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Preparing early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs

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Title:
Preparing early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs a case study of one community college
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Case study of one community college
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Goff, Andrew David Lepp ( author )
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English
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1 electronic file (163 pages) : ;

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Early childhood education ( lcsh )
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bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )

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High-quality inclusive early childhood programs serve children with developmental delays/disabilities alongside children without developmental delays/disabilities, something that has historically challenged the fields of early childhood education (ECE) and early intervention/early childhood special education (EI/ECSE). A current movement suggests the challenges can be attributed to insufficient leadership within early childhood programs. This study explored how one community college prepared recent graduates from the Colorado Director’s Certificate program to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. The research used a case study methodology. The results from the study were used to provide the ECE department at the community college with recommendations for their preparation of early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs and ultimately increase the percentage of children enrolled in programs serving children with and without developmental delays/disabilities and their families.
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Thesis (D.Ed.)--University of Colorado Denver
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Includes bibliographical references.
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System requirements: Adobe Reader.
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by Andrew David Lepp Goff.

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University of Florida
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999609514 ( OCLC )
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Full Text
PREPARING EARLY CHILDHOOD PROFESSIONALS TO BE LEADERS IN HIGH-
QUALITY INCLUSIVE EARLY CHILDHOOD PROGRAMS: A CASE STUDY OF ONE
COMMUNITY COLLEGE by
ANDREW DAVID LEPP GOFF B.S., University of Minnesota, 2004 M.ED., University of Minnesota, 2006
A thesis submitted to the Faculty of the Graduate School of the University of Colorado in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Educational Leadership for Educational Equity Program
2017


11
2017
ANDREW DAVID LEPP GOFF
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


Ill
This thesis for the Doctor of Education degree by Andrew David Lepp Goff has been approved for the Leadership for Educational Equity Program by
Alissa Rausch, Chair Connie Fulmer Courtney Donovan Ted Snow
Date: May 13, 2017


Goff, Andrew David Lepp, (Ed.D, Leadership for Educational Equity Program)
Preparing Early Childhood Professionals to be Leaders in High-Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs: A Case Study of One Community College Thesis directed by Instructor, Alissa Rausch
ABSTRACT
High-quality inclusive early childhood programs serve children with developmental delays/disabilities alongside children without developmental delays/disabilities, something that has historically challenged the fields of early childhood education (ECE) and early intervention/early childhood special education (EI/ECSE). A current movement suggests the challenges can be attributed to insufficient leadership within early childhood programs. This study explored how one community college prepared recent graduates from the Colorado Directors Certificate program to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. The research used a case study methodology. The results from the study were used to provide the ECE department at the community college with recommendations for their preparation of early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs and ultimately increase the percentage of children enrolled in programs serving children with and without developmental delays/disabilities and their families.
The form and content of this abstract are approved. I recommend its publication.
Approved: Alissa Rausch


V
DEDICATION
To Natalie for your love throughout my adulthood and professional endeavors. You force me to question my intentions and the decisions I make. This is yours as much as mine.
To Citlali for your curiosity. You have asked questions that no one else could think to ask. You and your sister have been my inspirations.
To Itzel for your patience. You have not known me as anything else than a father/student. To my mother for your presence. You have been with me through thick and thin. You allowed me to be who I am and always reinforce my value to this world.
To Vince for the countless selfless commitments you have made. I would not be where I am without you.
To my grandparents for the snail mail that keeps me grounded and connected to what is truly important in my life.
To my sisters for sharing your lives with me, allowing me to feel like I have something to share with the world.
To my father for driving me to find clarity in the transformative decisions I make when choosing which road to take.
To Ashley for your encouragement through this whole process. I value my professional role because you never question my potential.
To Janiece for talking shop and helping me organize the complicated reality of my professional commitments.


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To Alissa For challenging me since day one of the process and mentoring me when I needed answers. I knew I could get through this because you told me I could.
To Elizabeth for affording me the opportunity of experience the pain and pleasures of this achievement.
To Barbara introducing me and guiding me as I sought to understand why I do what I do. To Dorothy for your ear, encouragement and the words that kept me moving forward.
To my research assistants- for your diligence and follow through.
To my committee your willingness to take on the challenge of mentoring me and stepping in when I was in need.
To cohort V- for persevering alongside me and all the laughs we had. We are a team.
To the community college who allowed me to conduct the research I completed for this
dissertation.


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TABLE OF CONTENTS
I. INTRODUCTION................................................................ 1
The Foundation for this Case Study...................................... 1
Background of the Case Study.............................................7
Limitation...............................................................9
II. LITERATURE REVIEW......................................................... 12
The Division for Early Childhood Recommended Practices..................13
High-Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programming..................... 16
Inclusion in High-Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs............20
Leadership..............................................................22
Leadership in High-Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs...........22
The Colorado Directors Certificate Program.............................25
ECE Personnel Preparation Standards.....................................28
Barrier One.......................................................30
Barrier Two.......................................................32
Barrier Three.....................................................33
Professional Development................................................35
The Paradigm of Professional Development..........................37
Delivering PD.....................................................38
Evidence-based Instructional Strategies for PD....................39


Vlll
Applying Effective Instructional Strategies Developing the Elements for
Leadership............................................................41
Conclusion of the Literature Review..........................................42
III. METHODOLOGY....................................................................44
Qualitative Research.........................................................44
Participants.................................................................45
The Faculty Members...................................................46
Graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate......................47
Methods for Data Collection..................................................49
Interviews............................................................51
Course Learning Materials............................................ 52
Data Analysis................................................................53
Code Mapping.................................................................55
Trustworthiness..............................................................56
Ethical Considerations...................................................... 58
IV. RESEARCH RESULTS...............................................................61
Results......................................................................61
The Faculty Interviews...................................................... 61
The Faculty Definitions of Leadership.................................62
The Faculty Awareness of Elements of Leadership.......................63
Instructional Strategies used by the Faculty..........................65


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The Faculty Recommendations.......................................... 67
Graduate Interviews..........................................................69
The Graduates Definitions of Leadership...............................71
Elements for Leadership the Graduates Developed.......................71
Instructional Strategies..............................................73
Graduate Recommendations..............................................75
Learning Materials...........................................................76
Frequencies of Pattern Variables......................................78
Frequency of Instructional Strategies................................ 80
Summany of Research Findings.................................................85
The Faculty Definition of Leadership................................. 85
Elements for Leadership Graduates Developed...........................87
Instructional Strategies Used by the Faculty..........................88
The Graduate and the Faculty Recommendations..........................88
V. DISCUSSION..................................................................... 90
Discussion...................................................................90
The Faculty Definition and Characteristics of Leadership..............92
The Graduates Developed Few of the Elements for Leading...............93
The Effectiveness of Instructional Strategies.........................94
Implications................................................................ 95
Implication One: Professional Organizations Expectations.............95


X
Implication Two: Insufficient/Inadequate Professional Development..98
Recommendations....................................................... 99
Conceptualizing the Recommendations..............................99
Recommendations................................................ 101
Developing the Faculty Awareness and Competency................. 102
Practice Leadership in Context.................................. 103
Provide Professional Development Meeting the Needs of the Students.104
Future Research Recommendations...................................... 105
Conclusion............................................................ 107
REFERENCES................................................................... 110
APPENDIX.................................................................... 128
A. Terminology........................................................123
B. DEC (2014) Recommended Practices: Leadership Strand.................127
C. CEC (2012) Advanced Preparation Standard 5: Leadership and Policy..129
D. NAEYC (2007) Program Administrator Competencies: Leadership and Advocacy 131
E. Colorado Common Course Numbering System: Standard Competencies: ECE 240 132
F. Colorado Common Course Numbering System: Standard Competencies: ECE 240 134
G. The Faculty Participant Questionnaire
135


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H. Graduate Participant Questionnaire.........................................136
I. The Faculty Informed Consent...............................................137
J. Graduate Consent Form.......................................................140
K. Developing Leadership for High-Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs
Study Description..............................................................143
L. Interview Questions for the Faculty Participants..........................145
M. Interview Questions for Graduate Participants..............................147
N. A Priori Codes............................................................ 149
O. Aligning Instructional Strategies to Desired Professional Development Outcomes
(Winton, Snyder & Goffin, 2016)................................................150


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LIST OF TABLES
TABLE
3.1. Code mapping: The iterations of data analysis (Anfara, Brown & Mangione (2002) 56
4.1. The faculty definitions of leadership for high-quality inclusive programs.........63
4.2. The faculty awareness of elements for leadership practices aligned with professional
organizations expectations for leadership.............................................65
4.3. The faculty instructional strategies..............................................67
4.4. The faculty recommendations...................................................... 69
4.5. Graduates definition of leadership................................................71
4.6. Graduates elements for leadership aligned with the expectations of professional
organizations..........................................................................72
4.7. Graduates recollections of the instructional strategies........................74
4.8. Graduates recommendations
76


Xlll
LIST OF FIGURES
FIGURE
1.1. Conceptual framework of DEC Recommended Practices.............................. 16
2.1. Blending professional organizations expectations for leadership in a high-quality
inclusive early childhood program...................................................28
4.1. Coded learning materials.......................................................77
4.2. Pattern variable codes.........................................................80
4.3. Instructional strategies.......................................................81
4.4. Instructional strategies used to teaching leadership practices.................83
4.5. Instructional strategies used to teach inclusive practices.....................84
4.6. Instruction strategies used to teach EC professional practices.................85
4.7. Styles of leadership in learning materials..................................... 87
5.1. Conceptualization for developing the elements for leadership at the community college
101


1
CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION
Chapter one introduces this case study. The introduction includes: (a) the foundation for the case study; (b) an overview of the problem of practice that grounds the case study; (c) a background for the case study; and (d) the limitations of the case study.
The Foundation for this Case Study
Inclusive early childhood programs serve children with developmental delays/disabilities alongside children without developmental delays/disabilities (Barton & Smith, 2015; IDEA, 2004; U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, 2015). Despite ample research, and the passage of the section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (1973), the Americans with Disabilities Act (1990), and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (1986) the percentage of children with developmental delays/disabilities participating in inclusive early childhood programs has increased less than six percent since 1986 (Barton & Joseph, 2015). For more than 30 years, advocates have worked to increase inclusion, but research has shown their efforts were less successful than previously thought (Barton & Joseph, 2015; DEC, 2014; Odom & Mclean, 1996). Recent publications suggest the paucity of inclusion is attributable to inadequate preparation of early childhood professionals who are leading early childhood programs (DEC 2014; DEC 2015).
In 1993, the Division for Early Childhood (DEC) of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), the professional organization for the field of early intervention/early childhood special education (EEECSE) created the recommended practices (RP) for professionals in EI/ECSE. In 1996, the professional organization published Recommended


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Practices for Early Intervention and Early Childhood Special Education (Odom & Mclean, 1996). The RPs were intended to support professionals with the implementation of evidence-based practices (EBP) designed to improve the outcomes of children with developmental delays/disabilities. The authors thought the RPs would increase the inclusion of children with developmental delays/disabilities in early childhood programs (Odom & Mclean, 1996; Sandal, Hemmeter, Smith & McLean, 2005). More than twenty years after the creation of RPs, EBPs have not been normalized into the program practices of early childhood professionals. Subsequently, children with developmental delays/disabilities are not provided with the high-quality inclusive experiences they are legally entitled to (DEC, 2014; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services U.S. Department of Education, 2015; Smith & Barton, 2015).
The practice of inclusion in early childhood programs is supported by three pieces of federal legislation: the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) (2004), the Americans with Disabilities Act (2008) and the Rehabilitation Act (1973). IDEA states: Each public agency must ensure that (i) To the maximum extent appropriate, children with disabilities, including children in public or private institutions or other care facilities, are educated with children who are nondisabled; and (ii) Special classes, separate schooling, or other removal of children with disabilities from the regular educational environment occurs only if the nature or severity of the disability is such that education in regular classes with the use of supplementary aids and services cannot be achieved satisfactorily. (IDEA, 34 C.F.R. §303.114, 2004)


3
ADA states:
A place of public accommodation is a [public or private early childhood program] (ADA, 28 C.F.R. §1.2000)... even if a separate or special program for individuals with disabilities is offered, a public accommodation cannot deny an individual with a disability participation in its regular program. (ADA, 28 C.F.R. §3.4200)
The Rehabilitation Act states:
No otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States, shall, solely by reason of her or his disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance or under any program or activity conducted by any executive agency (Rehabilitation Act, 29 U.S.C. § 504(a), 1973)
Collectively, IDEA (2004), ADA (2008) and the Rehabilitiation Act (1973) mean early childhood programs cannot discriminate against children with developmental delays/disabilities and all children have equitable access to general education classroom curricula to the maximum extent appropriate. Unfortunately, even with the three federal statutes and research providing evidence-based strategies to support the implementation of high-quality inclusive practices the inclusion of children with developmental delays/disabilities remains elusive for a majority of young children (Barton & Smith, 2015).
There are three underlying criteria of inclusion: Access, participation, and systems of support (DEC/NAEYC, 2009). In their most recent publication of RPs, DEC (2014) identified leadership as the core tenet of implementing the three underlying criteria for the


4
inclusion of children with developmental delays/disabilities (DEC, 2014). The RPs are designed to guide early childhood programs with EBPs designed to overcome the obstacles inhibiting inclusion (Barton & Smith, 2015; DEC, 2014).
In Colorado early childhood programs, leadership is an expectation of early childhood program directors (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016). While many scholars in the fields of ECE and EEECSE agree that program management is a responsibility of directors (DEC, 2015; Kagan & Bowman, 1997; Muijs, Aubrey, Harris & Briggs, 2004), they also believe directors should espouse a wider range of elements for leadership that fosters high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2015: Kagan & Bowman, 1997). Elements are the knowledge, skills and dispositions of educational content (CEC, 2012;
DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC 2009). The sentiment is central to the concerns of vocal advocates of high-quality inclusive early childhood programming (DEC, 2015).
DEC (2015) proposes that the elements for leadership in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs should be learned through professional development (PD) (Buysse, Wesley & Skinner, 1999; DEC, 2015). PD is delivered through pre-service training, in-service training and practice in context (NAEYC/NACCRRA, 2011; NPDCI, 2008; Snyder, Goffin & Winton, 2016). In Colorado, early childhood program directors develop the elements for leadership while earning their state mandated Colorado Directors Certificate (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016).
Between 2011 and 2015, the Colorado Directors Certificate was earned through in-service PD (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2010; Colorado Childcare Rules and


5
Regulations, 2016; Colorados Early Learning Professional Development System Plan (n.d.). The certificate included, and for any student earning their certification at a Colorado community college, continues to include ten college courses. Two of the courses are written with personnel preparation standards designed to develop the elements Colorado community colleges have deemed important for leadership in early childhood programs (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016; Colorado Common Course Numbering System, 2016; Colorados Early Learning Professional Development System Plan, n.d.). However, the literature indicates the course standards may not be designed to develop the elements for leading high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (Colorado Common Course Numbering System, 2016; CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; DEC, 2015).
Traditionally, the personnel preparation standards for courses at institutions of higher education (IHE) are developed around the professional expectations defined by a fields professional organizations. The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), DEC and CEC are the professional organizations who influence the creation of the personnel preparation standards guiding the development of PD for EEECSE and ECE at MEs.
Personnel preparation standards are utilized for all levels of higher education. NAEYC provides guidance for personnel preparation standards for developing leadership for associate, bachelor and graduate degrees in ECE, but none of the professional organizations provide guidance for leadership in EEECSE through personnel preparation standards until early childhood professionals enter a graduate degree program (CEC, 2012; Stayton, Miller


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& Dinnebeil, 2003; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009). The literature published by NAEYC, DEC and CEC suggests Colorado community colleges and the professionals who design their courses do not have personnel preparation standards that will develop the elements for program directors to lead high-quality inclusive early childhood programs.
Understanding the Problem of Practice: Inclusion in Early Childhood Education
In 2012, only 42.5 percent of children with developmental delays/disabilities were included in early childhood programs, up from 38.8 percent in 1985 (U.S. Department of Education, 1987; U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, 2014). This case study considered the issue a problem of practice rooted in ECE personnel preparation. Guided by four research questions, it explored one community colleges preparation of early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive programs. The research focused on graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate program and the faculty at the community college who taught the courses.
The courses in the directors certificate are developed around guidance from expectations published by professional organizations (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC 2007; NAEYC, 2009; Colorado Common Course Numbering System, 2016). Literature suggests the expectations do not guide the development of community college courses designed to prepare early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (CEC, 2012; Stayton et al., 2003; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009). The DEC (2014; 2015) position affirms that the problem of practice will persist if personnel


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preparation programs like the Colorado Directors Certificate program do not prepare early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs.
Background of the Case Study
The community college where this research study was conducted has an annual enrollment of approximately 10,000 11,000 students. These students come from more than 60 countries, bringing with them a diverse range of racial, ethnic, and linguistic backgrounds. A majority of the students are non-traditional learners. Doescher & Beudert (2010) define a non-traditional learner in higher education as a student who has delayed enrolling in post-high school education. Non-traditional learners are typically the primary caregivers of dependents, working full- or part-time while attending school part-time, have low basic academic skills, limited financial resources and view their work as a job rather than a profession. Non-traditional learners in higher education are much more likely to leave school before graduation than traditional learners. Research has shown early childhood professionals who pursue credentials at community colleges demand well-planned, intentional instructional strategies targeted at developing relevant and applicable knowledge, skills and dispositions (Cho, 2016; Garavuso, 2014; Hyson, 2003; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009).
There are approximately 300 to 400 students annually enrolled in ECE courses at the community college. The demographics are similar to those college-wide. Students take courses to earn a degree or certificate. The department offers two different degrees: the Associate in Arts, and the Associate of Applied Sciences. They offer three different


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certificates: Level 1; Level 2; and Colorado Directors Certificate. This study addressed students who earned their Colorado Directors Certificate at the community college. The Colorado Directors Certificate program includes the following ten ECE courses.
ECE 101: Introduction to ECE ECE 102: Introduction to Early Childhood Techniques ECE 103: Guidance Strategies for Young Children ECE 111: Infant and Toddler Theory and Practice ECE 205: Early Childhood Health, Safety and Nutrition ECE 220: Curriculum Methods and Techniques ECE 238: ECE Child Growth and Development
ECE 240: Administration of Early Childhood Care and Education Programs ECE 241: Administration: Human Relations for ECE ECE 260: The Exceptional Child
The faculty participants who taught these courses all had adjunct status. The adjunct faculty had diverse professional and personal backgrounds. They all held graduate degrees in fields related to ECE and a career technical education (CTE) certificate.
The case study explored the preparedness of early childhood professionals in the Colorado Directora Certificate program at a community college to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. A specific definition of the term leadership as it relates to this study emerged through the applied methodology. There were four questions guiding
this research:


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1. What do semi-structured interviews with the faculty at the community college and document analyses of their course learning materials reveal about how the faculty at the community college and graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate program define leadership for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs?
2. What do semi-structured interviews with the faculty at the community college and document analyses of their course learning materials reveal about how the instructional strategies they use develop early childhood professionals elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program?
3. What do semi-structured interviews with graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate program at the community college reveal about how the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program are developed while they complete their certificate?
4. What recommendations can the findings from this research provide to the community college for enhancing their preparation of early childhood professionals to lead a high-quality inclusive early childhood program?
Limitations
There are four categories of limitations identified in this study: (a) the faculty participants; (b) the graduate participants; (c) the research design; and (d) the researchers role in the research.
The faculty had different personal and professional backgrounds. They had backgrounds in special education, mental health, education leadership and ECE program


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leadership. Their personal backgrounds were equally diverse. The faculty also had a diverse range of professional expertise and comfort with the courses they taught. Some taught one course multiple times others taught many courses a few times. They taught courses with different delivery models. Course models included a practicum, face-to-face and online.
Due to the diversity, this study recruited the faculty who had at least three semesters of experience teaching courses in the directors certificate.
Three limitations were identified for the graduates who participated in the research. First, the graduates completed the certificate at different paces, taking anywhere from three semesters to nine semesters to complete the courses. Second, they had different academic goals. The goals ranged from an interest in a bachelors or associates degree, not wanting additional education, or were no longer interested in ECE. Third, the graduates may have had different experiences while taking the courses. They may not have taken their course from a faculty member involved in the study and may not have been as engaged in the course.
There were two primary methodological limitations. First, the case study collected retrospective data. Experiences could have changed the way a faculty member taught, or recall teaching the course if or when the graduate took it. Graduates may have had experiences affecting the way they understood their experiences over time. Second, there were a small number of participants. While case studies do not require large sample sizes and procedures were set up to mitigate some of the problems occurring with small sample


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sizes, this could still be problematic. The results cannot be used to generalize for all students who graduate from the Colorado Directors Certificate program at the community college.
Insider research involves risks (Trowler, 2011). One that was of particular concern for this study was the power dynamic between the researcher and the faculty. The researcher was a full-time faculty member at the community college while the faculty members were adjunct. The research had a close relationship with the ECE department chair, who decides whether or not the adjunct have opportunities in the community college. This was mitigated by limiting the researcher's contact with the faculty during the research. The faculty was informed that their personal interview or results would not be shared with the community college.
The power dynamic between the research and graduates was also a concern. The graduates were aware they were participating in research that would be communicated to the ECE department. This was mitigated by limiting the researchers contact with the graduates. Additionally, the selected graduates were not familiar with the researcher and were not enrolled at the community college during the semesters the research was conducted.


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CHAPTER II
REVIEW OF LITERATURE
The literature is organized into five sections. The first section is a description of the DEC RPs as a theoretical framework molding the expectations for a high-quality inclusive early childhood program. The theoretical framework conceptualizes the rationale for courses in the Colorado Directors Certificate designed to develop the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program. The second section presents the current research on inclusion in early childhood programs. The findings highlight the value of inclusion for all children (Buysee, Goldman & Skinner, 2002; Cole, Mills, Dale & Jenkin, 1991; Cross, Traub, Hutter-Pishgahi & Shelton, 2004; Rafferty, Piscitelli & Boettcher, 2003; Strain & Hoyson, 2000). The third section discusses current research on leadership. It presents the recent researcher in EI/ECSE placing leadership at the forefront of the conversation on high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2015; Goffin, 2013; LaRocco, Bruns, Gupta & Sopko, 2014). However, the research specific to EI/ECSE is limited. The fourth section addresses personnel preparation standards for PD related to leadership. The literature illuminates the barriers caused by current standards. The barriers may create challenges for community colleges to prepare early childhood professionals enrolled in the certificate program to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (CEC, 2012; Colorado Common Course Numbering System, 2016; DEC, 2014; DEC, 2015). The final section addresses PD and the instructional strategies used in PD. The literature identifies certain PD instructional strategies as more effective at guiding the development of


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elements for leading high-quality inclusive early childhood programs than others. The literature reviewed provides evidence suggesting the elements for leadership early childhood professionals develop while earning their Colorado Directors Certificate at a community college may not prepare them to be leaders in early childhood programs including children with developmental delays/disabilities.
The Division for Early Childhood Recommended Practices
The RPs (DEC, 2014; Odom & McLean, 1996; Sandall, Hemmeter, Smith &
McLean, 2005) are the gold standard of practices for the effective inclusion of children with developmental delays/disabilities in early childhood programs (DEC, 2014). The Recommended Practices in Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education (2014), published by DEC is used as the theoretical framework for this literature review. There are two reasons for using the RPs as a framework. First, DEC, the professional organization for the field of EI/ECSE stresses the use of RPs to support high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. Second, the RPs define leadership positions, such as early childhood program directors as the foundation for successful, high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2015).
The RPs are the field of EI/ECSEs guide for promoting high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2014). The RPs were initiated with the passage of Public Law 99-457 in 1986, which amended what is presently called the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). P.L. 99-457 extended the mandate of the rights of all children to free and appropriate public education from kindergarten through twelfth grade to children birth


14
through 21 years old (Rous & Smith, 2011). Shortly after the passage of P.L. 99-457, DECS members recognized the need for a unified understanding of high-quality, effective practices. In 1991, DEC initiated a task force to create the first set of RPs. The task force decided it was important to draft the RPs with a broad base of stakeholders. Stakeholders included discipline experts, practitioners and families. The task force used six criteria to guide the selected practices: research based or value based; family centered; multicultural; cross-disciplinary collaboration; developmentally and chronologically age appropriate; and normalization of characteristics and practices that may be perceived as exceptional (McLean & Odom, 1996). The first set of RPs was completed in 1993 (Odom & McLean, 1996; Stayton et al., 2005). The RPs were comprehensively defined and described in Odom and McLeans (1996) book Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education Recommended Practices.
Although initially considered best practices for EI/ECSE, the authors determined the standards were not intended to suggest one practice was the best for all children and families. Rather, the standards for practices were recommendations for practices individualized for children and families (Odom & McLean, 1996). The first set of RPs contained 14 strands with a total of 415 practices (McLean, n.d.). The writers of the 1993 publication expected them to be the future for EI/ECSE stakeholders. They discovered a few years later that their expectations we not accurate. In response to advancements in research, policies, and recognition for the slow adoption of RPs by stakeholders, a revision of the RPs began in the late 1990s (Odom et al., 1995; Gurlanick, 1997).


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The second set of RPs was created with the intention of incorporating new EBPs and increasing the adoption of the practices by stakeholders (McLean, n.d.; Snyder, Thompson, McLean & Sandall, 2002; Smith, McLean, Sandall, Snyder, & Ramsey, 2005). Following a field validation and focus groups, seven strands with 240 practices were identified and defined (Sandall, Hemmeter, Smith & McLean, 2005; Smith et al., 2002). Two books designed to support the adoptions of RPs by stakeholders were published in 2005 (Hemmeter, Smith, Sandall & Askew, 2005; Sandall et al., 2005). DEC continued to search for additional techniques for expanding the dissemination of the RPs (DEC, 2014; Hemmeter et al., 2005).
The third set of the RPs (DEC, 2014), which is considered the current set, consists of eight strands. Beginning with leadership (see Appendix D), the practices are outlined in the following order: assessment; environment; family; instruction; interactions; teaming and collaboration; and transition (see Figure 1). The authors of the RPs note that practices within the strands are not isolated. High-quality inclusive early childhood programs demand the constant evaluation and integration of RPs across strands when appropriate. In many cases, practices from one strand cannot be teased apart from practices in other strands. For example, RPs of instruction are dependent on the inclusive environment, assessment, interaction, teaming and collaboration, and family. DEC (2014) states, the RPs bridge the gap between research and practice...supporting] childrens access and participation in inclusive settings and natural environments and address cultural, linguistic and ability


16
diversity (p 2).
High-quality inclusive ECE program leadership
High quality inclusive
ECE program practices:
Assessment
Environment
Family
Instruction
Interaction
Teaming and
Collaboration
Transitions
A high-quality inclusive ECE program
Figure 1.1. The conceptual framework of DEC Recommended Practices.
The RPs have become the guiding framework for adopting EBPs in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (see Figure 1.1). The framework of the RPs illustrates the importance of PD that builds the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program. Following the framework, high-quality inclusive early childhood programs begin with leadership which enables the use of the other EBPs. With the leadership outlined by the RPs, children with developmental delays/disabilities can have access to high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2014).
High-quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programming There are three federal laws supporting the inclusion of young children with developmental delays/disabilities in early childhood programs. ADA (2008) and the Rehabilitation Act (1973) protect children with developmental delays/disabilities from


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discrimination. IDEA (2004) provides rules and regulations for EI/ECSE. While ADA (2008) and the Rehabilitation Act (1973) are valuable assets for advocates of inclusions, the field of EI/ECSE is grounded by the rules and regulations of IDEA (2004).
IDEA regulation §303.114 states, to the maximum extent appropriate, children with disabilities, including children in public or private institutions or other care facilities, are [to be] educated with children who are not disabled (IDEA, 34 C.F.R. §303.114(i), 2004). Clarifying what is meant by maximum extent appropriate (IDEA, 34 C.F.R. §303.114(i), 2004), the legislation specifies that special classes, separate schooling, or other removal of children with disabilities from regular educational environment [should] occur only if the nature or severity of the disability is such that education in regular classes with the use of supplementary aids and services cannot be achieved satisfactorily (IDEA, 34 C.F.R.
§303.114(ii), 2004). Section § 300.42 defines supplementary aids and services as aids, services, and other supports that are provided in regular education classes, other education-related settings, and in extracurricular and nonacademic settings, to enable children with disabilities to be educated with children who are not disabled to the maximum extent appropriate in accordance with §303.114 (IDEA, 34 C.F.R. §300.42, 2004). IDEAS emphasis on inclusion has fostered a formal collaboration between DEC and the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).
In 2009, DEC and NAEYC issued a joint position statement on the inclusion of children with developmental delays/disabilities in early childhood programs. Recognizing the academic, social and legal conditions, the two leading organizations for educating young


18
children wrote a collective interpretation of inclusion in early childhood programs (DEC/NAEYC, 2009). The definition stated:
Early childhood inclusion embodies the values, policies, and practices that support the right of every infant and young child and his or her family, regardless of ability, to participate in a broad range of activities and contexts as full members of families, communities, and society. The desired results of inclusive experiences for children with and without disabilities and their families include a sense of belonging and membership, positive social relationships and friendships, and development and learning to reach their full potential. The defining features of inclusion that can be used to identify high-quality early childhood programs and services are access, participation, and supports (DEC/NAEYC, 2009, p. 2).
The joint position statement established a unified definition for the fields of ECE and EEECSE. It provided language that could meet the challenges of normalizing inclusion (Smith, Barton & Rausch, 2015). Stakeholders could articulate the obstacles inhibiting high-quality inclusive early childhood programs, and advocates could speak more clearly on practices that can eliminate the research to practice gap (DEC/NAEYC, 2009).
There were three themes framing the joint position statement: Access to, accommodations enhancing participation in, and structural supports for an early childhood program:
1. Access can be increased through adaptations to materials, classroom environments, technology and embedded learning opportunities (DEC/NAEYC, 2009; McWilliams


19
& Casey, 2008; Sandall & Schwartz, 2008). Access allows children with developmental delays/disabilities equitable opportunities to participate in all classroom activities.
2. Participation refers to accommodations for individual children. Accommodations support childrens engagement and adjust learning activities that meet the individual interests of a child (DEC/NAEYC, 2009; McWilliams & Casey, 2008; Sandall & Schwartz, 2008).
3. Program structural supports are intentional systems developed around collaborative relationships. Supports require programmatic coordination with a unified mission (Barton & Smith, 2015; DEC/NAEYC, 2009).
These three features defined the quality of inclusive early childhood programs and began to address the importance of leadership from all stakeholders.
The role of directors as leaders is highlighted in the joint position statement and subsequent documents with a call for the creation of program conditions enhancing the availability of resources improving a childs access to the classroom curriculum (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016; DEC, 2014; DEC/NAEYC, 2009). The literature identifies the importance of leadership which fosters policies and procedures allowing practitioners to implement practices increasing participation (DEC, 2014) and encouraging collaboration with the major stakeholders who are committed to a high-quality inclusive early childhood program (DEC, 2014; DEC, 2015; DEC/NAEYC, 2009).
Inclusion in High-quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs


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More than three decades of research has provided a large body of empirical evidence supporting inclusion as the recommended practice for children with developmental delays/disabilities (Gurlanick, 2001; Odom, 2002; Barton & Smith, 2015). Research strongly supports five conclusions:
1. Inclusion does not need to look the same in every early childhood program; there are multiple methods of structuring a high-quality inclusive early childhood program (Odom & Diamond, 1998; Odom, Horn, Marquart, Hanson, Wolfberg, Beckman et al., 1999).
2. Inclusion is beneficial for children with and without developmental delays/disabilities (Buysee, Goldman & Skinner, 2002; Cole, Mills, Dale & Jenkin, 1991; Cross, Traub, Hutter-Pishgahi & Shelton, 2004; Rafferty, Piscitelli & Boettcher, 2003; Strain & Hoyson, 2000).
3. The features of access, participation, and supports a high-quality inclusive early childhood program provide children with wide ranges of disabling conditions the opportunity to develop stronger social, pre-literacy, math, and art skills more than children in low-quality or segregated classrooms (Daugherty, Grisham-Brown & Hemmeter, 2001; Grisham-Brown, Schuster, Hemmeter & Collins, 2000; Grisham-Brown, Pretti-Frontczak, Hawkins & Winchell, 2009; Odom & Diamond, 1998; Rafferty et al., 2003).
4. With the correct policies, resources and unified beliefs, high-quality inclusive early childhood programs do not decrease the developmental outcomes of children without


