Hello! My name is Monica Furlong, and I have worked in education for 16 years. I have served as a Speech Therapist, Self-Contained Teacher, Resource Teacher, Director of Special Education, and currently as a Preschool Principal. I am a proud member of NAEYC and Illinois AEYC, which has helped me grow, learn, network, and collaborate with amazing colleagues in our profession. I recently completed my Doctoral Degree focusing on inclusion and co-teaching and am extremely passionate about early childhood education and early intervention. These passions emerged from my own experiences growing up in a rural community, which provided me insights into various barriers to child care access that I have employed in my educational career in suburban communities. I believe that early childhood education should be a right – not a privilege – for all kids and have advocated for increased support for appropriate staffing, resources, funding, services, and salaries at local, state, and national levels. When not at work, I love spending time with my husband (a high school teacher and coach) and our two children (Makenzy – 14yo, Bryant – 4yo). They keep us busy, and we love it! It is with great privilege and honor continuing to support all of our youngest children (both in the classroom and at home).