The Birmingham Public Schools will introduce a blended-learning class as part of its Preschool Early Education Program (PEEP) this fall.
The inclusive program aims to bring special needs students together with their typically-developing peers at the elementary level for a unique opportunity, officials said.
The district will host a special information breakfast will be held on Thursday, Aug. 15, at 9 a.m. in the BPS Education and Administration Center, 31301 Evergreen Rd., in Beverly Hills. Call 248-203-3001 to register for the breakfast or 248-203-5805 to speak to someone directly about PEEP.
"Blended learning opportunities like this are very important," district spokeswoman Marcia Wilkinson said. "We were looking for a program that would meet the needs of all students and provide an inclusive environment."
"Research shows that preschool programs with a blended learning focus are highly successful," added Wilkinson, noting that Waterford, to her knowledge, is the only district to offer something like this.
PEEP will allow students an enhanced opportunity to explore the diverse world around them, according to Lanissa Freeman, Special Education supervisor, elementary level.
Local educators believe children are the most receptive to character lessons and that they naturally accept one another, and programs like PEEP offer students a unique opportunity to build a strong foundation of character while beginning their academic career, she said.
PEEP will run Monday-Thursday with half day sessions for 3-year-old students at Harlan Elementary School and full day sessions at the Early Childhood Center for 4-year-old students. The program follows the High Scope Curriculum, which provides a strong foundation for school readiness which includes cognitive, social-emotional, physical, and creative development, a news release stated.