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disabilities (Dinnebeil, Mclnerney, Fox & Juchartz-Pendry, 1998; Lieber, Hanson, Beckman, Odom, Sandall, Schwartz et al., 2000; Mulvihill, Shearer, Van Horn, 2002; Purcell, Horn & Palmer, 2007; Stroiber, Gettinger & Goetz, 1998).
5. High-quality inclusive early childhood programs can be less expensive than programs segregating children with developmental delays/disabilities (Odom, Hanson, Lieber, Marquart, Sandall, Wolery et al., 2001; Odom, Parrish, Hikado, 2001).
The research has fueled advocates work to enhance the quality of inclusion. However, there are many obstacles maintained through the research to practice gap that leaders fight to overcome (Smith et al., 2015). Smith, Barton & Rausch (2015) organize the common obstacles inhibiting the implementation of RPs into three categories: (a) attitudes and beliefs, (b) policy and procedures, and (c) resources. The obstacles remain in place because of the research to practice gap (DEC/NAEYC, 2009; Fixsen, Naoom, Blase, Friedman & Wallace, 2005).
Between 2015 and 2016, the U.S. Department of Education and Department of Health and Human Services issued five joint policy statements to assist state, local and program leaders: Suspension and Expulsion; Inclusion; Family Engagement; Dual Language Learners; and Assistive Technology. One of the continuous themes found across all of the joint policy statements is the pivotal roles of leadership to overcome obstacles and bridge the research to practice gap. The policy statements go beyond providing resources; they provide recommendations supporting leaders with creating systems of support and services for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (ED/HHS, 2016). The policy statements are


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enhanced by the DEC (2015) position statement on leadership. The joint policy statements and the DEC (2015) position statements articulate the importance of professional development (PD) that can develop the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program (DEC, 2015; ED/HHS, 2016).
Leadership
Northouse (2009) recognizes that the term leadership holds a different definition for different people and can vary across different contexts and conditions. He says, as soon as we try to define leadership, we discover that leadership has many different meanings (Northouse, 2009, p.2). In this literature review, leadership is defined as the individual and collective actions taken to influence the desired outcome (DEC, 2015; Snyder et al., 2012).
A leader espouses unique leadership qualities, applies leadership methods and is defined by their specific organizations structure and culture (DEC, 2015; Kagan & Bowman, 1997; Muijus et al., 2004). The research conducted for this study explored how each research participant defined leadership, and how it was reflected in interviews and document analyses.
Leadership in High-quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs DECS (2015) position statement on leadership and RPs (DEC, 2014) points out that the wealth of evidence supporting inclusion will be less effective in an early childhood program if the leader(s) does not have the elements of leadership that allow them to support the implementation of EBPs. Strong leadership can create the conditions for bridging the research to practice gap (DEC, 2014; DEC, 2015). The leadership strand of RPs addresses the responsibilities of those in positions of program authority and leadership related to


23
providing services to children who have developmental delays/disabilities and their families (DEC, 2014 p. 5). It alludes to the value of leadership in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2015).
An accumulation of research from across multiple fields has begun to identify the characteristics and responsibilities of effective leadership applicable to the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program (DEC, 2015). Research on leadership in business and K-12 education recognizes leadership and management as inseparable (Billingsley, McLeskey & Crockett, 2014; DEC, 2015). This belief is embraced in the DEC (2015) position statement on leadership (DEC, 2015).
The literature on leadership in EI/ECSE and ECE distinguishes management and leadership specific to the field (DEC, 2015; Kagan & Bowman, 1997). Management roles involve day-to-day operations and the utilization of program resources (Muijs et al., 2004; Yukl, 2013). It does not require social engagement or leadership (Muijs et al., 2004). Kagan and Bowman (1997) recognize that leadership involves social engagement and specific qualities. They, and other scholars, emphasize that the roles and responsibilities of a leader in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs rely on their adaptability to situational conditions in the program (Derman-Sparks, Leeheenan & Nimmo, 2014; Kagan & Bowman).
Derman-Sparks, LeeKeenan and Nimmo (2014) note, personality qualities of leaders include having the courage to lead, cultivating imagination, willingness to engage in ongoing self-reflection and growth, practice what one preaches, embracing learning from mistakes (Derman-Sparks et al., 2014, pp. 29-30), and accepting misfortunes as catalysts for


24
change (Derman-Sparks et al., 2014). Leaders do not need to manage, and a manager does not need to lead (DEC, 2015). However, management and leadership are often a dual expectation (Culkin, 1997). The distinction between the roles of leaders and managers highlights one of the complexities of leadership in a high-quality inclusive early childhood program.
The work of Derman-Sparks, LeeKeenan and Nimmo (2014), and other scholars impress the need for leaders to develop a critical consciousness of the power they hold within their positions (Bloch, Swadener & Cannella, 2014; Nicholson & Miniates, 2016). The RPs (2014) highlight an importance for leaders to understand their power and use it to fostering collaboration.
Nicholson and Miniates (2016) investigated the complex nature of leadership in early childhood programs, and the challenges of power directors must reconcile in order to collaborate. They point out that leadership is not restricted to select persons, nor is it binary (Nicholson & Maniates, 2016). Programs are not limited to positioning leaders and followers in their traditional roles. Rather, under certain conditions, leaders follow and followers lead. A high-quality inclusive early childhood program should have systems of supports and services distributing leadership, which means followers and leaders will include families, teachers, support staff, administrators and other stakeholders (DEC, 2015; DEC/NAEYC, 2009; Nicholson & Maniates, 2016). The researchers found it is important for directors to understand and to be conscious of the power dynamics that may occur within the leader-follower relationship. Power can disturb collaboration and hinder the success of leadership


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(Nicholson & Maniantes, 2016). Because of the responsibilities placed on directors by their program and local and state policies (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016, 7.702.42; DEC, 2015), they are inherently expected to possess power (Culkin, 1997). Balancing power with leadership qualities promotes the successful systems of supports and services important for high-quality inclusive early childhood program (DEC/NAEYC, 2009; Nicholson & Maniates, 2016).
The Colorado Directors Certificate Program Beginning May 1st, 2011 (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2011), directors of early childhood programs in Colorado were required to complete thirty college credits specific to ECE. The intent of the requirements was to increase the quality of ECE in the state (Colorados Early Learning Professional Development System Plan, n.d.). In February of 2016, the credentials necessary to earn the Colorado Directors Certificate expanded to include alternative pathways with in-service PD. Early childhood professionals who have attended the community college in the past were not on an alternative track (coloradoofficeofearlychildhood.com). The circumstances of early childhood professionals who were not earning the Colorado Directors Certificate at a community college is beyond the scope of this study. However, whichever track directors take to earn their Colorado Directors Certificate they follow the requirements outlined in the current Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations (2016). The Rules and Regulations state:
The director of the center is responsible for administering the center in accordance with licensing rules. The director must plan and supervise the child development


26
program, plan for or participate in the selection of staff, plan for orientation and staff development, supervise and coordinate staff activities, evaluate staff performance, and participate in the program activities. (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016, 7.702[E])
Early childhood program professionals pursuing the Colorado Directors Certificate at a community college must take the ten courses discussed in chapter one to prepare them for the responsibilities outlined in the childcare rules and regulations (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016). Two of the courses focus on leadership. ECE 240: Administrators of Early Childhood Care and Education Programs provides foundational knowledge in early childhood program business operations, program development, and evaluation. This course covers administrative skills, ethical decision making, risk and resource management, and components of quality Early Childhood Education (ECE) programs serving children ages birth through 12 years (Colorado common course numbering system, 2016, ECE 240). ECE 241: Administration: Human Relations for Early Childhood Education focuses on the human relations component of an early childhood professionals responsibilities. This course includes director-staff relationships, staff development, leadership strategies, family-professional partnerships, and community interaction (Colorado common course numbering system, 2016, ECE 241). The course descriptions broadly address the concepts the literature identifies as important for leadership in early childhood programs. However, the influence of DEC/NAEYCs (2009) position


27
statement on inclusion and the DEC (2015) position statement on leadership is not clear (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2015).
Despite the call for leadership in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2014; DEC, 2015), the guidance from NAEYC, CEC and DEC does not clearly support community colleges (CEC, 2012; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009; Stayton et al., 2003). The NAEYC personnel preparation standards do not appear to address DEC RPs and the CEC personnel preparation standards are restricted to beginning and advanced training, providing minimal guidance for the preparation of early childhood professionals who are not pursuing a bachelors or graduate degree (CEC, 2012). That said, a small body of literature suggests the elements of leadership for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs by professional organizations and research could be generalized for all early childhood professionals (Hyson, 2002; Stayton, 2003). Evidence of possible generalizations are found by blending the leadership strand in RPs (DEC, 2014) (see Appendix B) and the NAEYC (2007) program administrator competencies (see Appendix D), which are intended to apply to all leaders in early childhood programs, with the CEC advanced specialty set of personnel preparation standards for early childhood specialists (CEC, 2012) (see Appendix C), which target early childhood professionals earning graduate degrees. Figure two conceptualizes the blending of the professional organizations expectations. The expectations signify the unique elements specific to leadership that early childhood professionals should develop in personnel preparation programs.


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Figure 2.1. Blending professional organizations expectations for leadership in a high-quality
inclusive early childhood program.
ECE Personnel Preparation Standards Personnel preparation standards (called standard competencies in the Colorado common course numbering system, 2016) are used to design and implement programs and classes (Stayton, 2015), measure a students outcomes, and hold institutions of higher education (IHE) accountable for teaching the elements of educational content considered important for professional success in the field (Cochran-Smith, 2005; Hiebert, Morris, Berk & Jansen, 2007; Irons, Carlson, Lowery-Moore, Farrow, 2007). In a 2012 study completed by Stayton, Smith, Diethrich and Bruder, the conclusion was drawn that IHEs and state licensure/certification requirements rely on personnel preparation standards created by professional organizations to determine a fields expectations for credentials. When professional organizations do not provide personnel preparation standards for specific


29
educational content in the field, IHEs and states do not have precedent to offer the necessary credentials (Chen, Mickelson, 2015; Cochran-Smith, 2005; Sobel, Chopra & DiPalma, 2015; Stayton, Smith, Dietrich & Bruder, 2012). If IHEs are invested in designing credentials without personnel preparation standards, they most likely will adapt personnel preparation standards that are available for other credentials (CEC, 2012; Sobel et al., 2015), and blend them with other expectations from professional organizations (DEC, 2015; Sobel et al., 2015). In the case of community colleges, adapting personnel preparation standards creates multiple barriers that can interfere with the preparation of early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (Chandler, Cochran, Christensen, Dinnebeil, Gallagher, Lifter et al., 2012; Sobel et al., 2015; Stayton, 2015; Stayton, Miller & Dinnebeil, 2003).
Literature provides evidence for the existence of three barriers embedded in the personnel preparation standards available to community colleges. The barriers may inhibit community colleges from preparing directors to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. These three barriers are:
1. The development of DECs (Stayton et al., 2003) recommended practices for PD, NAEYCs (2009) preparation standards for professional preparation, NAEYC (2007) program administrator competencies and CECs (2012) early childhood specialist set of preparation standards independent of one another.
2. The ambiguity of blended personnel preparation standards between ECE and
EI/ECSE.


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3. The omission of personnel preparation standards developing elements of leadership for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs applicable to community colleges.
Barrier 1
Personnel preparation standards began to impact ECE and EEECSE in the early 1990s. In 1993, DEC, NAEYC and the Association of Teacher Education (ATE) released a position statement on personnel preparation standards for early education and early intervention (DEC, 1993). The seminal document provided six recommendations derived from empirically defensible knowledge and clearly articulated philosophical assumptions about what constitutes effective early education and early intervention (DEC, 1993, p. 1). The two-page position statement was considered a base for credentialing guidelines aimed at preparing professionals for working in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC 1993; Stayton, 2015; Stayton et al., 2003). In 1998, the joint position statement was reaffirmed with no changes (Stayton et al., 2003). Since then, DEC, NAEYC and ATEs standards for preparing early childhood professionals have been designed independently of one another (CEC, 2012; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009; Stayton et al., 2012)
As the fields of ECE and EI/ECSE evolved in the 2000s, accountability dominated the landscape of education (Norris, 2010). NAEYC, CEC, and DEC, with other professional organizations related to educational responsibilities with young children and families, were working to enhance professionals effectiveness in implementing EBPs (Bruder & Dunst, 2005; Stayton, 2009; Stayton, 2015). In 2003, NAEYC published Preparing Early


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Childhood Professions: NAEYC Standards for Programs. The book provided support for utilizing the personnel preparation standards in associate, baccalaureate and graduate ECE degrees. The text included input from CEC/DEC and the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS). The information provided by CEC/DEC was specific to CECs common core personnel standards for knowledge and skills with some additional specialized standards specific to early childhood. Rather than standards, DEC offered a brief overview of recommended practices for personnel preparation that promoted the first set of RPs (Hyson, 2003).
The recommended practices for personnel preparation that DEC provided for the NAEYC text were detailed in DECS 2003 publication: Personnel Preparation in Early Childhood Special Education: Implementing the DEC Recommended Practices (Stayton et al., 2003). The publication emphasized the changing nature of the professional roles, services and PD in the field of EI/ECSE. The editors provided a detailed overview of seven categories of personnel preparation recommended practices. Each chapter of the book provided two case studies of university programs implementing a specifically recommended practice. This text was a framework for institutions invested in EI/ECSE degree and nondegree PD programs (Stayton et al., 2003)
DECs second set of the RPs was published in 2005. The revised RPs provided information to support early childhood professionals use of RPs in early childhood programs (Sandall et al., 2005). The publications did not include updates for personnel preparation


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standards, but they offered additional guidance for using the NAEYC/DEC/ATE (1993) standards.
Between 2005 and 2008 CEC and DEC collaborated to create a specialized set of early childhood beginner and advanced preparation standards (Lifter et al., 2011). The CECs specialized set of preparation standards were based on DECs 2005 RPs. The field validation of the standards was completed by members of DEC and NAEYC (Cochran, Gallagher, Stayton, Dinnebeil, Lifter, Chandler & Christensen, 2012), but the standards themselves did not reflect a blending of standards with the NAEYC personnel standards (Hyson, 2002). The revision of the NAEYC (2009) personnel standards encouraged the use of blended standards. The DEC RPs informed CECs 2012 specialized set of advanced early childhood preparation standards (Stayton, 2015). Together, the DEC (2014) RPs leadership strand and the CEC (2012) advanced preparation standards for leadership in early childhood offer rough guidance for IHEs. Figure 2 conceptualizes the relationship between the sources, and how the blending of standards could potentially develop the elements of leadership necessary to lead high-quality inclusive early childhood programs.
Barrier 2
Since the initial collaboration, NAEYC and DECs efforts to blend personnel preparation standards have been discrete (Chandler, Cochran, Christensen, Dinnebeil, Gallagher, Lifter et al., 2012; Stayton, 2015). Publications released by scholars affiliated with the organizations identified present work being completed by DEC and endorsed by NAEYC, but it is not widely available (Chandler et al., 2012; Chen & Mickelson, 2015;


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Stayton, 2015). In a 2012 study, Lifter and her colleagues cross-walked the CEC specialized set of preparation standards for early childhood with the NAEYC personnel preparation standards. The study found that the two sets of standards aligned with one another for a majority of elements, but not all. The CEC specialized set was determined to be inconsistent with NAEYCs standards addressing:
1. Becoming a professional and the individual elements of knowing and understanding diverse family and community characteristics.
2. Understanding positive relationships and supportive interactions as the foundation of their work with children.
3. Understanding content knowledge, appropriate early learning standards, and other resources to design, implement, and evaluate meaningfully, challenging curricula for each child.
Representatives from NAEYC leadership were not involved in this project, and the results were not published as either standards or a position statement. Lifter et al. (2011) reported that the discrepancies identified between the organizations expectations for PD provided evidence that early childhood professionals are not learning educational content blending the NAEYC standards with the CEC standards and DEC RPs. Stayton (2015), and Chen and Mickleson (2015) recognize the partnerships between DEC and NAEYC but reaffirm the need for more unity across the professional organizations. The growing recognition of leadership as a driver for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs illustrates a greater need for blended personnel preparation standards. Blended standards


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should address the needs of all early childhood professionals and outline the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program (Chen & Mickleson, 2015; DEC, 2014; Kagan & Bowman, 1997; Lifter et al., 2011).
Barrier 3
The third set of the RPs (2014) emphasizes leadership. To date, the only standards that address the elements of leadership for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs are within the CEC specialized set of advanced level EI/ECSE personnel preparation standards (CEC, 2012). DEC has drawn attention to the need for preparing early childhood professionals for leadership with the position statement on leadership (DEC, 2015). Referencing decades of research, the position statement identifies five forms of leadership leaders should possess to sustain a high-quality inclusive early childhood program: community, conceptual, pedagogical, advocacy, and administrative knowledge and skills (DEC, 2015; Kagan & Bowman, 1997).
According to Crompton (1997), community knowledge and skills involve understanding how to influence policy changes, how to access local resources, when to access those resources, and how to allocate those resources to improve the quality of inclusive services and supports. Kagan and Neuman (1997) use the term conceptual knowledge and skills to represent a leaders capacity to be innovative and act against status quo policies that have created barriers for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. Katz (1997) identifies pedagogical knowledge and skills as a leaders ability to use their research and expertise to support high-quality inclusive early childhood programs, bridge it


35
into program practices and problem solve using evidence-based analyses. Blank (1997) says that advocacy knowledge and skills leverage resources so that early childhood programs can become more effective in meeting the needs and interests of all stakeholders. Culkin (1997) describes administrative knowledge and skills as the responsibilities of management to provide a high-quality inclusive early childhood program with the necessary means to maintain the essential components of a functional program. Current personnel preparation standards for EI/ECSE do not address the five forms of leadership (CEC, 2012).
CEC (2012) does not include the five forms of leadership in their specialized set of standards. DEC (2015) and NAEYC (2007; 2009) recommend the use of the five forms by professionals in the fields of ECE (Kagan & Bowman, 1997; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009) and EEECSE (DEC, 2015). The generalizability of the five forms within both fields may provide opportunities for instructors of community college courses to develop early childhood professionals elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program. However, if the instructional strategies used for PD are not effective the elements may not be learned (Winton, Snyder & Goffin, 2016).
Professional Development
Stated earlier, early childhood professionals earning the Colorado Directors Certification complete ten courses, two of which develop directors elements of leadership. ECE 240: Administration of Early Childhood Care and Education Programs (see Appendix E); and ECE 241: Administration: Human Relations for ECE (see Appendix F) are built around competencies that can be infused with the RPs in the leadership strand (DEC, 2014;


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Colorado common course numbering system, 2016) (see Appendix E). For example, ECE 240: standard 11 discuss practices/issues related to working with other stakeholders in early childhood programming (Colorado common course numbering system, 2016, ECE 240). And RP: L.6 leaders establish partnerships across levels (state to local) and with the counterparts in other systems and agencies to create coordinated and inclusive systems of services and supports (DEC, 2014, p. 6) Both references align with the community leadership (Kagan & Bowman, 1997).
Although NAEYC, CEC and DEC have not created unified personnel preparation standards community colleges can use to guide the creation of courses developing the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program, there is the potential to equip early childhood professionals with other leadership standards or expectations (DEC, 2015). Given The faculty autonomy for course instruction (Sipple & Lightner, 2013), and the vague wording in the community college standard competencies (Colorado common course numbering system, 2016) (see Appendix E, see Appendix F), they have the ability to teach the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program based on their personal definition of leadership (DEC, 2015; Winton et al., 2016).
The barriers created by current personnel preparation standards may be hindered the faculty awareness of the elements for leading high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. The barriers may influence IHEs and faculty members to base instructional strategies on the elements of leadership in ECE rather than the elements of leadership in


37
EI/ECSE (Colorado common course numbering system, 2016; NAEYC/NACCRRA, 2011; NPDCI, 2008; Winton et al., 2016).
The Paradigms of Professional Development
Scholars in the field of ECE generally define PD differently than scholars in the field of EI/ECSE. The separate definitions represent separate paradigms for PD. Because of the separate paradigms for PD, IHE and the faculty may take different philosophical positions on effective PD. The field of ECE, led by a collaboration between the professional organizations of NAEYC and the National Association of Child Care Resource Referral Agencies (NACCRRA), define PD as:
A continuum of learning and support activities designed to prepare individuals for work with and on behalf of young children and their families, as well as ongoing experiences to enhance this work. These opportunities lead to improvement in the knowledge, skills, practices and dispositions of early education professionals. Professional development encompasses education, training, and technical assistance (NAEYC/NECCRRA, 2011, p. 5)
The definition commonly used in EEECSE comes from the National Professional Development Center of Inclusion (NPDCI). In contrast to NAEYC and NACCRRA, NPDCI is a research focused, grant-funded center, not a professional organization. A research center cannot speak for an entire field the way a professional organization can. That said, many researchers have referenced NPDCI, and there are no other definitions of PD in EEECSE commonly referenced in literature (Winton et al., 2016; NPDCI, 2008). NPDCI states:


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Professional development is facilitated teaching and learning experiences that are transactional and designed to support the acquisition of professional knowledge, skills, and dispositions as well as the application of this knowledge in practice. The key components of professional development include:
1. The characteristics and contexts of the learners (i.e., the who of professional development).
2. The content (i.e., the what of professional development).
3. The organization and facilitation of learning experiences (i.e., the how of professional development (NPDCI, 2008, p. 3).
While the two definitions discuss the importance of PD and its multiple contexts, their perspectives appear to be different. The NAEYC/NECCRRA definition regards PD as opportunities to expand an individuals range of specific knowledge, skills and dispositions. Their definition compliments the intentions of NAEYCs personnel preparation standards. NPDCIs definition views PD as a process that is systemic and ongoing, similar to the philosophical base of RPs (NAEYC, 2011; Winton et al., 2016). The different paradigms and Colorado common course numbering systems consistent references to NAEYC may influence the instructional strategies used by instructors at community colleges.
Delivering PD
Winton, Snyder and Goffin (2016) use the EI/ECSE paradigm to critically evaluate traditional PD in ECE and EEECSE. They use a comprehensive collection of information found in research on PD in ECE and EEECSE to argue that the status quo of PD is


39
systemically broken. They find that the current instructional strategies used in PD do not prepare early childhood professionals to bridge the research to practice gap. The researchers call for transforming ECEs fragmented PD into coherent and aligned systems (p. 61). They view the traditional instructional strategies used for PD and the delivery structures as troubled by the neglect for important details, disrupting the implementation of EBPs within the context of broader early childhood systems-building initiatives (Winton et al., 2016, p. 61)
Winton, Snyder and Goffins (2016) position proposes that effective PD requires leaders to identify the who (characteristics and contexts of the early childhood professionals and the children and families they serve), what (what professionals should know and be able to do; generally defined by professional competencies, standards, and credentials) and how (the approaches, models, or methods used to support self-directed, experientially-oriented learning that is highly relevant to practice) of PD. Once leaders have identified the components, instructional strategies can be selected, and EBPs will be successfully implemented and sustained (Winton et al., 2016).
Evidence-based Instructional Strategies for PD
Nearly 30 years of research on PD in ECE and EI/ECSE has provided IHEs and the faculty with a large body of evidence to support the effectiveness of their selected instructional strategies (Irons et al., 2007; Showers, Joyce & Bennet, 1987; Snyder, Hemmeter & McGloughlin, 2011; Winton et al., 2016). McCollum & Callet (1997) define instructional practices on a range of least effective to most effective.


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The least effective instructional strategies for teaching knowledge and professional skills are rooted in an overemphasis on personnel preparation standards (Irons et al., 2007; Winton et al., 1997; Winton et al., 2016). Literature proposes that personnel preparation standards have reinforced ineffective instructional strategies such as lecturing, reading, videos and discussions to develop early childhood professionals knowledge. It suggests common ineffective instructional strategies intended to develop early childhood professionals skills are modeling of, and observations of exemplars (McCollum & Catlett, 1997; Winton et al., 1997). The work of McCollum and Catlett (1998), and reiterated by Winton, Snyder and Goffin (2016) recognizes ineffective instruction strategies frequently used to develop early childhood professionals capacity to close the research to practice gap through leadership includes providing materials supporting classroom instruction and creating lesson plans (see Appendix O).
Research shows that effective strategies require early childhood professionals to synthesize information and actively apply their professional skills and knowledge in a meaningful professional context with support from content experts (Winton et al., 1997). The use of effective instructional strategies is especially pertinent to early childhood professionals pursuing a Colorado Directors Certificate at a community college (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations; Doescher & Beudert, 2010). Some scholars believe that the elements of educational content are better retained, especially by non-traditional learners when highly effective instructional strategies are used (Cho, 2016; Doescher & Beudert, 2010; Garavuso, 2014). Other scholars have noted early childhood professionals are more


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likely to retain the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program if they have practice in context, such as a mentorship, coaching, a community of practice and/or TA (Gallagher, 1997; Kontos & Diamond, 1997; Winton et al., 2016).
Applying Effective Instructional Strategies Developing the Elements for Leadership
There is a growing body of literature supporting the use of highly-effective instructional strategies fostering early childhood professionals ability to bridge the research to practice gap in early childhood programs (DEC, 2014; Gallagher, Steed & Green, 2014; Snyder et al., 2011). Common themes of highly effective instructional strategies are their application in context and active collaborations with peers and skilled professionals (Cochran-Smith, 2005; Winton et al., 2016).
Technical assistance (TA) is one instructional strategy involving practice in context.
It requires early childhood professionals to collaborate while using knowledge and skills they are learning in their professional environment. (Snyder, Hemmeter & Fox, 2015; NAEYC/NECCRRA, 2011). Highly effective TA is practice based. It includes collaborating with mentors, consultants, and peers. TA allows early childhood professionals to develop elements of leadership through work with skilled professionals (Gallagher, 1997; NAEYC/NECCRRA, 2011; Snyder et al., 2015). TA demands collaborative problem solving and brainstorming (Showers et al., 1987; Snyder et al., 2015). It may also include case studies, role-playing, guided reflection and practice with feedback. Research has provided evidence that effective TA can be face-to-face or web-mediated (Bishop, Snyder & Crow, 2015; Obom & Johnson, 2015), but different TA models have different degrees of


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effectiveness (Winton et al., 2016). For example, there is strong evidence identifying coaching to have the most potential for improving, sustaining and bridging research to practice gap (Fox, Hemmeter, Snyder, Binder & Clarke, 2011: Snyder et al., 2011). Like TA, coaching involves practice in context.
Snyder, Hemmeter and Fox (2015) found coaching depends, first and foremost, on a collaborative, trusting and supportive partnership between the coach and the early childhood professional. The partnership is built around the early childhood professionals individual strengths, needs, knowledge, skills and targeted learning outcomes. The coach and early childhood professional enter an ongoing process of co-creating goals and action plans developed around observations, reflection, and feedback (Artman-Meeker, Hemmeter & Snyder, 2014; Snyder et al., 2015). Research studies offer evidence that the performance-based coaching model also applies to web-mediated coaching (Bishop et al., 2015; Obom & Johnson, 2015).
While the literature strongly promotes the instructional strategies involving practice in context through TA and coaching, the two are not commonly used in IHEs (Buettner, Hur, Jeon & Andrew, 2015; Gallagher et al., 2014; Han, 2012). They are considered resource intensive (Buettner, Hur, Jeon & Andrew, 2015). Challenges are particularly relevant to early childhood professionals who are non-traditional learners and/or live in rural communities (Snyder et al., 2015), which accounts for many students earning course credits from community colleges (Doescher & Beudert, 2010).


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Conclusion of the Literature Review
Thirty years have passed since the passage of P.L. 99-457. Despite the support of federal legislation for EBPs, there has been a shockingly meager increase in the percentage of young children with developmental delays/disabilities included in high-quality early childhood programs (U.S. Department of Education, 1987; U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education Programming, 2014). Historically, DEC has been at the forefront of movements to improve inclusion. Their third set of RPs and the position statement on leadership have demonstrated the field of EI/ECSEs recognition for leadership as a key to increasing inclusion (DEC, 2014). However, IHE, community colleges, in particular, may be unable to formally address the preparation early childhood professionals to have the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program without personnel preparation standards.
The Colorado Directors Certificate program requires the PD many early childhood program directors in Colorado must earn. There are ten courses included in the Colorado Directors Certificate program with the potential of focusing on developing the elements of leadership (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016). Unfortunately, without the guidance of personnel preparation standards developing the elements of leadership, early childhood professionals at community colleges are dependent on IHEs and the faculty awareness of professional organizations expectations. Without awareness, the instructional strategies they used may be based on their personal definition of the elements of leadership.


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CHAPTER III METHODOLOGY
This research used a case study methodology to explore how one community college was preparing early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive ECE programs. It focused on early childhood professions who had completed the Colorado Directors Certificate program and the faculty members who taught the ten certificate courses while the graduates were enrolled in the program. Chapter three provides an overview of: (a) qualitative research; (b) the participants who were involved in this research; (c) the methods employed; (d) data collection; (e) data analysis; (f) coding iterations; and (g) ethical considerations applied to this research.
Qualitative Research
Case studies are a qualitative approach to gathering rich-data that reveals information regarding a problem bounded by specific conditions (Creswell, 2013; Fusch & Ness, 2015; Gillham, 2000; Merriam & Tisdell, 2016). They are driven by an in-depth inquiry with multiple sources of data collection with the purpose of finding common themes specific to the case. Case studies welcome iterations to data collection as new themes begin to emerge (Creswell, 2013; Yin, 2014).
The case study for this research was bound to one community college. Themes emerged from interviews with the faculty and graduates through iterations of interpreting the data. The research was a deep inquiry into the preparation of graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate to be leaders in high-quality inclusive ECE programs. The results from this research were specific to the ECE department at the community college under


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exploration. Interviews and document analyses were used to understand how the faculty defined leadership, the elements of leadership graduates developed, and the instructional strategies the faculty used to teach their courses. The research findings were used to write recommendations for the ECE department at the community college. The recommendations were designed to enhance instructional practices for preparing early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive programs. The recommendations were shared with the community colleges ECE department. The results of this research are not generalizable to the work other community colleges or director preparation programs around Colorado.
Participants
This research did not focus on the individual participants. The researcher collected data from two distinct populations with the intent of identifying themes across populations and providing recommendations applicable to the ECE department at the community college rather than the interests of individuals.
There were two populations of participants involved in this case study. One population of participants were faculty members at the community college who taught courses in the Colorado Directors Certificate. The second population of participants were the graduates who had completed all ten courses of the Colorado Directors Certificate program at the community college. After a comprehensive recruitment of eligible participants, eight faculty and 16 graduates were identified.
The faculty members and graduates who received a consent form and case study description were asked to schedule an interview with the research assistant responsible for


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interviewing. Six faculty members and seven graduates were interviewed. At the end of the study, each participant received a $20 gift card for Amazon.com.
The Faculty
The eight faculty members were initially contacted for the study through an email to their personal email account from the lead researchers community college email account.
The personal contact information was accessible to the lead researcher from the community college records. Three of the faculty responded. The faculty responded to questions from a three-question screening questionnaire (see Appendix F) that could not be retrieved from the community college records. The faculty who answered the questions with yes qualified for the study. All three of the faculty qualified. After qualifying for the study, they were formally invited to participate in the study and given a consent form by the lead researcher (see Appendix L). They were told to read the consent form thoroughly, initial each page and then sign if they agreed to participate. The three of the faculty signed and physically returned their consent form to the lead researcher within one week.
Two of the five faculty members who did not respond to the initial email were contacted by the lead researcher through their personal phone number. Neither faculty members answered the call. A voice message was left for both of them. They were asked to return the lead researchers call, send a text message to the lead researchers phone or respond to the initial email. Both responded to the email, signed and physically returned
their consent form to the lead researcher.


