Quality Education for Special Needs Children

From kindergarten through high school, teachers nationwide are educating more and more students with disabilities. Nearly 6MM students with disabilities attend public schools in the US, reports the Education Week Research Center. In fact, over the past decade, the number of students enrolled in special ed programs has risen 30%, according to the National Education Association (NEA).

Special Ed students make up roughly 9% of all 6 to 21 year olds, and New Jersey has the largest percentage at 11.6%, according to the Institute of Disability. With this growing trend, there is a definite need for more quality programs, more activities that are tailored to one’s disability, more specialized services, as well as more extracurricular programs.

Below is a list of schools with programs serving children with special needs. Parents can contact these school to learn more about their programs and have your questions answered.

Arc Kohler School - Serving Pre-K to Age 21

1137 Globe Ave, Mountainside, NJ, 908-518-0021, arckohlerschool.org, Contact: jkaufman@arckohlerschool.org

The Arc Kohler School serves students from Pre-K through Age 21. As a State approved, non-profit school for students with special needs, we are committed to providing each of our students with an individualized educational program and comprehensive support. Each student is assigned their own collaborative team which includes not only their teachers, but their therapists and parents as well. Therapies and treatments are carried over into the classroom environment, making sure that each student receives the best and most effective education possible.

Banyan School - Elementary

12 Hollywood Avenue, Fairfield, NJ, 973-439-1919, banyanschool.com

Banyan Elementary School is a private, non-profit, New Jersey Department of Education Approved School for students (ages 6 to 14) with significant language-based learning disabilities. Over the past 26 years, our primary focus has been the development and reinforcement of the reading, language and communication skills necessary for academic success.

Our faculty is trained in a variety of research-based, multi-sensory teaching techniques and strategies, including the Wilson Reading System®, Lindamood Bell® Programs, Multisensory Math®, and TouchMath®. With small classes, individualized attention, and integrated assistive technology, we are committed to establishing the foundation that students need for learning while fostering social and interpersonal skills.

Banyan School - High School & Life Academy

High School (9 – 12th Grade)
LIFE Academy (18 to 21 years)
471 Main St., Little Falls, NJ, 973-785-1919, banyanschool.com
Wendy McNeill, Director
Marguerite Freeman, Principal

Banyan High School is a private, non-profit, New Jersey Department of Education Approved School for students with significant language based learning disabilities. Established in 2006, the High School program provides a structured curriculum with small classes that allow our faculty to focus on each student’s academic and social needs. The 9th – 12th grade curriculum continues to reinforce reading, language and communication skills, while preparing students for the next phase of their education and life. Our faculty is trained in a variety of research-based, multi-sensory teaching techniques and strategies, including the Wilson Reading System®, Lindamood Bell® Programs, and Multisensory Math®. The LIFE (Learning Independence. Fostering Empowerment.)

Academy for 18-to-21-year old students emphasizes life and work skills in a supportive environment that builds confidence and success.

CTC Academy - 18 months to 6 years

Fair Lawn Campus
29-01 Berkshire Road, Fair Lawn, NJ, 201-797-7440, ctcacademy.org, email: info@ctcacademy.org

CTC Academy is enhancing the lives of children and young adults with special needs, and their families, by providing an enriched educational, therapeutic and supportive environment. NJ State approved pre-school through early elementary program serves children ages 3 – 6 years. Additionally, the Fair Lawn Campus offers an Early Enrichment Program (EEP) designed to enhance and build upon Early Intervention services received in the home, ages 18 months through 3 years.

Mommy (or Daddy) & Me! (M.O.D.A.M.) program is designed to expand and enhance caregiver and child interactions while participating in engaging and fun activities for young children with special needs (12 months to 3 years of age) and their caregivers - Open Enrollment.

CTC Academy - 7 to 21 years

Oakland Campus
125 Bauer Drive, Oakland, NJ, 201-612-5677, ctcacademy.org, email: info@ctcacademy.org

CTC Academy is enhancing the lives of children and young adults with special needs, and their families, by providing an enriched educational, therapeutic and supportive environment. NJ State approved 1st through 12th Grade, ages 7–18, and STEP Program, ages 18 – 21 years of age - serving children with special needs, including children who are medically fragile. Also available are support groups for families and siblings of children with special needs at both the Oakland and Fair Lawn Campuses.

The Deron School of New Jersey

1140 Commerce Ave, Union, 973-206-0444
130 Grove St., Montclair, 973-509-2777
deronschool.org

With campuses in Union and Montclair, The Deron School offers a state-approved private school program for students with multiple disabilities (MD), physical disabilities, intellectual disabilities, autism and down syndrome.

Since 1967, The Deron School has provided a nurturing environment, family culture, and personalized curriculum design and methods to optimize the experience and results of our students. We serve NJ students living in Union, Essex, Hudson, Bergen, Somerset and Middlesex counties on the autism spectrum looking to optimize not only their academic skills, but also their life skills.

Our independent living and daily living skills curriculum, “Bridge/Transition Program”, provides students with practical learning as they prepare to leave our school at age 21, and enter a new phase in their lives Our open house program enables home districts, child study teams and parents to see our school programming and environment up close. When the homedistrict cannot provide the right combination of services for a student, we should be the first call.`

Holmstead School

14 Hope St., Ridgewood, NJ, 201-447-1696, holmstead.org

An educational and therapeutic milieu, which emphasizes innovative and flexible education for bright adolescents who need to be challenged in order to improve their motivation and performance. A full-time clinical staff provides individual and group therapy as well as a parent support group. DBT, EMDR, and family therapy are available as well. Holmstead students between the ages of 13 and 18 in grades 8 through 12 have been unable to achieve successfully in traditional school settings.

Typical Holmstead students may have struggles with: Anxiety, Depression, School Phobia, Learning Problems, Behavior-Management Issues, Risk-Taking Behaviors. Classification by the public school child study team precedes an on-site interview at our alternative school.

North Jersey Elks Developmental Disabilities Agency

1481 Main Ave, Clifton, NJ, 973-772-2600,  www.njedda.org

Special Education and Therapeutic Excellence for toddlers through High School. We teach students with multiple disabilities, therapeutic and medical needs. Free Toddler Support Program. Special Education for Pre-K through 12th grade.

Westlake School

1571 Lambert’s Mill Road, Westfield, NJ, 908-232-4181, www.ucesc.org/schools/westlake_school

Westlake School is a public school program for students with multiple disabilities and autism spectrum disorders ranging from ages 7 to 21. We create connections between school and everyday life through hands on academics, vocational and transitional skills, social / emotional coping skills and behavioral intervention strategies. We aim to provide needed services in a barrier free setting which include all related services: Speech and Augmentative Communication, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and Counseling.

Click here for NJ Kids Special Needs Directory