Intercommunity Nursery School was established in 1930 when Helen Knapp started a play group with her daughter and six playmates. The classroom was in her basement and there was a 50 cent charge per morning session to cover the cost of supplies and snacks. Mrs. Betty Dryden, of Malverne, served as the Assistant and the mothers participated on a rotating basis.
In 1941, when student enrollment reached eighteen, the school moved to Carman Avenue in East Rockaway. They were registered as an accredited school, under the name of Jack and Jill PreSchool, by the State Education Department in 1946.
By 1948, the school had become so popular that larger quarters were once again needed. The school moved to the VFW Hall in East Rockaway. A cooperative (parent participation) nursery school was established with Mrs. Knapp as the Director and Helen Robinson as the first Board President.
In 1951 they outgrew their space so a house was rented in Oceanside, where they operated for five years. The program had now grown to three groups, with enrollment at approximately 45 children.
From 1956 until 1959, Jack and Jill Preschool was located at 206 Atlantic Avenue. These were important years. In 1957 the school’s name was changed to InterCommunity Nursery School and Kindergarten (ICNS). ICNS was incorporated and chartered by the Board of Regents and in 1958, ICNS was permanently certified by the New York State Board of Education. A tremendous effort on the part of Grace Dorrensteyn and the parents, to buy and sell bonds, made it possible to purchase our present home in 1960, at 20 Thompson Place. By 1964 there were four sessions and enrollment had reached 72 children from Lynbrook, East Rockaway, Oceanside, Hewlett, Woodmere, Rockville Centre, Malverne and Valley Stream.
In 1976, Mrs. Dorrensteyn retired and Mrs. Renee Kaplan, a professor at Nassau Community College, accepted the part time position of Director.
In 1982 Mrs. Kaplan developed a toddler program, which successfully offered developmentally appropriate activities for 2 year old children. By 1987, she introduced a six week, mornings only, summer program. An innovative kindergarten enrichment program was introduced, for children attending a half day kindergarten program, in 1995.
In 2012 Maria Cangemi was hired as our new Director.
We are proud to say, the vision of the founders of this school, have been successfully carried out for over 80 years.
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