ASK Resource Center has been Iowa’s Parent and Training Information Center (PTIC or PTI) since 1998. PTIs are also sometimes known as “Parent Centers.” There is at least one Parent Center in each state and U.S. territory. Some states have more than one depending on population size. Iowa has only one PTI, and we operate statewide.
The PTI is a federally funded project of the U.S. Department of Education. Iowa’s PTI is also supported with private donations raised by our board numbers because our federal funds do no t cover the entire cost of reaching all communities in need across the state. The authority to fund PTIs exist inside Part D of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), which means we answer to a federal project officer and work in partnership with other parent centers and technical assistance centers around the country.
The goal of the PTI is to help parents, families, and students with disabilities understand their civil rights regarding early intervention services and special education supports so that they can be strong self-advocates in the most effective ways. One misconception about self-advocacy is that it means being willing to listen or compromise. In reality, we work hard to ensure healthy relationships are built between families and schools to resolve conflicts at the lowest level possible and as quickly as possible.
The PTI project focuses on providing training, information, and referrals through a variety of services, including one-on-one support and assistance, small and large group workshops, publications, and websites. Check out the a few resources we use in our PTI work: