50 Faces of The Arc – Tine

Tine has been working for The Arc of Loudoun since 2010, where she was initially hired as the Administrative Assistant for the intentionally inclusive preschool on campus, Open Door Learning Center (ODLC), however, she’s been the Director of ODLC for the past five years. As the mother of a child with a disability, Tine loved what The Arc was doing in 2010 and said,

“I met the past Directors of The Arc and loved their passion and knew I needed to be a part of that.”

 

Soon after telling the Directors she wanted to join the the Paxton team, Tine left her position at another preschool and helped with the creation of ODLC from the ground up. For Tine, working at an intentionally inclusive preschool, for both children with and without disabilities, was incredibly important. She says,

“My son Kyle got kicked out of three different preschools. At ODLC I have never called a parent to pick up their child because of a behavior issue. Ever.”

Tine goes on to explain that she wants to make it as smooth of a road as possible for parents of children with behavior challenges and disabilities stating,

“It was a very, very bumpy road for Kyle growing up, and I don’t want parents, nor the children, to go through what we went through.” She goes on to say, “What I get out of this job is seeing successes. Seeing children talking who couldn’t talk before they came here. It’s seeing children playing with their peers when they didn’t before. It’s having parents know we’re here for them, too.  We’re getting kids (and their parents!) kindergarten ready, whether that’s socially, emotionally or academically.”  

 

ODLC started with six kids in 2010, and since then, the school has enrolled students from West Virginia to Maryland, is being referred to by the county school system, and is packed with children. The school was also given accreditation in 2012, which Tine says is her proudest professional accomplishment,

“It wasn’t my effort alone, it was a TEAM effort.”

Now, Tine and her team focus on outreach to the community which includes training other preschools about the principles of ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) therapy. Tine credits The Arc of Loudoun for teaching her about ABA and the importance of outreach. She says,

“I got sick and tired of kids getting kicked out of schools. We’re doing something different here that works, so now I want to share what we do here with the community.”

Tine has given ABA training to preschools in the surrounding areas who will implement the teachings of ABA in their classrooms.

 

Seeing the successes of students is what Tine enjoys most about working for The Arc. She also loves how everybody who works for the organization wants to fulfill the same vision. She exclaims,

“We work as a team, and together make sure that the mission is accomplished! We see a need, we fill a need. And everyday at ODLC, we come in with a smile on our face, knowing we’re making a difference in the life of a child.”  

 

After seven years of growing the ODLC program at The Arc of Loudoun, Tine has made the difficult decision, based on personal reasons, to move to Pennsylvania. But she knows that the new leader of the ODLC team (Ms. Megan), will forward Tine’s vision and continue the campus mission.  She wishes the best for the preschool program, the children and parents at ODLC past and present, and all of the programs at The Arc, saying,

“The Arc and ODLC will always have a special place in my heart.  I’ll miss everyone dearly, but I also can’t wait to see what the future brings to the campus and ODLC!”

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