quarta-feira, 25 de novembro de 2009
PREESCOLA INCLUSIVA DA CALIFORNIA INCLUE ALUNOS COM AUTISMO
Nina Middlebrooks, center, instructor for children with autism helping children wash their toy animals Friday November 20, 2009. Loma Alta Preschool, which recently opened in Altadena, was built with funds from a private group as well as support from Los Angeles County. (SGVN/Staff Photo by Walt Mancini)
vejam mais sobre PREESCOLA INCLUSIVA DA CALIFORNIA INCLUE ALUNOS COM AUTISMO em : http://www.pasadenastarnews.com/news/ci_13847328
Inclusive California preschool enrolls students with autism
A new California preschool is serving students with and without autism. The Los Angeles Universal Preschool group provided $264,000 for classroom renovations and pledged $152,000 each year through 2012 to pay for specialized staff for the students with autism. "Both populations have an ability to learn from each other," the school's principal said. "Here, they learn to work together collaboratively, something they will have to do when they grow up, as well." Pasadena Star-News (Calif.) (11/22)
LTADENA - A classroom at newly opened Loma Alta Preschool looks like any you'd expect - crayons, toys, bright rugs, children running everywhere.
But there are some differences. The room is specially designed for children with autism, so there is less direct light from above. Shades block out excessive sunlight, and the carpeting is designed to minimize noise from shifting chairs and footsteps.
All of those sources of noise and light that are a routine part of the average student's school day can be very distressing to an autistic child, said Cathy Gott, mother of two autistic children.
"The sounds of chairs squeaking are no big deal for an average kid, but it is one of the things that can act as a stimulus for an autistic child and get them very worked up," said Gott, a board member at the Los Angeles Universal Preschool group, which helped finance the preschool.
Just off Loma Alta Drive at the existing elementary school there, the new preschool serves 40 children. It is an inclusive school, mixing regular children and special-needs children.
The school has four special-needs students enrolled, but the site will have the capacity to take eight, according to Principal Eric Sahakian.
The preschool is the result of an LAUP investment of $264,000, which was used to renovate a classroom, install an activity room, and renovate a playground area. The school opened in September.
Loma Alta Preschool Opens
(SGVN/Staff Photo by Walt Mancini)
The investment came after a request from Supervisor Michael Antonovich, who represents Altadena, to invest in a local program.
LAUP, which is dedicated to creating preschool programs throughout the county, has committed to investing $152,000 annually through 2012 to keep the program going.
That has allowed the school to bring in teacher's aides trained in educating special-needs children, said Sahakian.
The investment also helps prepare autistic students to continue to work in the same classrooms as other children, he said.
Keeping the two groups of children integrated will have benefits for both, he said.
"Both populations have an ability to learn from each other," said Sahakian. "Here they learn to work together collaboratively, something they will have to do when they grow up as well."
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