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Old 06-14-2009, 04:48 PM
 
6 posts, read 26,879 times
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Default Best school district for Autism

I live in Long island NY, and looking to move to westchester. We have a 3 year old autistic son and want to move to a great school district, with a good special ed program that can address his needs.
The level of services that we currently get in Long Island is very good he goes to an ABA only pre-school and next year he would be going to district where the special ed is fantastic and they have a well established aba program, unfortunately we have to move, My husband's bussiness recently moved to new rochelle and the conmute is getting to much to handle (2- 2.5 hours each way, rarely sees the kids)
We do not know anything about Westchester, heard great things about Ardsley school districts, Scarsdale and Rye (also rye brook) but would like to hear some opinions.
Any help?????
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Old 06-14-2009, 06:16 PM
 
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Although I have no first hand experience, I know Ardsley is known for their Special Ed program. One of my friends is the school psychologist and another one has a severely autistic child. She moved from Manhattan to send her son to to Ardsley for its Special Ed program. Here are a couple of articles that talk about Ardsley and its Special Ed program and also a link to the school district website with a number you can call if you need more info.

As Autism Cases Rise, Parents Run Frenzied Race to Get Help - The New York Times

How Autism Shaped My Midlife, and Taught me What is Important | Women's Voices For Change

Link to Ardsley School District with phone number

Ardsley Union Free School District (http://www.ardsleyschools.k12.ny.us/second/pps.htm - broken link)
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Old 06-14-2009, 06:29 PM
 
297 posts, read 1,163,231 times
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More articles and more info for you

A School's Special Embrace - New York Times

Archived: Schools and School Districts Recognized for Outstanding Professional Development (http://www.ed.gov/PressReleases/09-2000/0918.html - broken link)

Ardsley UFSD > Special Needs Committee (http://www.ardsleyschools.org/second/SpecialNeedsCommittee.htm - broken link)
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Old 06-20-2009, 08:16 PM
 
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Since your son is only 3 years old, you are really looking for a great placement at the CPSE level. At this level you will probably be looking for a district with good CPSE chair person. It also depends on the severity of his ASD. There are several great districts for ASD kids depending on severity. I've heard great things about Mamaroneck, White Plains, Ardsley, Eastchester, Bedford, Pelham. If you want options, go with big districts that have fundings for Special Education. It all depends on the level of severity once again. Smaller districts tend to "ship out" more severely affected ASD. Larger districts try to deal with it in house. It all depends on what KIND of services you are looking for.
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Old 06-28-2009, 09:04 PM
DC1
 
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Mamaroneck has great special education programs.
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Old 07-17-2010, 08:03 AM
 
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Default Mamaroneck?

Hi can anyone tell me more about the special ed programs in Mamaroneck? Need to move in the next month and would prefer this location, my son has PDD nos and is in an integrated class with aide.
thanks very much
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Old 07-17-2010, 12:16 PM
 
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Default Mamaroneck Special Ed

To Bostonmommoving, we moved from Cambridge MA to Larchmont, NY two years ago and have not been disappointed with the Mamaroneck school system for our son, who is now 4years old with PDD-NOS. However, I have not found the district as generous as other districts such as Edgemont, Eastchester, Ardsley, or Pleasanteville at the CPSE level (preschool), but it is fair. For example, the CPSE chair will not give a child a special education integrated program and a SEIT (aid) support at the same time as you have now. It's either the special education program OR a mainstream setting with an aid. There are certain rules that the Mamaroneck chair follows and this is one of them. The other is that she will not give you more than 10 hours of SEIT time. If your child needs more than this, then she will recommend a full or half day special education program. Whereas I know a child who gets 18-20 hours of SEIT support coming from the Bronx! Westchester offers many special education programs at the CPSE level that you can choose from around the county, therefore CPSE chairs (in general across the county) are reluctant to give too many hours of SEIT time - they would rather you go into a special ed program... And the programs definitely have their advantages (like OT gyms and therapies such as OT, PT & Speech are all integrated nicely into their programs without disruption to classroom time).

So, my son at age 3 was in a full day integrated program and now at 4 will go to a local regular preschool with SEIT support. Meanwhile my friend's son in Pleasantville qaulified for a full day integrated program (in Rockland County) AND SEIT support at the same time. However, her son is much more delayed in speech than mine and with more behavior problems. But, at least this combination of special education with SEIT time is possible. I have friends in Scarsdale and Edgemont who attend 1/2 day self contained class and then 1/2 day mainstream with SEIT time. This is not possible in Mamaroneck as far as I've heard and experienced.

