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ASD Nest Support Team Embarks on the 2023-2024 Academic Year and Salutes 20 Years of the ASD Nest Program


The ASD Nest Program celebrates its 20th year!

Back in 2001, New York University began partnering with New York City Public Schools (NYCPS) to design an inclusive education model to support Autistic learners in their communities. Through this partnership the ASD Nest program was developed and was piloted at PS 32 in Brooklyn during the 2003-2004 school year. In the years since, the model has grown and developed as an innovative and impactful inclusion model. Incredibly, the ASD Nest program is now partnering with 83 NYCPS across all five boroughs, serving Autistic students in inclusive environments in grades K-12.

What is the mission of the ASD Nest Support Team at NYU Metro Center?     

Since the program’s inception, the ASD Nest Support Team at NYU Metro Center trains, supports, and empowers the Nest public school communities to implement their collaborative, strengths-based model of equitable and inclusive education. Their ongoing work is directly informed by the perspectives and experiences of autistic self-advocates in order to create systems change in schools that foster self-determination in students.

What are themes that the ASD Nest Support Team will incorporate into the respective professional development training sessions they conduct for NYCPS educators (and others) throughout the academic year? 

Annually, the ASD Nest Support Team elevates a theme for professional development, consultation, and training. This year’s Nest theme is Partnership, and centers on Dr. Damien Milton’s Double Empathy Theory in order to prioritize and cultivate partnerships across settings, between members of the school teams, alongside families, and with students themselves. This theme emphasizes several of the philosophical foundations of the ASD Nest program; collaboration, partnering with families, and learning from the true experts, Autistic individuals. The Partnership theme will be embedded across training, professional development, and consultation for teachers, therapists, and administrators, as well as workshops and a newsletter for ASD Nest families.

What are the key objectives that the ASD Nest Support Team has outlined for the 2023-2024 academic year?

The ASD Nest Support Project is excited for the 2023-24 school year and to continue this vital work toward the vision of a world that authentically embraces its inherent neurodiversity.  The team is thrilled to welcome 15 New York City Public Schools into the Nest community, across all five boroughs, many in districts that previously lacked autism specific programs. As the ASD Nest Support Project works with the NYCPS to scale and sustain the model, their team is also welcoming additional team members. The ASD Nest Support Project Team is delighted to have Carol Baingana, Emily Haire, Heather Clarke, and Keara Browne join this dynamic community, each of whom offer incredible experience, education, and expertise, enhancing the caliber of support and training provided to Nest schools. 

Learn more about the ASD Nest Support Project and their additional services: here.