The Stafford County Public Schools (SCPS) Preschool Programs were created with the belief that all children can learn. Early Childhood Special Educators (ECSE) provide effective instruction by utilizing a developmentally appropriate curriculum and establishing a collaborative partnership between home and school.
Our preschool classrooms are language enriched environments that help children develop the skills needed to participate and succeed in school. ECSE staff provides developmentally appropriate learning experiences for young children between the ages of 2 and 5 that have been identified as having a disability. Preschool programs and services are based on the age and individual needs of each child as determined by the IEP team. The Preschool Program offers a continuum of services to meet the needs of children found eligible for special education.
Our preschool classes are taught by certified teachers and are strategically located within several of our elementary schools. Our three-year old & four-year old Early Childhood Special Education classrooms provide children with and without disabilities an opportunity to learn along side each other in a developmentally appropriate inclusive environment. Children without disabilities are considered Peer Models. At Head Start, the ECSE collaborates with Head Start teachers who are providing instruction to children in their classroom with IEPs. Children not requiring a special education setting may receive resource services in the natural environment (home, private preschool, etc.). Children may also be found eligible for speech & language services only.
PRESCHOOL PEER MODEL PROGRAM DESCRIPTION
The SCPS Preschool Peer Model Program is a vital part of our early childhood special education classroom instruction. The Peer Model Program provides typically developing children an opportunity to interact with same age peers who are receiving specialized instruction in a developmentally appropriate classroom. This “inclusion” program provides a stimulating and challenging environment that offers all children a wide range of learning opportunities.
Research-based practices tell us that typically developing peers are positive role models for students with disabilities. Inclusive preschool environments promote belonging, friendships, understanding and acceptance of others that are different. Research also states that typically developing children enrolled in an inclusive preschool setting develop meaningful relationships with their peers who have disabilities.
Children selected to serve as peer role models must demonstrate developmentally appropriate speech, language, social skills and behaviors. Peer Models are able to communicate clearly, interact well with others, model cooperative interactions and follow directions.
Families of children accepted as Peer Models must commit to having their child attend when the program is in session, provide transportation to and from preschool, and sign an agreement letter. There is no enrollment or registration fee. Children are selected by the Early Childhood Special Educator at the elementary school where the preschool programs are located.
If interested in having your child considered as a Peer Model, please complete an application and return it to the school by the last Friday of May. You can submit one application per school year. Applications are reviewed as they are received. Applications for the following school year become available in April and can be found on the Stafford County Public Schools website.
The Early Childhood Special Educator will contact you if your child is selected to participate in a classroom visit. Prior to the end of the current school year, you will be notified if your child is selected to participate in our program as a Peer Model. For additional information, please contact the Early Childhood Special Education teacher closest to your neighborhood school. You may also contact the Preschool Instructional Coordinator at (540) 658-6512.
- Children must be 3 by September 30th of the school year for the morning class; 4 by September 30th of the school year for the afternoon class
- Children must be toilet trained
- Children must be able to interact well with their same-age peers and demonstrate age-appropriate skills
- Children must not have an active IEP or require specialized instruction
Peer Model Application