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About Us

Our Philosophy & Curriculum

The Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District Integrated Preschool is designed to promote the physical, social-emotional, cognitive, and language development of children. Located at the Winthrop Elementary School, our classrooms are staffed by early childhood special education teachers, therapists, and teaching assistants to provide a low adult to child ratio.

The integrated preschool model provides inclusion of all children, those with special needs and those who are typically developing, with a well-structured setting and a rich, prekindergarten curriculum. Integration offers an ideal opportunity for children to work and play together, explore social relationships and develop self-esteem. We offer high quality, developmentally appropriate opportunities in a safe and nurturing environment. Parents are viewed as children’s first teachers and are critical partners in the care and education of their children.

The HWRSD Integrated Preschool curriculum follows The Guidelines for Preschool Curriculum Experiences based on the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks and the educational approaches recommended by the National Association for the Education of Young Children.  Our curriculum is supported by the Heggerty Phonological & Phonemic Awareness Curriculum, the Social Thinking Social Skills Curriculum and the Handwriting Without Tears Curriculum. Our curriculum combines intentionally planned learning, opportunities for child choice, indoor and outdoor play, and quiet experiences.  Expressive arts, including music, are a vital part of each week. Our goal is to prepare our preschool students for Kindergarten in one of our three Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District Schools.

For a guide to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Pre-Kindergarten Standards, please click HERE. This guide is designed to help you understand the expectations, or standards, for what every student will know and be able to do in school and will help you to partner with the teachers to support your child’s learning during pre-kindergarten.

Photo of a paper sunflower craft on the class bulletin board
Special Education 
A wide range of programming and services are provided for students with special needs.  These services are individualized and outlined in an Individual Education Plan.  The needs, as determined by the parent/caregiver and the special education team, are the guiding factor in determining what services will be provided and the goals and objectives of these services.  Service provision can range from therapies ( OT, Speech and Language, PT) to full classroom placement with many options and combination of services, determined by the needs of the student.  The goal of all preschool programming is to provide the student to develop his/her skills to participate effectively in age appropriate activities. Referrals for evaluations come from many sources including, but not limited to, parents, community based preschool programs, hospitals, pediatricians, and Early Intervention.
Special education evaluations are offered throughout the school year. If at anytime you are concerned that your child may have a developmental delay, please call Maureen Smith ​at 978-626-0909.
photo of sue dagley the preschool teacher

Susan Dagley, M.Ed.
​Special Education Preschool Teacher 

​Hello, my name is Susan Dagley. I have been teaching for 24 years and I come from a family of long-time educators. Currently I am an Integrated Pre-K Teacher and have been teaching in the Hamilton-Wenham School District for 20 years. I am a native of Hamilton and I attended all 5 schools during my education.  I earned a Bachelors of Education in Special Education from Westfield State College and earned a Masters of Education from Lesley University. I am a dedicated teacher and I love being in the classroom. I have a strong rapport with students, their families and the community of Hamilton-Wenham.

photo of Kristen Moore preschool teacher

Kristen Moore, M.Ed.
​Special Education Preschool Teacher 

​Hi, my name is Kristen Moore and I have enjoyed working as an early childhood educator for the past 16 years.   I have a Master’s Degree from Wheelock College in special education and have been fortunate enough to be a part of the Preschool community here at the HWRSD for the past 11 years.  When I’m not teaching and having fun in preschool I love spending time outside, relaxing at Crane Beach, and going on adventures with my two sons.