Skip to main content

Ginsberg, Sadie Dashew

in: People

Sadie Dashew Ginsberg (1901–1993):  Child Welfare Advocate, Early Childhood Education Teacher and Founder of the Childrens Guild in Baltimore, MD

Sadie Dashew Ginsberg
Sadie Dashew Ginsberg
Photo: Children’s Guild

Sadie Dashew Ginsberg was born in East Baltimore in 1901 and reared on Gay Street, the daughter of Russian immigrant parents, Jacob Dashew and Eve Chircus, who came to the city in the late 1890s from Odessa. Her father established a sewing machinery equipment business, J. Dashew Inc. She was a 1918 graduate of Western High School and received her bachelor’s degree from Goucher College in 1922. She took graduate courses at Columbia University, Goucher and the Johns Hopkins University.

Sadie Ginsberg believed that the world depends on each individual in it, and the individual starts with the child, that peace in the family and peace in the world begins in the nursery. Armed with these beliefs she went forth to make a difference in the life of young children in Baltimore, the State of Maryland, across the United States and throughout the world.  As Mrs. Ginsberg put it in a 1942 interview, “Even though we win the war (WWII)  through an all-out effort, if the care and training of our children have been neglected by both family and community, the next generation will inevitably be the kind of human material incapable of rebuilding the ‘brave new world’ we are fighting for.”

Sadie began her work by pioneering a parent education group called the Child Study Association of Baltimore, which later became a part of the Department of Education. The nursery education that was first developed by her in the Child Study Association, later was accepted as a responsibility of Johns Hopkins University where she taught classes on Early Childhood Education. Her involvement in early childhood education was so intense she was known as Mrs. Day Care of Maryland. This was a fitting title as she was the Chair of both the Maryland and the National Committee for the Day Care of Children. As a member of the U.S. National Committee she worked closely with the World Organization for Pre-School Education, the advisory group to UNESCO. She then became the Vice Chair of this group, served on its editorial board and traveled throughout South America, Europe, Asia, Indonesia, New Zealand and Australia interpreting American education of the young child to schools, and organizations providing residential and day care services.

In 1953, with the help of Drs. Leo Kanner and Mathew Debuskey, she organized the first day care service for young children with severe behavioral disturbances called The Children’s Guild of Baltimore. The Children’s Guild is a nonprofit organization benefiting children and adolescents with behavior disorders due to autism, multiple disorders, family dysfunction and/or poverty.  Building successful lives through specialized educational programs, stimulating environments, specialized educational programs and integrated approaches to learning, the Children’s Guild operates day schools, group homes, foster homes, a mental health center plus other services for children that have special needs.

Programs of the guild are based on an organization’s philosophy, referred to as “Transformation Education,” and emphasizing specific educational programs, stimulating environments and integrated avenues to build successful lives for these children and adolescents!  The Guild, from its inception, served children and their families, had an elaborate training program for graduate students and professional personnel and conducted significant research in child development. Today, The Guild has become a multi-service children’s agency that has helped thousands of children of all ages and played a major role in making it possible for the development and proliferation of non-public schools for emotionally disturbed children throughout Maryland.

Reference: The Children’s Guild, Baltimore, MD

How to Cite this Article (APA Format): Social Welfare History Project (2011). Sadie Dashew Ginsberg (1901–1993): Child welfare advocate, early childhood education teacher and founder of the Children’s Guild in Baltimore, MD. Social Welfare History Project. Retrieved [date accessed] from