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Preschool Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) & Inclusion Resources

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IDEA (2004) and Kansas' regulations guarantee preschool age children who are eligible for special education services and their families, the right for each child to be educated in their least restrictive environment (LRE ). To accomplish this goal, early childhood special education (ECSE) services can take many forms and may be influenced by many factors. While local education agencies (LEAs) have a legal requirement to ensure that each child's placement decision is made in conformity with the LRE provisions, there is also an abundance of educational research supporting the provision of special education services to young children in inclusive settings. Effective inclusion requires planning and coordination to ensure children not only have access to a variety of learning activities and settings, but also have supports to ensure individual needs are met and children are able to participate in programs as fully as possible (DEC/NAEYC , 2009). This web page has been designed as a resource for Kansas' administrators, practitioners, and families of young children receiving preschool special education services. It is intended to support and promote programs in serving all children in their least restrictive environment.

"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." - from the Joint Position State of DEC and NAEYC , 2009.

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The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, retaliation, gender identity, gender expression and genetic information in the University’s programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies and is the University’s Title IX Coordinator: the Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access, IOA@ku.edu, 1246 W. Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS, 66045, (785)864-6414, 711 TTY.