IDEA Part C Programs

The Pathways Parent Training Program was developed specifically to empower your interventionists to teach parents to effectively address the unique learning and developmental needs of their toddler with or at risk for autism.

Created from within an authentic setting…

Pathways Parent Training Program was specifically designed to be compatible with the key principles for providing early intervention services in natural environments, which guide publicly funded early childhood intervention programs.

Why Pathways?

Because It Works!

With nearly $4,000,000 in innovative research grants and 9 published papers over the last 10 years, Dr. Pamela Rollins’ independent research has provided evidence showing the Pathways Parent Training Program to be effective for developing early foundational social communication skills including eye contact, social engagement, and verbal reciprocity.


- A practice to research model developed within an authentic IDEA Part C early childhood environment
- Evidence-based parent training program that works with the parent coaching model
- Cost effective and sustainable way to quickly build capacity to serve this rapidly growing population


- Empowers interventionists to provide effective evidence-based early intervention
- Can be delivered by all early childhood providers including Early Intervention Specialists, Teachers, SLPs, OTs, Mental Health, etc
- Developed specifically to fit the guiding principles of early childhood intervention


- Empowers parents/caregivers to facilitate their child’s learning and development
- Reduces parent stress as it increases parent child interaction
- Parent training model delivered in the home—the child’s natural environment


- A practice to research model developed within an authentic IDEA Part C early childhood environment
- Evidence-based parent training program that works with the parent coaching model
- Cost effective and sustainable way to quickly build capacity to serve this rapidly growing population

For More Information

Why Pathways?

Because it Fits!

Pathways Early Autism Intervention is a Naturalistic Developmental Behavioral Intervention (NDBI) specifically designed to be compatible with the key principles which guide IDEA Part C Early Childhood Intervention programs. The Key Principles are evidence based, universally recognized, and the foundation of IDEA Part C Early Childhood Intervention Programs. 

Key Principles


Infants and toddlers learn best through everyday experiences and interactions with familiar people in familiar contexts.

This is the Naturalistic part of an NDBI! Parents and caregivers are the natural teachers for all their children. The parent’s ability to teach their child and the child’s ability to learn from the parent are innate skills for the typical parent/child dyad. New studies show that for children with autism, social attunement is greater and more significant with parents/primary caregivers. The Pathways intervention is provided in the child’s natural environment teaching the parent to incorporate new skills into everyday experiences and interactions.


All families, with the necessary supports and resources, can enhance their children’s learning and development.

Pathways provides these professionals the necessary resources and support to implement an evidence-based intervention within their established delivery model. The Pathways program empowers the parent with new skills to interact with their child in a way that develops social attunement or “social looking behavior”. Social learning and development are enhanced when the child begins to ” tune in” to parents and family members, which supports early social communication skills. 


The primary role of a service provider in early intervention is to work with and support family members and caregivers in children’s lives.

Early Childhood Intervention personnel are the experts in going into the home and working to support families and caregivers. Pathwaysprovides a unique tool for the provider that will empower parents to address the specific needs of their child with autism. Research on the Pathwaysprogram has shown this leads to lowered caregiver stress for the family members and a generalization of skills for the child.


The early intervention process, from initial contact through transition, must be dynamic and individualized to reflect the child’s and family member’s preferences, learning styles, and cultural beliefs.

While Pathways follows well-researched developmental and behavioral theory, the delivery can be easily individualized to each family member’s preferences, learning styles, and cultural beliefs. Pathways uses the NDBI strategy of following the child’s lead which provides implied consent and a reinforcing environment and activities.


IFSP outcomes must be functional and based on children’s and families’ needs and family-identified priorities.

When using the Pathways program, IFSP outcomes are determined by both the unique needs of the child with autism as well as the individual needs of the family. The Pathways intervention addresses the developmental trajectory of social communication and family priorities by teaching evidence-based strategies to address any barrier that may come up for the family, be it in the child’s communication, behavior, or social involvement in the family.


The family’s priorities, needs, and interests are addressed most appropriately by a primary provider who represents and receives team and community support.

Pathways is compatible with both parent coaching and primary care provider models of delivery. The intervention is carried out by the family members in the child’s natural environment. The coaching is provided by a primary provider, which may include SLPs, OTs, PTs, Mental Health, and Early Childhood Interventionists. Other members of the child’s team serve as consultants when needed. The primary provider does not have to be a BCBA.


Interventions with young children and family members must be based on explicit principles, validated practices, best available research, and relevant laws and regulations.

NDBIs are a melding of both behavioral and developmental sciences that are evidence and research-based.  Both NDBIs and parent training programs have been shown effective for toddlers diagnosed or at risk for autism. Pathways meets all the criteria as an NDBI and has also amassed an extensive body of research. Pathways was created within an authentic early childhood environment and specifically designed to fit their guiding principles and delivery model.

Why Pathways?

Because it's Cost Effective and Sustainable

The Pathways Early Autism Intervention program will enable IDEA Part C agencies to build the capacity to provide effective evidence-based autism specific intervention to a rapidly growing population of toddlers with or suspected of autism and their families. Because children do not have to have a diagnosis to begin intervention, there are no more long wait times for autism evaluations to get started. With the Pathways program you will build a cost effective and sustainable program in a relatively short time.

General Questions:

Melissa Looney – 210-316-0462


Wendy Robinson – 817-913-3535

Program Specific Questions:

Please call your local ECI Agency 


Here’s what early childhood interventionists and IDEA Part C program directors are saying about Pathways Parent Training Program!

