Some of the best schools throughout Greater Boston, Massachusetts and New England, either accept, exclusively, motivated kids with learning and other disabilities, or are “LD-friendly,” offering individualized work with LD students. They tend to be small, and admission is competitive; the application process typically begins at least a year in advance. Different types of state aid may be available. Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and school success is a prevalent problem for middle school and high school students. ADD/ADHD has symptoms that include inattention to detail, impulsivity, poor concentration, and, possibly, oppositional defiance disorder.
After more than a decade of research and press about learning disabilities and the controversial practice of medicating children as young as 4, private and public schools throughout Greater Boston, Massachusetts, and New England are alert, if not hypersensitive, to the earliest signs of learning difficulties. At the same time, an ever-expanding legion of specialists is helping kids with learning issues and learning disabilities decode language and handle the rigorous homework and exams that competitive private schools demand. All this attention allows many bewildered, underachieving elementary-school kids to make dramatic gains and perform much more like the intelligent children that they are.
Public schools are mandated by the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act to educate all children in the “least restrictive environment.” Hence, LD kids, who made up more than half of the students referred to special education last year, are usually mainstreamed in general-ed classes and given an Individual Education Plan, or IEP, that outlines whatever additional tutoring, therapy, or accommodations are needed.
Naturally, some districts do a better job than others, and what looks good on paper doesn’t necessarily live up to its promise. Some parents who don’t feel their child’s IEP is working and have borrowed money, mortgaged their houses, taken funds out of their 401(k)’s, borrowed $1,000 from 25 different relatives to pay tuition. It’s not because they don’t want their kids to go to public school. They just want them to get an appropriate education.
115 Mill Street
Pathways Academy is a private, year-round school developed to meet the psychological, social, and academic needs of children and adolescents ages 6 through 22 with autism spectrum and related disorders, such as autism spectrum disorders, nonverbal learning disability, sensory processing disorder, socialization and peer-relations problems, anxiety disorders, and school phobias.
Beverly School for the Deaf
6 Echo Ave.
Beverly School for the Deaf is open to all children with any degree of hearing loss, from preschool to high school.
Carter Developmental Center
396 Northampton St
Carter is a coeducational public special needs school for students in grades 6 through 12.
90 Warren Ave.
William McKinley is a coeducational public special needs school for students in grades 1 through 12.
Franciscan Hospital for Children – Kennedy Day School
30 Warren St.
The Kennedy Day School provides children ages 3 to 22 with their own Individualized Education Program.
71 Pearl St.
Farr Academy accepts students in grades 7 through 12 and provides them with the right programs to help them learn and grow academically, socially and emotionally.
Judge Rotenberg Educational Center
250 Turnpike St.
Serves children from age 3 to adult and offers many different programs ranging from special needs day, respite and residential school.
551 Route 6A
Riverview School offers boarding school as well as a day school for children ages 11 to 19. They also offer a five week summer program for ages 17 to 22.
The Paul Center
39 Concord Rd.
The Paul Center offers programs for children 6 to 21 years old. The programs have many different options depending on your needs, ranging from Saturday Respite Care to an overnight summer camp.
285 Commandants Way
Seaport Academy is a small alternative school for young men in grades 8-12. We serve students who haven't been able to achieve their goals in a traditional school setting and provide a unique program where learning is experiential and filled with adventure.
The Chestnut School at Boston College
140 Commonwealth Ave.
The Campus School at Boston College offers students ages 3 to 22 years old education programs that are specialized for each student.
Schwartz Center for Children
1 Posa Place
The Schwartz Center for Children offers many different programs and services for children with special health care needs as young as newborns.
Fall River Deaconess Home
P.O Box 2118
Fall River Deaconess Home offers residential and educational programs to young women ages 11 to 22.
1 Winch St.
The main focus for Reed Academy is to promote emotional and academic growth for young boys with special needs. They offer residential school as well as a day program.
Learning Center for the Deaf
848 Central St.
The Learning Center for the Deaf offers campus based programs for children ages 3 to 14 who are deaf or hard of hearing.
Cardinal Cushing Centers
405 Washington St.
The Cardinal Cushing Center offers children of all ages with intellectual disabilities and autism spectrum disabilities many different programs and services to help the students reach their goals.
Eagle Hill School
242 Old Petersham Rd.
The Eagle Hill School offers students in grades 8 through 12 a college prep boarding school program. They also offer academic and recreational summer camps for ages 10 to 18 years old.
453 Concord Ave.
The Cotting School offers students ages 3 to 22 years old education programs that are specialized for each student.
Community Therapeutic Day School
187 Spring St.
Community Therapeutic Day Schools offers children ages 3 to 12 years old with neurologic and emotional disabilities different programs ranging from a 10-month program to a four-week summer program.
The Carroll School
25 Baker Bridge Rd.
The Carroll School is a day school for elementary and middle school students who have specific learning disabilities.
Willie Ross School for the Deaf
32 Norway St.
Willie Ross School for the Deaf offers a dual campus program for children in pre-k to high school.
St. Ann’s Home & School
100A Haverhill St.
St. Ann’s Home and School offers young children and adolescents a residential program, day school program and outpatient services.
345 Fortune Blvd.
The Evergreen Center, a residential school, serves children and young adults aged 6 to 22 who have been diagnosed with autism, intellectual impairments, developmental disabilities, behavior disorders and physical handicaps.
575 Washington Street
Dearborn Academy is one of the oldest and most distinguished special needs schools in New England.
429 Hale St.
Landmark School offers co-educational programs for grades 2 through 12.
May Institute (multiple locations)
41 Pacella Park Drive
May Institute offers year-round programs to children with autism.
League School of Greater Boston
300 Boston-Providence Turnpike
League School of Greater Boston provides a year-round, private educational program offering a full range of social, academic, behavioral, and community-life-skills curricula to meet the individual strengths and needs of our diverse population.
Perkins School for the Blind
175 North Beacon St.
Perkins School for the Blind offers many educational programs and services for adults and children who are blind, visually impaired and deaf and blind.
Learning Prep School
1507 Washington St.
Learning Prep School offers day programs to children with language and learning challenges, ages 7 to 22 years old.
The Gifford School
177 Boston Post Rd.
The Gifford School offers small class sizes to lower school, middle school and high school students to help the students receive individual support during classes.
G. Stanley Hall School
41 Randolph Rd.
G. Stanley Hall School is a traditional school offering individualized programs to students’ ages 8 to 13 years old.
The Wolf School
215 Ferris Avenue
The Wolf School is a K- 8 special education school that inspires students with learning differences, attention issues, and often school anxiety to discover confidence, compassion and a love for learning to reach their full potential.