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Early Childhood Preschool Programs Recognized for Exemplary Practice 2002-2003

For the school year of 2002-2003, the Kansas State Department of Education has recognized early childhood programs in Kansas for practices that they have incorporated into their early childhood special education program. These practices are progressive and go beyond the requirements of IDEA. Each year programs have the opportunity to submit an application to be reviewed by professionals from across the state to be considered for recognition. The programs recognized for this year were announced at the Kansas Division for Early Childhood Annual Conference in Wichita, Kansas, February 27 –March 1, 2003. The three programs are the Early Childhood Center in McPherson, the Early Education Center in Newton and the Early Childhood Special Education Program of SEK Interlocal 637.

The Early Childhood Center in McPherson is recognized for their effort in the development of a curriculum that is both appropriate to young children’s development and sensitive to the needs of individual children. In addition to being developmentally and individually appropriate, the curriculum is also aligned with the standards and outcomes of different governing bodies.

Contact Person: Marguerite Hornback, Early Childhood Center, 128 N Park, McPherson, KS, 67460 Phone: (620) 241-9590.

The Early Education Center, a program of the Harvey County Special Education Cooperative, receives recognition for its efforts in school/community collaboration. Specifically,this program is recognized for the administrative structure set in place to assure the review and ongoing development of the preschool program. This program, developed in association with the Community Playschool –Board of Directors, represents four local churches that collaborate for the delivery of preschool services. The administrators of the school district program and the Board of Directors have developed a written interagency agreement and meet quarterly to assure the ongoing development and review of preschool services.

Contact: Mary Beasley, Early Childhood Center, 218 E. 7th , Newton, KS 67114 Phone: (316) 284-6510.

The Early Childhood Special Education Program of SEK Interlocal 637 receives recognition for parent participation in screening activities. Initially, following the collection of survey information from parents, the screening process utilized by preschool staff was modified to make the process more friendly for families. Currently, parents are involved in the screening process through active participation in providing information to program staff during a play-based screening and providing feedback for improvement to the screening process.

Contact: Deborah Potter, SEK Interlocal 637, 1700 N Locust, Pittsburg, KS 66762 Phone: (620) 235-3152.

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