Weekly Update: March 3, 2022

Weekly Update

This year’s ski trip to Mt. Sunapee with NEHSA was a huge success!

Information From Cotting School

CANCELLED Due to Inclement Weather: Tomorrow’s Basketball Games vs. Alumni

Due to the weather forecast for tomorrow, Saturday, March 4, 2023, Cotting School’s basketball games against the Roadrunners alumni team are canceled.

We look forward to seeing you at the Basketball Tournament on Saturday, March 11th!

Thank You From the Senior Class of 2023

Dear Cotting Community,

Thank you for buying flowers and stickers from us. We appreciate it. We were able to sell all the stickers and flowers we had. We sold 50 stickers and 1,000 flowers for Valentine’s Day. This will help us pay for our senior trip in May.


The Senior Class of 2023

Yearbook Dedication Pages

Order forms for yearbook dedication pages were sent home in backpacks yesterday. They are due back by Friday, March 17. Dedication pages are OPTIONAL and usually consist of a few photos and a couple of lines of text congratulating your student and/or their class. We offer two options, half page ($25) and full page ($50). If you need another copy of the Yearbook Dedication Page Form, you can download it HERE. Questions? Please reach out to Mike Drew at mdrew@cotting.org.

Upcoming Events

Please mark your calendar for these upcoming in-person events taking place on campus.

Cotting School-Massachusetts Historical Society Partnership Celebration

Wednesday, March 15, 6:30-8 p.m.

Mass Historical has graciously agreed to be the archivists for Cotting’s rich educational history. Come help celebrate the partnership, complete with a display of records and images from our 130-year history. Learn more here.

Information Session

Friday, March 17, 9:30-11 a.m.

Know someone who might be interested in sending their child to Cotting School? Encourage them to attend our next information session! Learn more here.

Cotting Parent Advisory Council

(PAC) Meeting

Friday, March 24, 2023, 9-10 a.m.

This meeting will take place both in person in the Cotting School Board Room and via Zoom online. The link will be emailed out with the agenda.

Join Us at Play It Forward, a Fundraiser Featuring Falcon Trivia!

Thursday, April 13, 6-9 p.m.

Support our after school and athletics programs! Play trivia and/or Plinko, take your chances on exciting raffles and silent auction items and give our candlepin bowling alley a try.

Learn more and register here.

Community Resources & Events

Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month

Each March, we have a special chance to celebrate and uplift people with disabilities across our community and highlight their diverse experiences. Visit our new stories webpage to view our new PSAs and a range of compelling stories about people with developmental disabilities.

This month is an important opportunity to spread awareness of our shared humanity, the many ways people with developmental disabilities enrich our communities and the challenges we still face to realizing a truly inclusive society.

Important Notice From The Arc About MassHealth Redetermination

When the COVID pandemic began in March 2020, the federal government declared a Public Health Emergency that included “continuous Medicaid enrollment”. In effect, everyone who already had Medicaid was required to continue receiving Medicaid–even if they were no longer eligible for that Medicaid category.


The federal government has determined that the “continuous Medicaid enrollment” requirement will end. Therefore, everyone with Massachusetts Medicaid (MassHealth) needs to complete a redetermination application. MassHealth will begin mailing Medicaid redetermination applications to everyone who is enrolled.

Click here for more information on how to prepare.

Housing Models for People with Developmental Disabilities in Massachusetts

The Autism Housing Pathways’ Family Action Meetups (FAMS) provide a monthly opportunity for families to get together, learn about two housing models per month and chat in depth.

Each monthly meeting includes:

  • A 15-minute overview of housing for people with developmental disabilities in Massachusetts.
  • A brief video description of a housing model, followed by 20-25 minutes of breakout discussion groups.
  • Repeating this process with another housing model.

Click here to register. Tickets are $5. Please note the Zoom link will be sent to registrants by email but will not be posted on Eventbrite.

Keeping Your Daughter Healthy

March 8, 2023, 12-1 p.m. via Zoom

Presented by: Kate Nolan, NP

Join us for a conversation about the importance of preventative gynecological care and hygiene and how to develop a better understanding of caring for one’s body. The KIND Clinic, which specializes in gynecological care for women with intellectual and developmental disabilities, will be introduced and participants will have the opportunity to ask questions.


Register here.

For Questions please contact Loren Vecchiarelli at lvecchiarelli@lifeworksarc.org or

781-762-4001 x 303

Department of Developmental Services (DDS 101)

Webinar, March 8, 2023 with Vinfen in Cambridge, MA. The Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (DDS) and Vinfen are cohosting a live webinar for individuals and families of all ages. Learn more about: Eligibility, Transition, Self-Direction, Autism Support.

