NYSPEP'S mission is to promote and improve parenting education, in order to enhance parenting skills, knowledge and behavior.


NYSPEP eNews is free to members. This valuable resource informs of upcoming professional development opportunities such as conferences, workshops, trainings, and community events, as well as essential resources and tools for your work with parents, primary caregivers, and families with children.

Please CLICK HERE to subscribe and receive the NYSPEP eNews in your email inbox the moment each edition is published. 

NYSPEP eNews - Archives

NYSPEP E-News, March 2020

NYSPEP E-News, February 2020

NYSPEP E-News, January 2020

NYSPEP E-News, December 2019

NYSPEP E-News, November 2019

NYSPEP E-News, October 2019

NYSPEP E-News, September 2019

NYSPEP E-News, August 2019

NYSPEP E-News, July 2019

NYSPEP E-News, June 2019


NYSPEP E-News, April 2019
NYSPEP E-News, March 2019


NYSPEP E-News, March 2020


The NYS Parent Portal mobile app from the NYS Council on Children and Families is ready for download in the Apple Store! Download it today for helpful parenting tips! Coming soon to the Google Play Store.


Registration is now open for the 23rd annual Making Healthful Decisions Conference, Tools for Growing Resilience: for Schools, Health & Human Services, and the Community, on March 18, from 8:30 am – 3:30 pm at Mount Saint Mary College in Newburgh, NY. Register by Feb. 28 for the early bird price of $60. Seniors (65+) and students with ID can register for $45. Participants will be served breakfast and lunch. To register, visit http://cceorangecounty.org/events/2020/03/18/23rd-annual-making-healthful-decisions-conference.

School professionals seeking CTLEs can register her for a slightly higher fee:  


 Presenters will explain current research regarding fostering social and emotional development, and building resilience in individuals, families, and communities. Resilience is a key strategy for combating the impact of toxic stress caused by adverse childhood events. This conference is designed to inspire attendees, as well as identify tools to build resilience in local communities, healthcare and social services settings, and in schools.

Prevent Child Abuse New York's Tamae Memole will be a panelist.

NYSPEP E-News, February 2020


NYSPEP will be offering their next webinar, Ethical Practice for Parenting Educators, on February 25th at 11:00 a.m.

Parenting educators face challenging ethical situations on a regular basis. These challenges may include observing parenting practices that may be harmful to children, responding to parent remarks about their partner, or sharing information about a family with a professional in another agency. Some of these challenging situations may be resolved by reviewing general principles of good practice with a colleague or supervisor, while others may reveal a true ethical dilemma. This interactive webinar will offer a model for understanding ethical principles and a process for addressing ethical situations and dilemmas. It will include discussion of case examples and opportunities for practicing application of the model.

Register Here


North Country Holds Strong Roots Training

On January 17, 2020 in Plattsburgh, NY, the North Country held their Strong Roots Training on "Helping Families with Ambiguous Loss and Taking Care of Ourselves." There was a three hour presentation by Dr. Deborah Langosch, who is a LCSW, Trainer, Consultant and Psychotherapist from Brooklyn, NY, on this topic, an opportunity for learning, reflection and response for the families the participants served. Dr. Langosch discussed types of loss and trauma, aspects of ambiguous loss, the impact of opioid and substance misuse, coping, social media, culture, safe conversations, tools for support and self-care techniques. There were over 45 attendees!

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NYSPEP E-News, January 2020

Community Coalitions RFP Applications Due January 17th

Calling all interested coalition! The New York State Parenting Education Partnership (NYSPEP) is proud to announce the release of our 2020-2021 Community Coalition Application. NYSPEP will be awarding four mini grants to community coalitions through New York State. 

The application deadline was January 17th, 2020. The application window is now closed.

Application for Parenting Educator Credential Due January 31st

The process of applyikng for and the awarding of the NYSPEP Parenting Educator Credential assesses and acknowledges your experience, knowledge and expertise in parenting education giving your work visibility and credibility. You can apply for the Credential regardless of your work setting or job title; it is for all those who support families and facilitate the growth and development of parents through education and resources. 

The application deadline was January 31st. Please follow NYSPEP on Facebook for more information about the credentialing process and the next deadline.

NYSPEP Year In Review; Catch Up on NYSPEP 2019

Visit the NYSPEP website to learn more about the great work done in 2019, through this link


NYSPEP E-News, December 2019

Webinar Alert: The NYSPEP Parenting Educator Credential--What Is It...Who Should Have It...And Why? 

