Basehor-Linwood School District

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Tonganoxie/Basehor-Linwood Special Education Coop » Early Childhood

Early Childhood

Early intervention is critical to the success of young children with developmental delays. We promote a safe, nurturing, nonrestrictive educational environment while working collaboratively with staff, family, and community. Our programs are designed to provide a positive experience to all children and their families, where economic, cultural, and educational diversity is valued.

Children identified with disabilities may participate in early intervention through our Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) programs. This includes a range of options which may be implemented by appointment-based services, services provided in the child’s community preschool setting, or for children demonstrating significant delays, in our integrated preschool with peer models. The frequency and duration of the services are determined by the IEP team and based on individual student needs.
Research has shown that early intervention often decreases the amount and intensity of future services and increases success in school.
Information about Early Childhood Screenings can be found by selecting the Child Find and Referrals link on the right side of this page.

Peer Model Program
Peer Model students are typically developing children who reside in the Tonganoxie School District boundaries and are included in our preschool classrooms for children with disabilities. All children benefit from multiple opportunities to interact with their peers and learn appropriate social behavior and play skills from one another. Currently, we have 5-day programs at Tonganoxie Elementary. Applications for qualified peer models are processed and considered in the order in which they are received.

A peer model is a child without a disability who displays typical development and behavior in the classroom setting. A peer model enhances the education of special needs students by being a helper, a leader, and a friend. Peer models help special needs students reach their learning goals through play and social interaction. Peers also model typical school behaviors, such as sharing, turn-taking, and participation. In return, our peers learn confidence, empathy, and school readiness skills. All students in the program participate in a variety of developmentally appropriate preschool activities. Potential peer models must go through one of our developmental screenings to ensure they demonstrate above average skills in the areas of pre-academics, play, social, behavior, speech, language, and motor. Additionally, all peers must speak fluent English and be toilet-trained.

State regulations indicate the ratio of peer models to children with disabilities cannot exceed 50%.

The following criteria is used in selecting peer models:
- Recommendation of ECSE staff/team
- Children age three to five that reside within the boundaries of Tonganoxie are eligible.
- Children who are currently four and turning five during the school year are considered first.
- Children eligible for kindergarten will not be accepted.

We have a limited number of peer slots available each year. Peers can enroll at any time in the school year as spaces are available. If a peer model slot opens, the files of children who remained active are then considered.

Because peer models are a vital component to our early childhood special education classrooms, punctuality and attendance are important. Unfortunately, district provided transportation is not available for peer models.

Tuition for the 2020-2021 school year:
5 Day Program - $1,000/year 

*Tuition fees may be waived or prorated for families who qualify for the federal free/reduced meal program.

If you are interested in your child participating in our peer model program and they have not yet had a developmental screening, please contact us at (913) 662-7150 to schedule an appointment for one of our monthly screenings.

Once above average skills have been demonstrated at one of our developmental screenings, you will receive a letter from our early childhood team recommending your child for one of our peer model openings. If you have received this letter and are interested in having your child participate in our peer model program, please click HERE to complete the application.
The Leavenworth County Infant Toddler Program (Tiny-k)
This program provides services for families who have infants and toddlers, ages 0-36 months, with developmental delays or disabilities.
  • Evaluation in all areas of development
  • Individualized Family Service Plan
  • Serving children in the natural environment
  • Trans-disciplinary coaching model
Contact Information:
Maureen Hernandez, Tiny-k Coordinator
(913) 250-1111

A Tiny-k representative is always present at our monthly developmental screenings. If you would like to schedule an appointment to have your infant or toddler screened by Tiny-k, please call us at (913) 724-2348. In addition, you are always welcome to contact Tiny-k directly.