About Vinfen: Vinfen is a provider of community-based services to people with:

  • Autism
  • Behavioral Health Challenges
  • Brain Injuries
  • Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Mental Health Conditions

Click here to register or contact Maria Stefano at Maria.stefano@mass.gov or


The Dick and Judy Hoyt Grant for Inclusion

Deadline: March 8, 2023. The Doug Flutie Foundation in Natick and the Hoyt Foundation for the Dick and Judy Hoyt Grant for Inclusion will be distributing $50,000 through this community grant* to people with autism and other disabilities in honor of Dick and Judy Hoyt, who were pioneers for inclusion and acceptance.

*Grants will be awarded to help those looking to pursue athletic, academic and employment endeavors in their community.

Click here for more information or contact Lisa Collins at lcollins@flutiefoundation.org.

Now Open to Students Ages 3-8

9th Annual Lexington Parent/Caregiver Academy

We are excited to announce that Lexington Parent /Caregiver Academy Registration is now open! Join us for this FREE, IN-PERSON EVENT:

  • WHO: All interested Lexington families, adult caregivers and faculty
  • WHAT: Participants can choose up to 3 workshops to attend throughout the day
  • WHEN: Saturday, March 11 10 a.m.-2:15 p.m.
  • WHERE: Lexington Community Center, 39 Marrett Rd, Lexington, MA
  • WHY: To educate and empower parents and caregivers and help them manage the changing demands of parenting in today’s world

This is a free event for all interested parents and community members in Lexington.

To register and view presenter info and workshop descriptions, click here:

2023 Lexington Parent/Caregiver Academy Registration Link

or scan the QR code below

SPONSORED BY: The Lexington Public Schools SHAC (School Health Advisory Council), Town of Lexington Human Services dept., Town of Lexington Recreation dept., BALex (Bangladeshi Americans of Lexington), CAAL (Chinese American Association of Lexington), CALex (Chinese Americans of Lexington), Human Rights Committee, IAL (Indian Americans of Lexington), JPLex (Japan Support Group of Lexington), KOLex (Koreans of Lexington), JPLex (Japan Support Group of Lexington), LexFun (Lexington’s 5-and-under Network), LexPride, LexSEPTA (Lexington Special Education PTA), LHS PTO Forums Committee, PPC (PTO Presidents Council)

Although registration is not required we encourage you to register to secure a space in the workshops you are interested in attending. Several of the workshops have limited capacity.

Questions? Please contact Julie Fenn, Assistant Coordinator of PE, Health and Wellness at jfenn@lexingtonma.org.

Making the Most of Transition & Thinking About College Disability Workshops

Schrafft Center in Boston, March 11, 2023, with the Federation for Children with Special Needs (FCSN). FCSN will host a youth event with fun and educational activities to get them thinking about their options after high school. There will be 2 tracks of youth presentations:

1) Making the Most of Transition

  • A presentation for students on Charting the LifeCourse and interactive activities on “what you want in your life vs. what you don’t” with MassFamilies and DDS
  • An interactive panel presentation with young adults who have navigated postsecondary transition

2) Thinking About College

  • “The BIG Difference Between High School and College” hosted by Quinsigamond Community College
  • An interactive panel presentation with young adults with disabilities who have graduated from college


  • Theater games with Access to Theater (ATT) from Partners of Youth with Disabilities (PYD) (participation is not required)
  • Teach Disability Inclusion with Easterseals
  • Parents will be able to check out resource tables and learn about tools to encourage conversations with your young person about planning a life after high school.
  • There will be coffee, light snacks and pizza.
  • Fee for you and your youth is $15.00.

To register or for more information, contact Rebecca Davis, Director of Transition Projects at FCSN at Rdavis@fcsn.org, 617-236-7210 or 800-331-0688 (Language Line).

Universal Access Outdoor Connections in Massachusetts

Winter Recreation: DCR Programs, Parks and Trails

The Department of Conservation and Recreation’s (DCR) Universal Access Program provides outdoor recreation opportunities in Massachusetts state parks for visitors of all abilities and ages. Join them on Zoom at Universal Access Outdoor Connections to learn about their offerings and share your experience with accessible and adaptive programs in DCR Parks.

2023 Dates and Topics:

  • March 17 – Accessible Hiking in DCR Parks
  • April 21 – Birding in DCR Parks
  • May 19 – Summer Programs and Opportunities

To get more information, register and get the link to attend, email Kristen.Rhodes@mass.gov.

Need Supportive Housing?

Mainstay Can Help!

