At Bridges Public Charter School, “bridges” is more than a name. An exemplary model of inclusive education, the school builds bridges of understanding and support among children and families with a variety of needs, abilities, and backgrounds. Free and open to all DC residents, it serves children with and without disabilities, from preschool through third grade (with plans to expand through fifth grade by 2017). Staff work closely with each student to develop his or her cognitive, linguistic, physical, and social-emotional skills. The right learning environment is key: small classes, differentiated instruction, and projects-based learning encourage exploration, critical thinking, and play, and allow students to learn at their own pace. A host of experts on site – occupational and speech therapists, a social worker, and a special education coordinator, among others – ensure that each child receives tailored support. Studies show that high-quality inclusive education meets educational needs while benefiting all children, regardless of ability level – nurturing tolerance, compassion, and friendship. Shouldn’t every child learn these values?