Tennessee Disability Pathfinder is a free, statewide, information and referral service for persons with disabilities, family members, and service providers. Pathfinder has phone, web, and print resources in English and Spanish to connect the Tennessee disability community with service providers. Referral services, free of cost, are provided to persons with disabilities, family members, service providers, and advocates. It is a project of the Tennessee Council on Developmental Disabilities and the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center for Research on Human Development.
Click HERE to visit the Tennessee Disability Pathfinder. After logging on to the website, click on the Disability Pathfinder Database. Search the database by county and area of concern.
Behavioral Health Resources
Click HERE to view behavioral health resources and referral information.
Centers of Excellence for Children in State Custody (COE)
The COE is a specialty clinic serving the most complex children in DCS custody. The COE offers consultation, psychological and psychiatric evaluations, and specialty training for community partners regarding behavioral health needs for complex children with maltreatment trauma histories.
RIP is an internationally recognized parent implemented program in which parents learn to work directly with their own children. Experienced RIP parents provide training and support to newly enrolled families. RIP serves children 2 to 6 years of age with behavior concerns.
Advocacy and Parent Support
Family Voices of Tennessee assists families in navigating public and private health systems and insurance plans, including TennCare and commercial plans; educates families about resources available, how to access them, and how to work with health providers; works with families to promote family-centered health care and medical homes for children with special health care needs. Children with special health care needs including disability, chronic illness, physical conditions, and mental health conditions are eligible.
Tennessee Voices for Children (TVC) is a not-for-profit statewide advocacy agency for families whose children have emotional, behavioral, and/or mental health issues. They bridge the gap between professionals and family members so that they can work as a team to do what is best for the child and family. Along with advocacy services, they provide behavior resources, parent education, support groups, and respite care.
Website for accurate, up to date information about special education law and advocacy for children with disabilities.
Advocacy and Parent Support
The Special Education Department promotes education services and programs for all Tennessee’s students with special education needs.
STEP is a statewide family-to-family program in Tennessee. They support families by providing free information, advocacy training, and support services to parents of children eligible to receive special education services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
The Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (DIDD) is the state agency responsible for providing services and supports to Tennesseans with intellectual disabilities. DIDD provides services directly or through contracts with community providers in a variety of settings. These settings range from institutional care to individual supported living in the community.
Head Start is a nationwide comprehensive child development program, providing early childhood education, nutrition, health & safety, transportation, and social services to children and families in economic need of assistance. Head Start refers to programs geared for children 3-5 years of age. Early Head Start refers to programs geared for children 0-3 years of age.
Articles and Websites
The following documents contain helpful references and links regarding developmental and behavioral health, screening, and surveillance. When available online, the link is provided at the end of the citation.
START Contact InformationSusan Rollyson, M.Ed.