The Gan has a rich history of recognizing the value of inclusion. In order to provide an enriched preschool experience to all of the community’s children, the Gan has created an environment that understands the individual needs of all its students. It is this commitment to inclusion that inspired me to join this dedicated staff over 10 years ago, and has allowed me to bring many fabulous programs and therapeutic services to our school. We are among the small minority (10%) of Jewish preschools in the greater DC area that provide the services necessary to meet the needs of diverse learners.
The Division on Early Childhood Education (DEC) and the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) defines inclusion as follows:
"Early childhood inclusion embodies the values, policies, and practices that support the right of every infant and young child and his or her family, regardless of ability, to participate in a broad range of activities and contexts as full members of families, communities, and society. The desired results of inclusive experiences for children with and without disabilities and their families include a sense of belonging and membership, positive social relationships and friendships, and development and learning to reach their full potential. The defining features of inclusion that can be used to identify high quality early childhood programs and services are access, participation, and supports."(DEC/NAEYC, 2009)
As we continue on our journey of inclusion, we are forming a Preschool Inclusion Committee. This committee, comprised of both parents and staff, will enable the Gan to enhance its inclusion efforts and become a standard of excellence in the Jewish community.
The committee will meet every 4-6 weeks. Be a part of an exciting opportunity to revolutionize Jewish Early Childhood Inclusion: Join the Gan Preschool Inclusion Committee!