Jane Racoosin


Jane Racoosin has worked in early childhood education for over 20 years. As a teacher, parent, and Director of Beginnings Nursery School in NYC, she has witnessed how children’s learning and emotional development are impacted by an exploration-based education approach. In her own classroom, she saw that children gained confidence and creativity when curriculum was developed in collaboration between teachers and children. She wanted to offer the same high quality early learning experience to all children across the five boroughs regardless of cost. In 2013, she started Teaching Beyond the Square to fulfill this vision and to elevate early childhood education’s importance in a public way. With the launch of New York City universal pre-k programs in 2015, Jane felt it was the perfect time for the Wonder of Learning exhibit to return to New York after a 25 -year hiatus. She was the organizer and chair of the exhibit which had over 11,000 people visit and see the work of the children and educators in Italy. The exhibit also provided free professional development for all teachers new to the field and seasoned professionals, from independent and public schools. She has attended workshops at Reggio-inspired schools in the United States and been to Reggio Emilia, Italy to visit their early childhood programs and study their philosophy. Jane spearheaded a two-year relationship between The University of Vermont Campus Children's Center and Beginnings Nursery School. She has presented at the 92nd Street Y, Kean University, and The European Early Childhood Research Conference in Birmingham, England. Jane has been an adjunct lecturer in the department of Early Childhood Education at Hunter College, received a BA in Psychology from the University of Vermont, a Masters in Early Childhood Education and a Masters in Supervision and Administration from Bank Street College. Jane is also on the Independent Admissions Association of Greater New York (ISAAGNY) board of directors.