The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®)

About This Program

Target Population: Children birth to age five in early care and education settings and their caregiving adults (e.g., family caregivers and Early Care and Education providers)

For children/adolescents ages: 0 – 5

For parents/caregivers of children ages: 0 – 5

Program Overview

The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®) program takes a strengths-based approach to Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (IECMHC). The ECCP® Consultant (subcontracted from nonprofit child behavioral health agencies by Advanced Behavioral Health, Inc. (ABH), who also provides training and ongoing supervision) engages in a collaborative relationship with the consultees and seeks to help strengthen the adult partnerships. The ECCP® Consultant uses a combination of interviewing, screening/assessment tools, and observation to co-create an Action Plan, and then provides the adult caregivers with real time, onsite support to help the adult caregivers implement the strategies outlined in the Action Plan. There are three levels of service: Child/Family, Classroom, and Program Wide Consultation. The ECCP® Consultant also provides Social Emotional Trainings, facilitates Mental Health Consultation Groups, and is a member of Early Childhood Community Collaborative groups.

Program Goals

The goals of The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®) are:

For Children:

  • Improve attachment with caregivers and peers.
  • Improve emotional literacy and regulation.
  • Improve social skills.
  • Decrease probability of suspension or expulsion.

For Parents/Family Caregivers

  • Increase knowledge of social and emotional development.
  • Build stronger partnerships with childcare staff.
  • Build stronger relationship with child.
  • Plan and implement appropriate interventions to promote social emotional wellness.

For Childcare staff:

  • Increase knowledge of social and emotional development.
  • Improve ability to observe and document children’s behavior and identify children who may need more support.
  • Improve ability to create classroom environment that promotes social emotional wellness.
  • Improve ability to communicate with families about social–emotional concerns.
  • Build stronger relationships with children.
  • Increase ability to identify children at risk of suspension/expulsion and maintain children in placement.
  • Make referrals to help families obtain services outside the classroom when indicated.

Logic Model

View the Logic Model for The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®).

Essential Components

The essential components of The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® include:

  • Using the ECCP® Model, Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (IECMHC) is provided by a Masters-level ECCP® Consultant.
    • Services are provided in the community, at early care and education (ECE) centers, the family’s home, and/or other community locations.
  • Service intensity is outlined by the program model, with visits lasting between 1 and 3 hours.
    • The majority of service visits occur with teachers/providers in the classroom.
    • Some visits take place outside the classroom and require coverage for teachers/providers.
  • ECCP® Consultants are embedded in the community in which they provide IECMHC. They attend local early childhood collaborative groups, which helps them stay informed of key issues impacting their communities.
    • ECCP® Consultants also bring a social emotional lens to the table at collaborative meetings.
  • ECCP® Consultants build strong partnerships with other Early Childhood providers, which allows them to provide families/providers with warm referrals.
  • ECCP® model consists of three levels of direct service—Child/Family, Classroom, and Program-wide consultation:
    • The Child/Family Level of service includes the ECE provider(s), parent/guardian, and ECCP® Consultant.
      • This service level focus on the needs of the identified child.
      • Visits occur either at the early childhood care and education center, the family childcare program, or at the family’s home.
      • Each visit is approximately 1–2 hours with either the ECE provider or the parent/guardian with or without the child present.
      • These visits are weekly for 6 weeks. There is also a 1-month and a 6-month follow-up contact completed.
    • The Classroom Level of service includes the classroom teachers, center director, and ECCP® Consultant.
      • This level of service focuses on the social emotional needs of the classroom.
      • Within this level, the ECCP® Consultant can provide up to two Child/Family Level services concurrently.
      • The ECCP® Consultant also provides the classroom with a Social Emotional Training that aligns with the Classroom Action Plan and is opened up to all the ECE providers at the childcare center, including but not limited to:
        • Classroom structure
        • Social emotional practices
        • Assistance with transitions
        • Supporting staff development
      • The length of visits ranges from 1–3.5 hours depending on the type of visit. This service lasts for approximately 3 months. There is a follow-up meeting completed one month after the service ends.
    • The Program Wide Level of services includes the entire childcare center. This level of service focuses on the overall social emotional climate at the center.
      • Within this level, the ECCP® Consultant can provide up to three Classroom Level services and 4–5 Child/Family Level services.
      • The ECCP® Consultant also supports the center director/administrative team in building or enhancing a Behavioral Health Team (BHT) within the ECE center.
      • One of the main objectives of the BHT is to develop or strengthen policies/practices related to social emotional wellness at the ECE center. Each visit is approximately 1–2 hours.
      • Classroom and/or Child Level services add additional time spent and support provided to the ECE center.
      • This service lasts for approximately 9 months (an academic year). There is a follow up meeting completed one month after the service ends.
  • Within each level of service, the ECCP® Consultant co-creates an individualized Action Plan with the consultees. The Action Plan focuses on building upon existing strengths to help consultees meet their goals.
    • The ECCP® Consultant supports the consultees in implementing strategies outlined in the plan while also working with consultees to strengthen their capacity for reflective practice and taking multiple perspectives.
  • The ECCP® Program Model uses screening and assessment tools at the start and end of services to measure service impact.
  • The ECCP® Model also focuses on building the ECE workforce.
    • ECCP® Consultants facilitate monthly Mental Health Consultation Groups in their community for ECE providers. The focus of these groups is to provide a community of learning facilitated by the ECCP® Consultant where ECE providers can come together to continue learning about how to best support the social emotional needs of children in their care.
    • Topics covered in these groups can range from needs of the ECE providers to issues related to families and children. ECCP® Consultants also provide social emotional trainings to the ECE Community.
  • ECCP® Consultants enter data into the ECCP® Information System (EIS), a data system designed for the ECCP® Program.
    • The EIS helps guide fidelity to the ECCP® Program Model and allows for centralized management of the ECCP® Program.
    • The EIS can generate reports for an individual consultant or at a program wide level. This makes the EIS an integral tool at the case level, the consultant level, and the systems level.
  • ECCP® Consultants receive administrative, clinical, and reflective supervision. The ECCP® Management team monitors fidelity to the ECCP® Program Model.
  • ECCP® Consultants participate in local early childhood community collaborative groups.

