The William Center Autism program is a residential school that serves children that are on the Autism spectrum and are Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing ages 8-18 (a DCF waiver may be granted on a case by case basis for students over the age of 18 up to age 22). Using a specialized curriculum William Center Masters-level specialists assess the unique needs of each child and develop individualized education plans and goals. Our expertise in alternative communication methods, an appropriate staff-to-child ratio, therapeutic support in the classroom and the residence hall all contribute to creating a safe, supportive environment conducive to learning. The Deaf-Autism Program is accredited by the Vermont Agency of Education and the Vermont Department for Children and Families.
The program uses a caring approach and focuses on specific objectives measured and evaluated quarterly. Our high staff-to-child ratio to help children acquire the social, intellectual and emotional skills needed to make appropriate choices. This therapeutic milieu is guided by a whole-child approach that promotes mental growth and physical development.
Our Independent Living Skills program guides students toward both independence and interdependence through consistent modeling, encouragement, use of alternative communication technologies, and supervised community activities.
The program fosters a safe and healthy therapeutic milieu. It employs therapeutic interventions aimed to reduce or prevent future behavioral incidents. The program has individual and small group related services sessions as well as whole group meetings. The goal is to reduce the maladaptive behaviors, promote skills development and to provide students with the ability and stability to successfully transition back to their local school or to a less restrictive program or into supported living as an adult.
New students are accepted only after the results of a comprehensive evaluation by clinical staff are reviewed by William Center. A visit to the William Center is preferred but not required. Video-phone interviews and/or observations are quite helpful and easily arranged by our tech staff.
The William Center Program a Vermont Department of Education Approved Independent School and is also licensed by the Vermont Department of Children and Families (DCF). In addition, The William Center is an "out of State approved" placement by the State of New York (4402) and by the Massachusetts Department of Education.
Most referrals to the William Center are made by an Local Education Agency (LEA), although referrals may also be initiated by parents, guardians and social service agencies. If a referral is not initiated by the LEA, the referring party must include the local School before decisions can be made. We may defer the admission of accepted students until additional staff can be recruited and trained. Student performance is monitored closely and the program issues regular reports to referral agencies, parents and LEA's. Formal progress reports and report cards are produced according to the regular School schedule.
for additional information contact:
Kris Lemire, Director of Admission and Family Contact
** updated 12/2013