Educators gather at Young - September 22, 2005

Record Number: 1770
Displayed from: Sep 22, 2005 , until: Sep 26, 2005

Fort Wayne Community Schools innovative Whitney Young Early Childhood Center will be hosting approximately 20 educators from Ohio and Indianapolis on Friday, Sept. 23 at the school. Throughout the day they will have opportunities to see the Reggio Emilia philosophy of early childhood education in action as they spend time in classrooms and with the teachers there. The visitors are the principal and teachers from Lakota Early Childhood Center in Westchester, OH and from Lawrence Centralized Kindergarten of Lawrence Township Schools in Indianapolis. Like Young, their schools embrace the Reggio Emilia approach. Their visit is in conjunction with a research project the schools are involved in with the Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne School of Education. Dr. Terri Swim and Dr. Alice Merz are heading up the project. The staff from Lakota are due at Young at about 7:30 a.m. They will spend several hours visiting classrooms, then at 10:15 a.m. will have a debriefing and dialogue. The Indianapolis group will be visiting classrooms later in the morning then all groups will meet up at 11:30 a.m. for a luncheon in school gymnasium. During the day, principals and teachers will be sharing their experiences working in Reggio-inspired schools and collaborating on both the learning of the children and the adults. Young opened in 2001 and has about 250 students, ages 3 to 6, in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten. They are one of the few public schools in the nation to be accredited by the National Association for Educaton of Young Children, which looks at teacher education and qualifications, the child-to-teacher ratio, the curriculum and the health and safety of the school. The Reggio Emilia philosophy is an approach developed in Italy decades ago that encourages children to make discoveries on their own. The school uses curriculum based on Indiana's suggested learning foundations for those ages. Media are welcome at the school on Friday. Students have parental permission to be interviewed/photographed. Throughout the morning there will be visitors in the classrooms. Visiting educators and Young Principal Diana Parker, along with IPFW officials will be available for interviews. The school is located at 1026 E. Pontiac St. For information, contact Diana Parker, principal, 467-8950.

With nearly 30,000 students, Fort Wayne Community Schools is one of the largest school districts in Indiana. FWCS proudly allows families to choose any of its 50 schools through its successful school-choice program creating diversity in each school, including some with more than 75 languages spoken. FWCS offers seven magnet schools focusing on areas such as science and math, communication, fine arts or Montessori at the elementary and middle school level. In high school, students can choose from the prestigious International Baccalaureate program, Project Lead the Way or New Tech Academy as well as other rigorous academic and specialty training programs.