Understanding ECEI Requirements

The role you play as one part of a support team

The NDIS Eligibility checklist:

  • Do you live in Australia and have Australian residency?
  • Do you usually need support from a person because of a permanent and significant disability?
  • Do you need some supports now to reduce your future needs?
  • Are you aged between 7 and 65?
  • What about those in one of our most vulnerable populations?

Well you are in luck.

Under the National Disability Insurance Scheme, children under the age of 6 can access early childhood intervention supports to maximise their development. There are also supports available for parents, carers and family of a child with developmental delay or a disability to help them in their daily living with a child or sibling with a disability.

BUT what is Early Intervention?

Early intervention services for children living with disabilities is a comprehensive therapeutic approach that includes several therapy disciplines that assess a child, plan interventions, and develop participant and guardian-centred goals in order to achieve the best outcomes.

It takes a village to raise a child and a transdisciplinary team to provide Early Childhood Early Intervention.

The NDIA has defined the transdisciplinary approach as a team who works collaboratively, shares responsibility, and who sees the family as valued team members.

As a way to coordinate the delivery of services and to manage the links within a transdisciplinary team, families have the option of electing one professional as the main point of contact for families. This person is known as a Key Worker.

What this means for providers registering to provide ECEI under the NDIS.

When providing early childhood supports to NDIS participants service providers need to take a holistic approach with careful consideration of:

  • The Child – Service providers have a legal and ethical responsibility to ensure that thy have practices and processes in place that focus on creating a safe environment for children to learn and grow.
  • The Family – Service providers must recognise the importance family holds in a young person’s education and intervention. A family’s strengths, needs and priorities need to be recognised and respected.
  • Inclusion – Where every possible support should be provided with consideration and inclusion of a child’s daily routine and promote natural learning in a familiar environment.
  • Collaboration – Service providers must coordinate supports in a collaborative manner utilising the skills and knowledge of a child’s family and other relevant providers. Families have the option of engaging a key worker to scaffold this collaboration.
  • Capacity Building – Supports are planned and provided with the intention to build a child’s knowledge, skills and abilities in order to support a child’s learning.
  • Evidence – Informed Practice with an Outcome Based Approach – Service providers need to plan and offer supports that are based on validated practices, the best available research and relevant laws and regulations. As a matter of ongoing reflection, providers must ensure they have well documented assessments and plans that evaluate and report on intervention outcomes in a meaningful way.

As an ECEI provider it is your role to supports families to help children develop the skills they need to take part in daily activities and achieve the best possible outcomes throughout their life. Childhood is an important and influential time in a person’s life, early intervention leads to life time learning.

It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.Frederick Douglass