This is so helpful, thank you! 

Karen Natoci - 9/19/2019

I really like the idea that when you want to make changes you can look at it from the perspective of what information and skills people who support children with complex communication needs have.  I think many of us do that naturally.  But I have also come to realize that the  structures and processes you have in place can affect how well a classroom or agency is able to meet children's needs.  I think curricula are a good example of this.  If a self-contained classroom for children with complex communication needs does not have a learning sequence of some sort,  then things can be quite individualized but there may not be enough structure to identify the kinds of progress that kids are making.  For me,  using the Communication Matrix with ALL students in who are appropriate creates a structure that helps us tell if we really are doing what we set out to do-increase communication skills and opportunities.  

I have seen education agencies also use the Matrix as a process for looking at classroom activities too.  When they do that they ask questions like "How many opportunities do the students in this classroom have to share information (request, refuse, etc.).  Or how many chances in a day do students in this classroom have to talk with each other without adult intervention (social communication)?  

I think all four of the areas of capacity building, when considered together,  can really help to improve a program's ability to change their students' communication patterns. - 9/19/2019