This position statement defines inclusion for young children, delves into the three defining features of inclusion: access, participation, and supports; and gives recommendations for using this statement to improve early childhood services.
Early childhood special education services for children, three through five years of age and their families in Illinois, are provided through local school districts and special education cooperatives. This website provides general special education resources, child find resources, and family resources.
Source: Connect Modules & Division for Early Childhood
This free online course introduces the basics of inclusion and the rights and supports for children and teachers in early childhood education by defining inclusion and describing recent research findings related to inclusion, understanding the legislation related to inclusion, and identifying three actions teachers can take.
This article, geared towards early childhood program leaders, answers 13 frequently asked questions about preschool inclusion from the benefits of inclusion to the potential roadblocks a program may encounter.
Early care and education providers play a critical role in the health and wellbeing of children and are well positioned to help identify children who might need extra help in their development. This free online training course provides tools and best practices for monitoring the development of children in their care and talking about it with their parents.
These four sets of indicators were designed by a group of national partners to support state leaders, local administrators, and front-line personnel in the early care and education system providing programs and services to children ages birth through five and their families.
Source: National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)
This article explains to families what inclusive preschool programs look like for young children with and without disabilities. The article lists several benefits of inclusion and children’s rights to education.
Source: National Center for Pyramid Model Innovations (NCPMI)
The Pyramid Model is a conceptual framework of evidence-based practices for promoting young children’s healthy social and emotional development. The Pyramid Model provides guidance for early childhood special education personnel, early intervention personnel, and early educators.
The Preschool Inclusion Series of the SpecialQuest Multimedia Training Library focuses on several aspects of including preschool-age children who have disabilities in programs and settings with their typically developing peers. This series contains four videos. The first provides an overview of the benefits and rationale for inclusion, as well as what makes inclusion work. Two additional videos each feature a story about the successful inclusion of a child. The fourth video provides practical and concrete strategies for making the Individualized Education Program (IEP) process collaborative and focused on inclusion.
Illinois STAR NET provides a variety of opportunities for personal and professional growth for those who touch the lives of young children, ages birth through eight, with an emphasis on children with special needs. STAR NET supports family-centered, researched and effective practices in early childhood education and care.
The Understanding Inclusion series contains six online modules that explore key ideas about inclusion in early childhood. The series covers a range of topics including defining inclusion, to understanding the benefits of inclusion, and advocating for inclusion. Developed for families with family input, it is also meaningful and useful for practitioners working with families who have children from birth to 5.
This article explains how child care can be an ideal setting for children with and without disabilities and delays. The article focuses on the benefits of inclusive child care, the role of the teacher, and strategies for planning for successful inclusion. It also provides links to additional resources.