Program Delivery

Child/Adolescent Services

The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®) directly provides services to children/adolescents and addresses the following:

  • Challenging behavior (e.g., difficulty with transitions, not following directions, hitting, and/or biting), emotional regulation, difficulty with focus/attention, poor social skills, disrupted attachment or connection with caregivers, trauma exposure, withdrawn, difficulty adjusting to the childcare setting, and at high risk for suspension/expulsion

Parent/Caregiver Services

The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®) directly provides services to parents/caregivers and addresses the following:

  • Parent/Caregiver of a child with challenging behavior (e.g., difficulty with transitions, not following directions, hitting and/or biting), emotional regulation, difficulty with focus/attention, poor social skills, disrupted attachment or connection with caregivers, trauma exposure, withdrawn, difficulty adjusting to the childcare setting, and at high risk for suspension/expulsion
Services Involve Family/Support Structures:

This program involves the family or other support systems in the individual's treatment: ECCP services are provided to early care and education staff to promote social-emotional development and to address challenging behaviors for children birth to five.

Recommended Intensity:

Weekly, ranging in time from 1–3.5 hours, depending on which service type and service visit is being provided

Recommended Duration:

Child Level service: 6 weeks; Classroom Level service: 3 months; Program Wide Level Service: Up to 9 months

Delivery Settings

This program is typically conducted in a(n):

  • Adoptive Home
  • Birth Family Home
  • Foster / Kinship Care
  • School Setting (Including: Day Care, Day Treatment Programs, etc.)

Homework

The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®) includes a homework component:

Parents/guardians and early care and education staff implement strategies and techniques based on the Action Plan.

Languages

The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®) has materials available in a language other than English:

Spanish

For information on which materials are available in this language, please check on the program's website or contact the program representative (contact information is listed at the bottom of this page).

Resources Needed to Run Program

The typical resources for implementing the program are:

  • Office space for consultants
  • Office space for supervisor, and space for both individual and group supervision meetings
  • Cell phone
  • Computer
  • Access to the ECCP® Information System (EIS)
  • Travel expense reimbursement (mileage) for ECCP® Consultant’s travel

Manuals and Training

Prerequisite/Minimum Provider Qualifications

ECCP® Program Manager/Supervisor: Master’s in mental health, clinical license required, at least 5 years of related work experience in the field of early childhood mental health, at least 3 years of supervisory experience, excellent organizational skills, and professional writing ability are a must. Bilingual candidates are a plus.

ECCP® Program Coordinator: Bachelor’s degree in business, human services, health sciences or management related field and related work experience, 3–5 three years of demonstrated work experience of varied and progressive administrative duties, bilingual (Spanish) preferred.

ECCP® Consultant: Master’s in mental health, clinical license highly preferred, at least 2 years of postgraduate experience working in the field of mental health with young children and families, experience working in early care and education settings a plus. Excellent time management and organizational skills are a must. Bilingual candidates are a plus.

Manual Information

There is a manual that describes how to deliver this program.

Program Manual(s)

The program manuals are:

  • Finley, C., Borto, J., Pritz, M, & Moy, S. (2021). ECCP® training manual. Early Childhood Consultation Partnership at Advanced Behavioral Health, Inc.
  • Borto, J., Finley, C., Pritz, M., & Moy, S. (2021). ECCP® goals and objectives manual. Early Childhood Consultation Partnership at Advanced Behavioral Health, Inc.

These proprietary training manuals are used to train new ECCP® Consultants. These can be accessed by contacting the ECCP® Program Management team.

Training Information

There is training available for this program.

Training Contact:
Training Type/Location:

Training is provided by Advanced Behavioral Health, Inc (ABH). either at ABH in person or via a virtual platform.

