The River School is an international model for the inclusive education of young children ages 18 months through third grade. Most River School students (85% or more) are children with normal hearing who benefit from the rich educational experience that includes a focus on language, literacy and social emotional learning; theme based curriculum; and a wide array of classes in the Arts, Sciences and Physical Development. Each classroom includes a few children with hearing loss who use cochlear implants or hearing aids and a classroom majority of hearing peers. The school uses a unique co-teaching model that pairs a master’s level educator and a speech language pathologist full-time in each classroom. The teaching team supports all of the children in the classroom.
Inclusive classrooms are considered the gold standard in early childhood and elementary education, because they are characterized by highly trained faculty, favorable student-teacher ratios, and a research based curriculum.
Inclusive programs naturally encourage students to develop tolerance, empathy, and resilience.