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One of the three remaining faculty members who had not responded was approached directly at the community college during a visit. She was asked if she was interested in participating. She said she was and then responded to questions on the screening questionnaire. She answered all of the questions with yes, qualifying her for the study.
She returned it less than 24 hours with each page initialed and the bottom of the document signed.
The remaining two faculty members who did not respond to the initial email or phone call were not contacted again. At the end of the research recruitment phase, six faculty members had signed and returned their consent form. All six faculty completed the study.
At no time during the study did the remaining two faculty members respond to the lead researchers request for participation.
Graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate
The second population of participants were early childhood professionals who had graduated from the Colorado Directors Certificate program at the community college within a year before the research. Graduates were recruited from a list of students who have started courses after 2011 and completed the course work between the fall semester of 2015, spring semester of 2016 and the summer semester of 2016. The list was compiled in the community college database called Academic Intelligence. Sixteen students qualified under those criteria. Every student was initially contacted through their personal email address by the lead researcher. Fifteen of the 16 emails were sent successfully. One of the email addresses was not active. Five of the 15 graduates responded to the lead research expressing their


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interest in participating. The five participants received a responding email with questions from a screening questionnaire (see Appendix M) that could not be answered based on information in Academic Intelligence. They were also given the graduate consent form (see Appendix N) and a description of the case study. If they could answer yes to the questions, they were told to read the study description and the consent form thoroughly, initial each page, sign the bottom of the document and physically delivered it to the lead researchers office at the community college. Two of the five graduates responded to the email and physically returned the consent form. The three graduates who did not respond were asked once more via email to respond.
The three graduates who did not respond after expressing an initial interest, in addition to the eleven graduates who did not receive, or did not respond to the initial email were contacted through their personal phone number listed in Academic Intelligence. Thirteen of the 14 phone calls were either answered by the graduate or directed to a voicemail system. Four graduates answered the call. A voice message was left for nine graduates. One graduate did not have a working phone number. She was the same graduate who did not have an active email address in Academic Intelligence. The four graduates who answered the phone call were asked questions from the questionnaire to determine their qualification for the study. All four of the graduates qualified and expressed an interest in participating in the study. They were emailed the consent form with the case study description, told to read them thoroughly, initial each page, sign the bottom of the document


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and physically delivered it to the lead researchers office at the community college. Three of the four graduates signed the consent forms and returned them.
The one graduate who did not return their consent form and the nine graduates who had not yet responded to the initial email or phone call were contacted with a text message from the lead researcher to their personal phone number. Four of the graduates responded to the text message. The four graduates who answered the text were asked questions from the questionnaire to determine their qualification for the study. All four of the graduates qualified and expressed an interest in participating in the study. They were emailed the consent form and case study description told to read them thoroughly, initial each page, sign the bottom of the document and physically deliver it to the lead researchers office at the community college. Three of the four graduates signed the consent forms and returned them.
The lead research attempted to contact the remaining eight graduates two more times; first with a text and then a phone call. One responded, expressed an interest in participating, but did not return her consent form. One declined the invitation to participate. The remaining six graduates with active email addresses and phone numbers did not respond to any forms of contact. After the recruitment phase, the lead research obtained signed consent forms for seven graduates. All seven of the graduates completed the study.
Methods for Data Collection
The underlying goal of this case study was to explore a case and identify emerging themes that would guide the creation of recommendations for the early childhood education department at the community college. To identify and validate the themes, the case study


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used qualitative methods, collecting two data sets from interviews and one data set from document analyses.
Collecting multiple data sets is central to qualitative research. The multiple data sets enable data triangulation (King & Horrocks, 2010). Data triangulation corroborates the findings from one data set with the findings of the others (Yin, 2014). It allows the researcher to draw credible, transferable, dependable and confirmable conclusions from a research study with a small number of participants (Fusch & Ness, 2015; Guest, Bunce & Johnson, 2006; Sherman, 2004). The multiple data sets offer a wealth of qualitative information, creating rich-data (Creswell, 2013; Flick, 2007; Fusch & Ness, 2015). Rich-data allows for data-saturation. Data-saturation is achieved when no new themes are emerging (Creswell, 2013; Fusch & Ness, 2015; Gillham, 2000).
Data triangulation in this research occurred through the use of three data sets. The first data set came from interviews with the participating faculty members. The second data set came from interviews with the participating graduates. The third data set came from course learning materials used by the participating faculty members who taught courses included in the Colorado Directors Certificate. Once the data triangulation was completed, the research assistant, methodologist and lead researcher decided there were no additional benefits for collecting more data through follow-up interviews or other data sets based on the proposed methodology. The goal of answering the research questions was achieved through the interpretations of the three initial data sets.


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Interviews
The interviews for this research were semi-structured. The semi-structured interviews asked questions based on key issues identified in the literature gathered during the proposal. The interviews included additional prompts that encourage the interviewee to elaborate (Gillham, 2000; Thomas, 2011). All of the participants completed a 15 to 25-minute interview. There were separate interview protocols for the two population of participants (see Appendix L; see Appendix M).
The interview protocol for faculty members was piloted on a faculty member who taught several courses in the Colorado Directors Certificate program at another Colorado community college. The interview protocol for graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate program was piloted on a student currently enrolled at the community college under exploration. The student was pursuing a Colorado Directors Certificate and had completed eight of the ten courses required. The interviews were conducted by the research assistant of the study with coaching from the lead researcher. After the pilot interviews, the lead researcher and research assistant discussed the interview strategies, prompts and the effectiveness of the questions at gathering the intended data.
The research assistant conducting the interviews was a graduate student in her final semester in the University of Colorado Denvers Masters in Education program. She recorded the interviews using Zoom, a password protected, encrypted online video conferencing program approved by the University of Colorado Denvers institutional review board before the research. The research assistant transcribed the interviews onto a word-


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processed document. The research assistant and lead researcher reviewed the recorded pilot interviews and discussed the use of the prompts. The prompts align with the questions and a priori codes (see Appendix N) pulled from the literature review to gather sufficient data for answering the research questions (see Appendix L; see Appendix M). The a priori codes will be discussed in the next subsection. The prompts were statements rephrasing the questions or stating, tell me more about... or can you be more specific...?
Following the completion of the 13 interviews, the lead researcher reviewed all of the video recordings and transcriptions to ensure accuracy. The confidentiality of the interview content and anonymity of the interviewee are detailed in the ethical considerations of the subsection.
Course Learning Materials
The third data set was a document analysis of course learning materials used by the faculty members who participated in the research study. Twenty learning materials were collected. The learning materials included any document that described the expectations of course learning activity. They included: assignment description, activity descriptions and discussion prompts for in-class activities. All of the course learning materials were screened by the lead researcher to ensure their relevance to the case study (Olson, 2012). Qualifying documents included one or more of the a priori coding themes (King & Horrocks, 2010) (see Appendix N) identified during the literature review and discussed in the next subsection.


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Data Analysis
The transcriptions of interviews and learning materials were initially coded using ten a priori codes (King & Horrocks, 2010; Marshall & Rossman, 2016) (see Appendix N). The initial a priori codes were defined by the DEC/NAEYC (2009) position statement on inclusion, the leadership strand of the DEC (2014) RPs (see Appendix B), the leadership knowledge and skills in the CEC (2012) specialty set of personnel preparation standards for advanced early childhood professionals (see Appendix C), the leadership and advocacy knowledge and skills in the NAEYC (2007) program administrator competencies (see Appendix D) and research on effective instruction strategies.
The 13 interviews and 20 course assignments were coded by the lead researcher and two research assistants. Early in the coding process the lead researcher and research assistants identified 13 emerging themes related and unrelated to the a priori codes. The four interview transcripts that had been coded with the initial ten codes were re-coded using 23 codes.
The use of three coders allowed for additional triangulation. The triangulation used during this phase was investigator triangulation (King & Horrocks, 2010), also referred to in qualitative research as interrater reliability. Like data tri angulation, investigator triangulation corroborated the research findings. However, unlike data tri angulation, the investigator triangulation compared one coders interpretations with the others (King & Horrocks, 2010; Yin, 2014). The investigator triangulation required intercoding agreement from the insider perspective (lead researcher) and outsider perspectives (two research assistants). The


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intercoding agreements enabled the researcher to systemically compare data interpretations, neutralizing biases and enriching data (Creswell, 2009; King & Horrocks, 2010).
The lead researcher and research assistants coded the interviews of each population of participants separately. After the initial coding had been completed, follow-up interviews were considered with the potential of addressing emerging themes with more depth (King & Horrocks, 2010; Olson, 2012; Yin, 2014). As a group, the lead researcher, research assistants and methodologist, Dr. Courtney Donovan, determined the initial interviews and assignments provided sufficient data saturation. The group decided follow-up interviews were not likely to reveal additional information on the themes that had emerged and support answers for the research questions.
Dr. Donovan assisted the lead researcher in the next phases of data analysis. First, the lead research completed the investigator triangulation. The bench mark used to determine intercoder agreement of the results was set by the methodologist at 80 percent.
The investigator triangulation began with the data exported from Dedoose into Microsoft Excel. The exported data included the initials of the participants, the words in the coded excerpt, the starting point of each individual excerpt and the end of each individual excerpt. The data was disaggregated by each of the 23 codes. The 23 codes were sorted into three categories: (a) codes assigned to faculty transcripts; (b) codes assigned to graduate transcripts; and (c) codes assigned to course learning activities. The process created 69 Microsoft Excel sheets. Each sheet was then organized into three criteria: (a) Transcript


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name; (b) The number assigned to the start of the coded excerpts; and (c) the assigned end of the coded excerpt.
Once the excerpts were organized, they were labeled as a hit or miss. Excerpts labeled hits required intercoder agreement by two of three coders. If an excerpt was only coded by one coder, the lead researcher reviewed it and determined whether it was potentially a hit or miss. Potential hits accounted for 9.7 percent of the coded excerpts. After being reviewed, 3.2 percent were identified as misses. The final calculations revealed an intercoder agreement of 96.8 percent, exceeding the bench mark of 80 percent, satisfying the intercoder agreement benchmark. Lastly, the codes were mapped, analyzed, interpreted and used to answer the research questions.
Code Mapping
Anfara, Brown and Mangione (2002), recommend qualitative researchers use code mapping with the goal of providing more transparency for the analysis of data. Anfara (2002) and colleagues conceptualize a three-iteration analysis. The first iteration is a surface content analysis. The surface content analysis for this research included the 23 codes used to code every document. The 23 coders provided a structure for the documents related to the literature reviewed for the research and the early emerging themes. The second iteration was pattern variables. The pattern variables were identified during the interpretation of the coded excerpts. There were four pattern variables. The third iteration, application, gave meaning to the data allowing the researcher to draw conclusions and answer the research questions.
Table one illustrates the process of code mapping for this case study.


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Table 3.1. Code mapping: The iterations of data analysis (Anfara, Brown & Mangione
(2002)
Research questions:
Q1: Defining elements of leadership Q2: Elements developed from the certificate courses Q3: Instructional strategies for developing elements Q4 Development of elements while enrolled
Third iteration: Application
Graduates elements of leadership; graduate and faculty members definition of elements of leadership; the faculty instructional practices; and recommendations for the college
Second iteration: Pattern variables Early childhood professional practices Personnel development Inclusive programming Leadership
First iteration: Initial codes Access to inclusive programs Systems of supports and services Leadership practices/qualities Program policies Evidence-based practices Professional standards Advocacy Reflective practices Technical assistance Field experience First iteration: Early emergent codes Emotional affect Program collaboration Administrative leadership Advocacy leadership Conceptual leadership Community leadership Pedagogical leadership Skills, knowledge and dispositions Early childhood professional as a leader The faculty instructional strategies Early childhood professional instruction Approaches to teaching Professional development Community partnerships Resources
Trustworthiness
Sherman (2004) defines trustworthiness as credibility, transferability, dependability and confirmability of research findings. Credibility in qualitative research is parallel to internal validity in quantitative research. Credibility can be based on the question, how congruent are the findings with reality (p. 64)? To answer the question, the research must be well-versed in the most current evidence in the field. Credibility can be enhanced with the


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use of a priori coding and expertise of coders (Creswell, 2013; King & Horrocks, 2010). Transferability is parallel to external validity/generalizability. The transferability of qualitative findings is based on the context of the research. It is difficult to cancel out variables which may have strongly influenced the research findings and cannot be reproduced in other settings (Gillham, 2000; Thomas, 2011; Yin, 2014). Dependability is parallel to reliability. Dependability can only occur if it is done in the same context, and even then a researcher cannot discount changes in the phenomenon. Confirmability is parallel to objectivity. Confirmability is reliant on a researchers strict adherence to negating any personal biases.
This research involved certain degrees of trustworthiness. The research study was exploratory (Yin, 1993). Given the nature of this research study, the research findings are not transferable. Similar studies have not been conducted in the community college. Therefore, dependability was not a concern with these data.
Bias distorts the research findings (Walliman, 2011). Holloway, Brown and Shipway (2010) believe data collected through interviews inevitably include some degree of bias. The interviewer must separate themselves from their research and set their personal views to the side (Denzin, 2009; Fusch & Ness, 2015; Holloway et al., 2010). Failure to recognize personal biases will taint data and hinder the process of data saturation (Fusch & Ness,
2015). Data triangulation and investigator triangulation will negate some biases.
This research was considered an internal evaluation. The benefits of the internal evaluations include a clearer understanding of the community colleges culture and


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idiosyncrasies that an outside researcher may not have recognized. The evaluation methods were tailored to the lead researchers understanding of limitations with the participants, the courses and the Colorado Directors Certificate and the early childhood education department at the community college (Creswell, 2009; Love, 1991; Seidman, 2006; Trowler, 2011). Unlike an external evaluator, the lead researcher, as an internal evaluator had a commitment to the community college (Love, 1991; Trowler, 2011). Risks of the internal evaluation were biases and premeditated assumptions limiting trustworthiness (Creswell, 2009; Love, 1991; Seidman, 2006; Trowler, 2011). This research used data triangulation and investigator triangulation, as well as an outside interviewer to mitigate the risks of internal evaluation.
Ethical Consideration
The ethical considerations for a case study outline the principles of conduct (Thomas, 2011, p. 68). The ethical considerations can be presented in the informed consent given to and signed by participants before their participation (See Appendix I; See Appendix J). An informed consent explains the purpose and methods of the research study, the expected benefits, risks, explanation of measures to ensure confidentiality, anonymity, and data retention and disposal (Seidman, 2006; Thomas, 2011).
The purpose and benefits of the study are presented in chapter one. The risks included emotional discomfort and potential embarrassment. Despite measures to maintain anonymity the participant risked the release of identifiable information, which could have potentially had negative implications (Gregory, 2003; Kimmel, 1988; Seidman, 2006). The researcher for this study limited all possible risks through assurances of confidentiality,


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anonymity and the use of interview questions avoiding any known topics that could have caused participants to feel discomfort. None of the participants reported any negative experiences about their participation in the study.
All of the research material was confidential and only shared with the respective participant and coders (Seidman, 2006). The video files were saved in a password encrypted file within Zoom. They were deleted as soon as they had been transcribed onto a document. Documents with data were stored in the password protected cloud of Dedoose, an online program for coding qualitative data. Anonymity was maintained by using participants initials. Coders were unaware of the proper names of any participants. The researcher excluded any personal information or specific names of organizations, institutions, locations or people related to the participant from data interpretations. During the analysis phases, the data was never interpreted looking at the codes of individual participants.
This case study was conducted as insider research (Trowler, 2011). The research included active employees in the early childhood education department at the community college. Insider research inherently carries risks related to the power differences between the researcher and the research participants (Trowler, 2011; McDermid, Peters, Jackson & Daly, 2014). To guard against the risks the interviews were conducted by a research assistant not affiliated with the community college and the findings from individual interviews were not shared with college faculty members. The faculty participants were informed the research was not an evaluation of their performance.


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Participants involvement in the study was voluntary. They had the right to withdraw at any time. They had the option of reviewing their interview recording or transcript upon request. The participants were aware of the researchers interpretations of their interview or course learning materials before providing them for the study. The published study included the interpretations of data as it was described in the informed consent. The interpretations guided the recommendations given to the community college.


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CHAPTER IV RESEARCH RESULTS
The results and findings from this research revealed evidence supporting recommendations for the ECE department and the faculty who taught the ten courses included in the Colorado Directors Certificate program at the community college. Chapter four presents: (a) the results of the research; and (b) a summary of the findings.
Results
The results from the research came from three data sets. The data sets were collected through seven interviews with graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate program, six with the faculty who taught the courses required for graduation and 20 learning materials used in the courses taught by the faculty. The three data sets were analyzed with 23 a priori codes, which were interpreted and organized into four pattern variables. This section summarizes the results from (a) the faculty interviews, (b) the graduate interviews and (c) an analysis of the learning materials.
The Faculty Interviews
Results from the faculty interviews were extracted from four of the six interview questions. This subsection outlines the faculty (a) definitions of leadership for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs, (b) awareness of the elements for leadership identified by CEC (2012), DEC (2014) and NAEYC (2007), and the instructional strategies they use to teach courses included in the Colorado Directors Certificate program at the community college.


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The Faculty Definitions of Leadership
The defining characteristics of leadership for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs were based on the DEC (2015) position statement on leadership. The interpretations of data from the faculty interviews revealed six specific characteristics defining leadership for leading high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. They were primarily attributed to the leadership styles of advocacy (6/6) and administrative (4/6). The individual characteristics included: Management, resourcefulness, collaboration, inclusivity self-awareness and community engagement. Certain characteristics were mentioned more often than others.
Nearly all of the faculty discussed the importance of management, but more importantly, expanding leadership beyond the traditional roles of managing a program (5/6). This was done in a variety of ways. First, they emphasized reaching out to organizations to obtain resources for supporting children with developmental delays or disabilities (6/6). One faculty member summed it up by saying, There has to be an openness to learning and a willingness to ask questions and again it goes back to that advocacy of asking the questions, trying to find out who the resources are for the families. Multitasking is also huge, but just also having that awareness. Many of the faculty also talked about leaders as a catalyst for unity and collaboration within a program (4/6). The faculty discussed leadership for high-quality inclusive programs as actions in classrooms (3/6), impressing the need for leaders to have self-awareness (3/6). Community engagement was touched on, but rarely (2/6). Table 4.1 provides quotes of the topics related to the faculty definitions of leadership they


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discussed during their interviews. The number in the right-hand column indicates how many of the faculty gave similar responses.
Table 4.1. The faculty definitions of leadership for high-quality inclusive programs
DEC definition of leadership Excerpt: The faculty definitions of leadership for high-quality inclusive programs Related excerpts for other participants
Advocacy There has to be openness to leam and a willingness to ask questions, trying to find out who the resources are for the families, multitasking is also huge, also having that awareness 6
Advocacy If theyre a teacher, TA, parent, community member, director, if theyre at a state level, I think it just takes that courageous voice to be able to be a leader in early childhood 5
Administrative If the director doesnt lead the perfect inclusive environment or something is lacking... taking it into consideration making them know that the most important thing is maybe calling a staff meeting so everyone is on the same page, and addressing the issues whatever it can be, and again by educating... perhaps giving resources 4
Pedagogical You know, how do you go back and figure out styles of learning, ways to individualize your teaching, so that all children are getting it 3
Conceptual Asking them to be in this culture of self-awareness and change where it doesnt have a negative implication...not only do you need to be able to have that yourself, but you need to be able to lead others in participating in that with you 3
Community Being a leader, means being a leader in the community, as well 2
The Faculty Awareness of Elements for Leadership
Data from the faculty interviews indicated they were more aware of elements for leadership defined by NAEYC (2007) than those defined by CEC (2012) or DEC (2014) (see Table 4.2). Advocacy was the most consistent leadership practice the faculty identified aligning the expectations of the three organizations (6/6). One faculty member stated, Once


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you have a concern then you reach out to somebody that is the expert in the field that you may have concerns. All of the faculty expressed a similar belief. The faculty talked about creating an environment supporting children with developmental delays or disabilities (5/6).
The practices for creating a supportive environment are more closely related to elements for classroom practices (NAEYC, 2009) rather than elements for leadership practices (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC 2007), so the data alignment with professional organizations expectations for leadership was less transparent. Various combinations of the faculty discussed typical/atypical development (3/6), and cultural responsiveness (3/6). Similar to the data highlighting supportive environments, typical/atypical development and cultural responsiveness are not elements specific to leadership practices (CEC. 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2009; NAEYC, 2007).
The data most accurately aligned with the professional organizations expectations were practices addressing the legal policies supporting inclusion (2/6). One faculty member said, making sure that they understand where their support system is to be able to pull in people or supports when they need it and the bigger picture of, like, the legal ramifications, you know, like IDEA and all that stuff needs to really be talked about more. The topic of policies like IDEA is addressed in all three professional organizations expectations. Table 4.2 shows the alignment of data with the professional organizations expectations of elements for leadership. The middle column provides a quote representative of the faculty. The number in the right-hand column indicates how many of the faculty gave similar responses.


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Table 4.2. The faculty awareness of elements for leadership practices aligned with professional organizations expectations for leadership
DEC RP; CEC standard; NAEYC competency Excerpt: The faculty awareness of the elements for leadership in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs Related excerpts for other participants
DEC RP: LI; 3; 5; 12; 13 CEC: SEECS.5.K3; SI; S3 NAEYC: 1, 6 You are not the professional at this point. You can give your insight and observations. Once you have a concern then you reach out to somebody that is the expert in the field. You'd reach out to PT, OT, things like that 6
DEC RP: LI CEC: SEECS.5.S1 NAEYC: 6 How do you go back and figure out styles of learning, ways to individualize your teaching, so all children are getting it 5
DEC RP: LI CEC: SEECS.5.K1 NAEYC: 3, 6 They have to have a strong culture, multicultural background so they can gather an understanding of all cultures and how they work, why they do what they and do some of them in a different diversity 3
DEC RP: LI CEC: SEECS.5.S1 NAEYC: 6 Understanding the typical development of young children is important, what happens when children arent typical 3
DEC RP: L3; 5; 10 CEC: SEECS.5.K2; S2 NAEYC: 2, 6 Making sure that they understand where their support system is to be able to pull in people or supports when they need it and the bigger picture of the legal ramifications like IDEA 2
Instructional Strategies Used by the Faculty
Instructional strategies were identified using the Aligning Instructional Strategies to Desired Professional Development Outcomes figure (Winton et al., 2016) (see Appendix O). On the x-axis, the figure has the instructional strategys intensity of complexity rated from left to right: low, medium and high. On the y-axis, are the type of element being developed. The type of element, from bottom to top are: knowledge, skills and practice in context


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(Winton et al., 2016). The data were interpreted first by the type of element being developed, then by instructional strategies and last by the intensity of complexity.
The data from interviews revealed that the faculty members developed early childhood professionals knowledge using instructional practices that had medium complexity far more than any other type of element or complexities. During the interviews, they talked most about discussions (6/6) and learning checks (6/6). Both instructional strategies developed knowledge and use medium complexity. The development of skills was rarely mentioned (3/6). The skills addressed were done through skill practice. Skills practice used medium complexity. None of the faculty mentioned practice in context or instructional strategies using high complexity.
The faculty members talked about developing early childhood professionals knowledge of practices related to social justice, policy and ethical obligations using discussions. The learning checks they addressed developed knowledge through research papers, presentations and projects. The instructional strategy of skill practice primarily occurred in lab courses, where students observed children and wrote reflections. The faculty member who spoke the most about skill practice stated, my students actually go to various sites and they observe, they really get the hands on experience of inclusive classrooms and they always need to write reflections. Table 4.3 provides quotes representing the topics addressed by the faculty. The left-hand column shows the type of element, instructional strategy and complexity. The center column is a quote. The right column is the number of the faculty who provided similar responses.


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Table 4.3. The faculty instructional strategies
Type of Element being developed: Strategy -Complexity Excerpt: The faculty instructional strategies used to develop early childhood professionals elements for leading high-quality inclusive early childhood programs Related excerpts for other participants
Knowledge: Discussion -Medium They would read serious material, like journal articles, research, new information, documentaries and they have to research two opposing arguments for that particular topic and then present it to the class. Then we sit in a circle and we talk about these topics we have those hard discussions that people might shy away from. They see multiple different perspectives and it opens their eyes. When you hear someone else talking from a place of passion it allows students to put their guards down a little bit and be curious 6
Knowledge: Learning Checks -Medium All my students are required to do an individual learning activity of their own choice, and looking into the emotional piece of developmentally delayed for trauma and different issues that kids may be delayed 6
Knowledge: Discussion -Medium I would bring samples of IEPs and look at what do those look like, how you read them, what that means, the legal rights for the teachers and parents and what that means for a child 4
Skill: Practice- Medium My students go to sites and they observe, so they get the hands on experience of inclusive classrooms and they always need to write reflections 3
The Faculty Recommendations
At the end of each interview, each faculty member was asked, what additional support do you and students need from the community college to build students capacity to be leaders in early childhood programs including children with developmental delays or disabilities. A majority of the faculty members stated versions of the same four recommendations. Several of the recommendations were prefaced by the faculty recognizing


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that the recommendation may be outside the scope of resources available to the community college.
The most common recommendation was for the college to provide more instructional supports (6/6). The faculty voiced a desire for visual media, physical props and updated literature. The faculty also talked about the benefits students would receive with more field work related to inclusion (5/6). The faculty recommended the high complexity, practice in context instructional strategy of coaching during or after the course work (5/6). For this instructional strategy, they all recognized the difficulty of coaching, but they thought it was something the college should consider. The faculty recommended more intra-departmental collaboration between the faculty (4/6). They felt there was a disconnect between courses potentially interrupting students development of the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive program. They believed more continuity could improve student outcomes. The faculty also recommended building stronger relationships with the community, bringing in community resources, connecting with early childhood sites and establishing relationships with content experts (4/6). Only one of the faculty recommended the college become a community resource. She stated, We can become a hub where were hosting various things that the faculty are well-versed in. Table 4.4 provides quotes representing the recommendations offered by the faculty. The left-hand column shows the nature of the recommendation, the center column is a quote. The right column is the number of the faculty who gave similar responses.


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Table 4.4. The faculty recommendations
Recommendation Excerpt: The faculty recommendations for enhancing the early childhood department Related excerpts for other participants
Course materials/resources Maybe having the college provide, more of tools, video clips, games and visuals, interviews, videos, outside of books and have visuals and hands-on activities 6
Field work One of the things I think would be beneficial for the students is for them to go and apply something right away 5
Technical Assistance I think to have a coach whos there right beside you to help with things like lesson plans and with young children who have special needs 5
Intra-departmental Collaboration Trying to collaborate a lot more with all of us especially around the delayed learners 4
Become a Community Resource We can become a hub where were hosting various different things that the faculty are well-versed in 1
Graduate Interviews
Results from the graduate interviews were extracted from four of the six interview questions. This subsection outlines the graduates (a) definitions of leadership for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs, (b) the elements for leadership identified by CEC (2012), DEC (2014) and NAEYC (2007) they developed, and the instructional strategies used by the faculty the graduates recall from courses.
Graduates Definitions of Leadership


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The interpretations of data from graduate interviews revealed four characteristics defining leadership in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2015). Like the faculty, the graduates emphasized characteristics of advocacy and administrative leadership. The graduates also talked about characteristics of pedagogical, conceptual and community leadership, but less often. The characteristics they frequently spoke about were advocating, resourcefulness, inspirational, knowledgeable, open-mindedness, inclusivity and community orientation.
Advocating for families of children with developmental delays or disabilities was talked about extensively by many of the graduates (5/7). They talked about advocating in the classroom, program and community. Characteristics of administrative leadership were mentioned by all of the graduates. They recognized administrative leadership through resourcefulness (4/7), inspiration (4/7) and knowledge (3/7). The graduates also talked about characteristics of conceptual leadership such as creativeness and open-mindedness (3/7).
One graduate said, I mean somebody whos open-minded and willing to make the right changes to lead a good classroom or a good teaching environment. Graduates who talked about pedagogical leadership characteristics (3/7) such as, being able to make curriculum accommodations and individualized instruction, talked about it at length. Like the faculty, graduates rarely touched on community leadership (1/7). Table 4.5 provides quotes addressing the graduates definitions of leadership for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. The left-hand column shows the leadership style, the center column is a quote and the right column is the number of graduates who gave similar responses.


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Table 4.5. Graduate definitions of leadership
DEC definition of leadership Excerpt: Graduates definitions of leadership in high-quality inclusive programs Related excerpts for other participants
Advocacy For me it's helpin the parents get connected to child find, helpin the parents leam what the milestones are that their child should be reaching 5
Administrative Ensuring that you have the resources for the teachers, for the parents, and just have that already included in your program so it's easy access, just because I know sometimes they have a hard time accepting their kid is having these problems and theyre still trying to figure out what is going to be the best 4
Administrative I think being able to motivate the people who work for you, create a team that works well together, make people feel really good about themselves and see their strengths and want to come to work every day 4
Administrative I really think if someone wants to work with special needs and be a director, or even a leader in the ECE field, they need to take special courses for the special needs 3
Conceptual Somebody whos open-minded and willing to make the right changes to lead a good classroom or a good teaching environment 3
Pedagogical No matter what lesson that youre teaching, there's always a way to incorporate, different methods to include those children with special needs 3
Community Really cultivate relationship with the Council that youre part of 1
Elements for Leadership that Graduates Developed
The data from graduate interviews showed the elements for leading high-quality inclusive programs rarely aligned with the professional organizations expectation for leadership. During their interviews, graduates talked only about the NAEYC (2007) standard


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number six: The ability to advocate on behalf of young children, their families, and the profession (6/6). The ideas the graduates shared related to NAEYCs standard six overlapped slightly with the DEC RP L.l, L.6, L.7 and L.14 and the CEC competency SEECS.5.K3. Overall, the elements for leadership that graduates discussed did not meet the expectations of elements identified by the professional organizations. The elements the graduates discussed were more congruent with classroom practices than leadership (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009). Table 4.6 provides quotes addressing the elements for leadership graduates reported to have developed aligned with the professional organizations expectations. The left-hand column shows the professional organizations expectation, the center column is a quote and the right column is the number of graduates who gave similar responses.
Table 4.6. Graduates elements for leadership aligned with the expectations of professional organizations
DEC RP; CEC standard; NAEYC competency Excerpt: Graduates elements for leadership in high-quality inclusive early childhood program developed while they complete their certificate Related excerpts for other participants
DEC RP: L.l CEC: None NAEYC: 6 Ensuring that we are qualified to accept any child and know that we can do our best in our program to help their development and help support the parents 6
DEC RP: L.6; 7; 12 CEC: SEECS.5.K3; S3 NAEYC: 6 We learned a lot about the resources that are out there in the community and they come to us sometimes, but there are times when we need to knock on their door and knowing how to contact and communicate 5
DEC RP: L.14 CEC: None NAEYC: 6 She taught us about learning to assess and watch kiddos in different ways because that helps you be able to keep track and keep a good record so that then you can share that with the parents, the other teachers, the teams 2


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Instructional Strategies
Instructional strategies were identified using the Aligning Instructional Strategies to Desired Professional Development Outcomes figure (Winton et al., 2016) (see Appendix O). During the interview the graduates were asked, what experiences did you have while completing ECE courses at the community college that developed your abilities to lead an early childhood program including children with developmental delays or disabilities? Before answering the complete question, a few of the graduates needed additional prompts by the interviewer (3/7) such as, were there any specific experiences..can you elaborate a little more..and did you have experiences related to the courses... Each graduate recalled two to three experiences.
The data from graduate interviews revealed the instructional strategies they recalled, developed skills, and had medium complexity. The most common instructional strategies they recalled was discussion topics (5/7) and practice (5/7). They also talked about assignments allowing them to draw connections between the knowledge they acquired and experiences they had (4/7). Two of the three most common instructional strategies mentioned developed skills. The third instructional strategy developed knowledge. All of those three strategies were of medium complexity. One graduate recalled practice-based feedback, the only high complexity strategy mentioned by graduates or the faculty. Table 4.7 provides quotes representing the strategy used for the instruction. The left-hand column shows the type of element, instructional strategy and complexity. The center column is a quote. The right column is the number of graduates who gave similar responses.


