New Mexico Parent Training and Information Center (NMPTI)
Parents Reaching Out serves families of infants, children and youth with all types of disabilities as well as related professionals as New Mexico's Parent Training and Information Center (PTI) funded by the US Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). Our first responsibility is to inform and educate parents about special education law and the rights and responsibilities they and their child have under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
Children and youth with disabilities, ages 3 through 21, are served through IDEA Part B as the responsibility of the New Mexico Public Education Department. Early intervention services for Infants and toddlers with disabilities, ages birth through age 2 years, and their families are served through IDEA Part C by the New Mexico Department of Health Family, Infant, Toddler (FIT) program. NMPTI collaborates with our DreamCatchers Project to serve families of infants and children covered under IDEA Part C.
Our goal is to provide tools to families to help them make informed decisions as equal partners in their child's Individual Education Program (IEP) or Individual Family Service Plan (IFSP). Our Family Liaisons use telephone assistance, workshops and publications to provide 'family friendly' training to parents, educators and service providers throughout New Mexico. As the NMPTI, Parents Reaching Out:
- Helps families obtain appropriate education and services for their children with disabilities as identified through IDEA and related laws;
- Works to improve education results for all children;
- Provides training and information parents and professionals on a variety of topics to promote inclusive environments for children and youth with disabilities;
- Offers strategies to build partnerships, encourage communication and help resolve problems between families and schools or other agencies; and
- Connects families of children with disabilities and youth with disabilities to community resources that address their needs.
NM PTI Liaisons are familiar with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA 2004) for children with disabilities. However, they are not attorneys or paralegals and do not represent families in hearings or other legal matters. They are parents who are trained to provide information and support to improve educational outcomes for children in today's schools.
Our most powerful outreach tool is the commitment and dedication of a group of trained community volunteers known as our Adobe Corp. Just like the solid adobes used to construct homes, our Adobe Corp members provide a strong foundation for family involvement in towns and villages across our state. Adobe Corp members work hand in hand with other volunteers in our Family Leadership Action Network (FLAN).