Family Support (Birth to 3)
Family Support was created to meet the needs of Maryland families with children, birth to 3, who have been identified as having developmental delays or disabilities. Wicomico County Family Support, which is staffed by a parent of a child with a disability, provides information to families regarding community services; refers families to local support groups, workshops, and advocacy groups; provides opportunities for families to network and share ideas and experiences; and helps to link "experienced" parents with parents of newly identified children with similar special needs.
Family Support (3 through 5)
To help support families during the transition from the Birth to Five Program to preschool special education program or other community-based early childhood setting—or from preschool into a school-age program—the Maryland State Department of Education makes funding available to expand services provided through local Family Support. Family Support provides ongoing support to families of children ages 3 through 5, maintaining the connection with the Birth to Five Program, as well as fostering new connections among families, preschool programs, and community services.
Family Support (6 to 21)
Family Support Centers, established as part of each local school system in Maryland, have as their goal the provision of knowledge and the development of essential skills fundamental to parents and professionals working together as equal partners in the educational decision making process. Specifically, Family Support Centers seek to:
- Increase parental involvement in the special education decision making process
- Provide information and resources about disabilities and community services
- Assist families in resolving concerns and making informed decisions regarding their child's education
- Increase collaborative relationships through information and training