Do you work with parents? Or, supervise staff who work with parents? It’s time to receive recognition for this specific aspect of your professional scope! The process of applying for and the awarding of the NYSPEP Parenting Educator Credential assesses and acknowledges your experience, knowledge and expertise in parenting education giving your work visibility and credibility. You can apply for the Credential regardless of your work setting or job title; it is for all those who support families and facilitate the growth and development of parents through education and resources.

This webinar will:

  • Clarify exactly what the NYSPEP Credential is (and is not)
  • Explain the different levels of certification so that you can figure out what level is right for you
  • Walk you through the step-by-step process of the application
  • Help you understand how the credential can enhance your career path

For supervisors, this webinar will spell out why you should also apply and be looking to hire staff who are credentialed or helping your current staff obtain the credential.

This webinar will help prepare you to apply for the next application deadline on January 31st!


Toxic Stress: What It Is, How It Can Affect You, And What You Can Do. A New Resource from the Center from the Center for the Developing Child at Harvard University

For those who've experienced toxic stress, just getting through the day can feel tough, let alone being the best parents or caregivers you can be. In this video, learn more about what toxic stress can feel like, and practical steps you can take to feel better and build resilience for yourself and your children.


Parenting Educators Can Play A Role in Communicating the Importance and Safety of Vaccinations 

The National Parenting Education Network (www.npen.org) is, once again, partnering with the CDC to share accurate information about the flu vaccination with parents. We urge you to find opportunities to speak with families and disseminate (in person and/or on social media, email, etc.) the wide range of materials available at the CDC's Seasonal Influenza Reource Center, including print materials, buttons and badges, videos, animated images and web tools (such as the Flu Vaccine Finder).

The CDC's resources are designed to fit various needs, with some for the general population, and many for specific populations, such as pregnant women. Fact sheets are available in multiple languages.

As front line workers interfacing with parents, you can play an influential role in getting the word out about the importance of vaccinations and keeping communities healthy this flu season. Visit: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/resource-center/index.htm


NYSPEP E-News, November 2019

2020-2021 Community Coalition Application Coming Soon

Calling all interested coalitions! The New York State Parenting Education Partnership (NYSPEP) will be releasing the 2019-2020 Community Coalition Application soon, with applications to be due in January. NYSPEP will be awarding mini grants to community coalitions throughout New York State. All interested parties, please keep an eye out in your email and watch the NYSPEP Facebook pages and website for more information, coming in November.

WEBINAR ALERT: Family Home Visits—An Effective Strategy for Relationship Building and Mindset Shifts

Trust is the connective tissue for building relationships. Participants will discover how family (home) visits is an effective strategy to build strong family–school connections and help change mindsets and disrupt implicit bias for both educators and families.

Webinar is presented by Carolyn Williams from the New York State United Teachers

Follow this link to register now:


Community Café Host Training

Friday, November 8, 2019, 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Learn how to host a successful Community Café, and become a leader for stronger families in our community. This facilitated training is based on World Café principles, now being used in Community Cafés held across Tompkins County.  All are welcome! Bring a friend or two from your community! Light lunch will be provided. 

COST: FREE for Tompkins County residents; $50 for those from other counties. Pre–registration is required. Space is limited so don’t delay! Register by November 5 DEADLINE on the "Learn More" link below and we'll provide FREE childcare!  When registering please let us know # of children and their ages. For more information, questions, or help with registration; call 607-272-2292

What is a Community Café?

· A Café is a community conversation hosted by parents and community partners

· Café conversations spark leadership to develop the supportive relationships necessary to strengthen families

· Cafés support culturally diverse families to work together for a common cause

· Cafés help to engage and empower families

For more information on Community Cafés model visit:


FREE for Tompkins County residents, $50 for Non-Residents

Learn More



Anna Steinkraus
Family & Community Development Program Coordinator
(607) 272-2292 ext. 145


NYSPEP E-News, October 2019

Greg David, Healthy Start Fatherhood Coordinator, Recipient of The Wales Brown Memorial Scholarship

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The National Parenting Education Network (NPEN) is pleased to announce the winner of the Wales Brown Memorial Scholarship to attend the 2019 Zero to Three Conference!  Out of a group of excellent candidates, NPEN’s scholarship review panel selected parenting educator, Greg David who receives full registration at the Zero to Three conference plus a stipend to help defray travel and lodging costs.