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Table 4.7. The graduate recollections of the instructional strategies
Type of element developed: Strategy -Complexity Excerpt: The graduate recollections of the instructional strategies used to develop elements for leadership Related excerpts for other participants
Knowledge Discussion -Medium I know we did some administrative classes too, and in those we talked about fundraising, we talked about public speaking, putting, grants together... different things like that which you can use those to get the funding you need, or to get in touch with the resources you need to help kiddos 5
Skill: Practice -Medium We were able to have hand on experiences with some of the children that had disabilities, like the school of the blind. I was in their world, so, that was an experience. 4
Skill: Drawing Connection -Medium One of the projects I did in my creative curriculum class was make a lesson that would fit every child in the classroom including special needs. 3
Skill: Practice-based feedback -High I had to videotape myself doing stuff with the kids and I was like, ugh, I dont want to do this, but it toned out to be really good. 1
Skill: Drawing connections -Medium She had us put together a resource notebook where we can go to different sites, how we can look up information. For me just having that notebook and that experience looking those things up and that knowledge has made a huge difference. 1
Knowledge: Discussion -Medium Our teachers brought in a lot of people that would present to us, especially in the exceptional child class, she had them come in and show us what they were about and what ages they worked with, how they can help the kids and how we could get in contact with them. 1
Graduates Recommendations
At the end of each interview, each graduate was asked, what additional support do you need from your courses that would build your capacity to be a leader in early childhood


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programs that include children with developmental delays of disabilities? The graduates shared similar recommendations. The recommendations were focused on personal and early childhood program needs, as well as support for the ECE department at the community college.
The graduates talked about the desire for more, or better resources in their early childhood program (7/7). They felt they were under-resourced. The most common message related to resources was that they felt they needed more to support families with children who have developmental delays or disabilities and staff working with those children.
Support included access to specialized programs and services outside of the early childhood program, more information for staff who could share it with families and more resources to accommodate children in the classroom. The graduates also talked about the need for more professional development (7/7). One graduate said, a semester of looking at children with special needs isnt nearly enough. Their preference of delivery was not universal, but they repeatedly said that they and other early childhood professionals needed more than the one course they completed while earning their Colorado Directors Certificate. Other common topics included the need to have technical assistance from early childhood intervention specialists (4/7) and more experience working in the field before they completed their certificate (4/7). One graduate suggested the need to have field work that involved working with a director rather than teachers. Table 4.8 provides quotes representing the recommendations offered by the graduates. The left-hand column shows the nature of the


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recommendation, the center column is a quote. The right column is the number of graduates who gave similar responses.
Table 4.8. The graduate recommendations
Recommendation Excerpt: Graduates recommendations for enhancing the instructional strategies the faculty use Related excerpts for other participants
Resources The only thing that I would say is having more resources and getting more information about what way we support the children and ensuring that we are knowledgeable, that we work with the staff that you would work with 7
Professional Development A semester of looking at children with special needs isn't nearly enough, because I believe it's harder to deal and care for those children, and teach them, than it is for any regular child 7
Technical Assistance I think it would be nice if we could get counselors in there who could help train the actual teacher 4
Field Experience Some of the things that they teach you in the directors program you don't really get to experience, us ones that want to be directors need a little experience going in there and seein what it feels like to be a director 4
Learning Materials
The data collected from the learning materials were used to provide an additional data set for data triangulation and to illuminate the instructional strategies used by the faculty to develop graduates elements for leading high-quality inclusive early childhood programs.
The learning materials were comprised of assignment and activity descriptions. Each learning material was coded using the initial and emergent codes. The codes were the broad themes found in the literature which defined the elements for practices for high-quality


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inclusive early childhood programs. They were not limited to the elements for leadership practices (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007).
The learning materials addressed 20 of the 23 initial and emergent codes. The codes of skills, knowledge and dispositions, the faculty instructional strategies, professional standards and field experience were excluded from the interpretations. Those four codes addressed personnel preparation at the community college rather than elements for practices in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. Codes identifying leadership styles were also removed. Those codes did not identify individual elements for practices either. Therefore, they were determined to be unnecessary for the targeted interpretations. After removing the nine codes not relevant to elements for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs, there were 11 codes left to complete the data analysis and interpretations of the learning materials. Figure 4.1 illustrates the frequency of codes appearing in the 20 learning materials.
Learning Materials Coded with Initial and Emergent Codes
14
Figure 4.1. Coded learning materials


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Frequencies of Pattern Variables
After the data analysis was completed with the 11 codes, the codes were organized into pattern variables. There were three pattern variables relevant to developing the elements for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs: (a) Elements for early childhood professional practices; (b) elements for inclusive programming and practices; and (c) elements for leadership practices. The three pattern variables were the most consistent all the elements of practices for leading a high-quality inclusive early childhood program identified in the literature. The learning materials focused on codes associated with the pattern variable of early childhood and leadership practices. The codes associated with the pattern variables of inclusive programming practices and leadership practices were assigned the least often.
Reflective practices, evidence-based practices and early childhood professional practices were associated with the pattern variable elements for early childhood professional practices. The codes for early childhood professional practices were assigned 29 times. The data analysis showed the reflective practices (10/29), evidence-based practices (9/29) and early childhood professional practices (7/29) were three of the five most frequently assigned codes. Aggregating the three codes, plus evidence-based practices (3/29) the pattern variable of elements for early childhood professional practices was the most common of the elements for practices in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs.
Participation, systems of support and collaboration were associated with the pattern variable of elements for inclusive programming and practices. The inclusive programming and practices pattern variable was the element specific to practices supporting the inclusion


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of children with developmental delays or disabilities. The codes for inclusive programming and practices were assigned 15 times. The codes of participation (3/15) and systems of support and services (4/15) were two of the five least frequently assigned codes. The only code aligning with professional organizations expectations for inclusive programming and practices appearing frequently was access to inclusive environments (8/15). Aggregating the three codes, the pattern variable of inclusive programming and practices was the least common element for practices in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs.
Advocacy, early childhood professionals as leaders, collaboration and resources were associated with the pattern variable of elements for leadership practices. Leadership practices were relevant to elements for leadership in high-quality ECE, but they did not specifically address the elements for practices in high-quality inclusive programs. Codes for leadership practices were assigned 23 times. Advocacy (5/23), early childhood professionals as leaders (2/23) and collaboration (4/23) were three of the least frequently assigned codes. Resources (12/23) was the most frequently assigned code. Aggregated, the four codes associated with the pattern variable were assigned more often than the codes related to inclusive programming practices, but less often than the codes specific to early childhood professional practices.
The DEC (2014) RPs and DEC (2015) position statement on leadership recognize leadership as the foundation for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs, but the leadership must have a strong understanding of inclusive programming and practices. Figure 4.2 shows that the learning materials provided by the faculty emphasize inclusive


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programming (15/69) and leadership practices (23/69) the least, and the co-occurrence of codes associated with the two patterns are less common than any of the three pattern variables isolated (7/69), a majority of which included the co-occurrence of access and resources (6/69). If those were removed from the two pattern variables, there would be few co-occurrences between the pattern variables of inclusive programming and leadership practices (3/69).
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Pattern Variable Codes
ECprofessionalpractices Leadershippractices Inclusiveprogramming Inclusiveprogramming
practices arid leadership
Figure 4.2. Pattern variable codes Frequency of Instructional Strategies
After interpreting the frequency of pattern variables occurring within the learning materials, interpretations of the instructional strategies associated with the codes in each of the three pattern variables were conducted. Before interpreting the frequency of instructional strategies used for codes in the learning materials, the frequency and complexity of


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instructional strategies used for each of the 20 learning materials were identified. The learning materials were labeled with criteria from the Aligning Instructional Strategies to Desired Professional Development Outcomes figure (Winton et al., 2016) (see Appendix O). Figure 4.3 illustrates the findings. The x-axis indicates one of the four instructional strategies. The y-axis indicates the frequency of the instructional strategy identified for each learning material. The blue bar on the left is the instructional strategy and what the strategy develops. The orange bar to the right is the complexity of the instructional strategy. Each of the 20 learning materials is accounted for once.
Instructional Strategies
Discussion (Knowledge) Practice (Skill) Learning checks Reading (Knowledge)
(Knowledge)
Instructional strategies Complexity: 1 = Low. 2 = Medium, 3 = High
Figure 4.3. Instructional strategies
Figure 4.3 shows the majority of the learning materials were learning checks (13/20). The learning checks included research assignments, group projects, tests and essays. The data indicated the learning materials were designed to develop knowledge (16/20) rather than


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skills (4/20) or practice in context (0/20). Almost all of the elements were developed using instructional strategies with medium complexity (18/20). Very few of the elements were developed using instructional strategies with low complexity (2/20). None of the learning materials used instructional strategies with high complexity (0/20).
Instructional Strategies used for Codes Associated with their Pattern Variable
The interpretations looked at the instructional strategies used for each of the 11 codes. The codes were interpreted alongside the other codes associated with their pattern variable. The interpretations revealed the pattern variable of early childhood professional practices was the only one regularly addressed in learning materials other than those identified as learning checks.
Almost all of the codes associated with the variable code of leadership practices were assigned to learning materials identified as learning checks (17/23). Advocacy (5/5) was exclusively taught using learning checks. Early childhood professional as leaders (2/2) was taught as a learning check and discussion. Resources (10/12) was taught with learning checks and practice. Almost all of the codes associated with the pattern variable leadership practices developed knowledge (19/23) and were medium complexity (21/23).


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Instructional Strategies used to Teach Leadership Practices
I
I.
Learning Check Practice Discussion
Advocacy BE Casa leader Resources Collaboration
Reading
Figure 4.4. Instructional strategies used to teaching leadership practices A majority of codes association with the variable code of inclusive programming and practices were assigned to learning materials identified as learning checks (11/15). Access to inclusive programs was taught using learning checks (5/8), practice (1/8) and reading (2/8). Systems of supports and services was taught using learning checks (3/4) and reading (1/4). Participation was taught using learning checks (3/3). The codes associated with the pattern variable leadership practices developed knowledge (14/15) and skill (1/15). They used the
medium (13/15) and low complexity (2/15).


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Instructional Strategies used to Teach Inclusive Practices
6
Learning Check Practice Discussion Reading
Access to inclusive programming Systems of supports and sendees Participation
Figure 4.5. Instructional strategies used to teach inclusive practices A majority of codes association with the variable code of early childhood professional practices were learning checks (15/29) or practice (11/29). Evidence-based practices were taught using learning checks (5/8) and practice (3/8). Reflective practices were taught using learning checks (5/10), practice (4/10) and a discussion (1/10). Early childhood professional practices were taught using learning checks (4/8), practice (3/8) and a discussion (1/8). Program policies were taught using learning checks (1/3), practice (1/3) and reading (1/3). The codes associated with the pattern variable early childhood professional practices developed knowledge (16/29) and skill (13/29). They used medium (28/29) and low complexity (1/29).


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6
5
4
3
2
1
0
Instructional Strategies used to Teach Early Childhood
Professional Practices
Learning Check Practice Discussion Reading
Program policies Reflective practices BEC professional practices Evidence-based practices
Figure 4.6. Instruction strategies used to teach EC professional practices
Summary of Findings
The findings from the research reveal insights into the preparation of graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs at one community college. The conclusions are confirmed through data triangulation. This section summarizes the findings from the three data sets combined. The combined data sets confirm (a) the faculty definition of leadership, (b) the elements for leading a high-quality inclusive program that graduates developed, and (c) the instructional strategies used by the faculty.
The Faculty Definition of Leadership
An analysis of the combined data sets confirmed the faculty definitions for leadership in a high-quality inclusive program. However, the data from the learning materials provided


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evidence suggesting the faculty definitions may have emphasized certain leadership styles more than what was identified in the faculty and graduate interviews.
The faculty and graduate interview data showed the faculty and graduates believed leadership for high-quality inclusive early childhood programs required characteristics related to administrative and advocacy leadership more than other characteristics. Graduates also discussed characteristics of pedagogical and conceptual leadership, but less frequently. Neither data set indicated that characteristics of community leadership were valuable. The data revealed learning materials were much more likely to address pedagogical leaders (8/20) and administrative leadership (7/20) than advocacy leadership (2/20), conceptual leadership (2/20) or community leadership (1/20) (see Figure 4.7).
The combined data sets confirmed the faculty definitions of leadership in a high-quality inclusive early childhood program encompassed characteristics of pedagogical and administrative leadership. The faculty also confirmed characteristics of community leadership were not part of their definitions. The learning materials did not confirm the faculty definition included advocacy or conceptual leadership. The combined data sets suggested the faculty definitions included characteristics of advocacy and conceptual leadership, but they were not communicating that through their instructional materials.


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Styles of Leadership Addressed in each Learning Material
9
Pedagogical Administrative Conceptual Advocacy Community
Figure 4.7. Styles of leadership in learning materials Elements for Leadership Graduates Developed
According to the interview data, the graduates were not developing the elements for leadership that the faculty were teaching them (see Table 4.2; see Table 4.6). The learning materials suggested graduates were not learning the elements for leadership because the faculty were not teaching them, and/or using effective instructional strategies to teach them. The elements the faculty taught related to early childhood professional practices more than leadership or inclusion. Also, the instructional strategies used to teach the few elements for leadership develop graduates knowledge through learning checks rather than skills and practice in context.
The combined data sets confirm that graduates were not developing many of the elements for leading high-quality inclusive early childhood programs that professional


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DISS_para High-quality inclusive early childhood programs serve children with developmental delays/disabilities alongside children without developmental delays/disabilities, something that has historically challenged the fields of early childhood education (ECE) and early intervention/early childhood special education (EI/ECSE). A current movement suggests the challenges can be attributed to insufficient leadership within early childhood programs. This study explored how one community college prepared recent graduates from the Colorado Director’s Certificate program to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs. The research used a case study methodology. The results from the study were used to provide the ECE department at the community college with recommendations for their preparation of early childhood professionals to be leaders in high-quality inclusive early childhood programs and ultimately increase the percentage of children enrolled in programs serving children with and without developmental delays/disabilities and their families.
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P REPARING EARLY CHILDHOOD PROFESSIONALS TO BE LEADERS IN HIGH QUALITY INCLUSIVE EARLY CHILDHOOD PROGRAMS: A CASE STUDY OF ONE COMMUNITY COLLEGE b y ANDREW DAVID LEPP GOFF B.S., University of Minnesota, 2004 M.ED ., University of Minnesota, 2006 A thesis submitted to the Faculty of the Graduate School of the University of Colorado in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Educational Leadership for Educational Equity Program 2017

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ii 2017 ANDREW DAVID LEPP GOFF ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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i ii This thesis for the Doctor of Education degree by Andrew David Lepp Goff h as been approved for the Leadership for Educational Equity Program b y Alissa Rausch, Chair Connie Fulmer Courtney Donovan Ted Snow Date: Ma y 13 2017

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iv Goff, Andrew David Le pp, (Ed.D Leadership for Educational Equity Program) Preparing Early Childho od Professionals to be Leaders in High Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs: A Case Study of One Community College Thesis directed by Instructor Alissa Rausch ABSTRACT High quality inclusive early childhood progra ms serve children with developmental delays/ disabilities alongside child ren without developmental delays/disabilities something that has histor ically challenged the fields of early childhood education (ECE) and early intervention/early childhood special education (EI/ECSE) A current movement suggests the challenges can be attributed to insufficient leadership within early childhood program s This study explore d how one community college prepared recent graduates from the Colorado quality in clusive early childhood programs The research used a c ase study methodology The results from the study were used to provide the ECE department at the community college with recommendations for their prep aration of early childhood professionals to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs and ultimately increase the percentage of children enrolled in programs serving children with and without developmental delays/disabilities and their families The form and content of this abstract are approved. I recommend its publication Approved: Alissa Rausch

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v D EDICATION To Natalie for your love throughout my adulthood and professional endeavors. You force me to question my intentions and the decisions I make. This is yours as much as mine. To Citlali for your curiosity. You have asked questions that no one else could think to ask. You and your sister have been my inspirations. To Itzel for your patience. You have not known me as anything else than a father/stu dent. To my mother for your presence. You have been with me through thick and thin. You allowed me to be who I am and always reinforce my value to this world. To Vince for the countless selfless commitments you have made. I would not be where I am without you To my grandparents for the snail mail that keeps me grounded and connected to what is truly important in my life. To my sisters for sharing your lives with me allowing me to feel like I have something to share with the world To my father for driving me to find clarity in the transformative decisions I make when choosing which road to take To Ashley for your encouragement through this whole process. I value my professional role because you never question my potential. To Ja niece for talking shop and helping me organize the complicated reality of my professional commitments

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vi To Alissa For challenging me needed answers. I knew I could get through this because you told me I could. To Elizabeth for affording me the opportunity of experience the pain and pleasures of this achievement. To Barbara introducing me and guiding me as I sought to understand why I do what I do To Dorothy for your ear, encouragement and the words that kept me moving forward To my research assistants for you r diligence and follow through. To my committee your willingness to take on the challenge of mentoring me and stepping in when I was in need To cohort V for persevering alongside me and all the laughs we had. We are a team. To the community college who allowed me to conduct the research I completed for this dissertation

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vii TABLE OF CONTENTS I. INTRODUCTION ... The Foundation for this Case Study 1 Background of the Case Study 7 Limitation ... 9 II. LITERATURE REVIEW .......................... 12 T he Division for Early Childhood Recommended Practices 13 H igh Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programming 16 I nclusion in High Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs 20 Leadership .. 22 L eadership in High Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs ... 22 T 25 ECE P ersonnel Preparation Standards 28 Barrier O ne .. 30 Barrier T wo 32 Barrier T hree 33 P rofessional Development 35 The Paradigm 37 Evidence .. .... 39

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viii Applying Effective Instructional Strategies Developing the Elements for Leadership 41 C onclusion of the Literature Review 42 III. METHODOLOGY 44 Qualitative Research .... 44 Participants ... 45 The F aculty Members ... 46 Graduates of t h 47 M ethods for Data Collection 49 Interviews 51 Course Learning Materials 52 Data Analysis 53 Code Mapping 55 T rustworthiness ..... 56 E thical Considerations 58 IV. RESE A RCH RESULTS ... ..... 61 Results 61 The Faculty Interviews 61 The F aculty Definition s of Leadership 2 The Faculty Aware ness of Elements of Leadership .. ..... 63 Instructional Strategies used by the Faculty 6 5

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ix The Faculty Recommendations .. 6 7 Graduate Interviews 69 The Graduate s Definition s of Leadership 71 Elements for Leadership the Graduates Developed 71 Instructional Strategies 73 Graduate Recommendations 75 Learning Materials 76 Frequencies of Pattern Variables 78 Frequency of Instructional Strategies 80 S ummany of Research Findings 85 Elements for Leadership Graduates Developed 87 Instructional Strategies Used by the Faculty 88 V. DISCUSSION D iscussion 90 The Faculty Definition and Characteristics of Leadership 92 The Graduates Developed Few of the Elements for Leading 93 The Effectiveness of Instructional Strategies 94 I 95 95

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x Implication Two: Insufficient/Inadequate Professional Development ...... 98 R ecommendations 99 Conceptual izing the Recommendations 99 Recommendations 101 Developing the Faculty Awareness and Competency 102 Practice Leadership in Context 103 Provide Professional Development Meeting the Needs of the Students 104 F uture Research Recommendations 105 Conclusion 107 R EFERENCES 110 APPENDIX 128 A. ... ....... 123 B. DEC (2014) Recommended Practices: Leadership S trand ... 127 C. CEC (2012) Advanced Preparation Standard 5: Leadership and Policy ... ....... .129 D. NAEYC (2007) Program Administrator Competencies: Leadership and Advocacy 131 E. Colorado Common Course Numbering System: Standard Competencies: ECE 240 1 3 2 F. Colorado Common Course Numbering System: Standard Competencies: ECE 240 134 G. The Faculty Participant Questionnaire .. .. ........ 135

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xi H. Graduate Participant Questionnaire 136 I. The Faculty Informed Consent ... ....... J. Graduate Consent Form ... ....... ..140 K. Developing Leadership for High Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs Study Description ... 143 L. Interview Questions for t he Faculty Participants M. Interview Questions for Graduate Participants ... ...... 147 N. ... ...... 149 O. Aligning Instructional Strategies to Desired Professional Development Outcomes (Winton, Snyder & Goffin, 2016)

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xii LIST OF TABLES TABLE 3.1 Code m apping: The iterations of data a nalysis ( Anfara, Brown & Mangione (2002) 6 4.1 The faculty d efi nitions of leadership for high quality inclusive p rograms 63 4.2 The faculty awareness of elements for l ead ership practices aligned with professional eadership ... ... 65 4.3 The faculty instructional s trategies .. 4.4 The f aculty r ecommendations .. .. 69 4.5 Graduates d efinition of l ..... 71 4.6 Graduates e lements for l eadership aligned with the expectations of professional o 72 4.7 Graduate s r ecollection s of the i nstructional s trategies .. 74 4.8 Graduate s r .. 76

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xiii LIST OF FIGURES FIGURE 1. 1 Conceptual f ramework of DEC Recommended Practices 2.1 Blending professional o rganiz xpectations for l eadership in a h i gh quality inclusive early c hildhood p rogram ... ..................................... 28 4. 1 Coded learning m aterials ..77 4.2 Pattern variable c odes ... ...... 80 4.3 Instruc tional s ... ... ...... 81 4.4 Instructional strategies used to teaching l eadership p .. .. ........................... .... 83 4.5 Instructional strategies used to teach inclusive p 84 4.6 Instruction s trategie s used to t each EC p rofessional p ractices ... ..... .. 85 4.7 Styles of leadership in learning m aterials 87 5.1 Conceptualization for developing the e lements for leadership at the community c ollege ...... .. 1 01

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1 C HAPTER I INTRODUCTION Chapter one introduce s this case study. The introduction includes: (a) the foundation for the case study; (b) an overview of the problem of practice that grounds the case study; (c) a background for the case study; and (d ) the limitations of the case study. The Foundation for this Case Study I nclusive early childhood programs serve children with developmental delays/disabilities alongside children without developmental delays/disabilities ( Barton & Smith, 2015; IDEA, 2004; U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, 2015). Despite ample research, and the pass a ge of the section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (1973), the ith Disabilities Act (1990) and the s with Disabilities E ducation Act (1986) the percentage of children with developmental delays/disabilities participating in inclusive early childhood programs has increased less than six percent since 1986 (Barton & Joseph, 2015) For more than 30 years, advocates have work ed to increase inclusion but research has shown their efforts were less success ful than previously thought ( Barton & Joseph, 2015; DEC, 2014; Odom & Mclean, 1996). Recent publication s suggest the paucity of in clusion is attributable to inadequate preparation of e arly childhood professionals who are leading early childhood programs (DEC 2014; DEC 2015). In 1993, the Division for Early Childhood (DEC) of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) the professional organization for the field of early intervention/early childhood special education (EI/ECSE) created the recommended practices (RP) for professionals in EI/ECSE In 1996, the professional organization published Recommended

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2 Practices for Early Intervention and Early Childhood Special Education (Odom & Mclean, 1996) The RP s were intended to support professionals with the implementation of evidence based practices (EBP) designed to improve the outcome s of children with developmental delays/disabilities The authors thought the RPs would increase the inclusion of children with developmental delays/disabilities in early childhood programs (Odom & Mclean, 1996 ; Sandal, Hemmeter, Smith & McLean, 2005 ). More than twenty years after the creation of RPs EBPs have not been normalized into the program practices of early childhood professionals Subsequently, children with developmental delays/disabilities are not provided with the high quality inclusive experiences they are legally entitled to ( DEC, 2014; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services U.S. Department of Education, 2015 ; Smith & Barton, 2015). The practice of inclusion in early childhood programs is suppo rted by three pieces of federal legislation: the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) (2004) the Americans with Disabilities Act (2008) and the Rehabilitation Act (1973) IDEA states: Each public agency must ensure that (i) To the maximu m extent appropriate, children with disabilities, including children in public or private institutions or other care facilities, are educated with children who are nondisabled; and (ii) Special classes, separate schooling, or other removal of children with disabilities from the regular educational environment occurs only if the nature or severity of the disability is such that education in regular classes with the use of supplementary aids and services ca nnot be achieved satisfactorily (IDEA, 34 C.F.R. §3 03.114, 2004)

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3 ADA states: A place of public accommodation is a [public or private early childhood program] ( ADA, 28 C.F.R. § with disabilities is offered a public accommodation cannot deny an individual with a disability part icipation in its regular program. ( ADA, 28 C.F.R. § 3.4200) The Rehabilitation Act states: No otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States, shall, solely by reason of her or his disability, be exclu ded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving f ederal financial assistance or under any program or activity conducted by any e xecutive agency ( Rehabilitation Act 29 U.S. C. § 504 (a) 1973 ) Collectively, IDEA (2004) ADA (2008) and the Rehabilitiation Act (1973) mean early childhood programs cannot discriminate against children with development al delays/disabilities and all child ren have equitable access to general education classroom curricula to the maximum extent appropriate. Unfortunately even with the three federal statutes and research providing evidence based strategies to support the implementation of high quality inclusive practices the inclusion o f children with develop m ental delays/disabilities remains elusive for a majority of young children (Barton & Smith, 2015). There are three underlying criteria of inclusion : Access, participation, and systems of support (DE C/NAEYC, 2009). In their most recent publication of RPs, DEC (2014) identifie d leadership as the core tenet of implementing the three underlying criteria for th e

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4 i nclusion of children with developmental delays/disabilities (DEC, 2014) The RPs are designed to guide early childhood pro grams with EBPs designed to overcome the obstacles inhibiting inclusion (Bar ton & Smith, 2015; DEC, 2014). In Colorado early childhood programs leadership is an expectation of ea rly childhood program directors ( Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016 ) While many scholars in the fields of ECE and EI/ ECSE agree that program management is a responsibility o f directors ( DEC, 2015; Kagan & Bowman, 1997; Muijs, Aubrey, Harris & Briggs, 2004) they also believe directors should espouse a wider ra n ge of elements for leadership that foster s high quality inclu sive early childhood programs (D EC, 2015: Kagan & Bowman, 1997 ). Elements are the knowledge, skills and dispositions of educational content (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC 2009) The sentiment is central to the concerns of vocal advocates of high quality inclusive early childhood programming (DEC, 2015) DEC (2015) propose s that t he elements for leadership in high quality inclusive early childhood p rograms should be learned through professional development (PD) ( Buysse, Wesley & Skinner, 1999 ; DEC, 2015) PD is delivered through pre service training in service training and practice in context ( NAEYC/NACCRRA, 2011; NPDCI, 2008 ; Snyder, Goffin & Winton, 2016 ) In Colorado, early childhood program directors develop the elements for leadership while earning the ir (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulatio ns, 2016 ) Between 2011 and 2015 t w a s earned through in service PD ( Colorado Childc are Rules and Regulations, 2010 ; Colorado Childcare Rules and

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5 Regulations, 2016; System Plan (n.d. ) The certificate inc lude d, and for any student earning their certification at a Colorado community college continues to include ten college courses Tw o of the courses are written with personnel preparation standards designed to develop the elements Colorado community colleges have deemed important for leadership in early childhood programs ( Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016; Colorado Common Course Numbering S ystem 2016 ) However the literature indicates the co urse standards may not be designed to develop the elements for lead ing high quality inclusive early childhood programs ( Colorado Common Course Numbering System, 2016 ; CEC, 2012 ; DEC, 2014; DEC, 2015 ) Traditionally, the personnel preparation standards for courses at institutions of higher education (IHE) are developed around the professional expectations defined by professional organ izations. The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) DEC and CEC are the professional organizations who influence the creat ion of the per sonnel preparation standards guiding the development of PD for EI/ECSE and ECE at IHE s Personnel preparation standards are utilized for all levels of higher education. NAEYC provides guidance for personnel preparation standards for developing leadership for associate, bachelor and graduate degree s in ECE, but none of the professional organi zations provide guidance for leadership in EI/ECSE through personnel preparation standards until early childhood professionals enter a graduate degree program (CEC, 2012; Stayton, Miller

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6 & Dinnebeil, 2003 ; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009). The literature published by NAEYC, DEC and CEC suggests Colorado communi ty colleges and the professionals who design their courses do not have personnel preparation sta ndards that will develop the elements for program directors to lead high quality inclusive early childhood programs. Understanding the Problem of Practice : Inclusion in Early Childhood Education In 2012, only 42.5 percent of c hildren with developmental delays/disabilities were included in early childhood programs up from 38 .8 percent in 1985 ( U S Department of Education, 1987; U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Educat ion and Rehabilitative Services 2014 ) This case study considered the issue a problem of practice rooted in ECE personnel preparation. Guided by four research questions, it explored one quality inclusive programs. The research focused on graduates Cert ificate program and the faculty at the community college who taught the courses. The courses in the are developed around guidance from expectations published by professional organizations (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC 2007; NAEYC, 2009; Colorado Common Course Numbering System, 2016 ) L iterature suggests the expectations do not guide the development of community college courses designed to prepare early childhood professionals to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs ( CEC, 2012; Stayton et al., 2003; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009) The DEC (2014; 2015) position affirms that the problem of practice will persist if personnel

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7 preparation programs do not prepare early childhood professionals to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs Background of the Case Study The community college where th i s research study was conducted has an annual enrollment of approximately 10 ,000 11 ,000 students. The se students come from more than 60 countries, bring ing with them a diverse range of racial, ethnic, and linguistic backgrounds. A majority of the students are non traditional learner s. Doescher & Beudert (2010) define a n on traditional learner in higher education a s a student who has delayed enrolling in post high school education Non traditional learners are typically the primary caregiver s of dependents, working full or part time while attending school part time, have low basic academic skills limited financial resources and view their work as a job rather than a profession. N on traditional learner s in higher education are much more likely to leave school before graduation than traditional learners Research has shown early childhood professionals who pursue credentials at community colleges demand well planned intentional instructional strategies targeted at developing relevant and applicable knowledge, skills and dispositions ( Cho, 2016; Garavuso, 2014 ; Hyson 2003 ; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009 ). There are approximately 300 to 400 students annually enrolled in ECE courses at the community college The demographics are similar to those college wide Students take courses to earn a degree or certificate The department offers two different degrees : the Associate in Arts and the Associate of Applied Sciences. They offer three different

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8 certificates : Level 1; Level 2; and This study address ed students who earned their at the community college The program include s the following ten ECE courses ECE 101 : Introduction to ECE ECE 102 : Introduction to Early Childhood Techniques ECE 103 : Guidance Strategies for Young Children ECE 111 : Infant and Toddler Theory and Practice ECE 205 : Early Childhood Health, Safety and Nutrition ECE 220 : Curriculum Methods and Techniques ECE 238 : ECE Child Growth and Development ECE 240 : Administration of Early Childhood Care and Education Programs ECE 241 : Administration: Human Relations for ECE ECE 260 : The Exceptional Child The faculty participants who taught these courses all had adjunct status The a djunct faculty had diverse professional and personal backgrounds. The y all he ld graduate deg rees in fields related to ECE and a career technical education (CTE) certificate The case study explored the p reparedness of early childhood professionals in the Colorado D irector C ertificate program at a community college to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs A spec ific definition of th e term leadership as it relates to this s tudy emerge d through the applied methodology. The re were four questions guiding this research :

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9 1. What do semi structured interviews with the faculty at the community college and document analyses of their course learning materials reveal about how the faculty at the community college and graduates Certificate program define leadership for high quality inclusive early childhood programs? 2. What do semi structured interviews with the faculty at the community college and document analyses of their course learning materials reveal about how the instructional a high quality in clusive early childhood program ? 3. What do semi program at the community college reveal about how the elements for leading a high quality inclusive early childhood program are developed while they complete their cer tificate? 4. What recommendations can the findings from this research provide to the community college for enhancing their preparation of early childhood professionals to lead a high quality in clusive early c hildhood program ? Limitations There are four categories of limitations identified in this study: (a) t he faculty participants; (b) the graduate participants; (c) the research design; and (d) role in the research. The faculty had different personal and professional back grounds. They had backgrounds in special education, mental health, education leadership and ECE program

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10 leadership. Their personal bac kgrounds were equally diverse. The faculty also had a diverse range of professional expertise and comfort with the cour ses they taught. Some taught one course multiple times others taught many courses a few times. They taught course s with different delivery models. Course models included a practicum face to face and online. Due to the diversity this study recruited the faculty who had at least three semesters of Three limitations were identified for the graduates who participated in the research. First, t he graduates completed the certificate at different pa ces, taking anywhere from three semesters to nine semesters to complete the courses. Second, t hey had different academic goals. The goals additional education, or were no longer i nterested in ECE. Third the graduates may have had different experiences while taking the courses. They may not have taken their course from a faculty member involved in the study and may not have been as engaged in the course. There were two primary m ethodological limitations. First, the case study collected retrospective data. Experiences could have changed the way a faculty member taught, or recall teaching the course if or when the graduate took it. Graduates may have had experiences affecting th e way they understood their experiences over time. Second, there were a small number of participants. While case studies do not require large sample sizes and procedures were set up to mitigate some of the problems occurring with small sample

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11 sizes, this could still be problematic. The results cannot be used to generalize for all students Insider research involves risks (Trowler, 2011). One that was of particular con cern for this study was the power dynamic between the researcher and the faculty. The researcher was a full time faculty member at the community college while the faculty members were adjunct The research had a close relationship with the ECE department chair, who decides whether or not the adjunct have opportunities in the community college. This was mitigated by limiting the researcher s contact with the faculty during the research. The faculty w as informed that their personal interview or results would not be shared with the community college. The power dynamic between the research and graduates was also a concern. The graduates were aware they were participating in research that would be communicated to the ECE department. This was mitigated by limiting the contact with the graduates. Additionally, t he selected graduates were not familiar with the researcher a nd were not enrolled at the community college during the semesters the research w as conducted

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12 C HAPTER II REVIEW OF LITERATURE The literature is organized into five sections. The first section is a d e scription of the DEC RPs as a theoretical framework m olding the expectation s for a high quality inclusive early childhood program The t h eoretical framework con c eptualizes the rationale for courses in the designed to develop the elements for lead ing a high quality inclusive early childhood program The second section present s the current research on inclusion in early childhood programs The findings highlight the value of inclusion for all children (Buysee, Goldman & Skinner, 2002; Cole, Mills, Dale & Jenkin, 1991; Cross, Traub, Hutter Pishgahi & Shelton, 2004; Rafferty, Piscitelli & Boettcher, 2003; Strain & Hoyson, 2000) The third section discuss es current research on leadership. It presents the recent r esearcher in EI/ECSE placing leadership at the forefront of the conversation on high quality inclusive early childhood programs ( CEC, 2012; DEC, 2015; Goffin, 2013; LaRocco, Bruns, Gupta & Sopko, 2014) However, the research specific to EI/ECSE is limited. The fourth section address es personnel preparation standards for PD related to leadership The literature illu min ates the ba rriers caused by current standards The barriers may create ch alle nges for community colleges to prepare early childhood professionals enrolled in the certificate program to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs (CEC, 2012; Colorado Common Course Numbering System, 2016; DEC 2014; DEC, 2015) The fin al section addresses PD and the instructional strategies used in PD The literature identifies certain PD instruction al strategies as more effective at guiding the development of

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13 elements for lead ing high quality inclusive early childhood programs than others The literature reviewed provides evidence suggesting the elements for leadership early childhood professionals develop while earning their Colorado Direc college may not prepare them to be leaders in early childhood programs including children with developmental delays/disabilities The Division for Early Childhood Recommended Practices The RPs (DEC, 2014; Odom & McLean, 1996; Sandall, Hemmeter, Smith & McLean, 2005) are the gold standard of practices for the effective inclusion of children with developmental delays/disabilities in early childhood programs (DEC, 2014). The Recommended Practices in Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education (2014), published by DEC is used as the theoretical framework for this literature review. There are two reasons for using the RPs as a framework. First, DEC, the professional o rganization for the field of EI/ECSE stresses the use of RPs to support high quality inclusive early childhood programs. Second, the RPs define leadership positions, such as early childh ood program directors as the foundation for successful, high quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2015). The RPs are the field of EI/ECSE guide for promoting high quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2014). The RPs were initiated with the passag e of Public Law 99 457 in 1986, which amended w hat is presently called the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) P.L. 99 457 extend ed the mandate of the rights of all children to free a nd appropriate public education from kind ergarten through twelfth grade to children birth

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14 through 21 years old ( Rous & Smith, 2011) Shortly after the passage of P.L. 99 457 DEC members recognized the need for a unified understanding of high quality, effective practices In 1991, DEC initiated a task force to create the first set of RPs The task force decided it was important to draft the RPs with a broad base of stak eholders Stakeholders included discipline experts, practitioners and families. The task force used six criteria to guide the selected practices: research based or value based; fami ly centered; multicultural; cross disciplinary collaboration; developmentally and chronologically age appropriate; and normalization of characteristics and practices that may be perceived as exceptional (McLean & Odom, 1996). The first set of RPs was comp leted in 1993 ( Odom & McLean, 1996; Stayton et al., 2005 ). The RPs were comprehensi ve ly defined and described in Odom and Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education Recommended Practices Although i nitially considered best practices for EI/ECSE the authors determined the standards were not intended to suggest one practice was the best for all children and families. Rather, the standards for practices were recommendations for practices individualized for c hildren and families (Odom & Mc Lean, 1996). The first set of RPs contained 14 strands with a total of 415 practices (McLean, n.d. ). The writers of t he 1993 publication expected the m to be the future for EI/ECSE stakeholders They dis covere d a few years later that their expectations we no t accurate In response to advancements in research policies and recognition for the slow adoption of RPs by stakeholders a r evision of the RPs began in the late 1990 s (Odom et al., 1995; Gurlani ck, 1997).

