CEO Update: a time of innovation and increasing awareness of the school
The League School is moving forward on multiple fronts to increase awareness of the school and adopt innovative tactics to enhance student preparedness for life after graduation. “As a result of the strategic plan process, we’re increasing our focus on developing student work skills,” said Chief Executive Officer, Larry Sauer. “Students who would benefit by increasing their academic and vocational skills, and who are not behaviorally intensive, thrive at the League School, and we want more school districts and parents to know about our unique option.”
Increasing awareness of League School beyond Massachusetts
League School staff have attended conferences outside of Massachusetts to increase awareness of the school’s educational approach. Four employees distributed materials and answered questions at the northeast conference for the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs in Rhode Island. “A large percentage of the attendees were educational consultants who help parents locate appropriate programs for their child,” said Larry. “As a result of our participation at this conference, we have received a student referral and a number of requests for onsite visits.”
Staff also participated in the Autism New Jersey Conference. “Over one thousand parents, school professionals, and vendors attended this conference,” said Larry. “It was a valuable venue for increasing our residential program’s visibility in New Jersey.” The Rhode Island and New Jersey conferences also offered the school’s employee participants with professional development opportunities.
Improving employer and community organizational awareness of a neurodiverse workforce
In keeping with the school’s interest in increasing vocational opportunities for our students and giving them the skills needed to succeed, the school is offering on-site and virtual presentations on neurodiversity. Director of Neurodiversity & Community Inclusion, Lindsay Wagner, delivered a presentation at the October Massachusetts Association for Occupational Therapy conference. In January, she and the Vocational Coordinator, Amy Faraone, will provide a webinar to the Special Needs Advocacy Network on how to use a strengths-based approach to prepare autistic individuals for the transition to adulthood.
“These presentations increase awareness of the school and the work we’re doing to prepare our students for the work world,” said Larry. “The other goal is to give employers and community members insights into appropriate jobs and adaptations they might need to make for a neurodiverse workforce.” If your organization is interested in exploring an in-person or virtual neurodiversity presentation, contact Lindsay Wagner.
Moosehill vocational school project moving forward
In December, the Board of Directors will be selecting an architect to design the new vocational school for the Moosehill lot. They will subsequently hire a civil engineer to work with the architect to ensure that the infrastructure is appropriate for the design and vocational use of the property. “We narrowed our selection to two finalists for each role and have conducted interviews,” said Larry. “We’re looking for professionals with school building experience who are familiar with our student population and their needs. Another goal is to hire project leaders who will be involved in the entire process.”
New cameras on the way for school and residential homes
The school’s video cameras have become obsolete, don’t work, and/or do not communicate with one another and the Finance Committee approved funds to procure an all-new system. After researching vendor options, Verkada was selected. They will replace almost 150 units, install additional cameras, double the video storage capacity to 30 days, and move the recordings to a cloud system that administrators can access from anywhere when necessary.
“Cameras are important for safety and for non-disruptive classroom monitoring and supervision,” said Larry. “We look forward to having a high-quality, easily accessible video camera system for the safety and security of our students and staff.”