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Supervisor Training Curriculum Focuses on Effective Supervision in Disability Services and Special Education

Curriculum presents research-based management strategies known to enhance work productivity and quality of staff-consumer interactions

December 6, 2010 

Washington, DC – Most of us as adults spend a large part of life working and our quality of life is better if we enjoy our work. People are more likely to show up and stay with their jobs if they enjoy their work, and as we all know, supervisors make a huge difference. The Supervisor Training Curriculum: Evidence-Based Ways to Promote Work Quality and Staff Enjoyment Among Support Staff  published by the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD) is uniquely poised to train current and prospective supervisors in evidence-based strategies of motivating and supervising direct support staff working with people with intellectual disabilities.

"The bottom line in the disability service field is how well we have helped individuals with disabilities achieve their desired outcomes in life. Staff performance and client interactions are tied intrinsically to this goal such that staff must to be trained continually to provide exceptional supports and services," says Dr. Dennis Reid, co-author of the Curriculum. The Supervisor Training Curriculum is based on strategies that have been evaluated and tested over thirty years, and when applied correctly, they are known to make supervision more effective and work more enjoyable for staff in disability services."

Supervisors in the direct support profession often have little formal training and are frequently promoted from within the ranks of the direct support workforce. The Supervisor Training Curriculum breaks down the role of supervision for new and current supervisors into areas such as making performance expectations clear; assessing work performance; making work more enjoyable; reducing workplace discontent. The Curriculum also includes trainer instructions and forms for on-the-job competency checks. A unique attribute of the Curriculum is its competency and performance based methodology, which means that trainees have to demonstrate mastery of skills learned through classroom and on-the-job activities in order to successfully complete the training program.

The Supervisor Training Curriculum is tailored for any setting that provides supports and services to people with intellectual and developmental disability. These include agencies, residential centers, supported and community living programs, day activity programs, and sheltered workshops. The Curriculum is geared for training personnel and upper-level managers, as well as middle level supervisors, clinicians, consultants, school administrators, principals, and teachers who supervise teacher assistants will also find the Curriculum useful.

For details, including pricing, reviews, and more, visit the AAIDD Bookstore.


Founded in 1876, AAIDD is the oldest professional association concerned with intellectual and developmental disabilities. AAIDD advocates for the equality, dignity, and human rights of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and for their full inclusion and participation in society. Learn more about the organization at

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