Mailman Center Hosts Successful Conference on Early Childhood Development in a Pandemic

April 5, 2022

Over 250 childhood personnel and allied health professionals including speech language pathologists, psychologists, social workers, and physicians participated in the University of Miami Mailman Center for Child Development Innovation and Connection Conference on February 8th, 2022.

The conference, “Promoting Early Childhood Development in the Era of COVID: Practice, Policy, and Future Opportunities,” brought together experts in early childhood development to discuss challenges and opportunities for the care and wellness of young children as they grow up in a pandemic.

Topics included the physical and emotional impacts of COVID-19 on children 0-5 and their families and ways in which early childhood personnel and allied health professionals can better support young children’s well-being and development through practice and policy.

The fully virtual format allowed participants to join in from across the country and breakout sessions provided opportunities for reflection and networking.

In a panel focusing on lived experiences, disability self-advocates, parents, and representatives from community organizations shared their own stories of living with the pandemic and offered offer insights on providing support to children with disabilities and their families. A second panel focused on challenges faced by early childhood health and education providers during the pandemic and research-backed ways to overcome them.

The success of the conference highlights the importance of interdisciplinary efforts by educators, therapists, policymakers and health professionals to promoting healthy child development in the midst of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Since 1995, the Mailman Center has coordinated conferences that address the concerns of individuals with developmental disabilities and children with special health care needs and their families. The conferences are presented in tandem with the Mailman Center’s commitment to improving the knowledge and skills of community professionals, paraprofessionals and parents.

Learn more about the conference by visiting our webpage