McLean’s fully accredited school aimed at helping students with autism spectrum disorders. Learn more about how we can help your child succeed, academically and personally.
Pathways Academy is a year-round, therapeutic day school developed to meet the social, sensory, psychological, and educational needs of children and adolescents ages 6 through 22 with autism spectrum disorders as well as other related disorders.
Our school addresses social pragmatic (social communication) difficulties, sensory challenges, and difficulty meeting typical school expectations. Students may also have co-occurring psychiatric diagnoses, including depression, social and academic anxiety, and other disorders.
Pathways Academy is a Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) approved private school.
Pathways Academy is best suited to students who are:
- Diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders and desire a school setting that meets their needs
- Hope to enjoy attending school with peers who are working on similar challenges, especially if they have had previous negative school experiences
- Seeking a gentle and individualized approach to education with social pragmatic, sensory, and therapeutic supports throughout the school day
Some students at Pathways Academy may have specific learning disabilities and challenges with attention and processing speed. Our students tend to have average intelligence scores, although significant gaps in knowledge and delay in skill development are common.
Students often have difficulty integrating their experiences and interactions and drawing expected inferences. Reduced ability in these areas often leads to feelings of frustration, limited success, and low self-esteem.
We utilize a consistent implementation of positive behavioral supports and natural consequences to manage student behavior. Our staff offer ongoing support and structure, teach to student strengths, use high-impact visual aids, and provide frequent positive encouragement.
DESE Approved Private School
The core curriculum includes social pragmatics (social communication), sensory integration, and a therapeutic environment.
Our classrooms have a maximum of four students. With a staffing ratio of 1:2 (staff to students) and embedded 15-minute sensory breaks each hour, students are supported as they work to manage their internal resources throughout the school day.
Academics at Pathways Academy are individualized to take student strengths, abilities, and preferences into account. Students are encouraged to work at their own pace.
Our low-stress learning environment, where students can progress at their own pace, allows even the most anxious students a comfortable place to learn.
Social pragmatics skill development is supported by all school staff throughout the day, taking advantage of abundant natural learning opportunities as they arise. Ongoing access to clinicians and specialists is available to all students as needed.