Integrated Behavioral Technologies, Inc. (IBT) Receives $40,047 Grant from Kansas Children’s Cabinet and Trust Fund

Integrated Behavioral Services, Inc. (IBT) was recently awarded a $40,047 grant from Kansas Children’s Cabinet and Trust Fund – All In for Kansas Kids to increase the number of childcare professionals trained effective social-emotional interventions (Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports (PBIS)) for children with autism or other intellectual, developmental, physical, behavioral, and/or emotional needs. This project is the second part of a three-year plan to develop a replicable PBIS model that incorporates advanced social-emotional skills programming, puts into place appropriate structure, stability, and healthy behaviors to reduce problem behaviors among children at The K.I.D.S. Place.

Through this project, IBT seeks to increase the number of well-trained teachers and educated parents on the PBIS model within its own childcare facility, The K.I.D.S. Place, and scale this model to facilities throughout rural Kansas, ultimately increasing the quality and level of care among children with autism or other intellectual, developmental, physical, behavioral, and/or emotional needs IBT staff will train teachers on the implementation, techniques, and use of PBIS with guided manuals and ongoing trainings and discussions to determine what works best. Through Parent Café sessions, parents and families will feel empowered with proven tools and strategies to handle challenging behaviors. Classes will be a clear path to integrating parents and families more fully into the learning process. Sessions provide parents with tools and understanding of how to ask the right questions to ensure the best outcomes for all children. These classes will be a bridge to building deeper trust between parents and educators.

It is not uncommon for young children to exhibit challenging behaviors at young ages; however, an estimated 10-20% of young children experience significant behavior problems that interfere with functioning in their homes and community or have a diagnosed mental, behavioral, or developmental disorder (Cree et al, 2016; Ghandour et al, 2018). Of considerable concern is the report that the number of young children exhibiting significant behavior challenges is on the rise in early childhood settings, such as preschool and childcare centers (Squires & Bricker, 2007). If these issues are unresolved, these children are at risk for academic problems, social rejection, and continued behavior problems in later childhood and adulthood (Ogundele, 2018).

Early childhood settings, such as preschools and childcare centers are tasked with alleviating and managing the problem behaviors of young children in addition to teaching them the social-emotional skills necessary to succeed in current and future settings. Teaching social-emotional skills is Domain 2 of the Head Start Child Outcomes Framework (Administration for Children and Families Office of Head Start (OHS)). Many early childhood settings have begun to utilize a positive behavior support framework to help address the social and behavioral needs of the children under their care (Dunlap et al, 2017).

IBT has served children with autism or other intellectual, developmental, physical, behavioral, and/or emotional needs and their families in the Midwest region for almost 20 years. Incorporated in 2002 to address the paucity of well-trained providers in the area and to serve families who would not otherwise be able to afford or access services, IBT has maintained an integrated, family centered approach while growing to meet the demands created by the increase in the prevalence of autism or other intellectual, developmental, physical, behavioral, and/or emotional needs. We are one of few agencies in the region delivering scientifically validated approaches implemented by highly skilled, board certified behavior analysts. The K.I.D.S. Place is the only early learning and childcare facility in our 45-county service area and families travel anywhere from 20 to 40 miles to access childcare services.