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PAEC 803

PAEC Early Childhood


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Early Childhood

Early Childhood Coordinator: Ms. Consuelo Martinez

Main Office Phone Number: 708-338-3250

The Early Childhood Program provides special education preschool classes specifically designed to meet the needs of children between the ages of three and five who have developmental delays.  Students receive related services including social work, speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, vision itinerant services, and/or other related services as described in the students’ Individual Education Plans (IEPs). Many of these services are integrated into the classroom programs.

Students who have been identified with mild to moderate developmental delays, participate in either morning or afternoon classes, Monday through Friday, with enrollment limited to ten students per session with a special education early childhood teacher and a program assistant per class. The staff utilizes an eclectic approach to meet the diverse needs of the students with mild to moderate developmental delays. Tenets of the Creative Curriculum, Houghton Mifflin’s Pre-Kindergarten curriculum, and Dr. Toni Linder’s, Read, Play, and Learn, create learning environments which support progression toward the Kindergarten Common Core Standards.

Students identified with moderate to severe developmental delays participate in either morning or afternoon classes where the classroom staff includes a special education teacher, early childhood teacher and a program assistant. As enrollment increases, the number of staff members assigned to these classes increases. The classroom environment during these sessions is more structured and affords the students more individualized instruction due to the low staff to student ratio. The staff utilizes Read, Play, and Learn by Dr. Toni Linder which is a comprehensive, scientifically based early childhood curriculum that has been shown to improve cognitive and social/emotional outcomes in young children.

In both of the above program options, the staff evaluates the students’ progress through portfolio assessments and tri-annual benchmark assessments based on the Illinois Early Learning Standards as well as the students’ progress toward their Individual Education Plans (IEPs).

Students who have been identified with Autism Spectrum Disorder participate in a five-hour a day program.  The class size is limited to eight students with a special education early childhood teacher and up to three program assistants.  The staff utilizes a range of methods for working with children with Autism. They incorporate components of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), Treatment and Education of Autistic and Communication Handicapped Children (TEACCH), and other classroom strategies to support an effective learning environment.  In addition, the staff will use structured play to build and strengthen the students’ communication and social skills.  Each of these methods provides concrete data for developing and evaluating Individual Education Plans (IEPs).


Early Childhood Screenings