The free resources are designed to increase knowledge and skills of those working with children with combined intellectual and developmental disabilities and mental health needs.
Texas Tech University's Virginia Murray Sowell Center for Research and Education in Sensory Disabilities has released a video series providing educators, parents and related service personnel with information related to student mental health and special education.
The library of 13 videos, which is free and publicly available, focuses on helping students who have a dual diagnosis of an intellectual and developmental disability (I/DD) and a mental health condition. Topics include an overview of dual diagnosis, the impact of mental health on academic achievement and best practices for working with a student with a dual diagnosis.
“Youth with dual diagnosis and their families are often misunderstood and denied the specialized support they need,” said Devender Banda, a professor of special education at Texas Tech. “This series of videos features valuable tips and perspectives from a variety of sources, including parents, educators, counselors, psychologists and other experts. We hope this will be a useful resource for families and school personnel to better understand and help students who have dual diagnosis.”
The video series is a part of Project TEDD: Training Educators in Dual Diagnosis, an initiative to address a state need for K-12 educators who specialize in teaching students who have a dual diagnosis.
Over five years, the project will provide 400 Texas special educators with access to free "train-the-trainer" workshops, which will prepare them to equip other educators with necessary skills for recognizing, understanding and working with individuals with dual diagnosis. Each of the 400 teachers who receive the initial training will be expected to train at least five additional educators, totaling 2,000 or more across Texas.
“We had tremendous success with our first year of Project TEDD, which was focused on training educators within the Region 17 Education Service Center area,” said Stephanie Barbre, project manager for Project TEDD. “The participating teachers exceeded our initial outreach goal by training 179 other individuals in their districts. We look forward to starting our next round of workshops in the fall for educators in Regions 1-5.”
Project TEDD is funded by a $1.5 million grant from the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities (TCDD). The mission of TCDD is to create change so all people with disabilities are fully included in their communities and exercise control over their own lives.