The Wales Brown Memorial Scholarship is awarded by the National Parenting Education Network (NPEN) in memory and honor of Wales Brown, who was an integral member of NYSPEP’s Steering Committee and a NYSPEP Credentialed Parenting Educator. Wales was dedicated to helping parents build stronger, healthier connections with their children and developed and implemented collaborative programs focusing on in-home preservation, parent education, fatherhood, and reunification of families with a history of abuse and neglect. His ability to connect with parents and children of varying backgrounds, his immense knowledge, focus and dedication led him to state and national recognition in his field.

Greg David, the Wales Brown Memorial Scholarship winner, is the Healthy Start Fatherhood Coordinator at The Family Tree, an information, education and counseling center in Lafayette, Louisiana. Greg's dedication as a parenting educator in the areas of fatherhood and serving at-risk families and his desire to enhance his knowledge and skills and bring cutting-edge information back to his community from the conference perfectly align with Wales’ legacy and make him the ideal beneficiary of this award.

Congratulations, Greg!

Become A Credentialed NYSPEP Parenting Educator—Next Application Deadline Set

It’s time to receive recognition for your work with parents! The process of applying for and the awarding of the NYSPEP Parenting Educator Credential assesses and acknowledges your experience, knowledge and expertise in parenting education giving your work visibility and credibility. You can apply for the Credential regardless of your work setting or job title; it is for all those who support families and facilitate the growth and development of parents through support and education.

The next upcoming deadline for applications is January 31st, 2020.  Credential applicants submit a portfolio documenting their competency learned through education, training, and experience. A volunteer panel of professionals in the field throughout New York State evaluates applicant portfolios in order to establish and grant certification to those professionals who are worthy of the NYSPEP Credential. Just let our Credential Coordinator Jennie Knox know that you’re interested, and she will provide you with the necessary information and guide you through the process. She can be reached at credential@nyspep.org.

NYSPEP Community Café Training of Trainers Series Creates Actionable Steps to Support NYS Children and Families 

On September 10th, 2019 the New York State Parenting Education Partnership (NYSPEP) kicked off a series of Community Café Training of Trainers (ToT’s) with the Healthy Moms/ Healthy Babies Coalition of Niagara County in Sanborn, NY. ToT Sessions followed in Clinton County with the Clinton County Parenting Education Coalition and in Tioga County with the Tioga Strong Families Coalition. During morning sessions, participants experienced the community café exploring questions related to supporting children and families in their local communities. Following the discussion of questions, participants began to create lists of actionable steps. In the afternoon sessions, participants were trained in the Community Café Model and had the opportunity to craft questions for their upcoming café series. NYSPEP would like to thank the leadership team at all of our partner agencies for creating an inviting, safe space for participants to engage and explore ideas with community cafés.

Tioga Strong Families Announces October Events 

Tioga Strong Families has several community events coming up in October. Follow this link for more details.

NYSPEP 2018 Progress Report Available Online

Wondering what NYSPEP was up to in 2018? Check out our annual progress report.


NYSPEP E-News, September 2019

NYSPEP Webinar Series Launches on September 25th

Missed our Summer Institute day back in June? No worries, NYSPEP is excited to announce that our 2019-2020 webinar series will continue the conversation held during our Summer Institute. Join us on September 25th, 2019 with fathering specialist, Don Campbell, for Part One of the webinar series. Don will be presenting, “What Divides Us: The Foundations of Implicit Bias and Its Impact on Parenting. 

Through this webinar, participants will gain a foundational understanding of implicit bias and the ways in which we have come to understand its impact on communities and, more specifically, on raising children.

· Explicit versus implicit bias
· The toxicity of micro aggressions
· Implicit bias in the instructional environment
· Limiting the damage
· Bias and fathering

Don Campbell’s background includes a diversified and extensive base of prior experiences in learning and development and social services, including roles with The New York Public Library, the Literacy Assistance Center of New York City, the City University of New York, State University of New York, the New York City Department of Health & Mental Hygiene, Opportunities for a Better Tomorrow and WESTMED Practice Partners. Don is a fathering specialist at Forestdale’s Strong Fathers, a program based in Forest Hills, NY that supports fathers aspiring to engage more deeply and provide more meaningfully for their children by helping them grow their parenting skills, emotional intelligence and behavior management skills.

Follow this link to register.

Books Build Connection Toolkit from the American Academy of Pediatrics

As we gear up for the start of the school year and busy autumn schedules, the NYSPEP Website has a terrific resource for parents and caregivers.  The Books Build Connections toolkit from the American Academy of Pediatrics gives families practical ideas for staying connected, finding some quiet time and strengthening literacy skills.

