Admissions Policies and Practices that Build Inclusive Child Care Communities — Learning Links

These resources are intended as a starting point to learn more about inclusive child care policies, practices, laws and where to find additional supports toward finding and creating inclusive child care communities. You will need a PDF viewer for some of the resources – download Adobe Reader here.

Learn more about inclusive child care policies and practices:

Working Dad walking with his son.An Administrator’s Guide to Preschool Inclusion (PDF) – After talking with administrators of inclusive classrooms for young children, this guide was created to provide information for administrators to support the creation and success of inclusive classrooms for children, teachers, and families.

Child Care and Children with Special Needs: Almost Everything You Wanted to Know But Were Afraid to Ask! – A question and answer document about the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) created by New Jersey Statewide Parent Advocacy Network (SPAN), a resource and support network to empower and support families and inform and involve professionals and others interested in the healthy development and education of children and youth.

Maine DHHS Division of Licensing and Certification – Rules, Guidelines, Forms, and Resources for Child Care and Nursery School Providers – The contents of this web page are intended to assist existing and potential child care providers in applying for a license or certificate to operate a child care, and to comply with the Rules governing child care programs. Included are application materials, the Rules for the different types of child care programs, sample forms and materials and resources that may be helpful in providing quality child care, including agencies and services in Maine and nationally.

Model Child Care Health Policies 5th edition (252 pg. PDF) – The PA Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Pediatrics published the 5th edition of Model Child Care Health Policies in October, 2013. Significantly revised and updated, the new edition is a practical tool for adoption and implementation of best practices for health and safety in group care settings for young. children. This edition replaces the previously published version. ECELS encourages early education and the child care professionals to adapt the model policies as site-specific documents that fit their programs. Read more about Model Child Care Health Policies on the Early Childhood Education Linkage System website.

National Resource Center for Health and Safety in Child Care and Early Education – The Caring of Our Children 3rd Ed has multiple standards that include helpful information, tips and examples of ways a program can celebrate the richness found represented in children from varied backgrounds and cultures. Updated in August 2012, the Respecting One Another page provides a sample of questions that parents and families can ask (with examples to look for) regarding inclusion as well as direct links to the standards regarding enrollment, participation in program activities and nondiscriminatory policies.

Talking with Parents – this webpage offers child care and early learning providers tips on communicating with parents who have a child with special needs in child care. This website offers information and materials for child care providers, educators and students to help them better understand and serve children with special needs and their parents. Information includes topics and resources for communicating about a concern or special need and communicating about daily routines and existing special needs.

A Guide for Parents’ Questions When Seeking Child Care for Child with Special Needs (PDF) – this tipsheet was created by the Center for Inclusive Child Care.

A Thinking Guide to Inclusive Childcare – ideas, strategies and tools toward creating an inclusive child care experience for children and families.

Writing an Inclusion Policy (PDF) – A guide to help child care programs develop an inclusion policy.

Inclusion Toolkit (PDF) – The tool kit contains information and practical strategies including sample forms and examples of inclusive policy statements as well as an inclusion plan for individual children. Created by the Special Needs Inclusion Project, March 2010.

Choosing Quality Child Care for a Child with Special Needs (PDF) –  Parent publication from ChildCareAware.org

A Guide to High Quality Inclusion of Children with Disabilities for Families and their Communities (PDF) – Created by Delaware MAPS (Meaningful Access Participation & Supports). This guide is intended for parents.  It offers ideas, strategies and tools to help parents plan for inclusive placements.

Inclusion: Policy Development Guidelines for Early Learning and Care Programs (PDF) – Developed by Toronto Children’s Services (2007). This guide provides an overview of how to develop and embed Inclusion within the policies of your child care program. It outlines the benefits of inclusive child care from both a practical and an ethical point of view.

Samples:

Legal Considerations:

ADA Title III Flowchart: When Are You Required to Admit a Child with a Disability? (2002) – This document was developed by the Child Care Law Center and provides a flow chart to assist with the requirements under the ADA to explain when providers are required to admit a child with a disability.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Child Care (PDF) – In 1990, Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) which is designed to make an array of services, including child care programs, accessible to people with disabilities. This document was prepared by Public Counsel’s Early Care & Education Law Unit in September 2013 and is meant to provide general information.

Disability Rights Maine (DRM) – Maine’s Protection and Advocacy Agency and provides legal services for people with disabilities.

Laws that Support Early Childhood Education Resources for All – Selected Resources – A resource list of books, articles, tools, videos and websites.

Additional Supports:

Center for Community Inclusion and Disability Studies (CCIDS) –  CCIDS provides information, resources and training on inclusive child care, disabilities, early childhood mental health and consultation to child care programs to facilitate the access, participation and support of children in child care and early education.

Maine Parent Federation — A statewide family support organization which promotes individual aspirations for all people through information, education and advocacy.

Southern Maine Parent Awareness (SMPA) — Dedicated to providing information, referral support and education to families who have children and youth with special needs throughout Maine.

Quality for ME – Maine’s Quality Rating System (QRS) — Standards and a rating system that can help determine what to look for in child care.

Maine Expanding Inclusive Opportunities – Early Childhood Settings Inclusion Toolkit — The toolkit offers information, forms, tools, and materials to assist providers in providing quality inclusive care and education.

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Updated: 09/05/2017