Building Inclusive Communities

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Building Inclusive Communities

Bringing Early Childhood Communities Together to Improve Inclusion Practices

Building Inclusive Communities Series logo - circle of colorful squigglesSince October 2017, the CES Early Childhood Department has been collaborating with the MA Department of Early Education and Care (ECE) and the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) to develop the Building Inclusive Communities (BIC) Series. The foundation of the BIC series is guided by the philosophy that inclusion is a state of belonging. Research supports the benefits of inclusion for young children with disabilities and children without disabilities can also benefit from inclusive early childhood programs. Studies indicate that typically-developing children can show positive developmental, social, and attitudinal outcomes from inclusive experiences.

The focus of this series is to bring early childhood communities together to improve inclusion practices for children ages 2 to 5. Communities may include public pre-schools, community partners, early intervention programs, private early childhood centers and others who work with young children.

2019-2020 Focus

This year we are excited to partner with Dr. Richard A. Villa and Dr. Jacqueline Thousand from the Bayridge Consortium to bring participating teams a program that includes one full-day conference, one half-day conference, and four online meetings focusing on the following:

  1. Receive information regarding The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act definition and what the research says about inclusion and inclusive practices in early childhood;
  2. Develop an action plan that describes how your team will create strong partnerships with community partners to strengthen inclusive practices;
  3. Receive strategies for building relationships with families to engage them in decisions around inclusion;
  4. Learn and implement practices to address disproportionality and implicit bias;
  5. Receive strategies, resources, and tools for developing appropriate practices for promoting inclusive settings; and
  6. Learn ways to implement good inclusive practices and sustain this work to build strong community connections for children with and without disabilities.


The first conference is October 21, 2019 at the Devens Common Center.

Our second and final conference will be in the spring of 2020, with a date and location TBD. 

The first webinar is October 25, 2019 from 8:30am - 11:00am. It is for any administrators, teachers, parents, and community members that were part of Cohort A (returning teams from 2018/2019). It will cover information from the October 21st Conference.

The second webinar is October 25, 2019 from 12:30pm - 2:30pm. It is also for Cohort A teams. It is designed to help them prepare for upcoming half-day face-to-face planning sessions on November 8th. The webinar will assist teams to further develop their early childhood action plans for the current school year. Teams may choose between a morning or afternoon November 8th session. 

*Please email for the webinar log in information.

Join Our Teams

If you would like to sign up a team to participate in the BIC program, please fill out the linked form and send it to Chris Pond at



Family Engagement



Professional Development/Coaching


Trauma and SEL

Dual Language Learners


Social Justice and Equity


Developmentally Appropriate Practice

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ESE logo
Bayridge Consortium logo with an image of a school house


For more information, contact: 
Administrative Assistant
413.586.4900 x5568