Preschool Overview

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Our Preschool Special Day Class program provides individual education instruction and support for children with Individual Education Plans for children ages 3 to 5. The preschool Specialized Academic Instruction classrooms at LEAD Elementary are language-rich classrooms with specific focus on building compliance, communication, and school readiness skills. Each student in the classes have an individual schedule for the day to learn classroom routines. Visual supports are used at every activity to help build vocabulary and communication devices are used to allow students to have a voice. Students are introduced to writing, cutting and art activities and encouraged to be as independent as possible. Students also focus on building play and social skills.

LEAD Elementary school has two Preschool SDC classrooms, Ms. Nia and Ms. Danielle.

Nia Reate-Galarza received her B.A. in Human Development from UC Davis in 2008. Prior to receiving her degree from Davis, Nia worked as a paraprofessional in Redwood City at Associated Learning and Language Specialist (ALLS). Nia worked as a paraprofessional for 4 years. She also worked as a teacher for Bright Horizons while completing her credential and masters in Early Childhood Special Education at San Francisco State University. After receiving her credential and masters in ECSE she started teaching in a special day class for South San Francisco Unified School District. After 4 years with SSFUSD she was hired to work for SMFCSD. She is currently working on coursework for her BCBA.

Danielle Paine received her B.A. in Early Childhood Education from the University of Florida in 2004 and her Masters degree in Special Education from UF in 2005. She taught special education Kindergarten and 1st grade in Florida for five years while pursuing her certification in Autism Spectrum Disorders. She then moved to Arlington, Virginia where she taught for five years. In Arlington, Danielle worked as the lead teacher for resource and inclusion teacher and a Preschool/Early Intervention teacher. In 2016, Danielle moved to the Bay Area with her new husband and began teaching Preschool Special Education for San Mateo-Foster City School District. She has recently completed coursework for her BCaBA certification.