FVC Observation Tool Guide

DESE Family Visit Consultant (FVC) Observation Tool Guide

This guide will provide information to why we observe each educator, how often and instructions to using the FVC Observation Tool.

ECDA manual requirements.

  • 2.1 Administration
    • All programs MUST designate a supervisor who is responsible for providing leaderships and direction for the program including supervision and support of parent educators; and evaluation of services and staff.
  • 2.3 Qualifications
    • Each parent educator MUST develop an annual professional growth plan cooperatively with their program supervisor.

The Family Visit Observation helps the parent educator gain feedback, review and reflect with their supervisor. The tool should also be used to guide the educator when developing their annual professional growth plan in partnership with their program supervisor. The FVC is also beneficial to the supervisor in providing the educator needed support and guidance. Observations can drive the programs trainings and staff meetings to meet the needs of all educators.

Prior to the FVC the following should take place.

  • Parent educators MUST have successfully completed the DESE approved training in parent education regardless of previous training and experience prior to delivering family personal visits. (ECDA 2.3)
  • Parent educators MUST complete a 1 hour observation of an experienced parent educator on a Foundational family personal visit. (ECDA 2.3)
  • The parent educator will schedule a home visit and receive permission from the family for their supervisor to attend the home visit to observe.
  • Parent educator will plan for the visit by using one of the 8 Foundational plans or the planning guide if they have completed the first 8 visits.
  • Parent educator and supervisor will meet prior to the visit to review the lesson plan, partner and reflect on the visit preparation. Supervisor will use the first section on the FVC record form, visit preparation, to facilitate the conversation.

During the home visit the following should take place. Supervisors will use the FVC Observation Tool during the visit to document what is observed, emerging or not observed for all five components of the visit.

  • Opening (Connect, Reflect, Agree)
    • Parent educators continue to work on building their relationship and connecting with the family by using connecting statements and observations from the previous visit.
    • During this time, the educator and family will agree on the content of the visit, ensuring both of their agendas are addressed throughout their time together.
  • Parent-Child Interaction
    • The parent educator has chosen a parent-child activity that will focus on interactions between the child and their guardian. The activity should also prompt parent engagement and encourage child development.
    • The parent educator will share the rationale for the activity with the family as well as facilitate observation and discussion regarding child development.
    • Parent educator will facilitate a discussion of one or more child development domain, including emerging development.
    • The family and parent educator will reflect on the connection of child development and parenting behaviors. The parent educator will also facilitate the parents’ observations between their child’s development and link it to one of the five parenting behaviors.
    • The parent educator will acknowledge the parenting behavior listed on the activity page.
      • Nurturing
      • Designing/Guiding
      • Responding
      • Communicating
      • Supporting Learning
    • Parent educator will incorporate literacy into the visit with book sharing and encouraging families to share books with their children between visits.
  • Developmental-Centered Parenting
    • The parent educator will discuss one of the seven developmental topics during the visit.
      • Attachment
      • Discipline
      • Health
      • Nutrition
      • Safety
      • Sleep
      • Transitions / Routines
    • Parent educators will take time to understand the family’s perspectives on these topics, including their current experiences and family values and cultures.
    • Parent educators will strive to increase the family’s knowledge of child development and how it connects to their child’s behavior with their stage of development.
  • Family Well-Being
    • To help support the development of healthy physical and emotional environments parent educators will focus on one of the six well-being categories.
      • Basic essentials
      • Education and employment
      • Physical health of the family
      • Early care and education
      • Relationships with family and friends
      • Recreation and enrichment
    • Parent educators will assist families in enhancing their abilities to utilize personal resources and build social connections within their community.
    • Parent educators will engage the family in reflection, problem solving and decision making. They will also connect families to resources and provide follow-up and support to help reduce barriers the family may face.
    • Parent educators will partner with families to set goals and write steps to achieve their goals. Or they will reflect on current goals the family has set during past visits.
  • Closing
    • At the end of the visit parent educators will review key points of the visit and actions steps that the parent and educator plan to take.
    • Parent educator will encourage the family to continue or recreate the activity between visits.
    • The family and educator will reflect and evaluate their time spent together.
    • Parent educator will share about upcoming group connections or community events.
    • Parent educator will share specific strengths of the family.
    • Parent educator and family will partner to plan and schedule the next visit.

After the home visit the following should take place.

  • The parent educator should immediately complete the family visit record.
  • The supervisor and parent educator should review and discuss the completion of the family visit record.
  • The supervisor will make any final notes or edits to the FVC Observation Tool.
  • Supervisor and educator will meet to reflect on the family visit and review the supervisor's observations made during the visit.
  • The supervisor will share the strengths of the family visit that will include how the parent educator partnered, facilitated and reflected with the family throughout the visit.
  • The supervisor will provide comments and suggestions to the educator to assist in growth as an educator.
  • The supervisor will facilitate goal setting and provide recommendations.
  • Parent educator will develop their annual professional growth plan cooperatively with their program supervisor. (ECDA 2.3)

The Family Visit Consultation Observation Tool can be found on the DESE website under Parents as Teachers Resources.