This toolkit features a variety of resources for families to explore and expand their understanding of early literacy. A variety of resources are available. https://littoolkit.aap.org/forfamilies/Pages/home.aspx

For more great family and community resources, follow this link.

Resources on the Impact of Racism from NYSPEP Summer Institute

The 2019 NYSPEP Annual Member Meeting focused on Building Supportive Relationships While Working Respectfully with Families and included discussion of how implicit bias plays a role in all our lives. A list of resources that were shared throughout the day can be found here. Parenting Educators may also be interested in the new recommendations released by the American Academy of Pediatrics on ways to lessen the impact of racism and teens in its policy statement, The Impact of Racism on Child and Adolescent Health.

NYSPEP E-News, August 2019

NPEN Announces Wales Brown Memorial Scholarship

The National Parenting Education Network (NPEN) is pleased to announce the Wales Brown Memorial Scholarship, which will be awarded to one parenting educator covering the fee for the 2019 Zero to Three Conference, October 2-4 in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

This is an excellent opportunity for professional development and networking for a frontline parenting educator. The scholarship will cover the full Zero to Three Conference fee with an additional $100 stipend to offset travel and hotel costs. (Any remaining travel and lodging expenses must be covered by the scholarship recipient.)   

More information about Wales Brown and the scholarship can be found here.

The application can be found here.  The application deadline is August 12th and the scholarship will be awarded on September 1st.  

New Webinar Series: Trauma-Informed Care: Understanding and Addressing the Needs of Unaccompanied Children (Available in English and Spanish)

Led by the Refugee Trauma and Resilience Center in Boston and in collaboration with the UCLA-Duke University National Center for Child Traumatic Stress, the NCTSN presents this webinar series designed to cover the impact of trauma on children during their migration journey. Nationally recognized speakers from NCTSN are joined by experts from the Irving Harris Foundation’s Professional Development Network to provide best practices for culturally responsive and trauma-informed provision of services. This series features diverse expertise from the fields of refugee and migrant health, cultural studies, mental health, early childhood development, childhood traumatic stress, trauma-informed systems of care, and secondary traumatic stress.

Webinar 1: Culture, the Migration Journey, Trauma, and Assessment

Webinar 2: Culture, Development, Trauma, and Socio-Cultural Responsive Interventions with Youth Ages 7 and Older


MEMBER PROFILE: Jackie Spencer, Family Development Lead Educator, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tioga County

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Jackie grew up as the youngest of 6 children in Sayre, PA. After taking a variety of courses in Psychology, Sociology, Child Development, Literature and the Arts as a Liberal Arts major at Corning Community College, she decided to pursue a career supporting healthy parent-child relationships. She transferred to the University of Pittsburgh to study Psychology, focusing coursework in relation to development. She found the Family Resource Center as a parent of a toddler, participating and volunteering for a little over a year. That lead her to the decision that she would like to be a part of the FRC Team. She applied for a position as a home visitor and began her career as a Parenting Educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tioga County.

Jackie has worked in Parenting Education for 16 years. Her primary goal as a parenting educator is to provide parents with research based information and skills to nurture their children’s development. “Parenting is hard work and our culture has not fully shifted to non-violent parenting beliefs as a whole. I believe that parenting education can reduce the occurrence of unintentional abuse and neglect by providing parents with better tools for managing children’s behavior.”

She also enjoys spending time in her garden growing flowers of all types.


 The Power of Play: How Fun and Games Help Children Thrive

With just about a month left of summer vacation, we thought we would put PLAY front and center with this article about how play helps children thrive. You can find the article here:


Parenting Teens

 Is there a teen in your house? Or in your not too distant future? Check out this article from the National Institutes of Health:



NYSPEP E-News, July 2019

NYSPEP Summer Institute Addresses Implicit Bias

The NYSPEP Annual Member Meeting was held on June 5th, 2019 this year at the Carondelet Hospitality Center in Latham, NY. The theme for the day was Building Supportive Relationships While Working Respectfully with Families. Our keynote speaker, Julika von Stackelberg kicked us off with a presentation on working respectfully with all families and discussed our current systems and structures as well as how implicit bias plays a role in all our lives. Julika shared a video created by PBS called "Implicit Bias: Peanut Butter, Jelly and Racism" In the afternoon, we were joined by a panel of four experienced individuals in the field of parenting education. Don Campbell shared his experience working as a fathering specialist in Queens, NY while Priscilla Shorter shared her experience raising her son as a young mother navigating through the healthcare systems. Jackie and Michael Campbell share their experience as facilitators of the Effective Black Parenting Curriculum in Rochester, NY. Our Parent Leader, Kara Georgi continued the conversation with participates through a community cafe discussion. Participates shared their thoughts, ideas and experience and the relevance of the theme for the day through the cafe discussion.  NYSPEP would like to thank our speakers for the day, the planning committee for putting the day together and our participates for their enthusiasm and dedication to parenting education. We hope to see you next year!

