The League School of Greater Boston Becomes First Private Massachusetts School to Adopt Innovative SCERTS® Model Enhances Team and Family-Oriented Approach to Further Positive Outcomes

The League School of Greater Boston, one of the first U.S. schools to serve students with autism, has become the first private school in Massachusetts to adopt the SCERTS® Model.

Continuing its pioneering approach, the League School of Greater Boston, one of the first U.S. schools to serve students with autism, has become the first private school in Massachusetts to adopt the SCERTS® Model.

This fall, the League School began integrating the SCERTS educational approach into its programs for students with autism and Asperger’s syndrome to enrich its teaching practices through advanced
development of social communications and emotional regulation, enhanced team integration, stronger family involvement and comprehensive outcome measurement.

What Is SCERTS?

The SCERTS Model (Prizant, Wetherby, Rubin, Laurent and Rydell, 2006) is a research-based
multidisciplinary framework that directly addresses the core challenges people with autism spectrum disorder and related disabilities, and their families, face. It provides a comprehensive approach to effectively support students in different social environments by prioritizing goals in social communication, emotional regulation, and interpersonal and learning support, as well as support to families (“transactional support”).

The model involves a carefully coordinated multidisciplinary approach to assessment and educational programming that includes educators, speech and language pathologists, occupational therapists, and behavior therapists. The SCERTS curriculum provides a systematic method that ensures that specific skills and appropriate supports, stated as educational objectives, are selected and applied in a consistent manner across a student’s day. This process allows families and educational teams to draw from a wide range of effective practices that build on the students’ existing knowledge and abilities to provide an effective program to address the core challenges of persons with ASD and related disorders.

One of the main goals of the model is to help educators, families and therapists work cooperatively as a coordinated team to support a student across their different environments (home, school and community) and social situations. To accomplish this goal, the model requires schools to develop teams that work together to assess students and help them meet their goals, a practice the League School has been employing for more than 20 years. “We believe the SCERTS Model will advance both our academic and non-academic curriculum by providing an effective and accountable framework to help further enhance positive student outcomes,” said Frank Gagliardi, Ed.D., the League School’s Interim Executive Director. “We chose the SCERTS Model because it fits naturally into our current programming and philosophy. It allows us to continue to use a variety of teaching methodologies and techniques, including the Teacch Model and ABA, and it offers a comprehensive assessment process to help teams more accurately measure a student’s progress and identify necessary supports to further positive outcomes. It also encourages stronger family involvement – a
focus from the time our school was founded by parents of children with autism – offering family members the supports they need to independently problem-solve, cope with and address the challenges they face.”

“We are gratified that the League School has chosen the SCERTS Model to enhance programming for their students,” said Dr. Barry Prizant, who along with SCERTS Model Collaborator Amy Laurent trained the League School’s staff on the model. “The League School’s continued emphasis on prioritizing students’ social, communicative and emotional development, as well as supporting families, represents cutting-edge practices in educating individuals with autism and related disabilities.”

About the League School of Greater Boston

For more than 40 years, the League School of Greater Boston has been a leading educator of children and young adults with autism spectrum disorder. Its approach is built on innovation as well as established programs that have proven to help students reach their greatest potential. The school’s year-round, private educational program serves students from ages 3 to 22, and offers a full range of social, academic, behavioral and community-life-skills curricula to meet the individual strengths and needs of our diverse population. For more information about the League School of Greater Boston, visit its Website at www.leagueschool.com.

About the SCERTS® Model

The SCERTS® Model is a research-based educational approach and multidisciplinary framework that directly addresses the core challenges faced by children and persons with ASD and related disabilities, and their families. SCERTS® focuses on building competence in Social Communication, Emotional Regulation and Transactional Support as the highest priorities that must be addressed in any program, and is applicable for individuals with a wide range of abilities and ages across home, school and community settings. For further information and publications, visit www.SCERTS.com.

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