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15 T he second set of RPs w as created with the intention of incorporating new EBPs and increas ing the adoption of the practices by stakeholders (McLean, n.d.; Snyder, Thompson, McLean & Sandall, 2002; Smith, McLean, Sandall, Snyder, & Ramsey, 2005). Following a field validation and focus groups, seven str ands with 24 0 practices were identified and defined ( Sandall, Hemmeter, Smith & McLean, 2005; Smith et al., 2002). T wo books designed to support the a doptions of RPs by stakeholders were p ublished in 2005 (Hemmeter, Smith, Sandall & Askew, 2005; Sandall et al., 2005). DEC continued to search for additional techniques for expanding the disseminat ion of the RPs (DEC, 2014 ; Hemmeter et al., 2005) The third set of the RPs (DEC, 2014) which is considered the current set consists of eight strands. Beginning with leadership (see Appendix D) the practices are outlined in the following order: assessment; environment; family; instruction; interactions; teaming and collaboration; and transition (see Figure 1 ). The a uthors of the RPs note that practices within the strands are not isolated. High quality i nclusive early ch ildhood programs demand the constant evaluation and integration of RPs across strands when appropriate. In many cases, practices from one st r and cannot be teased apart from practices in other strands. For example, RPs of instruction are dependent on the inclusive environment, assessment, interaction, teaming and collaboration, and family. DEC (2014) states t gap between research and practice upport inclusive settings and natural environments and address cultural, linguistic and ability

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16 diversity ( Figure 1 .1 The c onceptual framework of DEC Recommended Practices The RPs have become the guiding framework for adopting EBPs in high quality inclu sive early childhood programs (see Figure 1.1) T he framework of the RPs illustrates the importance of PD that builds the elements for lead ing a high quality inclusive early childhoo d program Following the framework, high quality inclusive early childhood programs begin with leaders hip wh ich enable s the use of the other EBPs With the leadership outlined by the RPs, children with developmental delays/disabilities can have access to high quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2014). High quality I n clusive E arly C hildhood P rogramming There are three federal laws supporting the inclusion of young children with developmental delays/disabilities in early childhood programs ADA (2008) and the Rehabilitation Act (1973) protect children with developmental delays/disabilities from

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17 discrimination. IDEA (2004) provides rules and regulations for EI/ECSE While ADA (2008) and the Rehabilitation Act ( 1973) are valuable ass et s for advocates of inclusions, the field of EI/ECSE is grounded by the rules and regulations of IDEA (2004). disabilities, including children in pub lic or private institutions or other care facilities, are [to be] educated with children who are not disabled (IDEA, 34 C.F.R. §303.114(i), 2004). Clarifying what (IDEA, 34 C.F.R. §303. 114(i), 2004), the legislation specifies that children with disabilities from regular educational environment [should] occur only if the nature or severity of the disability is such that education i n regular classes with the use of supplementary aids and services cannot be achieved satisfactorily (IDEA, 34 C.F.R. §303.114(ii), 2004). services, and other supports that are provided in regular education classes, other education related settings, and in extracurricular and nonacademic settings, to enable children with disabilities to be educa ted with children who are not disabled to the maximum extent appropriate in accordance with §303. 114 (IDEA, 34 C.F.R. §300.42, 2004). emp ha sis on inclus io n has fostered a formal collaboration between DEC and the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). In 2009, DEC and NAEYC issued a joint position statement on the inclusion of c hildren with developmental delays/disabilities in early childhood programs Recognizing the academic social and legal conditions, the two leading organizations for educating young

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18 children wrote a collective interpretation of inclusio n in e arly childhood programs (DEC/NAEYC, 2009) The definition stated : Early childhood inclusion embodies the values, policies, and practices that support the right of every infant and young child and his or her family, regardless of ability, to participate in a broad range of activities and contexts as full members of families, communities, and society. The desired results of inclusive experiences for children with and without disabilities and their families include a sense of belonging and membership, positi ve social relationships and friendships, and development and learning to reach their full potential. The defining features of inclusion that can be used to identify high quality early childhood programs and services are access, participation, and supports (DEC/NAEYC, 2009, p. 2) The joint position statement established a unified definition for the fields of ECE and EI/ECSE It provided langua ge that could meet the challenge s of normalizing inclusion ( Smith, Barton & Rausch, 2015) Stakeholde r s could articulate the obstacles inhibiting high quality inclusive early childhood programs and advocates could speak more clearly on practices that can eliminate the research to practice gap (DEC/NAEYC, 2009). T here were three themes framing the joint position statement : Access to, accommodations enhancing participation in and structural supports for an early childhood program : 1. Access can be increased through adaptations to ma terials, classroom environments technology and embedded learning opportunities (DEC/NAEYC, 2009; McWilliams

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19 & Casey, 2008; Sandall & Sch wartz, 2008). Access allows children with developmental delays/disabilities equitable opportunities to participa te in all classroom activities. 2. Participation refers to accommodations for individual children. Accommodations id ual interests of a child (DEC/NAEYC, 2009; McWilliams & Casey, 2008; Sandall & Schwartz, 2008 ). 3. Program structural supports are intentional systems developed around collaborative relationships. Supports require programmatic coordination with a unified mission (Barton & Smith, 2015 ; DEC/NAEYC, 2009). The se three features define d the quality of in clusive early childhood programs and began to address the importance of leadership from all stakeholders. The role of directors as leader s is highlight ed in the joint position statement and subsequent documents with a call for the creation of program conditions enhancing the availability of resources improving access to the classroom curriculum ( Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016; DEC, 2014 ; DEC /NAEYC 2009 ) The literature identifies the importance of leadership wh ich fost er s policies and procedures allow ing practition ers to implement practices inc reasing participation (DEC, 2014) and encouraging collaboration with the major stakeholders who are committ ed to a high quality inclusive early childhood program ( DEC, 2014 ; DEC, 201 5; DEC/NAEYC, 2009 ). Inclusion in H igh quality I nclusive E arly C hildhood P rograms

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20 More than three decades of research ha s provided a large body of empirical evidence support ing inclusion as the recommended practic e for children with developmental delays/disabilities (Gurlanick, 2001; Odom, 2002; Barton & Smith, 2015 ). Research strongly supports five conclusions: 1. Inclusion does not need to look the same in every early childhood program; t here are multiple methods of structuring a hig h quality in clusive early childhood program ( Odom & Diamond, 1998; Odom, Horn, Marquart, Hanson, Wolfberg, Beckman et al., 1999 ) 2. Inclusion is beneficial for child ren with and without developmental delays/disabilities (Buysee, Goldman & Skinner, 2002; Cole, Mills, Dal e & Jenkin, 1991 ; Cross, Traub, Hutter Pishgahi & Shelton, 2004 ; Rafferty, Piscitelli & Boettcher, 2003; Strain & Ho yson, 2000 ). 3. The features of access, participation and supports a high quality inclusive early childhood program provide children with wide ranges of disabling conditions the opportunity to develop stronger social, pre literacy, math, and art skills more than children in low quality or segregated classrooms (D a ugherty, Grisham Brown & Hemmeter, 2001; Grisham Brown, Schuster Hemmeter & Collins, 2000 ; Grisham Brown, Pretti Frontczak, Hawkins & Winchell, 2009 ; Odom & Diamond, 1998; Rafferty et al., 2003) 4. With the correct policies, resources and unified beliefs, high quality inclusive early childhood programs do not decrease t he developmental outcomes of children without

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21 disabilities (Dinnebeil, McInerney, Fox & Juchartz Pendry, 1998; Lieber, Hanson, Beckman, Odom, Sandall, Schwartz et al., 2000; Mulvihill, Shearer, Van Horn, 2002 ; Purcell, Horn & P almer, 2007; Stroiber, Gettinger & Goetz, 1998 ) 5. High quality i nclusive early childhood programs can be less expensive than programs segregating children with developmental delays/disabilities (Odom, Hanson, Lieber, Marquart, Sandall, Wolery et al., 2001 ; Odom, Parrish, Hikado, 2001 ) The research has fueled advocates work to enhance the quality of inclusion H owever the re are many obstacles maintained through the research to practice gap that leaders fight to overcome ( Smith et al., 2015 ). Smith, Barton & Rausch (2015) organize the common obstacles inhibiting the implementation of RPs into three categories: ( a ) attitudes and beliefs, ( b ) policy and procedures, and ( c ) resources. The obstacles remain in place because o f the research to practice gap (DEC/NA EYC, 2009; Fixsen, Naoom, Blase, Friedman & Wallace, 2005). Between 2015 and 2016 the U.S. Department of Education and Department of Health and H uman Services issued five joint policy statement s to assist state, local and program leaders : Suspens ion and Expulsion; Inclusion; Family Engagement; Dual Language Learners; and Assistive Technology One of the continuous themes found across all of the joint policy statements is the pivotal roles of leadership to overcome obstacles and bridge the researc h to practice gap The policy statements go beyond providing resources ; they provide recommendations support ing leaders with creating systems of support and service s for high quality inclusive early childhood programs (ED/HHS 2016) The pol icy statements are

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22 enhanced by the DEC (2015) position statement on leadership The joint policy statement s and the DEC (2015) position statement s articulate the importance of professional development ( PD ) that can develop the elements for lead ing a high quality in clusive early childhood program (DEC, 2015; ED/HHS, 2016) Leadership Northouse (2009) recognizes that the term leadership hold s a different definition for different people and can vary across different contexts and conditions He says, we try to define leadership, we discover that leadership has many different meanings (Northouse, 2009, p.2 ). In this literature review, leadership is defined as the individual and collective actions taken to influence the desired outcome (DEC, 2015; Snyder et al., 2012). A leader espouses unique leadership qualities, applies leadership methods and is defined by their specific (DEC, 2015; Kagan & Bowman, 1997; Muijus et al., 2004). The research conducted for this study explore d how e ach research participant defined leadership, and how it was reflected in interviews and document analyses. Leadership in H igh quality I nclusive E arly C hildhood P rograms ( 2015) position statement on leadership and RPs (DEC, 2014) point s out that the wealth of evidence support ing inclusion will be less effective in an early childhood program if the leader(s) does not have the elements of leader ship that allow them to support the implementation of EBPs Strong leadership can create the conditions for bridging the research to practice gap (DEC, 2014 ; DEC, 2015 ). T he leadership strand of RPs es the responsibilities of those in positions of program authority and leadership related to

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23 providing services to children who have developmental delays/disabilities and their families It alludes to the value of leadership in high qualit y inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2015). An ac cumulation of research from across multiple fields has begun to identify the characteristics and responsibilities of effective leadership applicable to the elements for lead ing a high quality in clusive early childhood program (DEC, 2015) Research on leadership in business and K 12 education recognize s leadership and management as inseparable ( Billingsley, McLeskey & Crockett, 2014 ; DEC, 2015). This belief is embraced in the DEC (2015) position statement on leadership ( DEC, 2015 ) The literature on leadership i n EI/ECSE and ECE distinguishes management and leadership specific to the field (DEC 2015; Kagan & Bowman, 1997). Management roles involve day to day operations and the utilization of program resources (Muijs et al., 2004; Yukl, 2013). It does not require social eng agement or leadership (Muijs et al., 2004). Kagan and Bowman (1997) recognize that leadership involves social en gagement and specific qualities. T he y, and other scholars emphasize that the roles and responsibilities of a leader in high quality inclusive early childhood programs rel y on their adaptability to si tuational conditions i n the program (Derman Sparks, Leeheenan & Nimmo, 2014; Kag an & Bowman) Derman Sparks LeeKeenan and Nimmo (2014) n ote pers onality qualities of leaders include ongoing self reflection and growth, practice what one preaches, embracing learning from mistakes (Derman Sparks et al., 201 4 pp. 29 30), and accepting misfortunes as catalyst s for

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24 cha nge (Derman Sparks et al., 2014 ). Leaders do not need to manage, and a manager does not nee d to lead (DEC, 2015). However management and leadership are often a dual expectation (Culkin, 1997). The distinc tion between the roles of l eaders and managers highlights one of the complexit ies of leadership in a high quality inclusive early childhood program. The work of Derman Sparks, LeeKeenan and Nimmo (20 14) and other scholars impress the need for leaders to develop a critical consciousness of the power they hold within their positions ( Bloch, Swadener & Cannella, 2014; Nicholson & Miniates, 2016 ) The RP s (2014) highlight an importance for leader s to understand their power and use it to fostering collaboration. Nicholson and Miniates (2016) investigated the complex nature of leadership in early childhood programs an d the challenges of power directors must reconcile in order to collaborate The y point out that leaders hip is not restricted to select persons nor is it binary (Nicholson & Maniates, 2016 ). Programs are not limited to positioning leaders and followers in their traditional roles. R ather, under certain conditions leaders follow and followers lead. A high quality inclusive early childhood program should have systems of suppo rts and services distributing leadership which means followers and leaders will include families, teachers, support staff, administrators and other stakeholders (DEC, 2015 ; DEC/NAEYC, 2009; Nicholson & Maniates 2016 ). The researchers found it is importa nt for directors to understand and to be conscious of the power dynamics that may occur within the leader follow er relationship. Power can disturb collaboration and hinder the suc cess of leadership

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25 (Nicholson & Maniantes, 2016) Because of t he responsibilities placed on directors by their program and local and state policies (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016, 7.702.42 ; DEC, 2015 ) they are inherently expected to possess power (Culkin, 1997) B alancing power with leadership qu alities promotes the successful systems of supports and services important for high quality inclusive early childhood program ( DEC/NAEYC, 2009; Nicholson & Maniates 2016). The P rogram Beginning May 1 st 2011 (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2011) directors of early childhood programs in Colorado were required to complete thirty college credits specific to ECE. The intent of the requirement s w as to increase the quality of ECE in the state I n February of 2016, the credentials necessary to earn the expanded to include alternative pathways with in service PD Early childhood professionals who ha ve attended the c ommunity college in the past were not on an alternative track (coloradoofficeofearlychildhood.com) The circumstances of early childhood prof essionals who were s beyond the scope of this study. However whichever track directors take to earn their Colora do Certificate they follow the requirements outlined in the current Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations (2016). The Rules and Regulations state: The director of the center is responsible for administering the center in accordance with licensing rules. The director must plan and supervise the child development

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26 program, plan for or participate in the selection of staff, plan for orientation and sta ff development, supervise and coordinate staff activities, evaluate staff performance, and participate in the program activities (Colorado Childcare Rules and R egulations, 2016, 7.702[E] ) Early childhoo d p rogram professionals pursuing the Colorado at a community college must take the ten courses discussed in chapter one to prepare them for the responsibilities outlined in the childcare rules and regulations (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016) Two of the courses focus on leadership. ECE 240: Administrators of Early Childhood Care and Education P p rovides foundational knowledge in early childhood program business operations, program development, and evaluation. This course covers administrative skills, ethical decision making, risk and resource management, and components of quality Early Childhood Education (ECE) programs serving childre n a ges birth through 12 years ( Colorado common course numbering system 2016 ECE 240 ). ECE 241: Administration: Human Relations for Early Childhood E f ocuses on the human relations component of an early childhood This course includes director staff relationships, staff development, leadership strategies, family professional partnerships, and community interaction ( Colorado common course numbering system 2016, ECE 241). The course descriptions broadly address the concepts the literature identifies as important for leadership i n early childhood programs However, the influence of DEC/NAEYC (2009) position

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27 statement on inclusion and the DEC (2015) positio n statement on le adership is not clear (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2015) Despite the call for leadersh ip in high quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2014; DEC, 2015) the gui dance from NAEYC, CEC and DEC does not clearly support community colleges (CEC, 2012; NAEYC, 2007 ; NAEYC, 2009 ; Stayton et al., 2003 ). The NAEYC personnel preparation standards do not appear to address DEC RPs and the CEC personnel preparation standards are restricted to beginni ng and advanced training providing minimal guidance for the preparation of early childhood professional s who are not (CEC, 2012) That said, a small body of literatu re suggests the elements of leadership for high quality inclusive early childhood programs by professiona l organizations and research could be generalized for all early childhood professionals (Hyson, 2002 ; Stayton, 2003 ). Evidence of possible generalizations are found by blending the leadership st r and in RPs (DEC, 2014) ( s ee Appendix B ) and the NAEYC (2007) program administrator competencies ( s ee Appendix D), which are i ntended to apply to all leaders in early childhood programs, with the CEC advanced specialty set of personnel pr eparation standards for early childhood specialists (CEC, 2012) ( s ee Appendix C ) which target early childhood professionals earning graduate degrees Figure two conceptualizes the blending of the The expectations signify the unique elements specific to leaders hip that early childhood professionals should develop in personnel preparation programs

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28 Fig ure 2 1 for leadership in a high quality inclusive early childhood program. ECE Personnel Preparation Standards Personnel preparation standards (called standard competencies in the Colorado common course numbering system 2016 ) are used to design and implement programs and classes (Stayton, 2015) measure a institutions of higher education (IHE) accounta ble for teaching the elements of educational content considered important for professional success in the field (Cochran Smith, 2005; Hiebert, Morris, Berk & Jansen, 2007; Irons, Carlson, Lowery Moore, Farrow, 2007). In a 2012 study completed by Stayton, Smith, Diethrich and Bruder, the conclu sion was drawn that IHEs and state licensure/certification requirements rely on personnel preparation standards created by prof When professional organizations do not provide personnel preparation standards for specific

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29 educational content in the field, IHEs and states do not have precedent to offer the necessary credentials ( Chen, Mickelson, 2015; Cochran Smith, 2005; Sobel, Chopra & DiPalma, 2015 ; Stayton, Smith, Dietrich & Bruder, 2012 ). If IHEs are invested in designing credentials without personnel preparation standards they most likely will adapt personnel preparation standards that are available for other credentials (CEC, 2012; Sobel et al., 2015), and blend them with other expectations from professional organizations (DEC, 2015 ; Sobel et al., 2015 ) In the case of community colleges, adapting personnel preparation standards creates multiple barriers that can interfere with t he preparation of early childhood professionals to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs ( Chandler, Cochran, Christense n, Dinnebeil, Gallagher, Lifter et al., 2012; Sobel et al., 2015 ; Stayton, 2015; Stayton, Miller & Dinnebeil, 2003 ) Literature provides evidence for the existence of three barriers em bedded in the personnel preparation standards available to community colleges The barriers may inhibit community colleges from preparing directors to be leade rs in high quality inclusive early childhood programs T he se three barriers are : 1. Th e develop ment of (Stayton et al. 2003) recommended practices for PD (2009) preparation standards for professional preparation NAEYC (2007) program administrator competencies (2012) early childhood specialist set of preparation standards independent of one another 2. The ambiguity of blended personnel preparation standards between ECE and EI/ECSE

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30 3. The omission of personnel preparation standards developing elements of leadership for high quality inclusive early childhood programs applicable to community colleges. Barrier 1 Personnel preparation s tandards began to impact ECE and EI/ECSE in the early 1990s I n 1993, DEC, NAEYC and the Association of Teacher Education (ATE) released a position statement on personnel preparation standards for early education and earl y intervention (DEC, 1993). The seminal from empirically defensible knowledge and clearly articulated philosophical assumptions about what constitutes effective early education and early intervention (DEC, 19 The two page position statement was considered a base for credentialing guidelines aimed at preparing professionals for working in high quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC 1993; Stayton, 2015; Stayton et al., 2003 ). In 1998, the joint po sition s tatement was reaffirmed with no changes (Stayton et al., 2003) Since the n standards for preparing early childhood professionals have been designed independent ly of one another (CEC, 2012; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009; Stayton et al., 2012) As the fields of ECE and EI/ECSE evolved in the 2000 s, accountability dominated the landscape of education ( Norris, 2010). NAEYC, CEC, and DEC, with other professional organizations related to educational responsibilities with y ou ng children and families, were working to enhance implementing EBPs (Bruder & Dunst, 2005; Stayton, 2009; Stayton, 2015). In 2003, NAEYC p ublished Preparing Early

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31 Childhood Professions: NAEYC Standards for Programs The book provided support for utilizing the personnel preparation standards in associate, baccalaureate and graduate ECE de grees The text include d input from CEC/DEC and the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS). The information provide d by CEC/DEC was specific to mmon core personnel sta ndards for knowledge and skills with some additional specialized standards specific to early childhood. Rather than stan dards, DEC offered a brief overview of recommended practices for personnel prepa r ation that promoted the first set of RPs (Hyson, 2003). The recommended practices for personnel preparation that DEC provide d for the NAEYC text were detailed publication : Personnel Preparation in Early Childhood Special Education: Implementing the DEC Recommended Practices (Stayton et al., 2003). The publication emphasized the changing nature of the professional roles, services and PD in the field of EI/ECSE The editors provide d a detailed overview of seven categories of personnel preparation recommended practices. E ach chapter of the book provided two case studies of unive rsity programs implementing a specific ally recommended practice. This text was a framework for institutions invested in EI/ECSE degree and non degree P D programs (Stayton et al., 2003) of the RPs was published in 2005. The revised RPs provided information to support early childhood professional use of RPs in early childhood programs (Sandall et al., 2005). T he publications did not include updates for personnel prepara tion

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32 standards, but they offer ed additional guidance for using the NAEYC/DEC/ATE ( 1993 ) standards. Between 2005 and 2008 CEC and DEC collaborated to create a specialized set of early childhood beginner and advanced preparation standards (Lifter et al., 2011). The CEC specialized set of preparation standards we re based 2005 RPs. The field validation of the standards w as completed by members of DEC and NAEYC (Cochran, Gallagher, Stayton, Dinnebeil, Lifter, Chandler & Christensen, 2012), but the standards themselves did not reflect a blending of standards with the NAEYC personnel st andards (Hyson, 2002). The revision of the NAEY C (2009) per sonnel standards encouraged the use of blended standards The DEC RPs specialized set of advanced early childh ood preparation standards (Stayt on, 2015). Together, the DEC (2014) RP s leadership strand and the CEC (2012) advanced prepa ration standards for leadership in early childhood offer rough guidance for IHEs Figure 2 conceptualize s the relationship between the sources, and how the blending of standards could potentially develop the elements of leadership necessary to lead high quality inclusive early childhood programs. Barrier 2 Since the initial collaboration personnel preparation standar ds have been discrete (Chandler, Cochran, Christensen, Dinnebeil, Gallagher, Lifter et al., 2012; Stayton, 2015). P ubl ications released by scholars affiliated with the organizations identified present work being completed by DEC and endorsed by NAEYC but it is not widely available (Chandler et al., 2012; Chen & Mickelson, 2015;

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33 Stayton, 2015) In a 2012 study, Lifter and her colleagues cross walked the CEC specialized set of preparation standards for early childhood with the NAEYC personnel preparation standards. The study found that the two sets of standards aligned with one another for a ma jority of elements but not all The CEC specialized set was determined to be in consistent : 1. B ecoming a professional and the individual elements of knowing and understanding diverse famil y and community characteristics. 2. U nderstanding positive relationships and supportive interactions as the foundation of their work wit h children. 3. U nderstanding content knowledge, appropriate early learning standards, and other resources to design, implement, and evaluate meaningfully, chal l enging curricula for each child. Representatives from NAEYC lea dership were not involved in this project, and the results were not published as either standards or a position statement. Lifter et al. (2011 ) report ed that the discrepancies identified between the organizations expectations for PD provide d evidence that early childhood professionals are not le arning educational content blend ing the NAEYC standards with the CEC standards and DEC RPs. Stayton (2015) and Chen and Mickleson (2 015) recognize the partnerships between DEC and NAEYC but reaffirm the need for more unity across the professional organizations The growing recognition of leadership as a driver for high quality inclusive early childhood programs illustrates a greater need for ble nded personnel preparation standards Blended standards

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34 should address the needs of all early childhood professionals and outline the elements for lead ing a high quality inclusive early childhood program (Chen & Mickleso n, 2015; DEC, 2014; Kagan & Bowman, 1997; Lifter et al., 201 1 ). Barrier 3 The third set of the RPs (2014) emphasizes leadership. To date, the only standards that address the elements of leadership for high quality inclusive early childhood programs are within the CEC specialized set of advanced level EI/ECSE personnel preparation standards (CEC, 2012). DEC has drawn attention to the need for preparing early childhood professional s for leadership with the position statement on leadership (DEC, 2015) Referencing decades of research the position statement identifies five forms of leadership leaders should possess to sustain a high quality inclusive early childhood program : community, conceptual, pedagogical, advocacy, and administrative knowledge and skills (DEC, 2015; Kagan & Bowman, 1997). According to Crompton (1997) c ommunity knowledge and skills involve understanding how to influence policy changes, how to access local resources, when to access those resources and how to allocate those resources t o improve the quality of inclusive servic es and supports Kagan and Neuman (1997) use the term c on ceptual knowledge and skills to represent a capacity to be inn ovative and act against status quo policies that have created barriers for high quality inclusive early childhood programs Katz (1997) identifies p edagogical knowledge and skills as a leader ability to use their research and expertise to support high quality inclusive early childhood programs bridge it

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35 into program practices and problem solve using evidence based analyses Blank (1997) says that a dvocacy knowledge and skills leverage resources so that early childhood program s can become more effective in meeting the needs and interests o f all stakeholders Culkin (1997) describes a dministrative knowledge and skills as the responsibilities of management to provide a high quality inclusive early childhood program with the nece ssary means to maintain the essential components of a f unctional program Current personnel preparation standards for EI/ECSE do not address the five forms of leadership (CEC, 2012) CEC (2012) does not include the five forms of leadership in the ir specialized set of standards. DEC (2015) and NAEYC ( 2007; 2009) recommend the use of the five forms by professionals in the fields of ECE (Kagan & Bowman, 1997 ; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009 ) and EI/ECSE (DEC, 2015 ) The generalizability of the five forms within both fields may provid e opportunities for instructors of community college courses to develop early childhood professionals elements for lead ing a high quality in clusive early childhood program However, if the instructional strategies used for PD are n ot effective the elements may not be learned (Winton, Snyder & Goffin, 2016) Professional Development Certification complete ten courses, two of which develop elements of leadership. ECE 240: Administration of Early Childhood Care and Education Programs ( s ee Appendix E ) ; and ECE 241: Administration: Human Relations for ECE ( s ee Appendix F ) are built around competencies that can be infused with the RPs in the leadership strand (DEC, 2014;

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36 Colorado common course numbering system 2016) ( s ee Appendix E ) For example, ECE 240: standard 11 early childhood programming ( Colorado com mon course numbering system 2016, ECE 240) And RP: L.6 ders establish partnerships across levels (state to local) and with the counterparts in other systems and agencies to create coordinated and inclusive systems of services and supports (DEC, 2014, p. 6) Both references align with the community leadership (Kagan & Bowman, 1997). Although NAEYC, CEC and DEC have not created unified personnel preparation standards community colleges can use to gui de the creation of courses develop ing the elements for leading a high quality in clusive early childhood program there is the potential to equip early childhoo d professionals with other leadership standards or expectations (DEC, 2015) Given The faculty autonomy for course instruction ( Sipple & Lightner, 2013), and the vague wording in the community college standard competencies ( Colorado common course numbering system 2016) ( s ee Appendix E, s ee Appendix F ), they have the ability to teach the elements for lead ing a high quality inclusive early childhood program based on their personal definition of leadership ( DEC, 2015; Winton et al., 2016). T he barriers created by current personnel preparation standards may be hindered the faculty awareness of the elements for leading high quality inclusive early childhood programs The barriers may influence IHEs and faculty members to base instruction al strategies on the elements of leadership in ECE rather than the elem ents of leadership in

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37 EI/ECSE ( Colorado common course numbering system 2016; NAEYC/NACCRRA, 2011; NPDCI, 2008 ; Winton et al., 2016 ). The P aradigms of P rofessional D evelopment Scholars in the field of ECE general ly define PD differently than scholars in the field of EI/ECSE The separate definitions represent separate paradigms for PD. Because o f the separate paradigm s for PD IHE and the faculty may take d ifferent philosophical positions on effective PD The field of ECE, led by a collaboration between the professional organizations of NAEYC and the National Association of Child Care Resource Referral Agencies (NACCRRA), define PD as: A continuum of learning and support activities designed to prepare individuals for work with and on behalf of you ng children and their families, as well a s ongoing experiences to enhance this work These opportunities lead to improvement in the knowledge, skills, practices and dispositions of early education professionals. Professional development encompasses education, training, and technical assistance (NAEYC/NECCRRA, 2011, p. 5) T he definition commonly used in EI/ECSE comes from the National Professional Development Center of Inclusion (NPDCI). In contrast to NAEYC and NACCRRA, NPDCI is a research focused grant funded center, not a professional organization A research center cannot speak for an entire field the way a professional organization can. That said many researchers have referenced NPDCI, and there are no other definitions of PD in EI/ECSE commonly referenced in li terature (Winton et al., 2016; NPDCI, 2008) NPDCI state s :

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38 Professional development is facilitated teaching and learning experiences that are transactional and designed to support the acquisition of professional knowledge, skills, and dispositions as well as the application of this knowledge in practice. The key components of professional development i nclude: 1. T he characteristics and conte of professional development) 2. The c of professional development). 3. T he organization and facilitation of l of professional development (NPD CI, 2008, p. 3). While the t wo definitions discuss the importance of PD and its multiple contexts, their perspectives appear to be different. The NAEYC/NECCRRA definition regards PD as spec ific knowledge, skills and dispositions. Their defi nition compliments the inten t ions of NAEYC personnel preparation standards. philosophical base of RPs (NAEYC, 2011; Winton et al., 2016) The different paradigms and influence the instructional strategies used by instructors at community colleges. Delivering PD Winton Snyder and Goffin (2016) use the EI/ECSE paradigm to critically evaluate traditional PD in ECE and EI/ECSE They use a comprehensiv e collection of information found in research on PD in ECE and EI/ECSE to argue that the status quo of PD is

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39 systemically broken They find that the current instructional strategies used in PD do not prepare early childhood professional s to bridge the research to practice gap The researchers They view the traditional instructional strategies used for PD and the delivery structures as tr oubled by the neglect for important details disrupting the implementation of EBPs the context of broader early childhood systems building initiatives ( Winton et al., 2016, p. 61 ) position proposes that effective PD requires leaders to identify the who (characteristics and contexts of the early childhood professional s and the children and families they serve), what (what professionals should know and be able to do; generally defined by professional competenci es, standards, and credentials) and how (the approaches, models, or methods used to support self directed, experientially oriented learning that is hi ghly releva nt to practice) of PD. Once leaders have identified the components instructional strategies can be selected, and EBPs will be successfully implemented and sustained (Winton et al., 2016). Evidence based I nstructional S trategies for PD Nearly 30 years of research on PD in ECE and EI/ECSE has provided IHEs and the faculty with a large body of evidence to support the effectiveness of their selected instructional strategies (Irons et al., 2007; Showers, Joyce & Bennet 1987; Snyder, Hemmeter & McGlo ughlin, 2011; Winton et al., 2016 ). McCo llum & Callet (1997) define instructional practices on a range of least effective to most effective

