IDEALS in the Community

At the IDEALS Institute, we ask the right questions and conduct the research that improves the lifelong quality of care and education for everyone—from children to adults. Our dedication to IDEALS’ mission is highlighted on our websites and social media as well as in national publications.


The 37th annual Very Special Arts Festival (VSAF) – Thursday, May 9, 2019

The festival draws over 3,000 children, from birth-21, mostly from Baltimore County, but also surrounding areas. There are make and take craft exhibits, performance arts led by kids and professionals, natural arts (petting zoo), motor arts, and the exhibits IDEALS sponsors – edible art, lawn art, and digi-arts. Learn more about the Very Special Arts Festival at

Maryland EXCELS concludes its yearlong 5th birthday celebration in Baltimore County with more than 400 guests – Thursday, June 11, 2019

Maryland EXCELS, the child care and early education Quality Rating Improvement System run by the Maryland State Department of Education and IDEALS Institute at the Johns Hopkins School of Education, concluded its 5th birthday celebration on June 11, 2019 in Baltimore County. With nearly 400 guests attended, the Maryland EXCELS Team recognized the accomplishments and commitment of participating providers. The yearlong celebration included seven regional events, which drew more than 1,000 guests altogether.

Maryland EXCELS participating programs place particular emphasis on achieving high standards and implementing practices that support children’s development and learning. Learn more about the Very Special Arts Festival at

If you would like to learn more about our work in community engagement, contact us at