Promoting a Culture of Inclusion for Birth-Third Grade Systems within State and Local Education Agencies

May 2013

With this presentation, NIEER Senior Fellow Jim Squires discussed the implications of a birth-third grade framework to support and advance fully inclusive services across state and local education systems. 

“Opening the Doors to Inclusion” was the theme of the 2013 National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute sponsored by the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute in Chapel Hill, North Carolina on May 13-15. Participants ranging from direct service providers, program administrators, higher education, professional development specialists, and policymakers gathered to learn, share, and advance full inclusion as an idea whose time is long overdue. Jim Squires, Senior Fellow at NIEER and CEELO, presented Promoting a Culture of Inclusion for Birth–Third Grade Systems Within State and Local Education Agencies at the conference. Designed as a facilitated discussion, Dr. Squires assisted the group in understanding the implications of a birth–third grade framework for inclusion to identify drivers, barriers, strategies, and supports to advance a culture of full inclusion across state and local education agency policies, practices, and institutional values. Participants concurred that shared, committed values pervasive throughout any system are essential ingredients needed to advance inclusion.