Elves Special Needs Society

Early Childhood Services (ECS)

Elves is proud to be a Designated Special Education Private School (DSEPS) accredited by Alberta Education.

We are an independent school, creating individualized program plans for each learner, to ensure that their education is tailored to their abilities, and providing success in learning and life.  With over 45 years’ experience, our multidisciplinary team of experts are all on site to engage learners in their educational development.

Elves serves over 200 ECS learners across two locations in Edmonton, Alberta:

  • Elves Child Development Centre 10825-142 Street
    • 8:55 am to 11:25 pm (am class) 12:00 am to 2:30 pm (pm class) instructional hours (400 hour)
    • 8:55 am to 2:30 pm (800 hour)
    • Both 400-hour and 800-hour programs run Monday to Thursday with Closure Fridays
  • Elves Adult & Youth Centre 10421 -159 Street
    • 8:45 am to 11:15 pm (am class) 11:45 am to 2:15 pm (pm class) instructional hours (400 hour)
    • 8:45 am to 2:15 pm (800 hour)

Admission Criteria

 Elves’ Early Childhood Services are for learners who:
  • Are between the ages of 2.8 to 6.
  • Eligible for Program Unit Funding (PUF).
  • Have one severe developmental delay in the following areas:
    • Severe speech and language
    • Severe emotional or behavioural disability
    • Severe physical, cognitive, or medical delays (including Autism, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)
    • Visual and hearing impairments
    • Gross and fine motor skills

Why Choose Elves? 

At Elves, complex tasks are broken down into small steps and repeatedly presented to our learners with positive reinforcement for appropriate behaviours. These procedures are applied and embedded in a developmentally play-based curriculum. We provide small classroom sizes with high staff ratios across both of our facilities.
Learners are also placed into classroom groupings based on developmental levels and abilities. Each facility also provides a secure and safe environment where learners enjoy enclosed playground spaces and an accessible gym. In addition, Elves offers preschool and kindergarten with instructional hours based on age. Everything we do is individualized to each learner and implemented in partnership with families and Elves’ staff.

Furthermore, Elves provides programming that optimizes communication, fine and gross motor skills, social and emotional regulation, classroom skills onsite, early literacy, and numeracy. We serve all ability levels while specializing in Early Childhood Services for learners with speech delays, Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).

What Would a School Day Look Like?

Thinking about enrolling your child at Elves, but want to know more about what their day will look like? Check out an ECS School Day.

Environment Designed for Learning and Growth

In order to foster our young learners’ growth, Elves wants to ensure they have tools in their grasp. Therefore, equipment such as walkers, standing frames, beds,  and augmentative communication devices are always available to them. Each learner is educated in a specialized classroom setting while also having opportunities to use items such as switches, Alphasmart Neos keyboards, computers, and a SMART Board. 

Classrooms are designed around the ages and abilities of learners. For example, you may step into one classroom filled with bright colours, toys, and tables adorned with crafts. Another room specially designated for learners with Autism, may have white walls, a basket swing attached to the ceiling, sensory bins, and an egg chair for learners to self-soothe. 

Transportation Services

Transportation opportunities may be available to and from school. This will be determined once your child is enrolled in our program through the Student Services Coordinator. Transportation is provided by one of our partners such as First Student, Yellow Cab, or Elves’ own bus.

Family Support Network

Daily communication takes place between home and school through phone calls and communication books. As well, home visits are scheduled with parents/caregivers so that staff can provide tools to foster growth and development in all facets of life. This gives parents/caregivers the chance to ask questions one-on-one and allows staff to learn more about their child within the home environment.

Parents/caregivers are given opportunities to attend Family-Oriented Programming Sessions (FOPs) which offer information about supports such as toilet training, picky eaters, positive behavioural supports, sleep concerns, and transitioning to Grade One.

Families are also provided with access to community resources and referrals, and are invited to attend weeknight support groups depending upon their needs.

Other Onsite Services 

  • Physiatry (Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation)
  • Travelling Low-Vision Clinic
  • Home Nutritional Support Clinic
  • Adult Mental Health Clinic
  • Psychoeducational Assessments
  • Triple P Parenting Program
  • Positive Behavioural Supports
  • MANDT Training
  • Elves’ Summer Respite Program offered in July, funded by Ministries of Community and Social Services and Children’s Services
  • Family Support Groups

External Referrals 

  • Glenrose Pre-school Assessment Program (PAS)
  • Glenrose Pre-school and Learning Intervention Program (PLAI)
  • Children and Adolescent Services Association (CASA)
  • Feeding and Swallowing Assessment Clinics
  • Glenrose Seating Clinics

Elves’ Team

  • Principal
  • Special Education Supports & Learning Coach
  • PUF Coordinator
  • Certified Teachers
  • Educational Assistants
  • Early Education, Special Needs, and Proactive Behavioural Consultation
  • Speech and Language Pathologists and Assistants
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Physical Therapists
  • OT/PT Assistants
  • Family Support Workers
  • Nurses

Contact Elves

To learn more or to set up a tour, please contact us here:

Would you like to enroll someone into Elves? Fill out the Admission Inquiries form here and we’ll get back to you shortly.