There is something special going on inside a unique facility tucked away behind the soccer fields at UNLV. It could have a wide-reaching impact on some very special kids.
What looks like a pre-school class is also a working laboratory at UNLV. The students play and learn together while university groups study their behavior from behind the glass.
The school's director, Claire Tredwell says, "We've completed studies on how positive behavior supports children in early education, on child-teacher interactions and on children and their play between each other in single age groups and multi-age groups."
One study underway is assessing the impact a normal classroom environment can have on kids with special needs, especially at an early age. Teacher, Kelly Duncan says, "By watching their typical peers and what other kids are doing, it gives them motivation."
Students' ages run from six weeks old to age five. Of the 240 students enrolled, up to 15 percent have special needs. The program runs on a $1.2 billion budget and receives most of its funding from tuition and a $50,000 donation from the UNLV student government.
In return, the pre-school employs 130 students and helps prepare them for a future in education.
You can get more information on the pre-school by contacting the department of special education at UNLV.
Some medical providers say they often deal with Hispanic patients who are afraid to seek medical care. It's hoped the opening of a new medical clinic will change that.