In collaboration with the California Department of Social Services (CDSS), Child Care and Development Division (CCDD), the California Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (IECMHC) Network at WestEd is launching a California statewide training program to build the workforce of consultants who are able to provide high-quality, diversity-informed infant and early childhood mental health consultation services in center- and home-based child care and early education settings.
Infant and early childhood mental health consultation is an evidence-based service in which early childhood mental health professionals partner with the adults in young children’s lives to build their capacity to foster healthy social and emotional development and relational health.
The California Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultant Training Program (CTP) is offered free of charge to accepted participants. The CTP is a nine-month program offering fundamental training in the specialized role of mental health consultation in child care and early education settings. Faculty will meet monthly with participants in a highly interactive learning experience. Upon completion of the program, participants will receive a Certificate of Completion in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation. Licensed and license-eligible participants may also secure continuing education credits.
On this page
- Who should apply?
- What is the training program format?
- What is the time commitment for the Consultant Training Program?
- How do I apply?
With the goal of increasing California’s capacity to respond to the mental health needs of young children, their families, and the child care and early education providers who serve them, we invite racially, culturally, and linguistically diverse applicants serving various communities to apply. We are specifically seeking:
- Practitioners in California currently employed or seeking employment as Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultants serving child care and early education programs.
- Practitioners who are endorsed through the California Center for Infant-Family and Early Childhood Mental Health.
- Practitioners working in geographically remote and/or traditionally under-served communities
- Practitioners with specific experience working with tribal communities and family child care home
Applicants meet the following prerequisites:
- A master’s degree in a mental health, education or development field (e.g., psychology, counseling, social work, child development, human development, special education, education)
The following are preferred but not required:
- Mental health license or license-eligible.
- Endorsement through the California Center for Infant-Family and Early Childhood Mental Health.
- Minimum of one year of experience working with young children and staff in a classroom or group care setting.
The California IECMH Consultant Training Program emphasizes a relationship-based, diversity-informed, and reflective learning experience for all participants. The program takes place in both synchronous and asynchronous formats, offering professional learners a high-quality, engaging experience. Participants meet monthly with faculty via Zoom in large group trainings and small group communities of practice.
Reflective journal assignments are completed in the Canvas online learning platform. Participants also engage in a consultation assignment with a family child care home provider in order to practice what they are learning in real time. Finally, they meet regularly with a reflective practice facilitator to support their professional practice.
Course content includes an in-depth exploration of the practice of consultation, including defining IECMHC, examining the role of the consultant, understanding child care and early education systems, mental health consultation as a disrupter of racial bias and inequities, and the Consultative Stance.
Successful completion of the program includes the following:
- Nine Monthly Zoom sessions with Faculty: 2.5 hours each
- Dates and Time:
- All sessions are 9:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. PST
- 2023: October 13, November 3, December 8
- 2024: January 12, February 9, March 8, April 5, May 10, and June 7
- Eight Monthly Zoom sessions with Community of Practice: 1 hour each
- Reflective Journal Assignments: 1-2 hours per month
- Practicum Assignment: 8-12 hours total
- Reflective Practice Facilitation: 4-6 hours total
Total Commitment: Approximately 55 – 60 hours
The application period for the 2023 – 2024 Consultant Training Program has closed. Check back in Summer 2024 for details on next year’s programming.