Early Childhood Center at Great Beginnings – In 1981 the Lee’s Summit School District began providing early childhood services for children with developmental delays, ages three to five through Title 1. The Title 1 program served children in one home elementary attendance area of the district. By 1983, this same program was serving 5 attendance areas; and now, in 2006, this program is serving the entire 18 attendance areas of the district. In 1986, the federal government passed legislation mandating Early Childhood Special Education programs in public schools. The special education program began with two classrooms serving children with identified disabilities.
The Great Beginnings Early Education program currently includes 22 center based classrooms, 2 of which are located at Meadow Lane Elementary, 4 classrooms at Trailridge Elementary, and 1 classroom at Westview Elementary. The Early Childhood Special Education program is provided free for children, ages three to five, who qualify for services based upon a screening and evaluation process. Children served through the Early Childhood Special Education program may receive assistance such as speech, language, occupational and/or physical therapy if they qualify. Children served through the Title 1 preschool program attend for free after qualifying through a Parents as Teachers screening. Space in the Title 1 preschool program is limited. Parent involvement is an integral part of the Early Childhood Programs. Parents are encouraged to enroll in the Parents as Teachers program.