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40 The least effective instructional strategies for teaching knowledge and professional skills are rooted in an overemphasi s on personnel pr eparation standards (Irons et al., 2007; Winton et al., 1997; Winton et al., 2016). Literature propose s that p ersonnel preparation standards have reinforced ineffective instructional strategies such as lecturing, reading, videos and discussions to develop early childhood professional It suggests c ommon ineffective instructional strategies intended to develop early childhood professionals skills are modeling of and observations of exemplars (McCollum & Catlett, 1997; Winton et al., 1997) The work of McCollu m and Catlett (1998), and reiterated by Winton, Snyder and Goffin (2016) recognizes i neffective i nstruction strategies frequently used to develo p early childhood professional s capacity to close the research to practice gap through leadership include s provi ding materials support ing classroom instruction and creating lesson plans (see Appendix O ) Research shows that effective strategies require early childhood professional s to synthesize information and actively apply their professional skills and knowledge in a meaningful professional context wit h support from content experts ( Winton et al. 1997). The use of effective instructional strategies is especially pertinent to early childhood professionals (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations; Doescher & Beudert, 2010 ) Some scholars be lieve that t he elements of education al content are better retained especially by non traditional learners when highly effective instructional strategies are used ( Cho, 2016; Doescher & Beudert, 2010 ; Garavuso, 2014 ). Other scholars have noted early childhood professionals are more

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41 likely to retain the elements for leading a high quality inclusive early childhood program if they have practice in context, such as a mentorship, coaching a community of practice and/or TA ( Gall a g her, 1997 ; Kontos & Diamond, 1997 ; Winton et al., 2016 ). Applying E ffective I nstructional S trategies Developing the E lements for L eadership There is a growing body of literature supporting the use of highly effecti ve instructional strategies foster ing early childhood professional bridge the research to practice gap in early childhood programs ( DEC, 2014; Gallagher, Steed & Green, 2014; Snyder et al., 2011). C ommon theme s of highly effective instructional strategies are their application in context an d act ive collaboration s with peers and skilled professionals (Cochran Smith, 2005 ; Winton et al., 2016 ) Technica l assistance (TA) is on e i nstr uctional strategy involving practice in context. It requires early childhood professionals to collaborate while using knowledge and skills they are learning in their professional environment (Snyder, Hemmeter & Fox, 2015; NAEYC/NECCRRA, 2011) Highly effective TA is practice based. It includes collaborating with mentors consultants and peer s TA allows early c hildhood professionals to develop elements of leadership through work with skilled professionals ( Gallag her, 1997; NAEYC/NECCRRA, 2011; Snyder et al., 2015 ) TA demand s collaborative problem solving and brainstorming (Showers et al., 1987; Snyder et al., 2015). It may also include case studies, role playing guided reflection and practice with feedback. Research has provided evidence that effective TA can be face to face or web mediate d ( Bishop, Snyder & Crow, 2015; Oborn & Johnson, 2015), but different TA models have different degrees of

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42 effectiveness (Winton et al 2016). For example, there is strong evidence identifying coaching to have the most potential for improving, sustaining and bridging research to p ractice gap (Fox, Hemmeter, Snyder, Binder & Clarke, 2011: Snyder et al., 2011 ) Like TA, coaching involves practice in context. Snyder Hemmeter and Fox (2015 ) found coaching depends first and foremost on a collaborative, trusting and supportive partnership between the coach and the early childhood professional The partnership is built around the early childhood professional strengths, needs, knowledge, skills and targeted learning outcomes. The coach and early childhood professional enter an ongoing process of co creating goals and action plans developed around observations, reflection, and feedback ( Artman Meeker, Hemmeter & Snyder, 2 014; Snyder et al., 2015 ). R esearch studies offer evidence that the performance based coaching model also appl ies to web mediated coaching (Bishop et al., 2015; Oborn & Johnson, 2015 ) While the literature strongly promotes the instructional strategies involving practice in context through TA and coaching, the two are not commonly used in IHEs (Buettner, Hur, Jeon & Andrew, 2015 ; Gallag h er et al., 2014 ; Han, 2012 ). They are considered resource i ntensive ( Buettner, Hur, Jeon & Andrew, 2015 ) Challenges are particularly relevant to early childhood professionals who are non traditional learners and/or live in rural communities ( Snyder et al., 2015 ) which accounts for many students earning course credits from community colleges ( Doescher & Beudert, 2010)

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43 Con clusion of the Literature Review Thirty years have passed since the passage of P.L. 99 457 Despite the support of federal legislation for EBPs the re has been a shockingly meager increase in the percentage of young children with developmental delays/disabilities inclu ded in high quality early childhood programs (U.S. Department of Education, 1987; U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education Programming, 2014) Historically, DEC has been at the forefront of movement s to improve inc lusion Their third set of RPs and the position statement on leadership have demonstrated the field of EI/ECSE recognition for leadership as a key to increasing inclusion (DEC, 2014) However, IHE community colleges in particular, may be un able to formall y address the preparation early childhood professionals to have the elements for leading a high quality inclusive early childhood program without personnel preparation standards The program requires the PD many early childhood program directors in Colorado must earn There are ten courses included in the Colorado program with the potential of focus ing on developing the elements of leadership (Colorado Childcare Rules and Regulations, 2016) Unfortunately, without the guidance of personnel preparation standards developing the elements of leadership early childhood professionals at community colleges are depend ent on IHEs and the faculty Without awareness, t he instructional strategies they used may be based on their personal definition of the elements of leadership.

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44 C HAPTER III METHODOLOGY This research used a case study me thodology to explore how one community college was preparing early childhood professionals to be leaders in high quality inclusive ECE programs. It focused on early childhood professions who had completed the Colorado and the faculty members who taught the ten certificate courses whi le the graduates were enrolled in the program. Chapter three provides an overview of : (a) qualitative research; (b) the participants who were involved in this research ; (c ) the methods employed ; (d ) data collection ; (e ) data analysis; (f ) coding iteration s; and (g ) ethical considerations applied to this research Qualitative Research Case studies are a qualita tive approach to gathering rich data that reveals information regarding a problem bounded by specific conditions (Creswell, 2013; Fusch & Ness, 2015; Gillham, 2000 ; Merriam & Tisdell, 2016). They are driven by an in depth inquiry with multiple sources of data collection with the purpose of finding common themes specific to the case. Case studies welcome iterations to data collection as ne w themes begin to emerge (Creswell, 2013; Yin, 2014). The case study for this research was bound to one community college. Themes emerged from interviews with the faculty and graduates through iterations of interpreting the data. The research was a dee p inquiry into the preparation of graduates of the Colorado to be leaders in high quality inclusive ECE programs. The results from this research were specific to the ECE department at the community college under

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45 exploration Inter v iews and document analyses were used to understand how the faculty define d leadership, the elements of leadership graduates developed, and t he instructional strategies the faculty use d to teach their courses. The research findings were used to write recom mendations for the ECE depa rtment at the community college. The recommendations were designed to enhance instructional practices for preparing early childhood professionals to be leaders in high quality inclusive programs. The recommendations were shared with the CE department. The results of this research are not generalizable to the work other community colleges or director preparation programs around Colorado. Participants This research did not focus on the individual participants. The researcher collected data from two distinct populations with the intent of identifying themes across populations and providing recommendations applicable to the ECE department at the communit y college rather than the interests of individuals. There were tw o populations of participants involved in this case study. On e population of participants were faculty members at the community college who taught courses in the Colorado Direct icate. The second population of participants were the graduates who had program at the community college. After a comprehensive recruitment of eligible participants, eight faculty and 16 gr aduates were identified The f aculty members and graduates who received a consent form and case study description were asked to schedule an interview with the research assistant responsible for

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46 interviewing Six faculty members and seven graduates were interviewed At the end of the study, e ach participant receive d a $20 gift card for Amazon.com. The F aculty The eight faculty members were initially contacted for the study through an email to ity college email account. The personal contact information was accessible to the lead researcher from the community college record s. Three of the faculty responded. The faculty responded to questions from a three question screening questionnaire (see A ppendix F) that could not be retrieved from the community college records The faculty the study. All three of the faculty qualified. After qualifying for the study they were formally invited to parti cipate in the study and given a consent form by the lead researcher (see Appendix L) They were told to read the consent form thoroughly, initial each page and then sign if they agreed to partici pate. The three of the faculty signed and physically returned their consent form to the lead researcher within one week. Two of the five faculty members who did not respond to the initial email were contacted by the lead researcher through their personal phone number. Neither facult y members answered the call. A voice message was left for both of them. They were asked to researcher respond to the initial email. Both responded to the email, signed and phy sically returned their consent form to the lead researcher

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47 One of the three remaining faculty members who had not responded was approached directly at the community college during a visit. She was asked if she was interested in participating. She said s he was and then responded to questions on the screening questionnaire. She returned it less than 24 hours with each page initialed and the bottom of the document signed. The remaining two faculty members who did not respond to the initial email or phone call were not contacted again. At the end of the research recruitment phase, six faculty members had signed and returned their consent form. All six faculty completed t he study. At no time during the study did the remaining two faculty members respond to the lead researchers request for participation. The second population of participants were early childhood professional s who had graduated from the program at the community college within a year before the research. Graduates were recruited from a list of students who have started courses after 2011 and completed the course work between the fall semester of 2015, spring semester of 2016 and the summer semester of 2016 The list was compiled in the community college database called Academic Intelligence Sixteen students qualified under those criteria. Every student was initially contacted through their personal email address by the lead researcher. Fifteen of the 16 emails were sent successfully. One of the email addresses was not active. Five of the 15 graduates responded to the lead research expressing their

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48 interest in parti cipating. The five participants received a responding email with questions from a screening questionnaire (see Appendix M) that could not be answered based on information in Academic Intelligence They were also given the graduate consent form (see Appe questions, they were told to read the study description and the consent form thoroughly, initial each page, sign the bottom of the document and physically delivered it to the l ead email and physically returned the consent form. The three graduates who did not respond were asked once more via email to respond. The three graduates who did not respond after expressing an initial interest, in addition to the eleven graduates who did not receive, or did not respond to the initial email were contacted through their personal phone number listed in Academic Intelligence Thirteen of the 14 phon e calls were either answered by the graduate or directed to a voicemail system. Four graduates answered the call A voice message was left for nine graduates. One graduate did not have a working phone number. She was the same graduate who did not have an active email address in Academic Intelligence The four graduates who answered the phone call were asked questions from the questionnaire to determine their qualification for the study. All four of the graduates qualified and expressed an interest in participating in the study. They were emailed the consent form with the case study description, told to read them thoroughly, initial each page, sign the bottom of the document

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49 college. Three of the four graduates signed the consent forms and returned them. The one graduate who did not return their consent form and the nine graduates who had not yet responded to the initial email or phone call were contacted with a text message from the lead researcher to their personal phone number. Four of the graduates responded to the text message. The four graduates who answered the text were asked questions from the questionnaire to determine their qualification for the study. All four o f the graduates qualified and expressed an interest in participating in the study. They were emailed the consent form and case study description told to read them thoroughly, initial each page, sign the bottom of the document and physically deliver it to community college. Three of the four graduates signed the consent forms and returned them. The lead research attempted to contact the remaining eight graduates two more times; first with a text and then a phone call. O ne responded, expressed an interest in participating, but did not return her consent form. One declined the invitation to participate. The remaining six graduates with active email addresses and phone numbers did not respond to any forms of contact. Aft er the recruitment phase the lead research obtained signed consent forms for seven graduates. All seven of the graduates completed the study. Methods for Data Collection The underlying g oal of this case study was to explore a case and id entify emergi ng themes that would guide the creation of recommendations for the early childhood education department at the community college. To identify and validate the themes the case study

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50 used qualitative methods, collect ing two data sets from interviews and one data set from document analyses. Collecting multiple data sets is central to qualitative research. The multiple data sets enable data triangulation (King & Horrocks, 2010). D ata triangulation corroborates the f indings from one data set with the findings of the others (Yin, 2014). It allows the r esearcher to draw credible, transferable, dependable and confirmable conclusion s from a research study with a small number of participants (Fusch & Ness, 2015; Guest, Bu nce & Johnson, 2006; Sherman, 2004) The multiple data sets offer a wealth of qualitative information creating rich data (Creswell, 2013; Flick, 2007; Fusch & Ness, 2015). Rich data allows for data saturation Data saturation is achieved when no new th emes are emerging (Creswell, 2013; Fusch & Ness, 20 15; Gillham, 2000 ). Data triangu lation in this research occur red through the use of three data sets The first data set ca me from interviews with the participating fac ulty members. The second data set ca me from interviews with the participating graduates. The third data set ca me from course learning materials used by the participating faculty members who taught courses Once the data triangulation was co mpleted the research assistant, methodologist and lead researcher decided there were no additional benefits for collecting more data through follow up interviews or other data sets based on the proposed methodology. The goal of answering the research que stions was achieved through the interpretations of the three initial data sets

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51 Interviews The interviews for this research were semi structured. The s emi structured interviews ask ed questions based on key issues identified in the literature gathered during the proposal. The interviews included additional prompts that encourage the interviewee to elaborate (Gillham, 2000; Thomas, 2011). All of the partici pants complete d a 15 to 25 minute interview. There were separate interview protocols for the two population of participants (see Appendix L; see Appendix M). The interview protocol for faculty members was piloted on a faculty member who at another Colorado community college. The interview protocol for graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate program was piloted on a student currently enrolled at the community college completed eight of th e ten courses required The interviews were conducted by the research assistant of the study with coaching from the lead researcher. After the pilot interviews the lead researcher and research assistant discussed the interview strategies, prompts and th e effectiveness of the questions at gathering the intended data. The research assistant conducting the interviews was a graduate student in her final semester in the University of Colorado Denver Masters in Education program She record ed the intervi ews using Zoom a password protected, encrypted online video board before the research. The research assistant transcri bed the interviews onto a word

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52 processed docu ment. The research assistant and lead researcher reviewed the recorded pilot interviews and discussed the use of the prompts. T he pr ompts align with the questions and a priori codes (see Appendix N) pulled from the literature review to gather sufficient data for answering the research questions (see Appendix L; see Appendix M). The a priori codes will be discussed in the next subsection. The prompts were statements rephrasing the questions Following the completion of the 13 interviews, the lead researcher review ed all of the video recordings and transcriptions to ensure accuracy. The confidentiality of the interview content and anonymity of the interviewee are detailed in th e ethical considerations of the subsection Course Learning Materials The third data set was a document analysis of course learning materials used by the faculty members who participated in the research study. Twenty learning materials were collected The learning materials include d any document that described the expectations of course learning activity. They included : assignment description, activity descriptions and discussion prompts for in class activities. All of the course learning materials w ere screened by the lead researcher to ensure their relevance to the case study (Olson, 2012). Qualifying documents include d one or more of the a priori coding themes (King & Horrocks, 2010) ( see Appendix N) identified during the literature review and di scussed in the next subsection

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53 Data Analysis The transcriptions of interv iews and learning materials were initially coded using ten a priori codes (King & Horrocks, 2010; Marshall & Rossman, 2016) (see Appendix N) The initial a priori codes were defined by the DEC/NAEYC (2009) position statement on inclusion, the leadership strand of the DEC (2014) RPs (see Appendix B), the leadership knowledge and skills in the CEC (2012) specialty set of personnel preparation standards for advanced early childho od professionals (see Appendix C), the leadership and advocacy knowledge and skills in the NAEYC (2007) program administrator competencies (see Appendix D) and research on effective instruction strategies. The 13 interviews and 20 course assignments were coded by the lead researcher and two research assistants. Early in the coding process the lead researcher and research assistants identified 13 emerging themes related and unrelated to the a priori codes. The four interview transcripts that had been cod ed with the initial ten codes were re coded using 23 codes. The use of three coders allowed for additional triangulation. The triangulation used during this phase was investigator triangulation (King & Horrocks, 2010) also referred to in qualitative re search as interrater reliability Like data triangulation, investi gator triangulation corroborated the research findings. However, unlike data triangulation, the inv estigator triangulation compared rocks, 2010; Yin, 2014). The i nv estigator triangulation required intercoding agreement from the insider perspective ( lead researcher) and outsider perspectives (two research assistants ). The

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54 intercoding agreements enable d the researcher to systemically c ompare data interpretations, neutralizing biases and enriching data (Creswell, 2009; King & Horrocks, 2010). T he lead researcher and research assistants code d the interviews of each population of participants separately. After the initial coding had be en completed follow up interviews were considered with the potential of address ing emerging themes with more depth (Kin g & Horrocks, 2010; Olson, 2012; Yin, 2014). As a group, the lead researcher, research assistants and methodologist, Dr. Courtney Donovan, determined the initial interviews and assignments provided sufficient data saturation. The group decided follow up interviews were not likely to reveal additional information on the themes that had emerged and sup port answers for the research questions. Dr. Donovan assisted the lead researcher in the next phases of data analysis First, the lead research completed the investigator triangulation. The bench mark used to determine intercoder agreement of the resul ts was set by the methodologist at 80 percent. The investigator triangulation began with the data exported from Dedoose into Microsoft Excel The exported data included the initials of the participants, the words in the coded excerpt, the starting poi nt of each individual excerpt and the end of each individual excerpt The data was disaggregated by each of the 23 codes. The 23 codes were sorted into three cat e gories : (a ) codes ass igned to faculty transcripts; (b ) codes assigned to graduate transcript s; and (c ) codes assigned to course learning activities. The process created 69 Microsoft Excel sheets. Each sheet was then organized into three criteria: (a ) Transcript

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55 name; (b ) The number assigned to the start of the coded excerpts; and ( c ) the assig ned end of the coded excerpt. Once the excerpts were organized they were labeled as a hit or miss Excerpts labeled hits required intercoder agreement by two of three coders. If an excerpt was only coded by one coder the lead researcher reviewed it a nd determined whether it was potentially a hit or miss. Potential hits accounted for 9.7 percent of the coded excerpts. After being reviewed, 3.2 percent were identified as misses. The final calculations revealed an intercoder agreement of 96.8 percent, exceeding the bench mark of 80 percent, satisfying the intercoder agreement benchmark. Lastly, the codes were mapped, analyzed, interpreted and used to answer the research questions. Code Mapping Anfara, Brown and Mangione (2002), recommend qualitative researchers use code mapping with the goal of providing more transparency for the analysis of data. Anfara (2002) and colleagues conceptualize a three iteration analysis. The first iteration is a surface content analysis. T he surface content analysis for this research included the 23 codes used to code every document. The 23 coders provided a structure for the documents related to the literature reviewed for the research and the early emerging themes. The second iteration was pattern variables. The pattern variables were identified during the interpretation of the coded excerpts. There were four pattern variables. The third iteration, application, gave meaning to the data allowing the researcher to draw conclusions and a nswer the research questions. Table one illustrates the process of code mapping for this case study.

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56 Table 3 1 Code mapping: The iterations of data analysis (Anfara, Brown & Mangione (2002) Research questions: Q1: Defining elements of leadership Q2: Elements developed from the certificate courses Q3: Instructional strategies for developing elements Q4 Development of elements while enrolled Third iteration: Application elements of leadership; g raduate and definition of elements of leadership; t he f a culty instructional practices; and r ecommendations for the college Second iteration: Pattern variables Early childhood professional practices Personnel development Inclusive programming Leadership First iteration: Initial codes Access to inclusive programs Systems of supports and services Leadership practices/qualities Program policies Evidence based practices Professional standards Advocacy Reflective practices Technical a ssistance Field experience First iteration: Early emergent codes Emotional affect Program c ollaboration Administrative leadership Advocacy leadership Conceptual leadership Community leadership Pedagogical leadership Skills, knowledge and dispositions Earl y childhood professional as a leader The f aculty instructional strategies Early childhood professional instruction Approaches to teaching Professional development Community partnerships Resources Trustworthiness Sherman (2004) defines trustworthiness as credibility, transferability, dependability and confirmability of research finding s. Credibility in qualitative research is parallel to internal validity in quantitative research congruent are the findi To answer the question the research must be well versed in the most current evidence in the field. Credibility can be enhanced with the

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57 use of a priori coding and expertise of coders (Creswell, 2013; King & Horrocks, 2010). T ransferability is parallel to external validity/generalizability. The transferability of qualitative findings is based on the context of the research. It is difficult to cancel out variables which may have strongly influenced the research findings and ca nnot be reproduced in other settings (Gillham, 2000; Thomas, 2011; Yin, 2014). Dependability is parallel to reliability. Dependability can only occur if it is done in the same context, and even then a researcher cannot disco unt changes in the phenomenon Confirmability is any personal biases. This research involved certain degrees of trustworthiness. T he research study was exploratory (Yin, 1993) Given the nature of this research study, the research findings are not transferable Similar studies have not been conducted in the community college. Therefore, dependability was not a concern with these data. Bias distorts the research findings (Wal liman, 2011). Holloway, Brown and Shipway (2010) believe data c ollected through interviews inevitably include some degree of bias. The interviewer must separate themselves from their research and set their personal views to the side (Denzin, 2009; Fusch & Ness, 2015; Holloway et al., 2010). Failure to recognize personal biases will taint data and hinder the process of data saturation (Fusch & Ness, 2015). Data triangulation and investigator triangulation will negate some biases. This research was considered an internal evaluation. The benefits of the internal evaluations include a clearer understanding of the community colleges culture and

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58 idiosyncrasies that an outside researcher may not have recognize d The evaluation methods were tailored to the lead resea rcher nding of limitations with the participants, the at the community college (Creswell, 2009; Love, 1991; Seidman, 2006 ; Trowler, 2011 ). Unlike an ext ernal evaluator, the lead researcher, as an internal evaluator had a commitment to the community college (Love, 1991 ; Trowler, 2011 ). Risks of the internal evaluation were biases and premeditated assumptions limiting trustworthiness (Creswell, 2009; Love, 1991; Seid man, 2006; Trowler, 2011). This research use d data triangulation and investigator triangulation, as well as an outside interviewer to mitigate the risks of inte rnal evaluation. Ethical Consideration The ethical considerations for a case study outline can be presented in the informed consent given to and signed by participants before their participation ( See Appendix I; See Appendix J) An informed consent explains the purpose and methods of the research study, the expected benefits, risks, explanation of measures to ensure confidentiality, anonymity, and data retention and disposal ( Seidman, 2006; Thomas, 2011). The purpose and benefits of the study are presented in chapter one. The risks include d emotional discomfort and potential embarrassment. D espite measures to maintain anonymity the participant risked the release of identifi able information, which could have potential ly had negative implications (Gregory, 2003; Kimmel, 1988; Seidman, 2006). The researcher for this study limit ed all possible risks through assurances of confidentiality,

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59 anonymity and the use of interview quest ions avoid ing any known topics that could have cause d participants to feel discomfort. None of the participants reported any negative experiences about their participation in the study. All of the research material was confidential and only shared with the respective participant and coders (Seidman, 2006). The video files were saved in a password encrypted file within Zoom They were deleted as soon as they had been transcribed onto a document. Documents with data were stored in the password protected cloud of Dedoose an online program for coding qualita tive data. Anonymity was maintained by using part unaware of the proper names of any par ticipants. The researcher exclude d any pe rsonal information or specific names of organizations, institutions, locations or people related to the participant from data interpretations. During the analysis phases, the data was never interpreted looking at the codes of individual participants. Th is case study was conducted as insider research (Trowler, 2011). The research included active employees in the early childhood education department at the community college. Insider research inherently carries risks related to the power differences betwe en the researcher and the research participants (Trowler, 2011; McDermid, Peters, Jackson & Daly, 2014). T o guard against the risks the interviews were conducted by a research assistant not affiliated with the community college and the findings from indiv idual interviews were not shared with college faculty members. The faculty participants were informed the research was not an evaluation of their performance.

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60 Particip voluntary. T hey had the right to withdraw at any t ime They had the option of review ing their interview recording or transcript upon re quest. The participants were s of their interview or course learning materials before providing them for the study. The publishe d study include d the interpretations of data as it was described in the informed con sent. The interpretations guide d the recommendations given to the community college.

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61 CHAPTER I V RESE A RCH RESULTS The results and findings from this research revealed evidence supporting recommendations for the ECE department and the faculty who taught the ten courses Chapter four prese nts : (a) the results of the research ; and (b) a summary of the findings. Results The results from the research ca me from three data sets. The data sets were collected six with the faculty who taught the courses required for graduation and 20 learning materials used in the courses taught by the faculty. The three data sets were analyzed with 23 a priori codes, which were interpreted and organized into four pattern variables. This section summarizes the results from (a) the faculty interviews, (b) the graduate interviews and (c) an analysis of the learning materials. The Faculty Interviews Results from the faculty interviews wer e extracted from four of the six interview questions. This subsection outlines the faculty (a) definitions of leadership for high quality inclusive early childhood programs, (b) awareness of the elements for leadership identified by CEC (2012), DEC (2014) and NAEYC (2007), and the instructional strategies they use to college.

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62 The Faculty Definitions of Leadership The defining characteristics of leadership for high quali ty inclusive early childhood programs were based on the DEC (2015) position statement on leadership. The interpretations of data from the faculty interviews revealed six specific characteristics defining leadership for leading high quality inclusive early childhood programs. They were primarily attributed to the leadership styles of advocacy (6/6) and administrative (4/6). The individual characteristics included: Management, resourcefulness, collaboration, inclusiv ity self awareness and community engagem ent. Certain characteristics were mentioned more often than others. Nearly all of the faculty discussed the importance of management, but more importantly, expanding leadership beyond the traditional roles of managing a program (5/6). This was done in a variety of ways. First, they emphasized reaching out to organizations to obtain resources for supporting children with developmental delays or disabilities (6/6). One faculty member nd a willingness to ask questions and again it goes back to that advocacy of asking the questions, trying to find out who the resources are for the families. Multitasking is also huge, but just Many of the faculty also talked about leaders as a catalyst for unity and collaboration within a program (4/6). The faculty discussed leadership for high quality inclusive programs as actions in classrooms (3/6), impressing the need for leaders to have self awareness (3/6). Community engagement was touched on, but rarely (2/6). Table 4.1 provides quotes of the topics related to the faculty definitions of leadership they

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63 discussed during their interviews. The number in the right hand column indicates how many of the faculty gave simil ar responses. Table 4.1 The f aculty definitions of leadership for high quality inclusive programs DEC definition of leadership Excerpt: The f aculty definitions of leadership for high quality inclusive programs Related exce r pts for other participants Advocacy There has to be openness to learn and a willingness to ask questions, trying to find out who the resources are for the families, multitasking is also huge, also having that awareness 6 Advocacy If a teacher, TA, parent, community member, director, if at a state level, I think it just takes that courageous voice to be able to be a leader in early childhood 5 Administrative If the director lead the perfect inclusive environment or something is lacking taking it into consideration making them know that the most important thing is maybe calling a staff meeting so everyone is on the same page, and addressing the issues whatever it can be, and again by educating perhaps giving resources 4 Pedagogical You know, how do you go back and figure out styles of learning, ways to individualize your teaching, so that all children are getting it 3 Conceptual Asking them to be in this culture of self awareness and change where it have a negative implication... not only do you need to be able to have that yourself but you need to be able to lead others in participating in that with you 3 Community Being a leader, means being a leader in the community, as well 2 The Faculty Awareness of Elements for Leadership Data from the facul ty interviews indicated they were more aware of elements for leadership defined by NAEYC (2007) than those defined by CEC (2012) or DEC (2014) (see Table 4.2). Advocacy was the most consistent leadership practice the faculty identified aligning the expectat ions of the three organizations (6/6). One faculty member

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64 you have a concern then you reach out to somebo dy that is the expert in the field that you The f aculty talked about creating an environment supporting children with developmental delays or disabilities (5/6). The practice s for creating a supportive environment are more closely related to elements for classroom practices (NAEYC, 2009) rather than elements for leadership practices (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC 2007), so the data alignment with professional eadership was less transparent. Various combinations of the faculty discussed typical/atypical development (3/6), and cultural responsiveness (3/6). Similar to the data highlighting supportive environments, typical/atypical development and cultural respo nsiveness are not elements specific to leadership practices (CEC. 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2009; NAEYC, 2007). were practices addressing the legal policies supporting inclu sion (2/6). One faculty member making sure that they understand where their support system is to be able to pull in people or supports when they need it and the bigger picture of, like, the legal ramifications, you know, like IDEA and all that stuf f needs to really be talked about more policies like IDEA is addressed Table 4.2 shows the alignment of data with the professional organizations for leadershi p. The middle column provides a quote representative of the faculty. The number in the right hand column indicates how many of the faculty gave similar responses.

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65 Table 4 2 The f aculty awareness of elements for leadership practices aligned with professional organizatio DEC RP; CEC standard; NAEYC competency Excerpt: The f aculty awareness of the elements for leadership in high quality inclusive early childhood program s Related exce r pts for other participants DEC RP: L1; 3; 5; 12; 13 CEC: SEECS.5.K3; S1; S3 NAEYC: 1, 6 You are not the professional at this point. You can give your insight and observations. Once you have a concern then you reach out to somebody that is the expert in the field. You 'd reach out to P T, OT, things like that 6 DEC RP: L1 CEC: SEECS.5.S1 NAEYC: 6 How do you go back and figure out styles of learning, ways to individualize your teaching, so all children are getting it 5 DEC RP: L1 CEC: SEECS.5.K1 NAEYC: 3, 6 They have to have a strong culture, multicultural background so they can gather an understanding of all cultures and how they work, why they do what they and do some of them in a different diversity 3 DEC RP: L1 CEC: SEECS.5.S1 NAEYC: 6 Understanding the typical development of young children is important, what happens when children typical 3 DEC RP: L3; 5; 10 CEC: SEECS.5.K2; S2 NAEYC: 2, 6 M aking sure that they understand where their support system is to be able to pull in people or supports when they need it and the bigger picture of the legal ramifications like IDEA 2 Instructional Strategies Used by the Faculty Instruction al strat egies were identified using the Aligning Instructional Strategies to Desired Professional Development Outcomes figure (Winton et al., 2016) (see Appendix O ). On the x left to right: low medium and high On the y axis, are the type of element being developed The type of element, from bottom to top are: knowledge skills and practice in context

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66 (Winton et al., 2016). The data were interpreted first by the type of element being developed then by instr uctional strategies and last by the intensity of complexity. The dat a from interviews revealed that the faculty members develop ed early knowledge using i nstructional practices that had medium complexity far more than any other ty pe of element or complexities. During the interviews, they talked most about discussions (6/6) and learning checks (6/6). Both instructional strategies develop ed knowledge and use medium complexity. The development of skills was rarely mentioned (3/6). The skills addressed were done through skill practice. Skills p ractice used medium complexity. None of the faculty mentioned practice in context or instructional strategies using high complexity. The faculty members talked knowledge of practices related to social justice, policy and ethical obligations using discussions. The learning checks they addressed developed knowledge through research papers, presentations and projects The instructional strategy of skill practice primarily occurred in lab courses, where students observed children and wrote reflections. The faculty my students actually go to various sites and the y observe, they really get the hands on experience of inclusive classrooms and Table 4.3 provides quotes representing the topics addressed by the faculty. The left hand column shows the type of element, instruction al strategy and complexity. The center column is a quote. The right column is the number of the faculty who provided similar responses.

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67 Table 4. 3 The f aculty instructional strategies Type of Element being developed : Strategy Complexity Excerpt: The f aculty instructional strategies used to develop quality inclusive early childhood programs Related exce r pts for other participants Knowledge: Discussion Medium They would read serious material, like journal articles, research, new information, documentaries and they have to research two opposing arguments for that particular topic and then present it to the class. Then we sit in a circle and we talk about these topics we have those ha rd discussions that people might shy away from They see multiple different perspectives and it opens their eyes. When you hear someone else talking from a place of passion it allows students to put their guards down a little bit and be curious 6 Knowl edge: Learning Checks Medium All my students are required to do an individual learning activity of their own choice, and looking into the emotional piece of developmentally delayed for trauma and different issues that kids may be delayed 6 Knowledge: Discussion Medium I would bring samples of IEPs and look at what do those look like, how you read them, what that means, the legal rights for the teachers and parents and what that means for a child 4 Skill: Practice Medium My students go to sites and they observe, so they get the hands on experience of inclusive classrooms and they always need to write reflections 3 The Faculty Recommendations At the end of each interview, each faculty member was asked be leaders in early childhood programs including children with developmental delays or members stated ve rsions of the same four recommendations. Several of the recommendations were prefaced by the faculty recognizing

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68 that the recommendation may be outside the scope of resources available to the community college. The most common recommendation was for the college to provide more instructional supports (6/6). The f aculty voiced a desire for visual media, physical props and updated literature. The f aculty also talked about the benefits students would receive with more field work related to inclusion (5/6). The f aculty recommended the high complexity, practice in context instructional strategy of coaching during or after the course work (5/6). For this instructional strategy, they all recognized the difficulty of coaching, but they thought it was something the co llege should consider. The faculty recommended more intra departmental collaboration between the faculty (4/6). They felt there was a disconnect between courses a high quality inc lusive program They believed more continuity could improve student outcomes. The f aculty also recommended building stronger relationships with the community, bringing in community resources, connecting with early childhood sites and establishing relatio nships with content experts (4/6). Only one of the faculty recommended the college become a hosting various things that the faculty are well 4.4 provides quotes represent ing the recommendations offered by the faculty. The left hand column shows the nature of the recommendation the center column is a quote. The right column is the number of the faculty who gave similar responses.

