ERIC Number: ED336236
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991
Integrating Preschool Programs and Preschool Children.
Graham, Mary Jo
The Children's Center in Institute, West Virginia integrates disabled preschool children with their non-disabled peers. This integration is the result of a merger between programs of two private non-profit agencies. Through the assistance of an interagency coordination council, the two programs--a mental health agency's early intervention program and a child development agency's child care center--became aware of their common interests and needs. In forming a cooperative agreement, the agencies integrated their philosophies, staff, and children. Cognitive psychology and the work of Piaget provided the necessary unification of the developmental model and the interventionist model. Through regularly scheduled staff meetings, staff learned new techniques to use with children and clarified policies and procedures. Teachers integrated goals on the individual education plans (IEPS) of disabled children into lesson plans for the classroom. Therapists and other professionals conducted therapies in the classroom. Through creative planning, all children are included in all activities. Special equipment in the classroom is borrowed from its two parent agencies or donated by philanthropic organizations. Children in the program have shown the same general progress that children in other high quality programs do. Children show a high level of empathetic behaviors such as assisting others and comforting others. Progress for children with disabilities has been greater than projected. The program may not be appropriate for children with severe behavior disorders. (KS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Conference on Appalachia (5th, Lexington, KY, November 6-7, 1990).