Number of days/hours:

Training is intensive and requires two weeks of preservice training for providers and supervisors (80 hours). Weekly group and individual supervision for providers (1–3 hours per week) is provided for the first year either in person or via a virtual platform. Additional training for supervisors is provided monthly.

Implementation Information

Pre-Implementation Materials

There are pre-implementation materials to measure organizational or provider readiness for The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®) as listed below:

Pre-implementation involves consultation with the model developers to ensure readiness for the program, clarity on goals, and working with key stakeholders to build support for the program. The consultation also includes guidance for providers on best practices and readiness for the program.

Formal Support for Implementation

There is formal support available for implementation of The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®) as listed below:

Formal support is required and consists of pre-service training, ongoing weekly supervision and model fidelity review, and use of the ECCP® Information System. Formal supports are provided to all levels of staff including funders, providers, supervisors, and consultants. There is a combination of on-site support and tele-conferencing support provided.

Fidelity Measures

There are fidelity measures for The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®) as listed below:

ABH developed the ECCP® Information System (EIS), where all direct and indirect services are entered by the ECCP® Consultant. Consultants are trained on how to input data into the EIS, and the EIS has been programed to generate reports on key fidelity measures including but not limited to:

  • Timing and length of service visits
  • Attendees of service visits
  • Action Plan development
  • Caseloads/productivity
  • Completion of pre and post service screening/assessment tools
  • Completion of outcome measures
  • Collection of post service surveys.

The EIS also generates reports on a variety on ancillary measures including:

  • Community involvement
  • Mental health consultation groups
  • Social emotional trainings

The EIS is only available to contracted providers.

Implementation Guides or Manuals

There are no implementation guides or manuals for The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®).

Implementation Cost

There are no studies of the costs of The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®).

Research on How to Implement the Program

Research has not been conducted on how to implement The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®).

Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research

Child Welfare Outcome: Child/Family Well-Being

Gilliam, W. S., Maupin, A. N., & Reyes, C. R. (2016). Early childhood mental health consultation: Results of a statewide random-controlled evaluation. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 55(9), 754–761. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaac.2016.06.006

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 176 (88 preschool classrooms and teachers)

Population:

  • Age — Children: 3–4 years old; Adults: Mean=40.61–44.19 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — Children: 61% White, 19% Latino/Hispanic, 10% Black, 7% Other, and 3% Asian; Adults: 82% White, 10% Latino/Hispanic, and 8% Black
  • Gender — Children: 75% Male, 25% Female; Adults: 97% Female, 3% Male
  • Status — Participants were teachers and preschool classrooms.

Location/Institution: Connecticut

Summary: (To include basic study design, measures, results, and notable limitations)
The purpose of this study was to isolate the effects of early childhood mental health consultation (ECMHC) through Connecticut’s statewide Early Childhood Consultation Partnership® (ECCP®) for enhancing classroom quality, decreasing teacher-rated behavior problems, and decreasing the likelihood of expulsion in targeted children in early childhood classrooms. Participants were randomized to either ECCP® (n=88) or control group (n=88). Measures utilized include the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS), the Social Skills Rating System (SSRS), the Conners’ Teacher Rating Scale—Revised Long Form (CTRS-R), and the Preschool Expulsion Risk Measure (PERM). Results indicate that children who received ECCP® had significantly lower ratings of hyperactivity, restlessness, externalizing behaviors, problem behaviors, and total problems compared with children in the control group even after controlling for gender and pretest scores. No effects were found on likelihood of expulsion and quality of childcare environment. Limitations include the sole reliance on teacher ratings of children’s behavior with no measurements of child behavior collected from parents or from respondents blinded to the study condition; the collection of classroom quality data at posttreatment only; and lack of follow-up.

Length of postintervention follow-up: None.

Additional References

Duran, F., Hepburn, K., Irvine, M., Kaufmann, R., Anthony, B., Horen, N., & Perry, D. (2009). What works?: A study of effective Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation Programs. Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development. https://gucchd.georgetown.edu/products/ FINAL%20formatted%20executive%20summary.pdf

Gilliam, W. S. (2014). Early Childhood Consultation Partnership: Results across three statewide random-controlled evaluations. Yale School of Medicine, Child Study Center. https://medicine.yale.edu/childstudy/ zigler/publications/ECCP2014_333558_123099_5379_v3.pdf

Gilliam, W. S. (2007). Reducing behavior problems in early care and education programs: An evaluation of Connecticut’s Early Childhood Consultation Partnership. Child Health and Development Institute (CHDI). https://www.chdi.org/files/3814/1202/7645/ evaluation_of_cts_early_childhood_consultation_partnership.pdf

Contact Information

Samuel Moy, PhD
Agency/Affiliation: Advanced Behavioral Health, Inc.
Website: www.eccpct.com
Email:
Phone: (860) 638-5309

Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: February 2021

Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: January 2022

Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: January 2022