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69 Table 4 4 The f aculty recommendations Recommendation Excerpt: The f aculty recommendations for enhancing the early childhood department Related exce r pts for other participants Course materials/resources Maybe having the college provide, more of tools, video clips, games and visuals, interviews, videos, outside of books and have visuals and hands on activities 6 Field work O ne of the things I think would be beneficial for the students is for them to go and apply something right away 5 Technical Assistance I you to help with things like lesson plans and with young children who have special needs 5 Intra departmental Collaboration Trying to collaborate a lot more with all of us especially around the delayed learners 4 Become a Community Resource We can become a hub where hosting various different things that the faculty are well versed in 1 Graduate Interviews Results from the graduate interviews were extracted from four of the six interview questions. This subsection outlines the graduates (a) definitions of leadership for high quality inclusive early childhood programs, (b) the elements for leadership identif ied by CEC (2012), DEC (2014) and NAEYC (2007) they developed, and the instructional str ategies used by the faculty the graduates recall from courses.

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70 The interpretations of data from graduate interviews revealed four characteristics defining leadership in high quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2015). Like the faculty, the graduates emphasized characteristics of advocacy and administrativ e leadership. The graduates also talked about characteristics of pedagogical, conceptual and community leadership, but less often. The characteristics they frequently spoke about were advocating, resourcefulness, inspirational, knowledgeable, open minded ness inclusiv ity and community orient ation Advocating for families of children with developmental delays or disabilities was talked about extensively by many of the graduates (5/7). They talked about advocating in the classroom, program and community. Characteristics of administrative leadership were mentioned by all of the graduates They recognized administrative leadership through resourcefulness (4/7), inspiration (4/7) and knowledge (3/7). The graduates also talked about characteristics of conc eptual leadership such as creativeness and open mindedness (3/7). minded and willing to make the right changes to lead a good classroom or a good about pedagogical leadership characteristics (3/7) such as being able to make curriculum accommodations and individualized instruction talked about it at length Like the faculty, graduates rarely touched on community leadership (1/7). Table 4.5 provides quotes address quality inclusive early childhood programs. The left hand column shows the leadership style, the center column is a quote and the right column is the number of graduates who gave similar responses.

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71 Tab le 4 5 Graduate definitions of leadership DEC definition of leadership quality inclusive programs Related exce r pts for other participants Advocacy For me it's the parents get connected to child find, the parents learn what the milestones are that their child should be reaching 5 Administrative Ensuring that you have the resources for the teachers, for the parents, and just have that already included in your program so it's easy access, just because I know sometimes they have a hard still trying to figure out what is going to be the best 4 Administrative I think being able to motivate the people who work for you create a team that works well together, make people feel really good about themselves and see their strengths and want to come to work every day 4 Administrative I really think if someone wants to work with special needs and be a director, or even a leader in the ECE field, they need to take special courses for the special needs 3 Conceptual minded and willing to make the right changes to lead a good classroom or a good teaching environment 3 Pedagogical No matter what lesson that you to incorporate, different methods to include those children with special needs 3 Community Really cultivate relationship with the Council that you 1 Elements for Leadership that Graduates Developed The data from graduate interviews showed the elements for leading high quality leadership. During their interviews, graduates talked only about the NAEYC (2007) standard

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72 number six: The ability to advocate on behalf of yo ung children, their families, and the overlapped slightly with the DEC RP L.1, L.6, L.7 and L.14 and the CEC competency SEECS.5.K3. Overall, the elements for leadership that graduates discussed did not meet the expectations of elements identified by the professional o rganizations. The elements the graduates discussed were more congruent with classroom practices than leadership (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009) Table 4.6 provides quotes addressing the left hand column shows the professional organizations expectation, the center column is a quote and the right column is the number of graduates who gave similar responses. Table 4 6 leadership aligned with the expectations of professional organizations DEC RP; CEC standard; NAEYC competency Excerpt: Graduate elements for leadership in high quality inclusive early childhood program developed while they complete their certificate Related exce r pts for other participants DEC RP: L.1 CEC: None NAEYC: 6 Ensuring that we are qualified to accept any child and know that we can do our best in our program to help their development and help support the parents 6 DEC RP: L.6; 7; 12 CEC: SEECS.5.K3; S3 NAEYC: 6 We learned a lot about the resources that are out there in the community and they come to us sometimes, but there are times when we need to knock on their door and knowing how to contact and communicate 5 DEC RP: L.14 CEC: None NAEYC: 6 She taught us about learning to assess and watch kiddos in different ways because that helps you be able to keep track and keep a good record so that then you can share that with the parents, the other teachers, the teams 2

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73 Instructional Strategies Instruction al strategies were identified using the Aligning Instructional Strategies to Desired Professional Development Outcomes figure ( Winton et al., 2016) (see Appendix O ). you have while completing ECE courses at the community college that developed your abilities to lead an Before answering the complete question, a few of the graduates neede d additional prompts recalled two to three experiences. The data from gradu ate interviews revealed the instructional strategies they recalled developed skills, and had medium complexity. The most common instructional strategies they recalled was discussion topics (5/7) and practice (5/7). They also talked about assignments all owing them to draw connections between the knowledge they acquired and experiences they had (4/7). Two of the three most common instructional strategies mentioned developed skills. The third instructional strateg y developed knowledge. All of those three strategies were of medium complexity. One graduate recalled practice based feedback, the only high complexity strategy mentioned by gr aduates or the faculty. Table 4.7 provides quotes representing the strategy used for the instruction. The left hand co lumn shows the type of element, instructional strategy and complexity. The center column is a quote. The right column is the number of graduates who gave similar responses.

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74 Table 4 7 The graduate recollection s of the instructional strategies Type of element developed: Strategy Complexity Excerpt: The graduate recollection s of the instructional strategies used to develop elements for leadership Related exce r pts for other participants Knowledge Discussion Medium I know we did some administrative classes too, and in those we talked about fundraising, we talked about public speaking, putting, you can use those to get the funding you need, or to get in touch with the resources you need to help kiddos 5 Skill: Practice Medium We were able to have hand on experiences with some of the children that had disabilities, like the school of the blind. I was in their world, so, that was an experience. 4 Skill: Drawing Connection Medium One of the projects I did in my creative curriculum class was make a lesson that would fit every child in the classroom including special needs. 3 Skill: Practice based feedback High I had to videotape myself doing stuff with the kids and I was like, ugh I really good 1 Skill: Drawing connections Medium She had us put together a resource notebook where we can go to different sites, how we can look up information. For me just having that notebook and that experience looking those things up and that knowledge has made a huge difference. 1 Knowledge: Discussion Medium Our teachers brought in a lot of people that would present to us, especially in the exceptional child class, she had them come in and show us what they were about and what ages they worked with, how they can help the kids and how we could get in contact with them. 1 Graduate Recommendations At the end of each interview, each graduate was asked you need from your courses that would build your capacity to be a leader in early childhood

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75 shared similar recommendations. The recommen dations were focused on personal and early childhood program needs, as well as support for the ECE department at the community college. The graduates talked about the desire for more, or better resources in their early childhood program (7/7). They felt they were under resourced. The most common message related to resources was that they felt they needed more to support families with children who have developmental delays or disabilities and staff working with those children. Support included access to specialized programs and services outside of the early childhood program, more information for staff who could share it with families and more resources to accommodate children in the classroom. The graduates also talked about the need for more profession a semester of looking at children with special needs Their preference of delivery was not universal, but they repeatedly said that they and other early childhood professionals needed more th an the one topics included the need to have technical assistance from early childhood intervention specialists (4/7) and more experience working in the field before th ey completed their certificate (4/7). One graduate suggested the need to have field work that involved working with a director rather than teachers. Table 4.8 provides quotes representing the recommendations offered by the graduates. The left hand colum n shows the nature of the

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76 recommendation the center column is a quote. The right column is the number of graduates who gave similar responses. Table 4.8 The g raduate recommendations Recommendation Excerpt: Graduate recommendations for enhancing the instructional strategies the faculty use Related excerpts for other participants Resources The only thing that I would say is having more resources and getting more information about what way we support the children and ensuring that we are knowledgeable, that we work with the staff that you would work with 7 Professional Development A semester of looking at childr en with special needs isn't nearly enough, because I believe it's harder to deal and care for those children, and teach them, than it is for any regular child 7 Technical Assistance I think it would be nice if we could get counselors in there who could help train the actual teacher 4 Field Experience Some of the things that they teach you you don't really get to experience, us ones that want to be directors need a little experience going in there and what it feels like to be a director 4 Learning Materials The data collected from the learning materials were used to provide an additional data set for data triangulation and to illuminate the instructional strategies used by the faculty to quality inclusive early chi ldhood programs. The learning materials were comprised of assignment and activity descriptions. Each learning material was coded using the initial and emergent codes. The codes were the broad themes found in the literature which defined the elements for practices for high quality

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77 inclusive early childhood programs. They were not limited to the elements for leadership practices (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007). The learning materials addressed 20 of the 23 initial and emergent codes. The codes of skills, knowledge and dispositions, the faculty instructional strategies, professional standards and field experience were excluded from the interpretations. Those four codes addressed personnel preparation at the community college rather than elements fo r practices in high quality inclusive early childhood programs. Codes identifying leadership styles were also removed Those codes did not identify individual elements for practices either. Therefore, they were determined to be unnecessary for the targe ted interpretations. After removing the nine codes not relevant to elements for high quality inclusive early childhood programs, there were 11 codes left to complete the data analysis and interpretations of the learning materials. Figure 4.1 illustrates t he frequency of codes appearing in the 20 learning materials. Figure 4 1 Coded learning materials

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78 Frequencies of Pattern Variables After the data analysis w as completed with the 11 codes the codes were organized into pattern variables. There were three pattern variables relevant to developing the elements for high quality inclusive early childhood programs: (a) Elements for early childhood professional practices; (b) elements for inclusive program ming and practices; and (c) elements for leadership practices. The three pattern variables were the most consistent all the elements of practices for leading a high quality in clusive early childhood program identified in the literature. The learning mate rials focused on codes associated with the pattern variable of early childhood and leadership practices. The codes associated with the pattern variables of inclusive programming practices and leadership practices were assigned the lea s t often. Reflectiv e practices, evidence based practices and early childhood professional practices were associated with the pattern variable elements for early childhood professional practices. The codes for early childhood professional practices were assigned 29 times. T he data analysis showed the reflective practices (10/29), evidence based practices (9/29) and early childhood professional practices (7/29) were three of the five most frequently assigned codes. Aggregating the three codes, plus evidence based practices ( 3/29) the pattern variable of elements for early childhood professional practices was the most common of the elements for practices in high quality inclusive early childhood programs. Participation, systems of support and collaboration were associated with the pattern variable of elements for inclusive programming and practices. The inclusive programming and practices pattern variable w as the element specific to practices supporting the inclusion

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79 of children with developmental delays or disabilities. The codes for inclusive programming and practices were assigned 15 times. The codes of participation (3/15) and systems of support and services (4/15) were two of the five least frequently assigned codes. The only code aligning with professional organization practices appearing frequently was access to inclusive environments (8/15). Aggregating the three codes, the pattern variable of inclusive programming and practices was the least common element for practices i n high quality inclusive early childhood programs. Advocacy, early childhood professionals as leaders, collaboration and resources were associated with the pattern variable of elements for leadership prac tices. Leadership practices were relevant to elements for leadership in high quality ECE, but they did not specifically address the elements for practices in high quality inclusive programs. Codes for leadership practices were assigned 23 times. Advocacy (5/23), early childhood profess ionals as leaders (2/23) and collaboration (4/23) were three of the least frequently assigned codes. Resources (12/23) was the most frequently assigned code. Aggregated the four codes associated with the pattern variable were assigned more often than th e codes related to inclusive programming practices, but less often than the codes specific to early childhood professional practices. The DEC (2014) RPs and DEC (2015) position statement on leadership recog nize leadership as the foundation for high quality inclusive early childhood programs, but the leadership must have a strong understanding of inclusive programming and practices. Figure 4.2 shows that the learning materials provided by the faculty emphasize inclusive

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80 programming (15/69) a nd leadership practices (23/69) the least, and the co occurrence of codes associated with the two patterns are less common than any of the three pattern variables isolated (7/69), a majority of which included the co occurrence of access and resources (6/69 ). If those were removed from the two pattern variables, there would be few co occurrences between the pattern variables of inclusive programming and leadership practices (3/69). Figure 4. 2 Pattern variable codes Frequency of Instructional Strateg ies After interpreting the frequency of pattern variables occurring within the learning materials, interpretations of the instructional strategies associated with the codes in each of the three pattern variables were conducted Before interpreting the fre quency of instructional strategies used for codes in the learning materials, the frequency and complexity of

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81 instructional strategies used for each of the 20 learning materials were identified The learning materials were labeled with criteria from the Al igning Instructional Strategies to Desired Professional Development Outcomes figure (Winton et al., 2016) (see Appendix O) Figure 4.3 illustrates the findings. The x axis indicates one of the four instructional strategies. The y axis indicates the frequency of the instructional strategy identified for each learning material. The blue bar on the left is the instructional strategy and what the strategy develops. The orange bar to the right is the complexity of the instructional strategy. Each of the 20 learning materials is accounted for once. Figure 4.3 Instructional strategies Figure 4.3 shows the majority of the learning materials were learning checks (13/20). The learning checks included research assignments, group projects, tests and essays. The data indicated the learning materials were designed to develop knowledge (16/20) rather than

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82 skills (4/20) or practice in context (0/20). Almost all of the elements were developed using instructional strategies with medium complexity (18/20) Very f ew of the elements were developed using instruction al strategies with low complexity (2/20). None of the learning materials used instructional strategies with high complexity (0/20). Instructional Strategies used for Codes Associated with their Pattern Variable The interpretations looked at the instructional strategies used for each of the 11 codes. The codes were interpreted alongside the other codes associated with their pattern variable. The interpretations revealed the pattern variable of early childhood professional practices was the only one regularly addressed in learning materials other than those identified as learning checks. Almost all of the codes associat ed with the variable code of leadership practices were assigned to learning ma terials identified as learning checks (17/23). Advocacy (5/5) was exclusively taught using learning checks. Early childhood professional as leaders (2/2) was taught as a learning check and discussion. Resources (10/12) was taught with learning checks and practice. Almost all of the codes associated with the pattern variable leadership practices dev eloped knowledge (19/23) and were medium complexity (21/23).

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83 Figure 4.4 Instructional strategies used to teaching leadership practices A majority of codes association with the variable code of inclusive programming and practices were assigned to learning materials identified as learning checks (11/15). Access to inclusive programs was taught using learning checks (5/8), practice (1/8) and reading (2/8). Systems of supports and services was taught using learning checks (3/4) and reading (1/4). Participation was taught using learning checks (3/3). The codes associated with the pattern variable leadership practices developed knowledge (14/15) and s kill (1/15). They used the medium (13/15) and low complexity (2/15).

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84 Figure 4 5 Instructional strategies used to teach inclusive practices A majority of codes association with the variable code of early childhood professional practices were learning checks (15/29) or practice (11/29). Evidence based practices were taught using learning checks (5/8) and practice (3/8). Reflective practices w ere taught using learning checks (5/10), practice (4/10) and a discussion (1/10). Early childhood professional practices were taught using learning checks (4/8), practice (3/8) and a discussion (1/8). Program policies were taught using learning checks (1 /3), practice (1/3) and reading (1/3). The codes associated with the pattern variable early childhood professional practices developed knowledge (16/29) and skill (13/29). They used medium (28/29) and low complexity (1/29).

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85 Figure 4 6 Instruction st rategies used to teach EC professional practices Summary of Findings The findings from the research reveal insight s into the preparation of graduates of the quality inclusive early childhood programs at one community college. The conclusions are confirmed through data triangulation This section summarizes the findings from the three data sets combined. The combined data sets confirm (a) the faculty definition of leadership, (b) the elements for leadi ng a high quality inclusive program that graduates developed, and (c) the instructional strategies used by the faculty. The Faculty Definition of Leadership An analysis of the combined data sets confirm ed the faculty definition s for leadership in a high quality inclusive program. However, the data from the learning materials provided

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86 evidence suggesting the faculty definitions may have emphasize d certain leadership styles more than what was identified in the faculty and graduate interviews. The fa culty and graduate interview data showed the faculty and graduates believed leadership for high quality inclusive early childhood programs required characteristics related to administrative and advocacy leadership more than other characteristics Graduate s also discussed characteristics of pedagogical and conceptual leadership, but less frequently. Neither data set indicated that characteristics of community leader ship were valuable. The data revealed learning materials were much more likely to address p edagogical leaders (8/20) and administrative leadership (7/20) than advocacy leadership (2/20), conceptual leadership (2/20) or community leadership (1/20) (see Figure 4.7) The combined data sets confirm ed the faculty definitions of leadership in a high quality in clusive early childhood program encompassed characteristics of pedagogical and administrative leadership. The faculty also confirm ed characteris tics of community leadership were not part of their definit ions. The learning materials did not confirm the faculty definition included advocacy or conceptual leadership. The combined data sets suggest ed the faculty definition s include d characteristics of advocacy and con ceptual leadership, but they were not communicating that through their instruc tional materials.

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87 Figure 4.7 Styles of leadership in learning materials Elements for Leadership Graduates Developed According to the interview data, the graduates were not developing the elements for leadership that the faculty were teaching them (see Table 4.2 ; see T able 4.6 ). The learning materials suggest ed graduates were not learning the elements for leadership because the faculty were not teaching them, and/or using effective instructional strategies to teach them. The elements the faculty taught relate d to early childhood professional practices more than leadership or inclusion. Also the instructional strategies used to teach the few elements for leadership develop knowledge through learning checks rather than s kills and practice in context. The combined data sets confi rm that graduates were not developing many of the elements for leading high quality inclusive early childhood program s that professional

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88 organizations have identified in the literature. The data sets provide evidence s uggesting graduates develop ed the elements for early childhood professional practices, but not leadership f or inclusive programming practices. Quotes presented in T able s 4.3 and 4.7 support that conclusion. Instructional Strategies U sed by the Faculty An analysis of the combined data sets reveal ed consistencies and inconsistencies between the faculty and graduates. The data from the faculty interviews and graduate interviews reveal ed instructional strategies in volving discussions. W hile the faculty may have emphasize d discussions in their instructions (see Table 4.3) the learning materials show only one of the 20 learning materials included discussions (see Figure 4.3) Table 4.3 and F igure 4.3 confirm the faculty preference for instruction al strategi es designed to develop graduate knowledge using instructional strategies with medium complexity. Table 4.7 shows graduates did not r ecall the instructional strategies developing knowledge. They were more likely to recall instruction al strategies developing skills. The Graduate and the Faculty Recommendations The combined data sets confirmed the need for more field work. The graduates recommended field work allowing them to work in inclusive settings and with children who have dev elopmental delays or disabilities. The faculty recommended field work in high quality early childhood programs that would prepare graduates for the challenges of inclusion. The learning materials suggest ed field work is an uncommon instructional s trategy The data also confirmed a shared belief among the faculty and graduates that better

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89 professional development with instruction al strategies that provided technical assistance in the early childhood program could be beneficial. The additional recommendat ions were specific to the needs of the faculty or the needs of graduates. The f aculty recommended more work within the community college to unify the instruction. The graduates recommended more professional development through course work and resources i n their early childhood program.

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90 CHAPTER V DISCUSSION This case study explored how one community college prepared early childhood high quality inclusive early childhood programs. Chapter five : (a) connects the resear ch findings with the literature; (b) discuss es t he implications of the findings; (b) proposes recommendations ; and (c) guides next steps. Discussion In 1986 P.L. 99 457 established a free and appropriate public education for children birth through twelfth grade who have a developmental delay or disabilities. The statute set a precedent for early childhood programs to educate children with or at risk o f developmental delays \ disabilities with children who do not have a developmental delay \ disability to the maximum extent appropriate. With the support of the Rehabilitation Act (1973) and later, ate early childhood programs were legally barred from discriminating against children with developmental delays \ disabilities. Together, the laws, persistent advocacy and literature form a foundation for high quality inclusive early childhood education acc essible to all children with developmental delays \ disabilities and their families. Since 1986, DEC has worked to unify laws, advocacy and literature. Their RPs have established a framework for supporting the implementation of EBPs in order to improve the quality of inclusion for all young children and their families (DEC, 2014; Odom & Mclean,

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91 1996; Sandal et al. 2005). The RPs (DEC, 2014) and position statement on leadership (DEC, 2015) identify well trained leadership as the core tenet of h igh quality inclusive early childhood programs. The position statement (DEC, 2015) stresses the instrumental role of professional development and the need for IHEs to target the development of elements for leadership in high quality inclusive early childh ood programs. The emphasis on leadership is relatively new, but CEC (2012), DEC (2005) and NAEYC (2007) have provided IHEs with expectations of leaders for more than ten years (Colorado common course number system, 2016; Chandler, et al., 2012; Sobel et al., 2015; Stayton, 2015; Stayton, et al., 2012). Despite the availability of the expectations, their leading high quality inclusive programs are not well do cumented. The only evidence available indicates that current professional development has had a minimal impact on an increase in inclusive programming for children with developmental delays/disabilities and their families (Barton & Smith, 2015). This ca se study explore d how the community college prepared recent graduates from quality inclusive early childhood programs. o faculty used to teach leadership, and the elements of leadership graduates of the director certificate developed while earning their certificate. The findings from the research provide d three conclusions:

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92 1. The definition faculty at the community college assign ed to leadership for leading a high quality inclusiv e early childhood program shared many of the characteristics of the definition provided in the DEC (20 15) position statement on leadership. 2. The graduates developed very few elements for leading high quality inclusive early childhood programs. 3. In class discussions may be have been more effective instructional strategies than learning checks The Faculty Definition s of Leadership The faculty define d the elements for lead ership a high quality inclusive early childhood program as characteristics of administrative, advocacy, conceptual and pedagogical leadership. During the interviews the faculty talked abou t administrative responsibilities, advocating for children and families and creating accommodations for children who have developmental delays \ disabilities. Their learning materials emphasize d the development of pedagogical and administrative leadership c haracteristics. The faculty definition touched on the CEC (2012) standards and DEC (2014) RPs addressing advocacy and policy. However, t he ir framing of leadership was more congruent with the NAEYC (2007) competencies and the NAEYC (2009) standards for p reparation. In general the elements they taught were more relevant to classroom practices than program leadership practices (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC 2009; NAEYC, 2007). This was particularly transparent in the learning materials.

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93 The data revealed information that signified the faculty m ight have recognized the elements for leadership differently using a personal lens versus a professional lens. For example, advocacy was shown to be meaningful, but it appeared to be primarily taug ht or learned through class discussions. The opposite appeared to be true for characteristics and practices related to pedagogy. That finding suggested advocacy is something the faculty may personally believe is important and teach unintentionally, but p edagogy was more important for early childhood professionals to master in a course. If that was true, then the expectations the faculty had for early childhood professionals as leaders in high quality inclusive programs were different from their understan ding of the elements the course was designed to develop. The Graduates Developed F ew of the Elements for Leading The evidence from data collected for this case study showed graduates developed elements for early childhood professional practices (DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2009), but did not develop many of the elements for leadership practices or inclusive practices (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007). The elements for leadership graduates talked about develop ing ficate program at the community college focused on their skills and knowledge to advocate and administrate A majority of the graduates talked about the importance of resources that could support the inclusion of children with developmental delays \ disabil ities and their families. The elements of inclusion they recalled learning about involved individualizing the curriculum Graduates developed some skills and knowledge for collaborating with families and staff

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94 Data triangulation suggested graduates were not developing many of the elements for leading a high quality inclusive program according to the expectations of professional organizations (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC 2007). They were more privy to classroom practices. Graduates did not talk about po licies and advocating for the field as the faculty did. That was reflected by the faculty definition of elements for leadership. The faculty may not have communicate d their personal expectations of leadership for high quality inclusion because they did not feel it was an expected outcome of the course. The elements for leadership t hat the graduates developed appeared to be isolated to advocacy knowledge. The Effec tiveness of Instructional Strategies The research examined the instructional strategies faculty used to develop early chil dhood professionals elements for lead ing a high quality inclusive early childhood program. The results suggested certain instruction al strategies were more effective than others. According to the literature, b oth instructional strategies were medium complexity and develop ed knowledge (Winton et al., 2016). This specific finding provided evidence to conclude that discussions may have be en more effective than learning checks for the graduates. T he learning materials offered insight into the instructional strategies that were not discussed during the interviews. The results indicated that early childhood professional practices were addressed much more frequently than leadership practices or inclusive programming and practices. That was not as explicit in the interviews. The learning materials also drew more attention to the possible influence of reflective practices. The

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95 conclusio ns were supported by the research completed by Exposito and Bernheimer (2012), who found that instructional strategies focused on personal relationships were more effective for non traditional learners than alternative instruction strategies. Implications This section presents the implications the research findings may have on the quality early childhood inclusive programs. Two implications are identified : 1. The f aculty mem bers are aware of characteristics of leadership, but not the elements for leading a high quality inclusive early childhood program. It may be challenging for the faculty to prepare early childhood professionals to be leaders in high quality inclusive earl expectations. 2. The faculty use instructional strategies with medium complexity and are predominantly building knowledge rather than skills. If early childhood professionals do not rec eive effective and sufficient professional develop at the community college they will likely not be prepared to lead a high quality in clusive early childhood program The e xpectations from professional organizations, such as standards, competencies or recommended practices guide professional development that prepares professions to be more success ful in their field (Cochran Smith, 2005; Hiebert et al., 2007; Irons et al., 2007).

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96 Effective i expectations for elements important to leading a high quality inclusive early childhood program (DEC, 2014; Stayton et al 2003) The literature provides evidence for three barriers p an effective instructional strategies (Chandler et al., 2012; Sobel et al., 2015; Stayton, 2015; Stayton et al., 2003 ): 1. (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007; Stayton et al., 2003) 2. (Chandler et al., 2012; Chen & Mickelson, 2015; Stayton, 2015) 3. The re are not any clear expectations applicable to entry level certificate at a community college (CEC, 2012; NAEYC, 2007; NAEYC, 2009). The results from this case study share consistencies with the three potential barriers for the faculty at the community co llege. 1. The faculty members understanding of elements for leading high quality inclusive early childhood programs did not clearly align with the standards, especially those of DEC (2014) or CEC (2012). They were slightly more aligned with the NAEYC (2007) Program Administrator Competencies The results show ed that the faculty definition of the elements focus ed on pedagogy and administrative leadership. Advocacy and conceptual leadership were stressed in the interviews, but not in the learn ing materials. The topics addressed in the interviews satisfied four of

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97 the six NAEYC (2007) competencies, but only four or the twelve DEC (2014) RPs and three of six CEC (2012) standards. When the interpretations were extended to include the standards t he graduates recall ed, the numbers fe ll substantially. (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007) 2. The discrepancies between the faculty learning materials and faculty interviews suggest ed faculty could have potentially blend ed the organ ions, but the courses in the certificate mad e it difficult to consistently incorporate the DEC RPs or CEC standards The evid ence from this research suggested the faculty were aware likely did not teach them because of their understanding of the elements the course was designed to develop. ideology centered on an ECE professional development paradigm model (NAEYC/NACCRRA, 20 11) versus an EI/ECSE professional development paradigm model (NPDCI, 2008; Winton et al., 2016). 3. The omission of standards appropriate for community colleges may have be en the most salient barrier revealed in the research. The learning materials the fa culty shared for the research were deliberate, hinting that they are likely a better reflection of what the faculty believe d early childhood professionals who take their courses should learn before completing the course The faculty belief may be a reflec tion of the course designs (Colorado common course n umbering system, 2016) which

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98 emphasize the ECE professional development paradigm model (NAEYC/NACCRRA, 2011). Until faculty can successfully mitigate the three barriers, it will be challenging for them to provide sufficient professional development that use s effective instructional strategies. Implication Two: Insufficient / Inadequ ate Professional Development The interviews with the faculty showed the y had some awareness o f elements for leading a high quality inclusive program Their awareness was not reflected in the graduate interviews. The graduates talked about classroom practices that support high quality inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2014). When the graduates were asked for recommendations to assist the community college in preparing early childhood professionals, they talked predominately about developing more leadership skills and additional professional development. The y reveale d that they learned about, or understood Administrator Competencies (2007), one of six CEC (2012) standards and five of the twelve DEC (2014) RPs. All the expectations were related to advocacy or collaboration. This was potential ly the result of insufficient or inadequate professional development. The instructional strategies used by faculty were almost exclusively learning checks or discussions. They did not include any practice in context Practice in context allows an early childhood professional to transfer their knowledge or skills from the course into the field. Practice in context occurs through coaching, mentoring communities of practice or practice based feedback (Wint on et al., 2016) The use of practice in context is especially

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99 valuable for non traditional learners ( Cho, 2016; Doescher & Beudert, 2010; Garavuso, 2014) Non traditional learners account for a majority of students taking courses in the Colorado D irecto C ertificate program at the community college. Unfortunately, practice in context is not a common instructional practice in IHEs (Buettner et al. 2015; Gallagher et al., 2014; Han, 2012), because they require a lot of resources (Buettner et al., 2015) Recommendations ECE department. The recommendations address the implications of the research findin gs. This section outlines three recommendations for the ECE department Conceptual izing the Recommendations At the onset of this case study RPs (DEC, 2014) were the theoretical framework for conceptualizing high quality inclusive early childhood programming. The DEC (2015) position statement on leadership recognized leadership as the foundations for cl os ing the research to practice gap (DEC, 2014) pressing the need for IHEs to develop early childhood elements specific to lead ing a high quality inclusive early childho od program (DEC, 2015). This case study identified recommendations for the ECE department at the community college. The recommendations are conceptualized with three components preceding the implementation of the RPs (DEC, 2014) The three components f quality inclusive early childhood program are inter related. One component is equipping the faculty with the awa reness of the current

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100 information available tha t can guide them in elements for leadership. A second component is developing early childhood professionals elements of leadership through professional development that can be sustained without taxing the resources of the ECE department at the community college. Components one and two have a bi directional relationships Since there are not any defined personnel preparation standards for community college (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007) the faculty must be attuned to unique individual needs and limitations of the early childhood professionals who m with they work A strong relationship between the faculty and early childhood professionals will allow them to deliver more effective i nstruction (Exposito & Bernheimer, 2011; Garavuso, 2014) The third component is practicing leadership in the context of a high quality inclusive early childhood program. Practicing leadership in the context of a high quality inclusive early childhood pr ogram can be influenced by the community college, but the partnership and experiences of the early childhood professional are specific to each early childhood program. The three components are conceptualized in Figure 5.1

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101 Figure 5.1 Conceptualization for developing the elements for leadership at the community college Recommendations The recommendations are designed to assist the community college with the ir i mplementation of the three proces ses discuss and illustrated in F igure 5.1. The recommendations are: 1. Use virtual communities of practice (VCP) to develop and support the faculty application of eff ective instructional strategies.