Join our Housing Informational Sessions on Zoom, led by Doreen Cummings, Director of In-Home Services! Learn about Mainstay’s seven properties and other housing resources in Massachusetts. We will review budgets, websites and meet current residents who will share their perspectives.


All sessions take place from 6-7 p.m.

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Click here for the link

Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Click here for the link

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Click here for the link

Mainstay coordinates supportive homes in Newton, Malden, Norwood and Walpole for adults with a variety of abilities. Residents live largely independently. Services offered include live-in overnight staffing, evening and weekend staffing, professional cleaning of common areas, a daily communal dinner, support with activities of daily living and built-in socialization and friendship opportunities.

Visit our Websites:




If you cannot attend a Zoom Open House session, please contact Doreen via email at doreen.cummings@mainstayliving.org or phone at 617-799-6739 to schedule a one-on-one meeting.

Supported Decision Making

Webinar: March 22, 2023, with the Suffolk University Law School in Boston.

Problem Solving Clinic: Suffolk Law Students Present on Supported Decision Making:

  • Students from Suffolk Law School join Kerry Mahoney and Kathleen Amaral to present on the topic of supported decision-making.
  • Join this session to have your questions answered on this important subject.
  • Supported Decision-Making allows individuals with disabilities to make choices about their own lives with support from a team of people they choose.
  • Individuals with disabilities choose people they know and trust to be part of a support network to help with decision-making.
  • Supported Decision-Making is an alternative to guardianship.
  • Instead of having a guardian make a decision for the person with the disability, Supported Decision-Making allows the person with the disability to make their own decisions.

Click here for more information or to register, or contact The Arc of Massachusetts at 781-891-6270 or arcmass@arcmass.org

New Series from The Arc of MA: Advocacy for MA DDS Self-Directed Services as Envisioned by the 2014 Real Lives Law

Your voice is needed! Join the conversation about the Massachusetts Alliance for 21st Century Disability Policy’s (MA21) advocacy for changes to the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (DDS) Self-Directed Services to comply with the 2014 Real Lives Law.


Help improve regulations and waivers at DDS to increase transparency, flexibility and self-determination. Learn how to be part of organized advocacy with DDS to transform regulations, policies and guidelines to make Self-Direction more transparent and less restrictive.


Sessions are currently scheduled for the following dates and times. You can attend one or more sessions. Additional dates will be posted.


Tuesdays at 1:30 p.m.:

  • March 21
  • May 16

Register for Sessions Here

MA21 Real Lives Law Fact Sheet

“SpongeBob The Musical” Inclusive Performance

Acton, MA, April 1 & 2, 2023, with Open Door Theater. Actors with all abilities will be featured in this production, which will feature music and a diverse cast of underwater characters.

All show performancess will be:

  • Accessible and companion seating available
  • In a relaxed format and built to be sensory friendly
  • Interpreted into American Sign Language, Open-Captioned and Audio Described
  • We have marked best visibility for ASL seating and Captioned seating
  • Assisted listening devices available for all performances and include over the ear headsets, earbuds and telecoil enabled loop system
  • Patrons may also bring their own mono headsets. Please ask for a headset at the ticket booth

For more information and to order tickets, click here or contact 978-264-8150.

United Dance is Coming Back to Boston!


During our six-day dance and choreographic course and two-day art course, youth and young adults with Down Syndrome will have the opportunity to dance and experience live music with professional dancers, musicians and seasoned teachers. The United Dance team comprises experts in teaching art to specialized populations in a safe, engaging environment. Our program is designed to empower, foster creativity and, above all, give students the experience of a lifetime!

Dance & Choreographic Course

Dates: April 18-23, 2023

Venue: Brookline Ballet School

Start time: 4 p.m. (daily class lasts 1 hour + 30-minute choreographic workshop)

Register here

Art Course

Dates: June 10-11, 2023

Venue: Brookline Ballet School

Register here


We welcome all students and have partial and full scholarships, as well as financial aid, available.

Have a great weekend!


Please share your own resources and questions with Pam Varrin at pvarrin@cotting.org.

Helpful Links
Family Resources Dashboard
2022-2023 School Year Calendar
AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support Cotting School every time you shop, at no cost to you. Just select “Cotting School, Inc.” as your charitable organization and remember to shop at smile.amazon.com! Amazon will then donate a portion of your order’s purchase price to Cotting School!
Spread the Word!
Do you know someone who would like to learn more about Cotting School? Please share the information at the links below with someone you know. Cotting School parents are our best ambassadors, and our team is available to connect with families that would like to learn more!
Cotting’s Viewbook: Cotting Forward!
Cotting Admissions Information
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