Early Childhood Education


  • The Tolleson Elementary School District Early Learning Institute preschool program provides early childhood education to eligible children 3 - 5 years of age as well as children 2.9 - 5 years of age, who are eligible to receive special education services.

    Who is Eligible?

    We provide early childhood education to 3 - 5 year olds who are eligible based on income (federal poverty criteria) and are at risk for achieving at age and/or grade level.

    Special education services are provided to 2.9 year olds to kindergarten ineligible 5 year old children identified through the screening, evaluation, identification, and placement process prescribed by special education rules and regulations. If eligible for special education services, we develop an individual education program for the child. Children who qualify for speical education services are not required to meet the income requirement.

    How are services delivered?

    TESD offers an integrated early childhood education program where students receive services for a minimum of three hours per day, either in the morning or afternoon, four days per week. Parental involvement is a critical component of the preschool philosophy, which we emphasize in the programs. We conduct parent training upon request and need.

    What is the early childhood curriculum?

    The Early Childhood Houghton Mifflin curriculum is implemented in the Early Learning Institute and is aligned with the Arizona Early Childhood Education Standards and early childhood best practices. The five developmental domains are emphasized:

    • Adaptive (self-help)
    • Cognitive (academics)
    • Social/emotional
    • Physical (fine and gross motor)
    • Communication (language) development.

    Children with developmental delays receive specialized instruction addressed through goals and objectives identified in an IEP. We assess children twice a year using the state-mandated assessment, Teaching Strategies GOLD. In addition, the district assesses each child's progress quarterly using the Bracken School Readiness Assessment.