GDOE Supports Early Intervention Providers in the Implementation of P-ESDM


The Guam Department of Education (GDOE) and Guam CEDDERS continue their work with consultant, Dr. Laurie Vismara.  Dr. Vismara has continued to provide training to Guam Early Intervention System (GEIS) providers on the implementation of the Parent-based Early Start Denver Model (P-ESDM) framework.  P-ESDM is an approach which focuses on coaching parents and caregivers to develop their skills and strategies in using the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM). The January and February sessions with Dr. Vismara focused on developing the coaching skills of GEIS providers in supporting parents in increasing their child’s communication. This process includes helping parents increase their use and understanding of children’s “talking bodies”. The training also included helping providers problem-solve their potential needs or barriers to support families increase their child’s communication.  Follow-up sessions were facilitated by on-island consultant Elaine Eclavea and Guam CEDDERS Josephine Cruz to support GEIS providers as they applied the P-ESDM strategies in their coaching practices.

On January 21, a P-ESDM follow-up session was conducted with GEIS providers.  Top row, L-R:  Sangi Susuico, GEIS, GDOE; Josephine Cruz, Associate Director, Guam CEDDERS; Grace Loyola, GEIS; Middle row, L-R:  Sherry Cruz, GEIS, GDOE; Rita-Rose Hualde, GEIS, GDOE; Gajee Parsons, GEIS, GDOE; Bottom row, L-R:  Elaine Eclavea, Guam CEDDERS consultant; Liz Blas, GEIS Speech and Language Pathologist.

Outpatient Hearing Rescreen Clinics at the University of Guam CEDDERS


On June 1, Cathy Tydingco, GEIS Coordinator, met with Guam CEDDERS personnel, June De Leon, Marie Wusstig, and Michelle Aguigui, to provide an overview of its current staffing challenges and update the status of GDOE Audiology’s office relocation and staffing the audiology unit.  The discussion focused on options for outpatient hearing screening to resume for infants born at Guam Memorial Hospital Authority (GMHA) who did not pass the initial hearing screening.  One option offered by Guam CEDDERS was the use of Guam CEDDERS House 30 located at the University of Guam Dean Circle for the location of the Outpatient Hearing Screening Clinics.  As a result of this meeting, the GEIS Coordinator connected with the GDOE Audiologist, David Zieber, and presented the options discussed.  In collaboration with GDOE Audiology, GEIS, and Guam  EHDI project resumed outpatient hearing rescreen appointments for infants born at GMHA on June 18.

In preparation for the June 18th Outpatient Hearing Rescreen Clinic, Guam EHDI staff met with the GEIS coordinator and GDOE Audiologist and staff to do a walkthrough of House 30, review the COVID 19 Safety Protocols for families and staff, and to further discuss how each program would provide support to resume the Outpatient Hearing Rescreen Clinics at House 30.  Guam EHDI Director Michelle Aguigui offered additional days per week to screen children at House 30.  As a result of this offer, GEIS/GDOE Audiology will screen children two days a week, beginning June 24.  The Hearing Screening Clinic dates will run every Thursday and Friday, starting on June 18 and ending with the last clinic on July 30.

Parents can contact GEIS at 300-5776 or Guam EHDI at 735-2466  to determine if their child needs additional testing or follow-up services.

On June 18, the Guam Department of Education Audiology Department resumed the Outpatient Hearing Screening Clinic for infants from Guam Memorial Hospital Authority at the University of Guam, Dean’s Circle House 30.  The clinic was staffed by Guam Early Intervention System (GEIS) staff, GDOE Audiology staff with support from the Guam EHDI staff. Ron Nochefranca, GDOE Audiometirst, conducts an Automated Auditory Brainstem Response (AABR) to screen the infant.  L – R:  Ron Nochefranca, GDOE Audiometrist; Jacquelyn Hall, mother; Duncan Hall, infant.

Not Shown:  David Zeiber, GDOE Audiologist; R-Leen Mario, GEIS Service Coordinator

American Samoa Implements MSAA


American Samoa Department of Education, Special Education Division joined the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and Guam as a state partner of the Multi-State Alternate Assessment (MSAA) consortium to improve the development and implementation of the alternate assessment based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS) required for students with significant cognitive disabilities based on their Individualized Education Program.

In support of American Samoa’s MSAA implementation, Guam CEDDERS June De Leon facilitated six 2-hour virtual sessions from January through May with American Samoa specialists and special education teachers in preparation for the Spring 2021 MSAA on-line alternate assessment administration from March 15-May 14.  Preparation activities included addressing the academic instructional needs of students with significant cognitive disabilities and the requirements for administering the MSAA on-line alternate assessment.  The virtual sessions also included Guam special education teachers familiar with administering the MSAA online test, which provided practical insights in preparation for and during the administration.

Congratulations to American Samoa for administering the Spring 2021 MSAA test with 100% participation of students with significant cognitive disabilities requiring an AA-AAS in the tested grades!

GDOE Focuses on Compliance Monitoring


The Guam Department of Education (GDOE) in partnership with Guam CEDDERS coordinated consultations with Dr. David Bateman centered on addressing concerns related to compliance monitoring.  Dr. Bateman is a professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Special Education at Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania, where he teaches courses about learning disabilities, special education, and special education law.  He has authored and co-authored several books on Special Education and works with school districts that have been recently involved in litigation to help them successfully move forward.

From January to April, GDOE held monthly collaborative meetings with Dr. Bateman and the GDOE Special Education Division leadership and the GDOE Compliance Monitors.  The meetings centered on two main areas:  the Individualized Education Program (IEP) forms and the pre-referral process.  Dr. Bateman provided GDOE with a written summary of his feedback related to the areas of concern.  The collaborative meetings allowed for open discussion related to the feedback and for the planning of next steps to improve procedures.

On April 31, GDOE held a collaborative meeting between the Special Education Division the Compliance Monitors, and Dr. Bateman.  Top row, L-R:  Marie Babauta, Compliance Monitor, GDOE; June De Leon, Interim Director, Guam CEDDERS; Lillian Reyes, Compliance Monitor, GDOE; Middle row, L-R: Neil Rochelle, School Program Consultant, GDOE; Terese Crisostomo, School Program Consultant, GDOE; Josephine Cruz, Associate Director, Guam CEDDERS; Bottom row, L-R:  Laura Taisipic, School Program Consultant, GDOE; Dr. David Bateman, consultant, Guam CEDDERS; and Cathy Tydingco, School Program Consultant, GDOE.