BACK TO SCHOOL INFORMATION​​

Back to School information is for students currently enrolled for the 15​-16 school year. Please see below for peer model enrollment or visit Early Childhood Special Education if you have concerns about your child's development or are moving to Blue Valley with an IEP. We are so pleased to welcome you to the early childhood program! Please note the following information below to help make a smooth transition to school.​

Schedule
August 11 2:00-6:00 p.m.
Please note this schedule is for Hilltop only. All buildings will have a similar schedule but please check with your building staff for specific times.
Open House - Stop by and meet teachers, drop off school supplies and enjoy the playground (weather permitting).

August 12 9:00-10:30 a.m. (A.M. Families) or 1:00-2:30 p.m. (P.M. Families)
Please note this schedule is for Hilltop only. All buildings will have a similar schedule but please check with your building staff for specific times.
Soft Start - Meet with teachers and principal while students are in classrooms with other classroom staff. There is no bus service on this day.

August 13
First full day of school.

Arrival/dismissal procedures and times for Hilltop are located in the Back To School packet.

Bussing
Bus transportation for students with an IEP is arranged directly with your child's teacher or by contacting Margaret Gipson at (913) 239-4676. Bus transportation is not available for peer students. Please disregard mass emails from Durham School Services.

Registration
Please make plans to complete registration prior to school starting. The Hilltop office is open from 8:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m. Monday-Friday beginning July 27. If you have not enrolled, but are interested in the peer model program, you can get program information and an application below.

If you are concerned about your child's development and would like more information, please visit the Early Childhood Special Education page.

Documents
The Back to School packet includes all of the documents you will need to complete registration, find arrival/dismissal times, locate school supply lists, and more. We are looking forward to a wonderful school year!

ABOUT THE PEER MODEL PROGRAM​

The Peer Model Program provides an opportunity for typically developing children to be integrated into our Early Childhood Special Education classrooms to serve as role models for our children with special needs.

Peer Model students provide positive peer interactions, demonstrate play skills, and model appropriate language and behavior for children with special needs while in the classroom setting.

A Peer Model student must demonstrate age-appropriate skills in the areas of play, social, behavior, speech, language and motor. Additionally, all peer models must be independent with toileting and speak English fluently. Children must be at least 3 years old before attending, and not be age-eligible to attend kindergarten.

We have a limited number of slots available for Peer Models. We begin accepting applications in December for the following school year. Enrollment continues through the year as slots are available.

PEER MODEL PROGRAM ENROLLMENT

Peer Model Enrollment is now open for the 2015-16 school year. Click here to apply or get more information. Families will be notified by the end of February via email about acceptance into the program. After that date, spots will be filled on a first come, first served basis as space is available.

If you have any difficulty using the online application, please contact Sheryl Weigel at (913) 624-2912.

PEER MODEL APPLICATION INFORMATION

Families applying during January and February will be notified by the end of February. Remaining applicants will be placed on a first come, first served basis.

A fee of $12 per day will be assessed for all Peer Model Students (FEE SUBJECT TO CHANGE). Families will pay a portion of this fee upon acceptance into the program and the remainder is paid in monthly installments August 2015 - March 2016.

Peers can enroll at any time in the school year as spaces are available. Peers must be at least 3 years old, but not age-eligible to attend kindergarten, must be independent with toileting, and must speak English fluently.

If there are any questions or a printed application is needed please contact the Early Childhood Special Education Program.

OUR EARLY CHILDHOOD CLASSROOM​​​​​​

CURRICULUM

We follow a developmentally appropriate early childhood curriculum geared to children aged 3-5. Our curriculum helps us treat each child as an individual and is respectful of all learning styles. We use a thematic approach to connect learning across domains including language and literacy, early math, motor skills, classroom participation skills and social skills among others. We use small group, large group and play centers as a way to teach and practice important skills and concepts necessary for success in kindergarten and beyond.

We follow guidance from national organizations such as the National Association for the Education for Young Children as well as the Kansas Early Learning Standards.

As a part of Blue Valley Schools, we have a unique opportunity to work alongside our kindergarten colleagues to understand the most important skills and concepts needed for success.

PRINCIPLES OF DEVELOPMENTALLY APPROPRIATE PRACTICE

  • All children have the right to a safe and nurturing environment.
  • All children do learn.
  • Children learn best when learning is meaningful, interesting and functional.
  • Children learn best by talking and doing in a social context.
  • All children deserve respect for their individual differences.
  • All children deserve the right to be with same-age peers.
  • All children should know joy.
  • Children respond to a warm, stimulating environment.
  • Children learn through active exploration.
  • Children learn through repetition.
  • Children learn through trial and error and problem-solving.
  • Children need interaction with warm, caring, responsive adults.
  • Children follow the same course of development but at their own pace.

FAQ

Is there a wait list for enrollment in the program?
We do maintain a wait list in the event that all spots are filled in a particular location. We have limited openings in all PM classes (4-year-olds who will be eligible for kindergarten next year) and AM classes (3 to 4-year-olds who will NOT turn 5 before Aug. 31) throughout the year. For more information call (913) 624-2900.

I have a preference of A.M. or P.M. Why isn't there a spot for that on the application?
In order to provide developmentally appropriate experiences for all children, we enroll our younger children in the A.M. sections and our older children in the P.M. sections. We have found that this enables us to focus on particular skills including the development of friendships and early academic concepts that are specific to each age group. It also allows us to increase the level of challenge as children grow older.

How will my child be assigned to a classroom?
We work to create groups of children who will move on to the same Blue Valley schools together. Families tell us that these friendships among children (and families) set the stage for better transitions to kindergarten. Students will be placed, to the greatest degree possible, at the building and in the classroom with other children from your neighborhood school.

My child doesn't meet the criteria for peer enrollment. What do I do now?
Our criteria for peer enrollment is in place to ensure that we can provide each child with the experiences and support necessary. If your child does not meet the criteria as a peer, we encourage you to find an appropriate community preschool experience. Two resources include The Family Conservancy or KC Kids Fun.

As a peer, will my child get the attention he or she needs?
Our highly qualified teachers and specialists, together with paraeducators (classroom assistants), work to meet the individual needs of each child. Our low ratio of adults to children and carefully designed classroom routines and activities ensure that a range of learners can get what they need to succeed in kindergarten and beyond. We are implementing the new Kansas Early Learning Standards, which help us link early childhood skills to those that will be needed for kindergarten success.

My child will not be 3 years old at the start of the school year. Does he/she have to wait until next year?
No! Children simply need to be 3 years old before they attend. If there are openings, we can enroll your child at any time of the year. For enrollment in the current school year, you may submit an application up to three months before your child's third birthday.​​​​​

Is transportation available for peer models?
We do not offer transportation services for peer model students.

When will you begin enrollment for the 2016-17 school year?
We will begin the process of re-enrolling existing peers late in the fall, and expect to post the 2016-17 application by mid-December.​

CONTACTS

​​LOCATIONS

Hilltop Learning Center
7700 W. 143rd Street
Overland Park, KS 66223
(913) 624-2900
Website | Newsletter

Oak Hill Elementary
10200 W. 124th Street
Overland Park, KS 66213
(913) 239-6900​
Website | Newsletter

Mission Trail Elementary
13200 Mission Road
Leawood, KS 66209
(913) 239-6700
Website | Newsletter

Stanley Elementary
6121 W. 158th Street
Overland Park, KS 66223
(913) 239-7200
Website | Newsletter

ECLocations.png​​​​