That said, Mamaroneck has an AMAZING special education program in-district at the preschool level. I know a lot of families who sent their children to this program and had amazing results. The negative for me was that the integrated program is only 1/2 day, where we wanted my son in a full day program. But, really that is the only negative. The school has a fabulous social worker that runs a support group weekly for those in the school and the teachers are phenomenal. You don't have to go to this program, but I would say the majority of families do choose it. And, the main advantage of going to it over other great programs is that your child is able to meet other children in the community (and you other parents!) so its easy to set up playdates.

In terms of special education in kindergarten, the district highly favors putting children in the mainstream setting when possible. I hear the kindergarten self-contained program is not as great as other districts (particularly Eastchester & Ardsley which I hear are amazing) but the teachers I understand change year to year so one year it could be great and the next not so much. But if it is required, a child could qualify for an aid in kindergarten. A friend's child in Mamaroneck qualified for the shared aid (one aid for 2 children) next year because while she is verbal, well mannered and social, she is delayed in processing (can't answer questions from stories read to her). Integrated settings (called co-teaching) are not available as far as I know in Mamaroneck in kindergarten or beyond. If you are leaning towards a mainstream class with support, you really need to look at what elementary schools you would attend when moving to Mamaroneck and see how many kids are typically in a kindergarten class. Murray I know has 22 kids to a class and is bursting at the seams thanks to its 10 rating on greatschool.net, but Mamaroneck Ave I understand is only 17-18 per class and they have full day kindergarten (the only elementary school of the 4 in district to offer this - because of the highly diverse population there).

Good luck with your move!

Last edited by Lacrobat; 07-17-2010 at 01:22 PM..
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Old 07-27-2010, 05:55 AM
 
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I know a lot about upper Westchester. My 2 year old is autistic and has been in early intervention since he was 8 months. my 4 year old is not as delayed and is in the CPSE program (Preschool special ed program). EI is just fantastic here in Cortlandt manor, extremely generous. CPSE has been very impressive as well, esp. considering since my son does not have a diagnosis yet. Both both receive speech, PT, OT and then seperately have a SIET 5x/week or ABA training 12 hrs/wk. they would hopefully both be attending hendrick hudson sc district which has a great integrated program i hear. we may have to move unfortunaltely though. i am reverse of you- my husband works in LI adn commutes every day- just too much. I was born and raised in New rochelle, and to say the schools have changed is being polite. I would stay far away. it is so hard to move when you have a child or children with special needs. i befriended you- maybe we can help each other out with info (abmac@optonline.net). I would love to stay down county in lower westchester. i hear pelham to be good. i read a post about the Prospect School. (Pelham borders New Ro by the way). good luck, and please e-mail me, i could use your help as well.
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Old 07-30-2010, 06:55 PM
 
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Thanks Lacrobat for your response, that is very helpful! I am always torn when it comes to my son being fully integrated verse pulled out into a small class. Interesting I spoke with the SPED Director at Mamaroneck, and told her that my son was mainstreamed. She seemed to think he was perfect for a program of PDD and Asperger children who would be 50/50 small class and integrated. It seems like a step backwards from where he has been.. I hope they would honor his IEP from Boston. We also get ABA home services 4 hours a week (even at age 6) Is that possible in Westchester?
thanks!
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Old 07-08-2011, 04:30 PM
 
2 posts, read 10,381 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luludebono View Post
I live in Long island NY, and looking to move to westchester. We have a 3 year old autistic son and want to move to a great school district, with a good special ed program that can address his needs.
The level of services that we currently get in Long Island is very good he goes to an ABA only pre-school and next year he would be going to district where the special ed is fantastic and they have a well established aba program, unfortunately we have to move, My husband's bussiness recently moved to new rochelle and the conmute is getting to much to handle (2- 2.5 hours each way, rarely sees the kids)
We do not know anything about Westchester, heard great things about Ardsley school districts, Scarsdale and Rye (also rye brook) but would like to hear some opinions.
Any help?????
Hey, what is the name of the school district where you live? We are looking to move to LI area with a good autistic school
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