Resources from the 2019 Summer Institute are available here.


NPEN Seeks Input for Parenting Education Survey

You can help shape the narrative around parenting education by participating in a survey linked below being conducted by the National Parenting Education Network. NPEN is committed to the promotion of parenting education and seeks to advance the depiction and utilization of skills and the portrayal of parenting and family education professionals in entertainment media. By completing this short survey after viewing a TV show, movie or advertisement, you are helping us collect data that we can use as we pursue working with media professionals.

Our goal is to increase storylines that include family members seeking parenting education information, families using skills acquired from various resources and characters who are professional parenting education providers.  Media exposure will go a long way in the normalization of parenting education and the promotion of a profession often unrecognized by family members, policy makers, legislators, funders, researchers and academia.

To complete this very brief survey, you can draw from something previously viewed, something you are watching now, or when you watch something in the immediate future. Please complete the survey, throughout the month of July, one per media experience, although you are not limited to the number of media occasions you survey.

Please forward this email to all your professional and personal contacts as the more data we collect, the better. We will analyze the date and share the results with the entertainment media professionals.

Simply follow the link, https://forms.gle/aMofMqP4Kk9SkBKt9, complete the survey, and hit submit. This is anonymously submitted so we will not be getting back to you about our results. We will, however, compile data and post it on the www.NPEN.org website as soon as possible.


FREE TRAINING ALERT: DC:0-5 Diagnostic System Comprehensive Training Offered 

DC:0-5 is a research and clinically-informed multi-axial diagnostic system that provides a comprehensive guide to the clinical disorders found in young children. New York State plans to make DC:0-5 the recommended diagnostic tool for all children birth to age 5.

This comprehensive training is specifically designed for participants who are directly involved in the developmental and mental health evaluation and diagnosis of children birth to five years of age. 

This training provides history and background around the need for and development of a specialized diagnostic classification system for infancy and early childhood, as well as approaches to diagnosis from an Infant Mental Health perspective which is developmentally informed, relationship based, contextual and culturally competent.

Participants will learn about the multi-axial classification system and gain an understanding of each: Axis I Clinical Disorders, Axis II Relational Context, Axis III Physical Health Conditions and Considerations, Axis IV Psychosocial Stressors, and Axis V Developmental Competence

Participants will have the opportunity to participate in Community of Practice calls following the training for support on use of DC:0-5™ in their practice.   

Participation in this training is free of charge and participants will receive a complimentary DC:0-5 manual. 

This training will offer 11 CE contact hours for licensed social workers and LMHCs through the NYU Silver School of Social Work. Participants must attend both days to receive full credit. Attendees will be able to access certificates online following the training.

Register early since capacity is limited.  Additional trainings will be offered based on demand in each location.     

Please register below (All Trainings are 1.5 days (9am-5pm on Day 1 & 9am-1pm on Day 2):  

Buffalo Niagara Marriott 
1340 Millersport Hwy, Amherst NY, 14221          
July 11 & 12    
Register Here             

Long Island 
Melville Marriott
1350 Walt Whitman Road Melville, NY 11747    
July 25 & 26    
Register Here          

Location: TBD
September 12 & 13
Register Here

In collaboration with the Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County
615 Willow Avenue
Ithaca, NY, 14850 
September 26 & 27    
Register Here       

Doubletree by Hilton
455 South Broadway Tarrytown, NY 10591 
September 26 & 27    
Register Here

Hyatt Regency Rochester
125 East Main Street,  Rochester, NY 14604     
Sept 30, October 1     
Register Here    

Marriott Syracuse Downtown
100 East Onondaga Street, Syracuse, NY 14604      
October 2, 3             
Register Here 

Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel
40 Civic Center Plaza, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601 
October 7 & 8
Register Here

Holiday Inn Plattsburgh
406 New York 3, Plattsburgh, NY 12901
October 17 & 18     
Register Here

November 6 & 7        
Century House, 997 New Loudon RD.,  Latham NY 12110
Register Here


Member Spotlight: Connie Desmarais


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Connie Desmarais received a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from SUNY Oswego and a Master’s Degree in Marriage, Family & Child Counseling from Pepperdine University. Connie has been working in the human services field for over 25 years with the majority of her career being in early childhood and home visiting programs. Connie’s passion for serving young children and families can be traced back to her high school and college years where she spent significant time working as a babysitter, camp counselor and day care teacher.

