1. What is Big Red School & is it different than ECC?
Big Red School is the group program available through the Early Childhood Center. It is the same program.
2. Who can attend?
Any child between the ages of 15 months through kindergarten. ECC provides inclusive toddler groups for children 15mths to 3 years old and inclusive preschool groups for children 3 to 5 years. ECC also provides an after-school group for children ages 5 to 7 years with disabilities.
3. Where is the ECC located?
The ECC classroom is located in the Clinical Education Complex.
4. When are groups in session?
Group sessions are generally 10 weeks during the Fall and Spring Semesters and 4 to 6 weeks during the Summer Semester. ECC groups typically start one or two weeks after the WKU students begin classes and end the week before WKU finals.
5. How many children are in each ECC group session?
Each group has approximately 10-12 children.
6. What is the teacher/child ratio at ECC?
From 3 to 5 teachers will be present with a group of 10-12 children. The staffing by WKU students allows for a very low teacher/child ratio.
7. Will WKU students be caring for my child without supervision?
No, WKU students are supervised at all times by a Master’s level lead teacher.
8. How much do the group sessions cost?
$200 per semester for one day per week & $400 per semester for two days per week, during the spring and fall semesters. Second child discounts are available and financial hardship discounts may be available depending upon family circumstances and funding.
9. How do I enroll my child?
Contact the ECC at 270-745-4125, 745-3146, or 745-2773.
10. Will the inclusion of children with disabilities have a detrimental effect on my child?
No, a recent study examining parent perceptions of the benefits and limitations of their child’s toddler program (inclusive), found that parents were satisfied with and saw many benefits to the inclusion of children with delays in their child's classroom. Another current study examined the social, behavioral, communication, and cognitive development of toddlers enrolled in the same inclusive program. Testing in the areas of development demonstrated no detrimental behavioral effects of inclusion and excellent gains in cognitive and language development.
Stahmer, A., and Carter, C. (2005, May). An empirical examination of toddler development in inclusive childcare. Early Child Development & Care, 175, 4, p321.
11. How will you address my child’s unique developmental needs related to his/her disability or developmental delay?
An initial family meeting will be held prior to your child beginning ECC in order to identify family goals. A copy of your child’s IEP or IFSP will be requested and reviewed to ensure individual goals are being incorporated into the group sessions. You may meet with the Director and/or staff at any time to discuss your concerns in detail. ECC will collaborate with your child’s other service providers (preschool, therapists, etc) to ensure coordinated services. The ECC Director has over 20 years experience with Kentucky’s First Steps system (infants/toddler from birth to 3 years old with developmental delays and disabilities) and has worked with many toddlers and preschoolers with autism spectrum disorders. Sign language, picture schedules, visual systems, language expansion strategies, individualized motivators and reinforcers, adaptive seating, etc. are utilized as needed for specific children.
12. How is ECC unique?
• Individualized learning goals are incorporated into the curriculum for all children.
• ECC is staffed with WKU students who are pursuing an education in early childhood or a related field. They are motivated to provide high quality care and instruction.
• The ECC Director holds a certification in IECE (Interdisciplinary Early Childhood Education) and has over 20 years experience with children with delays/disabilities as well as children who are developing typically.
• Inclusion of children with differing abilities is planned systematically.
• Group activities are theme-related and strive to help children make important connections regarding ideas and concepts.
• Independence in activities of daily living is a vital program goal. (For example: Toddlers drink from small cups rather than sippy cups. Preschool children help prepare sandwiches, serve themselves, and pour their own juice.)
• Emergent Literacy is emphasized during all group activities. Recall time is incorporated into the schedule of activities. Children tell teachers about their day and teachers document these stories to help children make a connection between thoughts/words and printed language. Visual prompts (photos or pictures) are used to help children recall events of their day.
• Teachers take the time to talk to parents on a daily basis regarding their child’s progress and skills.
• Collaboration with outside agencies is available upon parent request.
• Music and movement is considered a vital strategy to maximize children’s development in all areas of development.