July 29, 2020

IEPs and the 2020-21 School Year: What Families Need to Know

Are you the parent or caregiver of a student with an IEP? Join the PEAL Center on August 11 for the webinar, “Students with IEPs and the 2020-21 School Year: What Families Need to Know.”


On August 11, Carole Clancy, Director of the Bureau of Special Education at the Pennsylvania Department of Education, will join the PEAL Center for a live presentation to offer an overview of guidance being provided to schools regarding students with IEPs. Director Clancy will discuss the following:

    • COVID-19 compensatory services;
    • instructional days and hours;
    • the use of masks at schools; and
    • COVID-19’s impact on evaluation, re-evaluation, and delayed eligibility determinations.

Participants are encouraged to submit any questions they may have for the presenter in advance by completing this online form. Questions must be submitted no later than August 3, 2020.


This live event will be available on the PEAL Center Facebook page and will be recorded for those unable to attend. A webinar recording will be available on the Facebook event page after the session ends.

Training will be delivered in English, with Spanish and American Sign Language (ASL) translation available. Captioning in other languages is available if participants download the Microsoft Translator app.

More Information

For questions or more information, contact or 1.866.950.1040.

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June 17, 2020

Transitioning Your Child from Preschool EI to Elementary School

Are you interested in learning about options for developing an Individualized Education Program (IEP) for your child as they transition from preschool early intervention (EI) to elementary school? Join the PEAL Center on July 1 for their webinar, “Transitioning Your Child From Preschool Early Intervention to Elementary School.”


In this webinar, participants will learn about:

    • the importance of informed decision making in determining educational placement,
    • options for developing an IEP as a child transitions,
    • the impact of adult perspectives on children’s opportunities, and
    • a Student Snapshot tool families can use in preparing for the transition.


To register and learn more, visit the event webpage.


March 24, 2020

Questions Answered for Families During Time of Uncertainty

Join the PEAL Center on Wednesday, March 25 for their webinar, “Questions Answered for Families During Time of Uncertainty.”


In this webinar, PEAL Center team members will review the latest information and identify key information for families who have children with IEPs. Their goal is to ensure that families understand their rights under IDEA while encouraging collaborative problem solving and creative solutions. By attending, participants will hear about critical and timely information, including evolving guidance, resources for families, strategies for progress monitoring at home, and answers to questions you may have.


To register and learn more, visit the event webpage.


May 7, 2019

Parents Moving Forward Together | Conference

Join the Allegheny Family Network for “Parents Moving Forward Together,” a one-day mental health conference focused on supporting our region’s children, caregivers, and educators.


  • Legislative Panel with Rep. Dan Miller
  • Building Leadership Qualities
  • Connecting Trauma Through Stories
  • Dissecting the IEP
  • Teens: Intense Emotions and Suicidality


This event is free, but registration is required for lunch and child care. To register, call 412.246.2030.

See the event’s Facebook page.


Buses are available for specific areas. See the bus schedule here.

Parking will be available onsite for $5. Free parking is available for Allegheny Family Network families.

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February 15, 2019

Response to Governor Wolf’s Budget Proposal

On Tuesday, February 5, Governor Tom Wolf presented his fiscal year 2019-20 budget proposal. In highlighting his plan to make the Pennsylvania workforce the strongest in the nation, he outlined several increases in early care and education programs, as well as his plans to spend over $101 million in federal child care funds. Governor Wolf’s proposal includes the following:

Child Care

  • $15 million in federal funds to provide subsidized child care for 970 additional infants/toddlers in STAR 3 and 4 programs.
  • $10 million in federal funds to provide a 28 percent increase to tiered reimbursement rates for STAR 2, 3 and 4 providers for infant/toddler care.
  • $2 million in federal funds to support an “Early Childhood Career Pathways Initiative” for education, training and professional supports for an apprenticeship, or work-based learning model for professionals serving infants/toddlers in early care and education programs.
  • $74 million in federal funds to provide a rate increase for subsidized providers for an increase in the minimum wage to $12/hour.

Today only one-third of subsidized children are accessing high-quality STAR 3 and 4 care, 4,300 children are on the subsidy waiting list, with families waiting 88 days to access subsidies they need to work, 50 percent of child care staff are receiving public assistance and child care subsidy reimbursements do not cover the cost of quality care. Trying Together, along with nine partner advocacy organizations, launched a new advocacy campaign last week – Start Strong PA – to turn those numbers around and increase access to high-quality child care for families so their infants and toddlers can grow, learn and succeed.

We are pleased to see the federal spending plan includes a waiting list initiative to serve more infants/toddlers in high-quality care and an increase in tiered reimbursement that will provide further program stability and consistency in teacher:child relationships. These are proposals for which we and partners advocated and align with our goals. We also believe the “career pathways” initiative will help to attract and retain talented early care and education teachers, another hallmark of the campaign.

Trying Together looks forward to learning more about Governor Wolf’s minimum wage proposal’s impact on the professionals in our field and the programs in which they work. While we appreciate the allocation of these critical federal dollars and again thank our federal delegation for strong, bipartisan support for high-quality child care, we are concerned with the lack of new state investments in this area.


  • $40 million for the Pre-K Counts program
  • $10 million for the Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program

This expansion would serve 5,500 additional young children.  

Today the commonwealth ranks 18th of the 30 states investing in high-quality, publicly-funded pre-k and with this investment 100,000 children still lack access. As a leading partner in the Pre-K for PA campaign, Trying Together is advocating that lawmakers fully-fund Governor Wolf’s proposal.

Evidence-Based Home Visiting

In addition, the budget proposal includes a $5 million investment in evidence-based home visiting programs to expand home visiting for 800 eligible families.

For more information on home visiting advocacy efforts go to

Evidence-Based Early Intervention

There is a $15 million state funding increase proposed in the Department of Education budget and a $9.75 million increase in the Department of Human Services (DHS) budget for Early Intervention to continue to support the cost of children receiving services.

Trying Together commends Governor Wolf for his continued commitment to early care and education programs in the commonwealth and encourages a state investment be made in high-quality child care so we can provide children with the educational foundation they all deserve. We will advocate for these investments as the budget process continues. Stay up-to-date on how to advocate for these issues by signing-up to support Trying Together’s public policy agenda here.