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102 2. Create multiple opportunities for early childhood professionals to practice leadership in th e context of a high quality inclus ive early childhood program. 3. Identify effective and sustainable instruction strategies that develop early childhood professionals quality inclusive early childhood program. Developing the Facul ty Awareness and Competency The data f rom this research revealed the faculty members want more knowledge and resources for developing early childh o od elements for leading a high quality inclusive early childhood program. However, r esearcher s have shown that developing faculty awareness and comp e tency especially adjunct faculty is a difficult task ( Dailey Hebert, Mandernach, Donnellie Sallee & Norris, 2014). The primary b arriers for faculty include geographic location and financial burdens (McKenna, Johnson, Yoder, Guerra & Pimmel, 2016). Recently, researchers have begun addressing the barriers of faculty PD through virtual communities of practices (VCP) (Dailey Hebert et al., 2014; McKenna et al., 2016). VCPs at an IHE are defined as a group of faculty members working with one another online (Dailey problems, or a passion about a topic, and who deepen their knowledge and expertise in this area by interacting on VCPs are a more effective approach to faculty development than traditional models (Henderson & Dancy, 2011; McKenna et al., 2014). Traditional model s are comparable to the ineffective strategies used by the faculty with early childhood professionals discussed throughout this case study (Henderson & Dancy, 2011 ; Winton et al., 2016). VCPs can be

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103 expectations. VCPs can also be used to address the faculty interest in intra departmental collaboration and professional growth. Practice Leadership in Context Showers Joyce and Bennet is to create the condit ions under which sufficient levels of knowledge and skill are developed During one interview for this case study in the don't really get to experience, us ones that want to be directors need a little experience going in there and Similar sentiments were echoed by three other graduates One faculty things I think would be beneficial for the students is for them to go and apply something right Without conditions that support the development of leadership practices, researchers and the participants in this case study suggest that it is difficult for early childhood professionals to develop the elements for leading a high quality inclusive early childhood programs (Showers et al., 1987) The literature indicates that early childhood professionals achieve better outcomes from professional development if they can have practice in context (Gallagher, 1997; Kontos & Diamond, 1997; Showers et al., 1987; Winton et al., 2016). The expectations of directors are complex ( Bloch et al. 2014; Kagan & Bowman, 1997; Nicholson & Miniates, 2016). Their position demands a vast array of knowledge and skills unique from oth er early

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104 childhood professional positions (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; DEC, 2015; NAEYC, 20 07). If e arly childhood professionals were able to p ractice leadership in the context of a high quality inclusive early childhood program with the mentorship or coaching from a highly qualified director they may be more likely to retain the elements for l eadership ( Showers et al., 1987; Snyder et al., 2015). The community college would need to establish dependable relationships with high quality early childhood programs in the community in order to afford their students the opportunities for practicing le adership in context. Provide Professional Development Meeting the Needs of the Students Research supports practice in context as highly effective instructional strategies (Gallagher, 1997; Kontos & Diamond, 1997; Showers et a l., 1987; Winton et al., 2016). Unfortunately, it lly community colleges to implement practice in context (Buettner et al., 2015; Gallagher et al., 2014; Han, 2012). Practice in context demands from external resources and requires commu nity partnerships with appropriate early childhood programs (Buettner et al., 2015 ; Garavuso, 2014 ). Challenges are particularly relevant to early childhood professionals who are non traditional learners ( Garav uso, 2014; Snyder et al., 2015). Literature shows that n on traditional learners thrive with well planned, intentional instructional strategies targeted at developing relevant and applicable knowledge, skills and dispositions (Cho, 2016; Garavuso, 2014). This does not necessarily include practice in context. The instructional strategies used by the faculty in this case study are almost

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105 exclusivel y learning checks and discussions, yet the graduates still developed elements of leadership for classroom practices If the faculty cannot provide practi ce in context due to limited resources they should use alternative instructional strategies that are the most effective for the non traditional learners at the community college. The data from this case study suggests discussions may be one the best alte rnative (Exposito & Bernheimer, 2012; Garavuso, 2014) Garavuso (2014) recognizes the strain of common barriers community college students face, but she encourages the faculty working with the students to be innovative and apply instructional strategies t hat create a strong relationship between the faculty and their students. Her work and the data from this research indicate discussions are one alternative to practice in context (Garavuso, 2014). The three recommendations are a starting point for enhan cing the preparation of early childhood professionals at the community college New research and policy will continue to be published The recommendations are intended to assist the community college in developing early childhood professionals elements for leadership in high quality inclusive early childhood programs, which ultimately will increase the percentage of children with developmental delays \ disabilities being educated with children who do not have developmental delays \ disabilities. Future Resea rch Recommendations This case study was the first known piece of research looking at the preparation of early childhood professionals to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood

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106 programs. This particular research focused on a case study of one community college. The future researc h recommendations address a continuation of work to improve the ECE program and supports the early childhood professionals and faculty involved in it. There are three recommendations for future research The limitations outlined in chapter one suggest that future research may want to begin with developing a better understanding of the influence of unique identities adjunct faculty and non traditional college students contribute to the practices at an IHE (Doe scher & Beudert, 2010; Garavuso, 2014; McKenna et al., 2016). The identities of the adjunct faculty include the personal experiences/credentials that make them valuable assets to the preparation of the early childhood professionals at the IHE under invest igation as well as the barriers inhibiting their professional growth (McKenna et al., 2016). The identities of non traditional college students include their unique racial, ethnic, social economic status, ability, gender and other socially constructed his tories shaping their identity. The influence of the intersection of their socially constructed identities could potentially impact a community quality inclusive early childhood program (Derman sparks et al., 2014). The identities of the adjunct faculty and non traditional college students may have significant implication s that could guide recommendations for more effective instructional strategies effective for the IH E under investigation. Those implications were beyond the scope of this case study, but may be a place to start for future research.

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107 One question that remained from this research was the effectiveness of instructional strategies used by the faculty at the community college. The results showed discussions, possibly accompanied by reflection were the most effective instructional strategies. The evidence suggests the discussions were more effective than the learning checks and observations. Given the ch allenges for practice in context with early childhood professionals at the community college, more discussions and reflection could be an alternative to learning checks To eliminate some of the limitations found in this case study the research should be conducted with early childhood professionals who are in the process of completing the The third recommendation for future research involves more collaboration among the faculty in the ECE department at the community college. Twenty years of research has supported the use of communities of practices as an effective approach for developing c research recognizes the barriers adjunct faculty encounter with participating in communities of practice. One solution under consideration is Virtual Communities of Practice ( VCPs ) (Dailey Hebert et al., 2014; McKenna et al., 2016). Follow up research could look at the effectiveness of VCPs to build the faculty awareness of concepts like those addressed in this case study. Conclusion Since 1986, the field of EI/ECSE has been continuously evolving. One constant over the years is the low percentage of children with developmental delays \ disabilities included in

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108 early childhood programs (Barton & Smith, 2015). Researchers are continuously identifying new information intende inclusive services accessible to all children and families. The DEC (2014) RPs and DEC (2015) position statement on leadership attracted attention to the need for well trained leaders. The docume nts identify leadership as the foundation for high quality inclusive early childhood education. Leadership in early childhood programs typically begins with the program director. In the state of Colorado, many of the directors earn their credentials b y completing the The ten courses they complete, are intended to prepare them to be leaders. This case study revealed how prepared seven graduates from one community college were to be leader s in high quality inclusive early childhood programs. The results suggested that the graduates were not well prepared to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs. They understood many of the characteristics of a leader, but they app eared not to have developed the elements for leadership defined by professional organizations (CEC, 2012; DEC, 2014; NAEYC, 2007). The results indicated two likely, closely linked reasons for this: 3. It may be challenging for the faculty to prepare early c hildhood professionals to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs if they are unaware of

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109 4. If early childhood professionals do not receive effective and sufficient professional develop at the c ommunity college they will likely not be prepared to lead a high quality in clusive early childhood program The recommendations can potentially guide the department in enhancing their preparation of early childhood professionals to be leaders in high quality inclusive programs. Findings from the case study provide insight into next steps for future research. This case study was the first of its kind. The results from it provide a foundation for additional preparation to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childho od programs at other IHEs.

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119 Odom, S. L. (Ed.). (2002). Widening the circle: Including children with disabilities in preschool programs. New York, NY: Teachers College Press. Odom, S. L., Buysse, V., & Soukakou, E. (2011). Inclusion for young children with disabilities a quarter century of research perspectives. Journ al of Early Intervention 33 (4), 344 356. Odom, S. L., & Diamond, K. E. (1998). Inclusion of young children with special needs in early childhood education: The research base. Early Childhood Research Quarterly 13 (1), 3 25. Odom, S. L., Hanson, M. J., L ieber, J., Marquart, J., Sandall, S., Wolery, R. Chambers, J. (2001). The costs of preschool inclusion. Topics in Early Childhood Special Education, 21 46 55. Odom, S. L., Horn, E. M., Marquart, J. M., Hanson, M. J., Wolfberg, P., Beckman, P... & Sandall S. (1999). On the forms of inclusion organizational context and individualized service models. Journal of Early Intervention 22 (3), 185 199. Odom, S. L., Parrish, T., & Hikido, C. (2001). The costs of inclusion and noninclusive special education presch ool programs Journal of Special Education Leadership, 14 33 41. Odom, S. L., & McLean, M. E. (1996). Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education: Recommended Practices Austin, TX. Olsen, W. (2011). Data collection: key debates and methods in social research Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Purcell, M. L., Horn, E., & Palmer, S. (2007). A qualitative study of the initiation and continuation of preschool inclusion programs. Exceptional Children, 74 (1), 85 99. Rafferty, Y., Boettcher, C., & Griffin, K. W. (2001). Benefits and risks of reverse inclusion for preschoolers with and without disabilities: Parents' perspectives. Journal of Early Intervention 24 (4), 266 286. Rehabilitation Act (1973). 29 U.S.C. § 504(a) Rous, B. & Smith, B. (2011). Key national and state policy implementation issues. In C. Groark, S. Eidelman & S. Maude (Eds.) Early Childhood Intervention: Programs and Policies for Special Needs Children, Vol. I: Policies and Procedures CA: Preager.

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120 Sandall, S., Hemmeter, M. L., Smith, B. J., & McLean, M. E. (2005). DEC recommended practices: A comprehensive guide. Longmont, CO: Sopris West Sandall, S. R., & Schwartz, I. S. (2008). Building Blocks for Teaching Preschoolers with Special Needs Baltimore, MD: Paul H. Brookes Publishing. Showers, B., Joyce, B. & Bennet, B. (1987). Synthesis of research on staff development: A framework for future study and a state of the art analysis. Educational Leadership 45 (3), 77 87. Seidman, I. (2006). Interviewing as qualit ative research: A guide for researchers in education and the social sciences (3 rd Ed.) New York, NY: Teachers college press. Sipple, S. & Lightner, R. (Eds.). (2013). Developing faculty learning communities at two year colleges: Collaborative models to i mprove teaching and learning Sterling, VA:Stylus Publishing. Smith, B. J., Barton, E. E. & Rausch, A. L. (2015). Preschool inclusion challenges and solutions. In Barton, E. E., & Smith, B. J. (2015). The preschool inclusion toolbox: How to build and lead a high quality program Baltimore, M A: Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co Smith, B. J., Strain, P. S., Snyder, P., Sandall, S. R., McLean, M. E., Ramsey, A. B., & Sumi, W. C. (2002). DEC Recommended Practices: A Review of 9 Years of EI/ECSE Research Literature. Journal of Early Intervention 25 (2), 108 119. Snyder, P. A., Hemmeter, M. L., & Fox, L. (2015). Supporting implementation of evidence based practices through practice based coaching. Topics in Early Childhood Special Education 35 (3), 133 143 Snyder, P., Hemmeter, M. L., & McLaughlin, T. (2011). Professional development in early childhood intervention where we stand on the silver anniversary of PL 99 457. Journal of Early Intervention 33 (4), 357 370. Snyder, P., Thompson, B., Mclean, M. E. & Smith, B. J. (2002). Examination of quantitative methods used in early intervention research: Linkages with recommended practices. Journal of Early Intervention 25 (2), 137 150. Sobel, D., Chopra, R. V., & DiPalma, G. I. (2015). University and commun ity college education programs partnering to enhance standards based paraeducator training. The Journal of the International Association of Special Education, 16 (1), 77 85.

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121 Stayton, V. D., Miller, P. S., & Dinnebeil, L. A. (2003). DEC Personnel Preparati on in Early Childhood Special Education: Implementing the DEC Recommended Practices Longmont, CO: Sopris West. Stayton, V. D. & McCollum, J. (2002). Unifying general and special education: What does the research tell us?. Teacher Education and Special Education: The Journal of the Teacher Education Division of the Council for Exceptional Children 25 (3), 211 218. Stayton, V. D., Smith, B. J., Dietrich, S. L. & Bruder, M. B. (2012). Comparison of state certification and professional association personne l standards in early childhood special education. Topics in Early Childhood Special Education 32 (1), 24 37. on. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 13( 1), 107 124 Strain, P., & Hoyson, M. (2000). The need for longitudinal, intensive social skill intervention: LEAP follow up outcomes for children with autism Topics in Early Childhood Special Education 20, 116 122. Thomas, G. (2011). How to do your case study: A guide for students and researchers. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Trowler, P. (2011). Researching your own inst itution: Higher Education, British Educational Research Association online resour ces Retrieved from https://www.bera.ac.uk/researchers resources/publications/researching your own institution higher education. U.S. Department of Education. (1987). Annual report to congress on the implementation of the Education of the Handicapped Act. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education. U S Department of Education Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. (2012). Part B: Child co unt and educational environment Retrieved from http://www2.ed.gov/programs/osepidea/618 data/state level data files/index.html#ccc U S Department of Health and Human Services US Department of Education. (2015). Policy statement on expulsion and suspensi on policies in early childhood settings. Retrieved from https://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/school discipline/policy statement ece expulsions suspensions.pdf

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122 U S Department o f Health and Human Services US Department of Education. (2015). Policy statemen t on expulsion and suspension policies in early childhood settings. Retrieved from https://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/school discipline/policy statement ece expulsions suspensions.pdf. Walliman, N. (2011). Research methods: The basics New York, NY: Rout ledge. Wenger, E., McDermott, R. A., & Snyder, W. (2002). Cultivating communities of practice: A guide to managing knowledge Harvard Business Press. Winton, P., & Catlett, C. (2009). Statewide efforts to enhance early childhood personnel preparation programs to support inclusion: Overview and lessons learned. Infants & Young Children 22 (1), 63 70. Winton, P. J., McCollum, J. A. & Catlett, C. (1997). Reforming personnel preparation in early intervention: Issues, models, and practical strategies Baltimore, MA: Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co Winton, P. J., Snyder, P., & Goffin, S. (2016). Beyond the status quo: Rethinking professional development for early childhood teachers. In Couse, L. J., & Recchia, S. L. (Eds.). (2016). Handbook of early chil dhood teacher education. New York, NY: Routledge Yin, R. K. (1993). Applications of case study research. London, UK: Sage Publications Yin, R. K. (2003). Case study research design and methods (3 rd Ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage publications. Yin, R. K. (2013). Case study research: Design and methods Thousand Oaks: CA. Sage publications. Yukl, G. (2013). Leadership in Organizations (8 th ed.). Englewoods Cliff, NJ: Prentice Hall.

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123 A PPENDIX A Terminology A Child with a Developmental Delay/ Disability : Developmental d elay/ d isability is socially constructed and only relevant to the conditions that are disabling a child ( Ferri 2009; Mc Dermott & Varenne, 1995) As the term is used in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, a child with a developm ental delay/ disability is a child ho is experiencing developmental delays, as defined by the State and as measured by appropriate diagnostic instruments and procedures, in one or more of the following areas: physical development, cognitive development, c ommunication development, social or emotional development, or adaptive development (IDEA, 2004 § 300.8 [b][1]); and who, by reason thereof, needs special education and related services (IDEA, 2004 § Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) : The professional organization representing children and families of children with exceptional needs, practitioners and advocates. Dispositions and voluntarily. The pattern of behavior is directed to a broad goal, rather than a limited short Division for Early Childhood (DEC ): A subdivision of the Council for Exceptional. DEC is the professional organization re presenting children birth to five years old and f amilies with children birth to five years old who have development delays/disabilities or are at risk for having disabilities practitioners and advocates.

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124 Early Childhood Education (ECE) : Traditional ly con sidered e ducation for children birth to eight years old, in th is paper it refers to children three through five years old. Early Childhood Professionals : Individuals with experience working with young children, and/or are pursuing formal education related to early childhood education. Early Intervention/ Early Childhood Special Education ( EI/ ECSE) : E arly intervention services are provided to children who have or are at risk of having development delays/disabilities according to the guidelines in Part B of ID EA (2004). Part B of IDEA addresses spec ial education for children birth t o 21. Evidence based Strategies High quality Inclusive early childhood prog ram: An early childhood education program that with development delays/disabilities instructional strategies for meeti ng the individual needs of children (Soukakou, Winton & Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA): The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (2004) was originally passed in 1975 as the Education for al l Handicapped Children Act ( Rous & Smith 201 2 ). The law guarantees the education of all children birth to 21 years old in a free and appropriate public educational environment, as well as many other rights that allow them to participate in general education to the maximum extent appropriate (IDEA, 2 004).

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125 Instructional Strategies : Approaches to teaching that are intended to produce specific learning outcomes (Winton, Snyder & Goffin, 2016). Knowledge: and practice (Sheri dan et al., p.2 Leadership : T he individual and/or collective actions taken to influence the desired outcome (DEC, 2015; Snyder et al., 2012). National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) : The professional organization representi ng the field of early childhood education (ECE). Personnel Preparation Standards : Unified sets of expectations set by states or professional organizations to design and implement programs and classes (Stayton, 2015), measure a IHE educators accountable for teaching the knowledge, skills and d ispositions considered important Smith, 2005; Hiebert, Morris, Berk & Jansen, 2007; Irons, Carlson, Lowery Moore, Farrow, 2007). Professional Development (PD) : A continuum of facilitated teaching and learning experiences that build professionals knowledge, skills dispositions and practices. PD includes formal education before and during a profession, trainings and technical assistance (NAEYC/ NACCRRA, 2011; NPDCI, 2008). Recommended Practices (RP) effective ways to improve the learning outcomes Research to Practice Gap: The disconnect between the p ractices that have been shown to result in better outcomes for young children with disabilities, their families, and the

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126 the practices early childhood professionals use in early childhood programs. Skills at occur in a relatively discrete period and that are observable or easily inferred (Sheridan et al., Stakeholders about the [issue] They include people who ha ve resources to apply to the [issue], people who make decisions about the [issue], and people who will be affected by the [decisions]

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127 A PPENDIX B DEC (2014) RPs Leadership Strand L1. Leaders create a culture and a climate in which practitioners feel a sense of belonging L2. Leaders promote adherence to and model the DEC Code of Ethics, DEC Position Statements and Papers, an d the DEC Recommended Practices. L3. Leaders develop and implement policies, structures, and practices that promote shared decision making with practitioners and families. L4. Leaders belong to professional association(s) and engage in ongoing evidencebased professional development. L5. Leaders advocate for policies and resources that promote the implementation of the DEC Position Statements and Papers and the DEC Recommended Practices. L6. Leaders establish partnerships across levels (state t o local) and with their counterparts in other systems and agencies to create coordinated and inclusive systems of services and supports. L.7 Leaders develop, refine, and implement policies and procedures that create the conditions for practitioners to impl ement the DEC Recommended Practices. L8. Leaders work across levels and sectors to secure fiscal and human resources and maximize the use of these resources to successfully implement the DEC Recommended Practices.

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128 L9. Leaders develop and implement an evi dence based professional development system or approach that provides practitioners a variety of supports to ensure they have the knowledge and skills needed to implement the DEC Recommended Practices. L10. Leaders ensure practitioners know and follow pro fessional standards and all applicable laws and regulations governing service provision. L11. Leaders collaborate with higher education, state licensing and certification agencies, practitioners, professional associations, and other stakeholders to develo p or revise state competencies that align with DEC, Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), and other national professional standards. L12. Leaders collaborate with stakeholders to collect and use data for program management and continuous program improve ment and to examine the effectiveness of services and supports in improving child and family outcomes. L13. Leaders promote efficient and coordinated service delivery for children and families by creating the conditions for practitioners from multiple dis ciplines and the family to work together as a team. L14. Leaders collaborate with other agencies and programs to develop and implement ongoing community wide screening procedures to identify and refer children who may need additional evaluation and servic es.

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129 A PPENDIX C CEC (2012) Advanced Preparation Standa rd 5: Leadership and Policy 5.0 Special education specialists provide leadership to formulate goals, set and meet high professional expectations, advocate for effective policies and evidence based practices, and create positive and productive work environments. Key Elements 5.1 Special education specialists model respect for and ethical practice for all individuals and encourage challenging expectations for individuals with ex ceptionalities. 5.2 Special education specialists support and use linguistically and culturally responsive practices. 5.3 Special education specialists create and maintain collegial and productive work environments that respect and safeguard the rights of individuals with exceptionalities and their families. 5.4 Special education specialists advocate for policies and practices that improve programs, services, and outcomes for individuals with except ionalities. 5.5 Special education specialists advocate for the allocation of appropriate resources for the preparation and professional development of all personnel who serve individuals with exceptionalities. Knowledge K5.1 Sociocultural, historical, and political forces that influence diverse delivery systems, including mental health

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130 K5.2 Policy and emerging trends that affect infants and young children, families, resources, and services K5.3 Community resources on national, state, an d local levels that impact program planning and implementation, and the individualized needs of the child and family Skills S5.1 Advocate on behalf of infants and young children with exceptional needs, and their families, at local, state, and national le vels. S5.2 Provide leadership to help others understand policy and research that guide recommended practices S5.3 Provide leadership in the collaborative development of community based services and resources. S5.4 Provide effective supervision and eval uation.

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131 A PPENDIX D NAEYC (2007) Program Administrator Competencies: Leadership and advocacy 1. Knowledge of organizational theory and leadership styles as they relate to early childhood work environments. 2. Knowledge of the legislative processes, social issues, and public policy affecting young children and their families. 3. The ability to articulate a vision, clarify and affirm values, and create a culture built on norms of continuous improvement and ethical conduct 4. The ability to evaluate program effectiv eness. 5. The ability to define organizational problems, gather data to generate alternative solutions, and effectively apply analytical skills in its solution. 6. The ability to advocate on behalf of young children, their families, and the profession

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132 A PPENDIX E Colorado common course numbering system : Standard competencies: ECE 240 1. Identify the responsibilities, knowledge, and skills required for early childhood program management and staff leadership. 2. Analyze program vision, mission, values, a nd philosophy that support administration of a quality ECE programs. 3. Analyze current local, state, and national policies and practices that promote quality in early care and education programming. 4. Analyze the role of ethical decision making in ad ministrative practices for EC leaders using National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Code of Ethical Conduct and Code of Ethical Conduct for Administrators. 5. Describe laws, policies, and regulations pertinent to the EC prof ession and apply them to best practices for EC directors/administrators. 6. Discuss early childhood program practices that support optimal child development in an educational or care giving setting for young children. 7. Demonstrate familiarity with re source management strategies in terms of fiscal management of ECE program income streams. 8. Demonstrate familiarity with resource management strategies in terms of fiscal management of ECE program expenses.

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133 9. Identify risk management strategies for managing emergency preparedness, food programming, health, and safety operations of an early care and education program. 10. Recognize policies and procedures that promote best practices in staffing an ECE prog ram. 11. Discuss practices/issues related to working with other stakeholders in EC programming. 12. Assess community needs for EC programming and develop a marketing strategy.

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134 A PPENDIX F Colorado common course numbering system : Standard competencies: ECE 241 1. Demonstrate knowledge of effective communication skills for dealing with children, families, staff, other professionals, and community volunteers. 2. Define and discuss the human relations and advocacy components of an early chi ldhood 3. Describe the quality of an early childhood program from a human relations standpoint. 4. Examine strategies for connecting to and communicating with families and the community. 5. Analyze the components of l eadership including mission, vision, goal setting, team building, and strategic planning. 6. Develop and demonstrate reflective listening and conflict resolution skills, as well as mentoring strategies to use with children, staff, and families. 7. Prac tice making ethical decisions using the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Code of Ethical Conduct. 8. Differentiate roles among early intervention team members and follow chain of command to address policy questions, system s issues, and personnel practices. request direction, instruction, guidance, and feedback for new or unfamiliar tasks. 10. Discuss personal and professional strategi es for becoming a resilient early childhood leader.

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135 A PPENDIX G Faculty participant questionnaire Directions: Answer the following three questions by circling or answering yes of no. 1. Have you taught one or more of the following ten courses since fall semester of 2011 : ECE 101, 102, 103, 111, 205, 220, 238, 240, 241, 260 ? Yes No 2. If you answered than once? Yes No 3. If you are selected to participate in this research study, can yo u commit to completing one half hour interview in the month s of September or October? Yes No

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136 A PPENDIX H G raduate participant questionnaire Directions: Answer the following three questions by circling or answering yes of no. 1. Have you complete all of the following ten courses since fall semester of 2011: ECE 101, 102, 103, 111, 205, 220, 238, 240, 241, 260? Yes No 2. in all of the courses ? Yes No 3. If you are selected to pa rticipate in this research study, can you commit to com pleting one half hour interview in the months of September or October? Yes No

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137 A PPENDIX I Faculty Informed Consent Form Developing Leadership for Inclusive Early Childhood Programs Study Informed Consent Form You are invited to participate in the Developing Leadership for Inclusive Early Childhood Programs Study The go al of the study is to gain insight as to how prepared early childhood professionals are to be leaders in high quality inclusive ea rly childhood programs. Your participation is completely vol untary, but it is highly valued Your participation will help me gain a faculty perspective as I prepare for my doctoral dissertation. P articipant s who complete the study will receive a $20 gift card for Amazon.com. As the researcher, I will be collecting data through one 20 to 30 minute interview with 4 8 faculty and exploring the learning materials they use to teach their students There may be a follow up 15 to 20 minute interviewed to gain additional information. The follow up interview is determined based on the sufficiency of data collected during the initial interview. You may choose not to participate in the study and are free to withdraw from the st udy at any time. Refusal to participate or withdrawal from participation involves no penalty. As the researcher, I will, however, treat all information gathered for this study as confidential. This means that only I will have access to the complete d inte rviews and learning materials you provide that can be connected with your identity After I have reviewed the interviews and learning materials I will replace your name with your first and

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138 last initial and remove any information specific to your personal experiences. Once that is complete, the documen t s will be uploaded to a private password protected online program called DeDoose Through the program, I will share the document with two research assistants who will help me interpret the data. In additi on, when I report information, it will be reported for the entire group of research participants, never for any one individual. There are two exceptions to the promise of confidentiality. Any information you reveal concerning suicide, homicide, or child abuse and neglect is required by law to be reported to the proper authorities. In addition, should any information contained in this study be the subject of a court order, the University of Colorado Denver might not be able to avoid compliance with the o rder or subpoena. The benefits of being invo lved in this study include: providing a voic e for faculty who want graduates of the Colorad o Directors Certificate program to be fully prepared to be leaders in inclusive early childhood programs. Your voice will help me understand the additional support faculty need to prepare our graduates of the certificate to be leaders. Your participation will also provide me with invaluable practice and experience in conducting qualitative resear ch. You may also enjoy the ability to provide information about your own experiences or learn abo ut my insights into your work If you would like a copy of the results of the study, I will be happy to provide one for you. Potential risks of being involv ed include the possibility that discussing certain issues about your experience may be upsetting. If this occurs, I will arrange for supportive care from an appropriate professional in your area.

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139 If you hav e any questions at all about my study of the im pact of the Developing Leadership for Inclusive Early Childhood Programs study, please feel fr ee to contact me andrew.goff@ucdenver.edu. If you have any concerns or complaints about how you were treated during the research sessions please contact. Dr. A lissa Rausch School of Education and Human Development, University of Colorado Denver, alissa .rausch@ucdenver.edu Thank you again. Developing Leadership for Inclusive Early Childhood Programs Study I have asked for and received a satisfactory explanation for any language I did not fully understand. I have had the chance to ask any questions I have about my participation. I agree to p articipate in the study, and I understand (Please sign below) ________________________________________ _____________________ Signature Date ______________ __________________________ Print Name ____ I agree to be video taped. ____I do not agree to be video taped. ________________________________________ _____________________ Signature Date

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140 A P P ENDIX J Certificate Informed Consent Form Developing Leadership for Inclusive Early Childhood Programs Study Informed Consent Form You are invited to participate in the Developing Leadership for Inclusive Early Childhood Programs Study. The goa l of the study is to gain insight as to how prepared early childhood professionals are to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs. Your participation is completely voluntary, but it is highly valued Your p articipation will help me u nderstand the perspective program as I prepare for my doctoral dissertation. P articipant s who complete the study will receive a $20 gift card for Amazon.com. As researcher, I will be collecting data thro ugh one 20 to 30 minute interview with 4 8 graduates There may be a follow up 15 to 20 minute interviewed to gain additional information. The follow up interview is determined based on the sufficiency of data collected during the initial interview. You may choose not to participate in the study and are free to withdraw from the study at any time. Refusal to participate or withdrawal from participation involves no penalty. As the researcher, I will, however, treat all information gathered for this study as confidential. This means that only I will have access to the completed interviews you provide with information that can be linked to your identity After I have reviewed the interviews, I will replace your name with your first and last initial and re move any

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141 information that is specific to your personal experiences. Once that is complete, the document will be uploaded to a private password protected online program called DeDoose Through the program, I will share the document with two research assis tants who will help me interpret the data W hen I report information, it will be reported for the entire group of research participants, never for any one individual. There are two exceptions to the promise of confidentiality. Any information you revea l concerning suicide, homicide, or child abuse and neglect is required by law to be reported to the proper authorities. In addition, should any information contained in this study be the subject of a court order, the University of Colorado Denver might no t be able to avoid compliance with the order or subpoena. The benefits of being involved in this study include: providing a voic e for graduates of the Colorado Directors Certificate who want graduates of the program to be fully prepared to be leaders in in clusive early childhood programs. Your voice will help me understan d the additional support early childhood professionals need to be prepare d to be leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs Your participation will also provide me with invaluable practice and experience in conducting qualitative research. You may also enjoy the ability to provide information about your own experiences or learn about my insights into your work. If you woul d like a copy of the results of the study, I will be happy to provide one for you. Potential risks of being involved include the possibility that discussing certain issues about your experience may be upsetting. If this occurs, I will arrange for support ive care from an appropriate professional in your area.

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142 If you have any que stions at all about my study of the impact of the Developing Leadership for Inclusive Early Childhood Programs study, please feel free to contact me, andrew.goff@ucdenver.edu. If you have any concerns or complaints about how you were treated during the research sessions please contact. Dr. Alissa Rausch, School of Education and Human Development, University of Colorado Denver, alissa .rausch@ucdenver.edu Thank you again. Inclusive Early Childhood Programs Study. I have asked for and received a satisfactory explanation for any language I d id not fully understand. I have had the chance to ask any questions I have about my participation. I agree to participate in the study, and I understand (Please sign below.) ________________________________________ _____________________ Signature Date ________________________________________ Print Name ____ I agree to be vide otaped. ____I do not agree to be video taped. ________________________________________ _____________________ Signature Date

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143 A PPENDIX K Developing Leadership for High Quality Inclusive Early Childhood Programs Study Description The Developing Leadership for Inclusive Early Childhood Progr ams Study is a case study of a community college. The ca se study explores the elements for leadership we are currently developing in our students and how those align with the elements for lead ing a high quality in clusive early childhood program Elements ar e the knowledge, skills and dispositions of the educational content. Recently, scholars in the fields of early childhood education (ECE) and early intervention/early childhood special education (EI/ECSE) have begun to press the importance of leadership and specialized training for leaders in inclusive early childhood programs (DEC, 2015). Leadership in the early childhood programs in our community is a primary responsibility of program directors, many of whom earn their leadership credentials at the commun ity college. While there are resources to guide faculty with the preparation of leaders in early childhood programs, there are limited resources available to prepare leaders in high quality inclusive early childhood programs. Simply said, it is not easy to prepare directors to lead a program that includes children with developmental delays/disabilities. The goal of this case study is to identify how faculty are currently developing the elements of leadership, how those elements support high quality inclus ive early childhood programs and what additional support the community college can provide to support faculty and early childhood professionals. The need for leadership and inclusion has been supported

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144 by laws and research for thirty years, but currently, there is nothing explicitly made available to faculty to develop the elements of leadership for directors to lead high quality inclusive early childhood programs. With the completion of the Developing Leadership for Inclusive Early Childhood Programs Stu dy, faculty will be provided with guidance for preparing directors to lead early childhood programs that include children with development delays/disabilities.

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145 A PPENDIX L Interview questions for faculty participants 1. What courses do you teach at the community college? 2. How do you define leadership in early childhood education? a. Can you elaborate 3. What are some of the instructional strategies you use that might prepare early childhood pro fessionals to including children with developmental de lays/disabilities in early childhood programs? a. Tell me more about access b. Tell me more about systems of support c. Tell me more about leadership 4. What do you believe Certificate Program should have inorde rto be leaders in an early childhood program including children with developmental delays or disabilities? a. Tell me more about collaboration b. c. Tell me more about advocacy d. Tell me more about re flective practices 5. Tell me about instructional activities and materials you have used that develop early including children with developmental delays or disabilities.

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146 a. Tell me mor e about field experiences b. Tell me more about technical assistance 6. What additional support do you and students need from the community college to build students capacity to be leaders in early childhood programs that include children with developmental dela ys or disabilities? a.

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147 A PPENDIX M Intervie w with graduate participants 1. What certificates or degrees have you earned at the community college? 2. How do you define leadership in early childhood education ? a. Can you elaborate 3. During your education at the community college, what are some of the things you learned about including children with developmental delays/disabilities in early childhood programs? a. Tell me more about access b. Tell me more about systems of support c. Tell me more about lead ership 4. What skills and knowledge do you believe early childhood professionals in the Program should have inorder to be leaders in an early childhood program including children with developmental delays or disabilities? a. Tell me more about collaboration b. Tell me more about c. Tell me more about advocacy d. Tell me more about reflective practices 5. What experiences did you have while completing ECE courses at the community college that dev eloped your abilities to lead an early childhood program including children with developmental delays or disabilities.

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148 a. Tell me more about field experiences b. Tell me more about technical assistance 6. What additional support do you need from your courses that w ould build your capacity to be a leader in early childhood programs that include children with developmental delays or disabilities? a. Tel

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149 A PPENDIX N A priori codes Access to inclusive programs Systems of supports and services for children with developmental delays/disabilities Program Collaboration Leadership practices /qualities Program policies Evidence based practices Professional standards Advocacy Reflective practices Technical Assistance Field experience

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150 APPENDIX O Aligning instructional strategies to desired p rofessional development o utcomes (Winton, Snyder & Goffin, 2016)