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Kicked Out of Kindergarten

April 2, 2009

Why Early Childhood Development?

Healthy early childhood development is influenced by early detection of behavioral and emotional issues; recent studies have demonstrated the growing importance of creating continuity and collaboration in early systems of pediatric and mental health care.


Charles Biss, MSW
Charlie received his MSW from SUNY Albany, and has worked in the Vermont Department of Mental Health as Child and Adolescent Family Services Director for the past 22 years. He has 36 years of Human Services experience as a clinician, local program developer and a state level implementer of systems of care. He has secured many public and private grants to develop and sustain statewide systems of care for very young children, school age children and transition-aged young adults. He was instrumental in the implementation of the CUPS (Children's Upstream Services) program as a standard for the state of Vermont.

His personal and professional experience has taught him the importance of consumer and family involvement, building local community-based services and supports, and focusing on prevention and early intervention. Charlie has lived in Vermont for the past 30 years and is married with four children.

Paul H. Dworkin, MD
Dr. Dworkin is Professor and Chair of the Department of Pediatrics, University of Connecticut School of Medicine and Physician-in-Chief, Connecticut Children's Medical Center. He received his A.B. from Rutgers University, his M.D. from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and his pediatric residency and fellowship training at the Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston.

His vision led to the creation of Help Me Grow, a statewide initiative to promote the early detection of children with developmental and behavioral problems. Dr. Dworkin has authored more than 130 journal articles, abstracts, and book chapters in the fields of developmental-behavioral pediatrics and general pediatrics. His interests are at the interface among child development, child health services, and child health policy and his research has focused on the value of developmentally-oriented anticipated guidance, the role of developmental surveillance and screening in the early detection of at-risk children, and the value of care coordination in the linkage of children and families to programs and services. Dr. Dworkin's honors include teaching awards, visiting professorships, and named lectureships.

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