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Old 03-17-2010, 02:12 AM
7 posts, read 40,847 times
Reputation: 14


Hi everyone,
We currently live in ATL and have a son with autism. We are moving to south FL in May/June and can either move to Broward County or Palm Beach County, and I'm looking for an autism school for him. He will turn 3 right before school starts so he has lots of time left before he starts kindergarten and I want to be sure to put him where he will be pushed to reach his highest potential. He is non-verbal and him learning to talk is my main therapy goal.
I have visited the Baudhuin School at NOVA (which is in Broward) and the Palm Beach School for Autism (which is in Palm Beach). I haven't seen the Renaissance Learning Center yet, but am going down in the next couple of weeks to do so. So far I like each of them for different reasons, Baudhuin is a big beautiful modern building with an impressive website and reputation but I didn't exactly get the "warm fuzzies" there. Lots and lots of people and kids and didn't feel so personal. (He goes to the Walden School at Emory Univ. right now which is AMAZING, but it's small and everyone knows everyone which I love). The Palm Beach School's facility was definitely not anything impressive, but I loved the director, principal, the personal attention (2 hours) they gave me at my tour. Haven't seen the Renaissance Learning Center yet, but the fact that their waiting list is huge and that a pro-golfer's son is currently attending there makes me want to check into it. If it's something we like we would probably have to start him out at PBSFA, then move him there when a spot opens up.
Does anyone have any experience with any of these schools? We need to decide quickly at least which county to live in, and the fact that I'm posting this at 4am shows how much I'm stressing over it. If anyone has heard or has any experience, BOTH GOOD OR BAD, I would LOVE to hear about it. Sorry for the lengthy post and appreciate any help can give this mommy that just wants to be sure to open every door she can for her sweet boy!

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Old 05-02-2010, 04:33 PM
3 posts, read 21,974 times
Reputation: 12
Hi. I just joined but I hope I'm not too late with an answer. My son went to the Palm Beach School for Autism and they did a wonderful job with him. He started at 3 and was also non-verbal. He started talking at four. They made so much progress with him. When he turned 5 they wanted to keep him in pre-school one more year cause they felt he was still too immature for kindergarten even though he was high functioning enough and smart enough to be mainstreamed. We were ok with that but then we decided to move to pensacola for my husband's schooling. Well they had nothing like PBSA in Pensacola and we ended up putting him in a regular school with an ESE class. Well, let me tell you, everything Nancy said was going to happen, happened. She has been great even through that trail, she's even had phone conferences with us and his new teachers/principles/speech therapist/psychologist to help them better deal with him. They were quite impress with her as well. She knows her stuff and got us through a lot of difficult times.

We're now moving back to Palm Beach County and he's too high functioning for PBSA. Even if he had stayed he would've been mainstreamed after preschool. Now I don't know where to put him. Nancy did some research for us and suggested Eisenhower Elementary in Palm Beach Gardens so we'll probably be moving to that area although it's a little pricey for us.

Let me put my disclaimer here: I don't know how severe your child is and I'm not promising PBSA will have him talking by 4 or in a regular class by 5. There are lot of kids that went to PBSA and stay there through grade school due to their severity and others who've graduated out. I will say this, I don't regret sending my child their at all. Everyone, from the principle to the teacher's assistance are very well educated in dealing with autistic kids. I would recommend this school a hundred times over. I'm glad my son is too high functioning to stay there but at the same time I'm saddened that there doesn't seem to be any other programs that compare to PBSA for high functioning children.

This school isn't that fancy but they know what they're doing. They use to be a part of St Mary's Medical Center but had to close due to financial difficulties. A few years later they were able to reopen in that small makeshift school. If I'm not mistaking they are in the process of building a school that will go from pre-school to high school I think. Anyway, I've said enough, good luck. I'm also in the process of researching elementary schools with autistic programs. Let me know if you hear anything. We'll be back in Palm Beach County at the end of this month.
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Old 05-02-2010, 04:42 PM
3 posts, read 21,974 times
Reputation: 12
I wanted to add that I also visited Renaissance when I was looking for autistic schools. At the time they didn't have any openings but after visiting PBSA we were so impress with their knowledge that we signed my son up that day. I can't say enough good things about them. I credit alot of my son's progress to their care, compassion, and knowledge/training. You can have the nicest facility and fancy equipment in the world but it you don't have the proper training then they won't do you much good.
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Old 08-24-2010, 02:07 PM
1 posts, read 8,940 times
Reputation: 12
You should check out The Conde Center. Dr.Conde works with kids the program is called Unlimted Potential. the website is [URL="http://www.thecondecenter.com"]www.thecondecenter.com[/URL]
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Old 11-19-2010, 10:50 PM
2 posts, read 17,344 times
Reputation: 12
Our son will be turning 3 in couple of months. We have visited both Baudhuin and Palm Beach School for Autism. We got the same impression that you got. We are still debating where to send my little child. I was wondering where you finally send you child. Your input is greatly appreciated.

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Old 11-20-2010, 01:37 PM
2 posts, read 17,344 times
Reputation: 12
Amy, also r u happy with the school he is going now? Can you please provide some details? We don't have much time to take the decision. Your response is valuable to us.
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Old 08-20-2011, 12:38 PM
1 posts, read 7,867 times
Reputation: 11
Im interesting in getting an opinion on a middle school on palm beach gardens that can accommodate a child with ADHD as well as a child with autism and a " normal 12 year old" as well
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:16 AM
1 posts, read 7,220 times
Reputation: 13
I want you all to know the Palm Beach School for Autism is in the process of building a new campus on Lantana and Lyons. They plan to expand this into a highschool by 2014. A special Ryde-A-Thon will be held April 15, 2012 from 8AM-5PM to raise funds for this project. 100% of donations recieved will go towards building the new school! Come by to support this great cause!

For more information:
//www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1111740188&ref=tn_tnmn#!/events/298704266868108/ (broken link)
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Old 02-06-2013, 02:41 PM
1 posts, read 6,201 times
Reputation: 10

Thank you everyone. Your reviews of these schools help me. I am moving to Palm Beach in June. I am looking for a school for my 6 year old whom is living with autism. I have called the Renaissance School and they are a charter school. They offer no busing. They do not offer group counseling . As this is important to me this is on my sons I.E.P. Busing is also important as I have 3 other children. Ugh, the commute i will have. Anyways, I am looking for a class size of 6*1*1 for him. Can anyone refer and schools. Also, please remember I need busing. Thank you so much. Lisa
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Old 04-29-2013, 01:12 PM
Location: Grosse Pointe, MI
11 posts, read 33,363 times
Reputation: 15
I am also moving to Jupiter this summer and looking for a program for my son who will be in 10th grade. He is high functioning. Very curious about the quality of programs available in the area.
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