The Pathways Program has truly become the most important breakthrough for me in working with children with autism or autistic characteristics. Before Pathways, working with children with lack of eye contact, lack of tuning in and disinterest in the social world was our biggest challenge. Typical strategies used with our other children were not as effective and progress was slow. When the Pathways Program was introduced to our ECI program, I was immediately impressed with its thoroughness, attention to detail, practicality and evidence based strategies. Pathways gives us the tools to target the core deficits affecting these children and helps us rewire the brain to appreciate social interactions. Pathways allows us to guide our ECI families step by step as children learn to attend to activities, enjoy social play, use eye contact, turn to their name and use words socially to communicate their needs. I am excited to be a part of this program and grateful to be effectively prepared to help these children.

~Rachel, Interventionist, IDEA Part C Early Intervention Program

The Pathways program has helped me when working with children with autism and their families. In my years of working with children with autism, I have found that using a more traditional speech model’ has not been as effective and I felt that something was missing from my treatment plan. The Pathways program has filled in some of those missing pieces. Pathways is a specific step by step program that addresses foundational prelinguistic skills, social interaction skills, and behavior. The program utilizes the principles of ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) in the home setting within the context of the family’s daily routines. It has been a joy watching the children build a deeper bond with their parent/caregiver and to see them learn how to better focus and attend, interact in more meaningful back and forth exchanges, and learn how to request and imitate others.

~Lori, Speech Pathologist, IDEA Part C Early Intervention Program

The Pathways Program has been a complete transformation for me personally when working with children with autism and their families.  Before being introduced and trained in this program I often found myself at a loss as to how to provide effective interventions for these toddlers.  Although we were seeing some results with the “traditional” course of treatment (Speech Therapy, Occupational Therapy and Specialized Skills Training) these results were minimal.  I have now been implementing Pathways with some of our children that have been diagnosed with autism or who have red flags of the spectrum disorder.  I can without a doubt say that the progress has surpassed my expectations.  I have now learned an innovative approach to teaching parents how to interact with their child, which in turn has provided new opportunities for these children to learn!  Parents are now feeling less anxious about playing and teaching their child.  I will also admit that I, as a provider, feel more enabled and confident in my service delivery.  I am a firm believer in the Pathways Program and its ability to alter the lives of the children and families that we serve!  Not only has the Pathways Program delivered amazing progress for these children but it has also restored the families’ faith that their child has a fighting chance!  We are actually altering the brain functioning of children with autism and empowering their parents to succeed!

~Rhonda, Interventionist, IDEA Part C Early Intervention Program

I have been given the privilege to be trained for Pathways, and it has been an exciting experience as parents are now expressing hope for their children.  Pathways has taught me how to be able to respond to the parents who have expressed concerns and questions, on why their child displays challenging behaviors. In return, I am able to provide them with strategies in helping them focus, not so much on the why, but on how to help them change their child’s behavior.  Pathways has helped me have a better understanding of Autism, as well as how I can provide the knowledge to parents to help them understand it too.  A Pathway parent mentioned to me that other family members have seen a change with their child’s behavior, as he has shown improvement in following direction and is more attentive when doing activities, compared to other times that they have visited the family.  Hearing this gives me a sense of accomplishment, especially because with Pathways, it has added to my knowledge on how to empower our parents on how to help their children that are in the Autism spectrum, and it helps us show another perspective of Project Ninos, since we now have the tools to help these families.  

~Liliana, Interventionist, IDEA Part C Early Intervention Program

Since my participation in the Pathways Parent Training Program, I have observed how increased parent involvement has had a positive impact on children who display characteristics of autism. The uniqueness of this Pathways program incorporates the teaching practices of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and profound parent involvement into a child’s daily routine. Parents are coached to use daily opportunities to teach and reward their child for their performances. This behavioral intervention does not only provide parents with an effective resource, but it also increases a parent’s confidence to improve their child’s social and communication skills. Since utilizing the pathways training program with my clients, I have seen the decrease of characteristics of autism. I have witnessed a young boy go from lacking joint attention, no eye contact and limited toy play, to now participating in social games with family members, imitating sounds, gestures and words, and using eye contact to request for objects. I am extremely grateful for Pathways Program! Rene and Michelle have provided us with a very valuable tool to reduce cascading effects that autism can have on a child.

~Angela, Interventionist, IDEA Part C Early Intervention Program

The Pathways Program has helped me as an Early Intervention Specialist in being able to help families use the tools necessary in order to create connections with their child. Pathways has been able to prepare me with any obstacles that I might face with families who seek answers to their questions about their child’s needs. Using the tools that Pathways has taught me, I have been able to coach and guide my families in being able to understand the unique characteristics that their child has and how to be able to get those first glances and first words. Pathways has been able to break down the skills helping parents to understand what Autism is and how to use these skills in ways to create those lasting connections. Renee and Michelle developed a wonderful program that really answers those questions that parents have. Pathways has been able to guide parents in the right path to get inside their child’s world.

~Jennifer, Interventionist, IDEA Part C Early Intervention Program

Renee and Michelle REALLY GET IT by understanding that infants and toddlers learn best within context of relationships and natural environments and routines. Early childhood service providers and Pathways fit perfectly by following; coaching, teaching, developmental focus, working in the natural environment, focusing on everyday activities and routines. Best of all, families have reported progress in a short period of time.

~Anisha, Program Director, IDEA Part C Early Intervention Program

Interested in learning more about Pathways?

Get in contact today!