When she’s not conducting outreach and encouraging partners in the Western New York area to look at the possibility of implementing developmental screening into their work, Connie is a mother/stepmother to six children, grandmother of two, and enjoys outdoor activities such as hiking and fishing with her family and her dogs.

Currently she helps to educate community partners such as pediatric offices, school systems, community based organizations, and parents on the topic of developmental milestones and how they can best support each child in the achievement of these milestones through her work at Help Me Grow. They offer free developmental screening tools to families and partners as well as providing follow-up on the results of the screenings along with any additional resources the family may need to help support them in their parenting. She was also the Program Manager for Healthy Families Niagara for 14 years.


Thank You for Your Service Gail!!!

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NYSPEP would like to congratulate our Steering Committee member Gail Volk (State Education Department) on her retirement. NYSPEP would like to thank Gail for her dedication to parenting education and her involvement in the Committees and workgroup. 


NYSPEP E-News, June 2019


**Member Spotlight will return next month**

***Registration is now closed for the 2019 Summer Institute. We hope to see you there!"

Applications Open for the NYSPEP Parenting Educator Credential

Parenting Educators are invited to apply for the NYSPEP Parenting Educator Credential. The NYSPEP Credential recognizes your professional development and competence and gives you increased visibility in the field of parenting education. The application process involves developing a portfolio to document your knowledge, skills and competencies for work in the field of parenting education. 

The next application deadline is July 31, 2019. Those who are preparing applications will have the opportunity to be partnered with a mentor to help guide you through the application process. You can learn more about the history and content of the NYSPEP Parenting Educator Credential at http://nyspep.org/professionals/credentialing. To begin the application process or ask questions contact the Credential Coordinator at Credential@nyspep.org.


New York Zero to Three Conference is Approaching June 14th in NYC

Equity from the Start: Promoting Social Justice in Early Childhood Programs

Keynote Speaker Eva Marie Shivers, JD, PhD, Founder and Executive Director of the Indigo Cultural Center

Friday, June 14, 2019 
9:00 AM - 3:00 PM 
130 East 59th Street 
New York, New York

Early childhood programs abound with diversity in both the children and the families who participate.  This diversity comes from differences across race, class, developmental ability, gender identity, sexual orientation, nationality, religion, languages spoken, and immigration status, to name a few.  How do we, as early childhood professionals, develop our own awareness of the power and privilege afforded to some and of the oppression and marginalization foisted upon others on the basis of these identifiers?  How can we make sure that we inadvertently don't add to the weight of oppression experienced by the families we serve? How can we, instead, become instruments of social justice? 

Our keynote presenter, Eva Marie Shivers, JD, PhD, Founder and Executive Director of the Indigo Cultural Center, and our breakout presenters will address these questions.  Dr. Shivers will begin the day looking at racial identity and how, through mindful transformation, we can be bias disruptors and champion social justice in early childhood programs.  After her plenary presentation, we will break into small groups to discuss and process her talk. 
In the afternoon, the following breakout presenters will continue the exploration: Michelle Gantt, Alexandra Martinez & Quiana Jackson, Veera Mookerjee, Renee Ortega, Laurel Salmon, and Rebecca Shahmoon-Shanok & Lauren Tobing-Puente. Some will address the personal work required to develop intercultural competency, with a focus on self-reflection and therapeutic use of self, and others will focus on racial literacy in early childhood classrooms. Still others will address a range of challenges including international immigration, developmental differences, and incarceration.

Breakfast and Lunch will be provided! Group rates are available. Register today!


PS: It Works! Strengths Based Communication Skills Professional Development Training

What: PS: It Works! Personal-Professional Communication Skills

When: Wednesday and Thursday, July 10 & 11, 2019, 9:00 am to 4:30pm

Where: CCE-Tompkins Education Center, 615 Willow Ave, Ithaca, NY 14850

Facilitators: Anna Steinkraus, Serena Ward & Judy Burrill
Cost: $200 registration fee, includes: training, lunch, snack and Parenting Skills Workshop Series Manual
Additional $25 fee to obtain NY State MSW/LCSW contact hours
Preregistration is required.
Register here: https://reg.cce.cornell.edu/PSItWorks-2_250. For more information: email: ams69@cornell.edu , or call Anna at (607) 272-2292.



