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OCDEL Announces Rapid Response Team Grant Application

The Pennsylvania Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) announces the ability of the Rapid Response Team (RRT) Mini-Grant application.

A grassroots and collaborative approach has emerged in several Pennsylvania communities to provide a cross-sector RRT deployed to early childhood education programs when an early care and education program is struggling with the challenging behavior of a child who is at immediate risk of expulsion. The development of this collaborative service at the local level has been in response to the increase in challenging behaviors in ECE settings combined with historically long waiting lists for the statewide Infant Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (IECMHC) program. Locally developed RRTs typically include, but are not limited to, behavioral health professionals, Early Intervention (EI) professionals and Early Learning Resource Center (ELRC) staff. 

To expand RRTs across the state and help standardize the development of RRTs, OCDEL, through the renewed federal Preschool Development Grant (PDG), will award nineteen (19) Rapid Response Mini Grants to local collaboratives to create teams, support emerging teams, or enhance existing Rapid Response approaches.

PDG will fund training, development, and implementation of RRT model approaches and include a cross-site evaluation. Increasing access to RRTs locally will support the following goals:

  1. Provision of trauma sensitive, human-centered, collaborative short-term support in ECE programs struggling to support a child(ren) with challenging behavior at risk for expulsion.
  2. Facilitate quick referrals to additional supports, not limited to Early Intervention (EI 0-3, 3-5), Family Support Programming, Home Visiting, IECMH consultation, and/or behavioral health services.

Rapid Response Teams are not to be confused with county Crisis Intervention Services.

Application deadline is Sept. 29, 2023.

Get complete information, including background, scope of work, eligible applicants, funding information, Rapid Response mini grant options, and how to apply.


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