Below are some frequently asked questions that New Directors often have. Following the FAQs are some links to other helpful resources that we’ve collected. Feel free to edit or customize any samples or templates you discover on this site.

There are two primary ways that new PTI/CPRC Directors can access training. Each year the 4 RPTACs and the CPIR collaborate to put on a virtual New Directors Training which covers topics such as Grant Reporting, Data Collection, Project Implementation, Finance and Uniform Guidance. New directors go through these training modules in real time with a cohort of other new directors from across the country. Your RPTAC can inform you when the next series is occurring so you may get signed up. New directors can also access training on a variety of special education and nonprofit management topics through the CPIR’s eLearning Hub. Every center director may request a username and password to access this site.

In Region C, we have a variety of resources and archived content on our website that may help enhance your knowledge on topics relevant to managing a parent center program and/or nonprofit organization.

The CPIR, located at SPAN Advocacy in New Jersey, serves as the national technical assistance center for Parent Centers across the country. The CPIR’s focus is on developing products that are relevant and useful for all Parent Centers. The CPIR provides universal, general TA to the Parent Centers across the nation and serves as a virtual hub for collaboration and training. Great Things From CPIR

The focus of the four Regional PTACs is to provide capacity-building technical assistance to the Parent Centers within their respective regions. The PTACs provide targeted, specialized TA and intensive, sustained TA to the Parent Centers in their regions.

Parent Center Directors take on a great deal of management responsibility along with program responsibilities and budgets that are usually quite small. That means we need to know exactly where to go to find out what to do to manage the required board, personnel, financial, and legal requirements that are a part of our day-to-day work.

Your RPTAC may have samples of various documents and/or policies that they can share with you. Additionally, all parent center directors have access to the Management Index, which is designed to provide high-quality, topical resources organized by tabs relating to essential Parent Center Director information. Teams of experienced center director staff have collaborated to provide up-to-date resources for each of the essential areas of Parent Center management.

The Board Toolkit was developed to train Parent Center Boards to help them meet their responsibilities. Each of the Tool Kits has 3 topics – 18 topics altogether! Each topic includes a short 10-20 minute video, a Dialogue Guide with presenter notes to help apply the video information to the Parent Center, a FAQ with the most important takeaway information, additional supporting resources, and a post-training evaluation survey. A Board Self-Assessment Tool is available to help the Board create a professional development plan, prioritizing topics identified where training is most urgently needed. The RPTACs can help with questions related to use of these Tool Kits.

Written TA and Unauthorized Practice of Law Toolkit: Parent Centers’ foremost commitment is to provide families with information that will empower them to advocate effectively for their children. To do that properly, each Parent Center must provide individualized assistance that is accurate, up-to-date, relevant, high quality, research-based, and appropriate to the needs expressed. There are special considerations Parent Centers must be mindful of when providing assistance to families in writing. Further, there are legal and ethical considerations Parent Centers must be mindful of so that they do not unknowingly engage in the Unauthorized Practice of Law when providing any type of assistance. The Toolkit to Ensure Appropriate, Quality, Written Individualized Assistance & the Unauthorized Practice of Law, was developed collaboratively between the RPTACs and the CPIR will help Parent Centers:

  • Understand the context and legal and other implications of providing written individualized assistance and avoiding the unauthorized practice of law;
  • Understand the need for, and appropriate contents of, written Parent Center policies and procedures regarding written individualized assistance and avoiding the unauthorized practice of law;
  • Learn about tools to assess current policies and practices, and develop and train staff on appropriate policies, procedures, and practices.

Both toolkits are intended exclusively for Parent Centers, and are available on the Parent Centers Only page.

  • The Annual Performance Report (a.k.a. Continuation Report) – Due for each year funding has been approved in order to receive continuation award. Demonstrate progress toward meeting project and program performance measures.
    • Centers typically receive the initial notification that the report is due in February, with a due date in early May (approximately). This notification/letter includes instructions for completing the report, where to find the form templates and how to access available technical assistance.
    • This letter is sometimes referred to as the “Larry letter” in reference to the individual at OSEP who previously sent out these letters.
  • Program Service Description (Government Performance and Results Act, GPRA) – Demonstrate the effectiveness of OSEP programs. Gather data on performance measures approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Done through review of services developed and delivered by Parent Centers. Parent Centers do NOT do this every year, but typically do it every other year (or sometimes once every 3 years; selection is based upon a sampling plan). If your Center is selected to participate, you will be notified in January and your submission will be due in March (approximately). The results of this data collection yield aggregated data across all participating Parent Centers related to measures of Quality, Relevance and Usefulness (QRU).
  • National Data Collection – facilitated by the Center for Parent Information & Resources (CPIR), this two-part data collection serves to highlight the work of Parent Centers in reaching and serving families and youth and the many positive impacts and outcomes from our work. Part 1, typically due in early November, is the quantitative data collection (the numbers of various types of services, contacts, activities conducted during the reporting period). Part 2, typically due in December, reflects the overall assessment of progress toward long-term measures (outcomes) established by OSEP. Part 2 data is collected through surveys completed by a random sample of individuals who accessed services from your Parent Center.
  • Region C Parent Center Directors monthly virtual meetings are held the last Wednesday of each month from 11-12 Mountain/12-1 Central/1-2 Eastern.
  • Regional and All Parent Center Conferences – annual and offered on alternative years
  • OSEP Leadership/Project Directors conference – typically held in late July or August annually in the Washington DC area
  • Region C website: regioncptac.org (this includes a password protected page for Region C Centers only – password may be obtained by contacting Melissa Voegeli ([email protected])
  • Region C Google drive which contains resources and minutes from each month Director Meeting. Please contact Karen Thompson ([email protected]) for access.