Region D PTAC Technical Assistance


Serving as the Parent Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) for the 29 Parent Training & Information Centers (PTIs) and Community Parent Resource Centers (CPRCs) located across the 13 Western States and Pacific territories collectively known as Region D.


Barb Buswell, Project Co-Director
Nora Thompson, Project Co-Director
Emily Rome, Technical Assistance Specialist
Tony Darren, Technical Assistance Specialist

Region D TA Services


We believe that well-managed, well-run parent centers that implement best practices are positioned to make significant changes in the lives of the children of the families they serve and influence state, regional, and national laws, policies, and procedures. Region D PTAC’s role is to enhance the probability that all Region 13 OSEP-funded parent centers will develop their capacity so they achieve or maintain this status and impact.

Based on a comprehensive needs assessment, Region D PTAC is responsible for offering targeted and intensive Technical Assistance (TA) designed to address individual centers’ needs. Regional TA seeks to increase the capacity of Parent Centers to achieve and sustain 4 major outcomes related to centers’ provision of services to parents of children with disabilities and youth with disabilities:

  • Outcome #1: Increased capacity on the part of Parent Centers to effectively manage their work and maintain a stable, effective organization, capable of carrying out the requirements for their Federal grant;
  • Outcome #2: Increased Parent Center ability to reach and effectively serve the diversity of families that represent their catchment area/target population, particularly those that are historically underserved , underrepresented, or in remote locales;
  • Outcome #3: Improved ability to provide parents with the knowledge and skills needed to partner to improve outcomes for their children at the individual child and school improvement levels;
  • Outcome #4: Improved ability to partner or collaborate with other Parent Centers, TA & D projects, state lead agencies, local educational agencies, other nonprofits, etc.


Region D PTAC uses information, training, and a variety of other forms of technical assistance, including ongoing evaluation of the effectiveness of TA service delivery, to help centers achieve the above outcomes. RDPTAC’s TA includes:

  • One-to-One Connections: The foundation of our technical assistance is confidential consultations that are available to all federally-funded parent centers anytime via phone or email. Consultations include support, information, referrals, and resources on EDGAR requirements; nonprofit management; boards; grant implementation; reporting/evaluation; technology; policies and procedures; human resources; among others.
  • Comprehensive Needs Assessment and Individualized TA: A variety of assessments are made available to centers to assist in the crafting of a customized annual technical assistance plan for each center.
  • Newsletter: An electronic newsletter, produced 6 times per year, designed to speak to the needs of centers within Region D; connect those centers with resources, tips, and updates regarding parent center events and trainings; and expand awareness and understanding in key topical areas.
  • Site Visits: In-person visits from Region D staff to centers that are customized to meet each center’s specific needs. Visits may include: board training, strategic planning, staff development, team building, review of agency policies and procedures, technology planning/review, crisis management support, and/or anything else identified as appropriate by the Center and Region D staff and/or the OSEP project officer.
  • R6PTAC on The Region D PTAC web portal that is on the website of the Center for Parent Information and Resources (CPIR), the central resource for information and products to the community of PTIs and CPRCs; The CPIR web site also offers a unified web presence for all the Parent Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs) and their resources.
  • Bi-monthly Teleconferences or Webinars: Regional conversations or webinars designed to increase the opportunity for centers to share with and learn from each other and address region-wide identified needs for professional development. Topics for the conversations/webinars are identified via the annual regional needs assessment, a survey used to identify topics specifically for this forum, OSEP initiatives, or current trends.
  • Small and Large Group Regional Conferences or “Gatherings”: Regional conferences or smaller-group topic-oriented meetings will be offered in alternating years; both types of offerings are designed to inform and train center directors, staff and board regarding the 14 OSEP-identified priority topics for the Parent Center Network and current or emergent, or educational topics.
  • Peer To Peer Networking: A network of peer-to-peer support provided by matching centers with a need to centers with experience in that area; networking will occur virtually through online forum or e-mail, or in-person via site visits between centers.
  • On-line Forums: Facilitated online communication and shared peer/professional learning designed to enhance outcomes by bringing groups with similar needs together to share center wisdom and experience regarding successful practices or to engage in joint problem solving; examples of possible groups are Tech Staff, Fund Development Directors, New Centers, New EDs/Project Directors, or Board members; each forum serves as an additional avenue for information distribution, smaller group projects, communities of practices, and/or group list serve based on the needs of the group.
  • TA Center Involvement in TA Services Planning and Delivery: Centers are offered opportunities and encouraged to participate in the PTACs planning and advisory committees throughout each year, such as the Region D Evaluation Advisory Board and Region D Conference Planning Committee.

Contact us

Nora Thompson, 707/364-5897 |
Tony Darren, 415/475-2116 |

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Region D Parent Technical Assistance Center @ Matrix Parent Network
94 Galli Drive, Suite C, Novato Ca 94949 • 415.884.3535 • Fax 415.884.3555
Funded by the Dept. of Education, Office of Special Education Programs (PTAC H328RO80008).
Views expressed are not necessarily those of the U.S. Dept. of Education