NYSPEP Attends Babypalooza at Fort Drum

We would like to thank the staff at Fort Drum for inviting us to table and provide outreach at their annual Baby Palooza event. Our staff were able to meet and provide resources to service members and their families. Many attendees were first time parents and/or expecting parents.

NYSPEP Site Visitations!

Between April 2nd-9th, NYSPEP Steering Committee Members, Timothy Hathaway, Kristin Weller, Judy Wolf, and Melody Tien visited our 2019-2020 Community Coalition cohorts. NYSPEP is excited to partner with these local coalitions and support the parenting engagement work happening in each of these communities. NYSPEP would like to thank the community coalition leads for organizing the half-day meetings and the coalition members for providing space for the opportunity to convene.


Project Teach: Parent & Family Resource Page

OMH is  pleased to announce that Project TEACH has developed resources for parents and families which are now available on the Project TEACH Parent & Family Resource page. These videos and downloadables provide information for parents about mental wellness at different stages of a child/youth’s development and about the typical questions that may be asked in a child’s wellness visit with their pediatrician.

We all have a hand in promoting good mental health. One key role for parents and family members is being aware of the warning signs for mental health concerns. These Project TEACH resources can support a parent’s ability to identify concerns and have conversations with health care providers.

Guiding Caregivers: How to Talk to a Child about Deportation or Separation (Available in Spanish and English)

News reports and adult discussions about deportation can cause children many worries, such as fearing separation from a parent. Caretakers often wonder if it is better to keep silent so as not to upset their children. Having an open conversation, at the child’s developmental level, typically is the best approach. That way, the caregiver can give accurate information and explain the family plan in the event of a separation or deportation. This 2-page handout—created by NCTSN-partner Center for Child Stress & Health at Florida State University—gives examples of developmentally appropriate analogies to aid such discussions. 



NYSPEP Member Spotlight: Renee Falanga Brenner

Renee Falanga-Brenner has a good reason for doing what she does--her oldest daughter Serena, who celebrated her 25th birthday this past December! "Specialists said she wouldn't live past the age of four because of her extensive brain damage suffered at birth!" The impact of that experience has benefited over a thousand parents and early childhood professionals, as Renee has spent the past 19 years providing workshops and one-on-one support to parents who are concerned about their child's development or disability. "I provide strategies, resources, and empower parents with ways they can advocate for Early Intervention or Preschool services. I also share how they can support their child at home, in the community and within their family." She also gives workshops for Early Childhood Educators, School Districts, Head Starts, and Preschool Special Education Programs on topics including Social and Emotional Development and Creating the Ultimate Classroom: Addressing the Needs of All Children.

Renee has been involved with NYSPEP for a little over a year and she hopes to become a Credentialed Parenting Educator and continue the work of providing information about ACEs and Protective Factors via Community Cafes to Ulster, Dutchess, and Sullivan Counties.

In addition to Serena, Renee has three other children, making her the blessed mom of four children ages 16-25. She is a Core Volunteer for Christmas Wishes of Ulster County and is very civically minded, serving as President of the New Paltz HS PTSA; President of Ulster County Youth Board; Co-Chair of Orange County Parenting Coalition; Co-Chair of Hudson Valley Special Education Task Force; and member of the Newburgh Basics Steering Committee.

Conference Alert, This Saturday: Annual Forum--Innovative Practices in Prevention Science

A dynamic conference to help incubate strategies and solutions for moving prevention science from policy to practice in New York State.

Saturday, May 4, 2019 -- 8:30am to 3:15pm

Network with leaders in prevention science. Explore how early interventions improve outcomes in primary care settings. Strategize on the path from idea to policy to practice. And contribute to better health and a brighter future for children and adolescents in New York State.

This conference is presented by Project TEACH, a project funded by the New York State Office of Mental Health.

 Register Now 


NYSPEP E-News, April 2019

NYSPEP Celebrates the Life and Legacy of Colleague Wales Brown

We were all shocked and saddened to hear about the death of our colleague Wales Brown.

For nearly 30 years, Wales dedicated his life to helping parents build stronger, healthier connections with their children throughout upstate New York and beyond. He developed and implemented collaborative programs focusing on in-home preservation, parent education, and reunification of families with a history of abuse and neglect. His ability to connect with parents and children of varying backgrounds, his immense knowledge, and his dedication led him to state and national recognition in his field. Being awarded the prestigious ZERO TO THREE Fellowship (Class of 2014-2016) was a shining example of Wales’s accomplishments and his desire to always strive to expand his knowledge and influence as a leader in the field.

