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Old 11-10-2009, 07:10 AM
 
3 posts, read 14,877 times
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I am a single Mother from Miami being relocated to NYC within the next 6 months. I have a 4 1/2 year-old mildly autistic son who attends a special pre-K public school program here in Florida that is so AWESOME, I hate to leave.

I will be working near West 49th and 10th Avenue and want to move into the Clinton/West Midtown neighboorhood as a result.

Am I crazy to look for apartments in this area?

Is there a particular school/neighborhood in Manhattan that is ideal for kids with Autism? My budget is $3,000 a month to rent a 2 or 3 bedroom place (my mother, the live-in nanny, is coming too).

The closer the apartment and school is to my work, the better (I want to WALK everywhere if possible)...

But if there is one neighborhood that really shines above all others for families like mine, I will make the commute.

Any advice is welcome. I have no one else to discuss these life-changing ideas with...

THANK YOU!!!
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Old 11-10-2009, 07:24 AM
DAS
 
2,532 posts, read 6,430,137 times
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The only public charter school dedicated to children with autism in NYC is the NYCA Charter school located at 400 East 100th St. Which is in East Harlem. I would contact them and see if children living close to the school have priority. If so I would move nearby, it is not a bad area near the school, and right below near East 96th St which is the beginning of the UES. The UES has many activities for children, as well as adults. You should be able to rent a nice apt in Lower East Harlem near the UES within your rent budget.

Since it is the only public school solely dedicated to Autistic children there are many people that want to send their children there. If your financial situation allows you to have a private school option, you may be able live in other areas near private schools for Autistic children. This should be your priority when choosing neighborhoods. Best Wishes.
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Old 11-10-2009, 07:25 AM
 
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You need to research the schools, rather than the neighborhoods. Walking to work might be nice, but if it's in a district with a dreadful school, that might not be the right priority.

I don't think $3000 is realistic for such a large apartment, unless you want a walk-up and only one bathroom.
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Old 11-10-2009, 07:34 AM
DAS
 
2,532 posts, read 6,430,137 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Viralmd View Post
You need to research the schools, rather than the neighborhoods. Walking to work might be nice, but if it's in a district with a dreadful school, that might not be the right priority.

I don't think $3000 is realistic for such a large apartment, unless you want a walk-up and only one bathroom.
In this case it is not about the school district because parents all over the city are competing to get into the NYCA Charter school. It is an exceptional school for autistic children.

As for the area around the school, there are nice quiet blocks around, and that area is racially and ethnically diverse, you can get an adequate sized apt for the family situation descibed by the OP.
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Old 11-10-2009, 07:42 AM
 
7,079 posts, read 36,393,862 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DAS View Post

As for the area around the school, there are nice quiet blocks around, and that area is racially and ethnically diverse, you can get an adequate sized apt for the family situation descibed by the OP.
The OP said she wants to walk to work.
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Old 11-10-2009, 07:52 AM
DAS
 
2,532 posts, read 6,430,137 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Viralmd View Post
The OP said she wants to walk to work.
If her child's well being, and education are a priority, which she states it is in her first paragraph, I think she needs to investigate how hard it is to get a good public school education for an autistic child in NYC, that is if she needs to use the public school system. Then she can see where she would need to live to provide that opportunity.

Hopefully that is within walking distance to work, if not "Have metro card - will travel."
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Old 11-10-2009, 08:06 AM
 
7,079 posts, read 36,393,862 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DAS View Post
If her child's well being, and education are a priority, which she states it is in her first paragraph, I think she needs to investigate how hard it is to get a good public school education for an autistic child in NYC, that is if she needs to use the public school system. Then she can see where she would need to live to provide that opportunity.

Hopefully that is within walking distance to work, if not "Have metro card - will travel."
Yes, and that's exactly why I wrote what I did....
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Old 11-10-2009, 08:21 AM
DAS
 
2,532 posts, read 6,430,137 times
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Viralmd your post, IMO was accurate, it wasn't detailed enough. Your response was more general concerning school districts. East Harlem where NYCA Charter School is located may not be the best school district in NYC. However this school is exceptional for autistic children, and the only one of it's kind that is public in NYC.

There are other programs in NYC public schools that admit autistic children along with other special needs children and are not necessarily geared for autism alone. Most parents of autistic children are unhappy with a lot of these programs.

I'm sure there are posters that can provide much more information on other school programs that are also exceptional. However when it comes to Autism alone as the special need or priority, school district is not applicable for this situation.

Also your comment about school districts and their relationship to apt size, for her budget, may not have been the accurate response for this situation. We can agree to disagree, and she can check out what we are both stating as well as any other responses she will receive.
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Old 11-10-2009, 08:28 AM
 
3 posts, read 14,877 times
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Default Looked into that one...

Thank you both for the excellent feedback. I looked into the New York Center For Autism Charter School that was mentioned in East Harlem, and I was told that enrollment is limited to 28 kids. That's it - 28 kids in a city of millions!

Given the fact that my son is considered high-functioning (after years of therapy, he luckily only exhibits a speech delay now) I was doubtful that such a sought-after enrollment spot would be given to a child who was considered a "mild case."

I think my son will be best served in a public school that primarily serves mainstream kids, but offers additional services such as "co-instruction" classrooms, etc.

I was hoping that these types of public schools were more plentiful throughout Manhattan. Namely in the Clinton, Upper West Side or Chelsea neighborhoods... But I am having a hard time locating these types of schools from just researching the Internet.

I am more surprised that my $3,000 a month rental budget offers me so few choices in the Clinton, Upper West Side and Chelsea neighborhoods (probably a common reaction)... I guess we will learn to live in 2 bedroom walk-up with one bath for $3,000 a month - if that's even doable.

I honestly have no idea...

Is a walk-up really that undesirable?

Please explain to me why. In Miami, everything off the ocean is a walk-up.
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Old 11-10-2009, 08:44 AM
DAS
 
2,532 posts, read 6,430,137 times
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There are some really nice walk ups, the plus side is that you have a pretty good daily work out if you live on a high floor. Most walk-ups are not more than 5 stories. I think this is the law, however I did live in a very large 6 floor walk up apt at one time.

The down side is that it is hard to bring in a lot of groceries, but you can have them delivered, if you live in a good area.

That is really sad that NYCA Charter school only admits 28 children. Don't give up, you really have to go visit different schools to see your child would benefit at other school programs. There are many people that live in really good areas of Manhattan and other boros and can't find a good program for there autistic child. It is the "mild" cases that seem to have the most trouble.

There are private schools that do, and the NYC school system does offer vouchers for these schools for children with special needs, especially "mild" cases. They are hard to get, and it is hard to find out information, but with persistance you can get the information you need.

Also I know that you really want to live in the city, but if cannot find a school in the city, or any of the boros that offer the kind of help your child needs, you may want to consider a nearby suburb, that offers an easy commute.
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