Currently, I am in Washington DC, but I spent the day in New Haven, CT visiting Chapel Haven and Yale University.
I visited Chapel Haven because the have been providing support to young adults to live independently for 30 years. For some folks that included participating in classes at the local community college, but primarily they taught life and work skills - and believe me they have it down!
But my visit was prompted by Chapel Haven starting an off shoot program specifically for young people with Asperger's syndrome. I met with Michael Storz and Ginny Hodge who gave me a wealth of information that I hope to bring back to Pathway. The connection with Chapel Haven came about through my conversations with Nancy London who runs the Spectrum Program at New Roads in Santa Monica.
In developing this new program, the folks at Chapel Haven worked with a group of experts to develop a new curriculum that they have been very successful with so far. I will write more about that in the future.
I also went by Yale University's Child Study Center to meet with the Director Dr. Fred Volkmar. Turns out Dr. Volkmar is a renowned autism expert, is on the advisory board for Chapel Haven, and on top of that is related to my step mother. I had a brief but fruitful visit with Dr. Volkmar - he gave me a copy of a book he co-authored with his wife Healthcare for Children on the Autism Spectrum.
My point in these visits is to gather information about how we can better serve our students and particularly those with autism and Asperger's.