Wales was also a foster parent for more than a decade and was a single father of four boys with special needs who were freed for adoption. He worked in Ecuador, Egypt, and India in children's residential facilities and was a founding member of the Leadership Training Initiative for people living with HIV/AIDS, developing programming to respond to the needs of those in undeserved communities.

His personal and professional background made him uniquely qualified to work with the children and families of Northeast Parent & Child Society in Schenectady, New York, where he worked for 29 years. He was responsible for coordinating and teaching parenting groups for parents of children in different age groups through selected evidence-based curriculums. In addition to the group processes, he provided intensive individual in-home consultations and was a clinician in a supervised visitation program, coordinating and coaching visits using a coached visiting model and working with birth parents to build parenting skills and parental bonding. He completed his Masters in Adult Learning at SUNY Empire State College, and he was a nationally recognized Certified Family Life Educator (National Council on Family Relations). He also coordinated a fathering program in his community service work to help fathers that were separated from their children and worked privately in rural areas providing parent education.

Wales served for many years on the NYS Parenting Education PartnershipSteering Committee as well as the Credential Committee and Communications Committee. He was one of the first Parenting Educators in New York to apply for and be awarded the NYSPEP Tier III Credential: Senior Parenting Educator. While continuing his deep engagement with NYSPEP, he was elected to the National Parenting Education Network - NPEN in 2016 and was involved with the Communications and Membership Committees and had been serving the past two years on the Executive Committee as Secretary. He was instrumental in so much of the work of both organizations and volunteered his time and expertise generously.

Wales's death will be felt deeply in his community and throughout the world of parenting education.

Success in Strong Roots Events in Orange and Richmond Counties

On March 19th, 2019, the Orange County Parenting Coalition hosted their 22nd annual Making Healthful Decisions Conference (Regional Strong Roots). This year’s theme, Building Resilience focus on the collective effort of community members strengthening and understanding the impact of coming together to create positive change within their community. Participates had the opportunity to view the film, Resilience where Dr. Nadine Burke-Harris discusses the impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and the effects ACEs has on the development of children’s bodies and brain structures. Following the film, participates engaged in a guided discussion with Tamaé Memole (Prevent Child Abuse NY) and Kristin Fortuna (Rehabilitation Support Services). NYSPEP would like to thank the Orange County Parenting Coalition for hosting the event. 


On March 22nd, 2019 the Staten Island Perinatal Network hosted their Regional Strong Roots in Richmond County. This year’s theme, Triumph Over Trauma focus on supporting and promoting a positive parenting environment for individuals with a history of trauma. The keynote was presented by Dr. Myra Sabir from Binghamton University, who shared the significance of Life Writing. Following Dr. Sabir’s keynote address, a panel of parenting educators and medical professionals discussed the impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and the connection to their work. NYSPEP would like to thank the Staten Island Perinatal Network for hosting the event.

State of Babies Yearbook: 2019 Compares National and State-By-State Data


For the first time, the State of Babies Yearbook: 2019 compares national and state-by-state data on the well-being of infants and toddlers.

The current state of babies tells an important story about what it is like to be a very young child in this country, and where we are headed as a nation. Far too many babies face persistent hardships—such as food insecurity, unstable housing and exposure to violence—that undermine their ability to grow and thrive.

To create a brighter future for all, we must implement policies based on science and budgets that make babies a priority. Report and state rankings at https://stateofbabies.org. 

NYSPEP Member Spotlight: Shamise Quinn


Shamise Quinn is the Project Coordinator at the Community Health Center of Richmond. The center serves as the backbone organization for the Staten Island Perinatal Network for Better Birth Outcomes, a cross-sectoral partnership of more than 40 community-based organizations, health care entities, social service agencies and other related partners dedicated to improving birth outcomes and the livelihood of women, children, and families on Staten Island’s North Shore. 

She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Clark Atlanta University, a Master of Public Administration from John Jay College and has 23 credit hours of project management education from the Project Management Institute. She is an energized project manager/coordinator with documented success in planning, estimating and organizing the overall implementation of assigned projects and is highly competent at providing daily direction, motivation and support for a project team to ensure that project specifications and deadlines are met.

As the project coordinator for the Staten Island Perinatal Network, Shamise continues to make linkages and build relationships between different organizations within the coalition. Shamise ensures that parenting education information is spread throughout the network, and the community. Shamise realizes the importance of parenting education and works hard to make sure that parents, and families are provided with support and resources needed to succeed.

Shamise also loves to read and is a huge fan of Beyonce.