Haring Center


Ilene Schwartz :: Faculty Director

Dr. Ilene Schwartz has been a member of the special education faculty at the UW since 1991 and the director of the Haring Center since 2007. She is at the forefront of research and professional training in the areas of autism, inclusion and the sustainability of educational interventions. At the intersection of these three areas is Project DATA, a model preschool program for children with autism. Ilene is the director of the program, which was created at the Experimental Education Unit in 1997. With continuous research funding from the U.S. Department of Education since 1990, Ilene is on a variety of review boards including the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and the Journal of Early Intervention. She earned her Ph.D. in child and developmental psychology from the University of Kansas and is a board certified behavior analyst (BCBA).

Ilene is also the director of the UW special education program designed to prepare BCBAs. She is committed to ensuring that all children, with and without disabilities, have access to a high quality education in their neighborhood school.

Read Ilene’s full CV.

“Inclusion is not a set of strategies or a placement issue. Inclusion is about belonging to a community – a group of friends, a school community, or a neighborhood.”

Chris Matsumoto :: School Principal, Experimental Education Unit

Chris Matsumoto has been an EEU community member since 1999, when he started as an early childhood interventionist. For more than a decade, Chris has dedicated himself to making the EEU better for all students and their families first as a head teacher (2001-2003), then assistant principal (2003-2009), and most recently as principal (2009-present). Chris received his Bachelor’s degree in education from Western Washington University and Master’s in education from the University of Washington. He also holds a Principal’s Residency Certificate from Western Washington University and a Professional Education Certificate with endorsements in Special Education P-3 and Special Education K-12. Chris and his wife, Lisa, have had their two children attend the EEU to show them what inclusion looks like at a very young age.

“We knew this was the place where our children would learn that ability and development are not obstacles to friendship.”

Kathleen Artman Meeker :: Director of Research

Dr. Kathleen Artman Meeker joined the UW special education faculty and the Haring Center community in 2013. Kathleen has worked extensively with teachers around preventing challenging behavior and promoting young children’s social-emotional development. She is particularly interested in efficient and effective coaching for early childhood educators. She has designed professional development materials for U.S. military child care and collaborated with the Head Start National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning to design and deliver professional development to support coaches in Head Start classrooms. She earned her Ph.D. in special education from Vanderbilt University and her undergraduate and Master’s degrees in special education from Ohio State University. She is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA-D) and was a certified early childhood special educator. Kathleen and her husband, Jon, have had two children attend the EEU.

Read Kathleen’s full CV.

“The Haring Center is a place that lives its values. Every member of the community works together to make sure all children get the early experiences they deserve.”

Ariane Gauvreau :: Senior Director, Professional Development & Training

Dr. Ariane Gauvreau, BCBA-D, is senior director of the Professional Development Unit at the Haring Center. She began her career in inclusive education at the Haring Center in 2002. 

Ariane has extensive experience leading professional development and in-service trainings on topics including inclusion, neurodiversity, home visiting, tiered systems of support, individualized instruction and family collaboration. She is author of many peer-reviewed articles and chapters, including Building Blocks for Teaching Preschoolers with Special Needs. Ariane is an active member of the Division for Early Childhood, on the Editorial Board of Young Exceptional Children, and a part of several state and national committees promoting inclusion and best practices in education. 

Prior to joining the Haring Center team, Ariane was a clinical faculty member in the College of Education, field director of the Special Education Program at the UW, and coach with the Center for Teaching and Learning. She has experience as a special education teacher, early intervention provider, Sibshop facilitator and educational consultant. Her research interests include personnel retention, supporting families of individuals with disabilities, and sustainable interventions to promote inclusion for all children.

“The Haring Center’s work expands to any community seeking to advance inclusion and equity. We work alongside teachers, leaders and providers as they push back on educational systems that continue to marginalize learners and families.”