Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Logo
The Department has moved to 135 Santilli Highway in Everett. The Department's office and Licensure Welcome Center are open. The new location has free parking and is a short walk from the Wellington station on the MBTA's Orange Line.
Special Education

Vision and Mission

Building Blocks Logo: Better Longitudinal Outcomes for Children in pre-K

The Departments of Elementary and Secondary Education, Early Education and Care, and Public Health have established the following Vision and Mission for Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) in Massachusetts:


The vision for Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) in Massachusetts is to ensure that children with disabilities and their families receive individualized services and resources, so that all children enter the K-12 system with the competencies and supports they need to access and participate in the general curriculum and in all aspects of the school.


The mission of ECSE is to provide a coordinated early childhood system and use data systematically for program improvement to maximize family engagement, coordinate transitions between Early Intervention and Preschool Special Education, and improve student level outcomes. The shared statewide values and beliefs which inform our work include:

  • We believe all young children with disabilities and their families have a right to high expectations, dignity, respect, and opportunity in an educational program that is geared to their unique and individual needs.
  • We believe agencies serving young children should work together to achieve a unified system of support and services.
  • We believe every child communicates, and can learn and grow.
  • We believe in self-determination and that education should be child/family-driven to the fullest extent. Research and our experiences show that the more children and their families are involved in their own future, the better that future is likely to be.
  • We believe each child's experience of disability is unique.
  • We believe our work is urgent, and early access to services and interventions is critical.
  • We value the unique and necessary expertise that parents and families have about their children.
  • We believe that a well trained and well prepared early childhood workforce is able to individualize instruction to meet the needs of all children, including those with special needs.
  • We believe that technology and social networking can be a valuable way to connect families with other families, families with professionals and professionals with other professionals.

Last Updated: March 20, 2018

Contact Us

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
135 Santilli Highway, Everett, MA 02149

Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370


Disclaimer: A reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.