What Leaders In The Field Are Saying About the Center
"This program thoughtfully brings together cutting edge partners that together will create a high-caliber, hands-on environment for learning. Those that complete the program will be sought after by many school systems for leadership positions in special education."
- Kim Lewis, EdD
The Center for Innovation and Leadership in Special Education at Kennedy Krieger Institute is a new fellowship program designed to train future leaders in the fields of special education and neurodevelopmental disabilities. Through a mentored program including didactic learning opportunities, interdisciplinary clinical experiences, and immersion in cognitive and behavioral research and neuroscience, fellows will acquire valuable skills in evidence-based best practices involving independent research, teaching, supervision, advocacy, law, and translation of neuroscience and behavioral principles to educational practice.
The broad-based goals for fellows include:
- long-term training in interdisciplinary care models
- principles of neuroscience and behavioral science
- methods for acquisition, interpretation, and translation of research to school and classroom settings
- educational leadership, including educational law
In order to become leaders, fellows receive specific training in management, ethics, methods of scientific inquiry, and the political processes in the fields of special education and neurodevelopmental disabilities. We believe the best way to train individuals in these methods is through didactic training, supervision, and mentored professional activities within a full-time fellowship format. The content areas will reflect a developmental continuum that includes early childhood, school-age children, transitions to adulthood, and lifelong learning.
For over 30 years, support from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau’s LEND (Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities) program has allowed Kennedy Krieger Institute to establish and maintain an interdisciplinary training program for over ten clinical disciplines, including:
- genetic counseling
- health administration
- occupational therapy
- physical therapy
- pediatric rehabilitation medicine
- neurodevelopmental disabilities
- psychology (behavioral and neuropsychology)
- social work
- speech language pathology
- spinal cord injury
During that same time, the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities funded a University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD) at Kennedy Krieger Institute. That UCEDD is now known as the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities (MCDD).
The Center for Innovation and Leadership in Special Education fellowship will function in tandem with the LEND and MCDD programs. Fellows will actively participate in a structured series of seminars, rounds, and clinics in order to gain in-depth knowledge of assessment and interventions for children with complex neurodevelopmental disorders, as well as a breadth of exposure to highly diverse patient populations and interdisciplinary approaches to intervention. In order to provide comprehensive interdisciplinary training, all fellows will be assigned a primary faculty mentor who, together with the fellow, will develop an individualized training plan (ITP) designed to monitor and document the breadth and depth of the training experiences.