Autism Spectrum Disorders Programs
The Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) Nest and ASD Horizon programs are specialized programs that serve some students with autism. They are available in some District 1-32 schools. The program is a partnership between the NYCPS and New York University’s (NYU) ASD Nest Support Project.
Each program works to strengthen academic and social skills, but they have different eligibility criteria and serve students in different types of classes.
ASD Nest Program Features
The program serves students with autism in a classroom with general education students. The class is a small Integrated Co-Teaching (ICT) class, with one special education teacher and one general education teacher. As students get older, the class size increases. There is no classroom paraprofessional.
Curriculum and Instruction
Classes follow the New York State Learning Standards and the same curriculum used in all DOE schools. ASD Nest teachers are trained in specialized teaching strategies for students with autism, including a special social curriculum called Social Development Intervention (SDI) developed by NYU. SDI is an evidence-based program that supports social-emotional development.
Related service providers use SDI to help students improve social functioning. This social language curriculum is taught in small groups.
“If children do not learn the way we teach them, then we must teach them the way they learn.”