Weekly Update: May 19, 2023

Weekly Update

The Class of 2023 had a great time on the senior trip to Cape Cod!

Information From Cotting School
Cotting School Program Levels Overview

If you weren’t able to make it to last week’s Zoom meeting on program levels, or if you would like to review the information shared, you can review the presentation slides here..

Questions? Please reach out to Director of Curriculum & Instruction Jeanine Meredith at jeaninemeredith@cotting.org.

Attention Upper School & Capstone Families: Project Bridges Breakfast

If your student participates in Project Bridges, we hope you can join us for a special event on Wednesday, May 24 from 9-10:30 a.m. in the campus center. There will be a light breakfast, employer awards, meeting employers from job sites and celebrating with other students and families. Please RSVP to Job Coach/Advancement Coordinator Mike Drew at mdrew@cotting.org or 781-862-7323 x168.

Grandparents Day Reception

Grandparents, “grandfriends”, relatives and family friends are welcome to attend this event on Wednesday, May 31, 2023 from 5-6 p.m. at Cotting School. Light refreshments will be served, staff will be on hand to answer questions and we’ll be sharing what goes on day-to-day at Cotting with tours and an interactive activity. Students and parents/guardians are encouraged to attend with their guests. After the reception, please stay for Cotting’s annual Art Show (details below). Families may RSVP on behalf of their guests to Mike Drew at 781-325-7997 x168 or mdrew@cotting.org.

Cotting’s Annual Art Show

All Cotting community members are welcome to the Campus Center on Wednesday, May 31 from 6-7:30 p.m. for the annual Art Show, a celebration of creativity and artistic expression! Student artwork, sustainability projects and more will be on display. Thanks to our event sponsor, Alnylam Pharmaceuticals! No RSVP necessary.

Next PTO Meeting

Friday, June 2, 2023 from 8:30 – 9:30 a.m.

Want to learn more about the PTO and volunteer opportunities? Join us at the next meeting! You can either attend in person (meetings are held in the school’s Board Room) or online via Zoom. All Cotting parents and guardians are welcome to attend!

Cotting PTO Cornhole Tournament

You’re invited for a fun afternoon of socializing with parents, guardians and Cotting faculty and staff! If you are unable to make it but would still like to support the event, please consider purchasing a ticket for a staff member.

Date: Sunday, June 11, 2023

Time: 1-5 p.m.

Location: Cotting School Field

Tickets: $30 per person (click here to purchase)

Community Resources & Events
New Location: Bridging Independent Living Together (BILT)

BILT is moving to the Center for Innovation at 215 Lexington Street in Woburn.

Click here to check out some of their new offerings.

Outdoor All-Access Evening

Saturday, May 20, 5-8 p.m.

Register Now!


Tonight, we are focused on being outdoors! Explore our accessible Discovery Woods, try out a variety of outdoor activities and take part in our Nature Connections program!


Join us during this special free evening event for families with children with disabilities. During this event, the Museum will be closed to the general public. Any family who can benefit from a limited capacity visit is welcome at this event; a medical diagnosis is not required. ASL interpretation may be available upon request. Dinner, including a gluten-free option, will be provided.

These events are free for all family members, but registration is required as space is limited. ASL interpretation may be available upon request; please indicate on the registration form if you would like interpretation.

Click here for a printable schedule.

Free Family Training: Voicing Choices and Needs

Webinar, Tuesday, May 23, 2023 from 6:30-8 p.m. You’ll receive a Zoom link once you complete your registration.

As a follow up to our meetings on different housing options, we will continue the conversation about voicing choices and needs for the community. The format for this evening will enable participants to tune in to any or all of what interests them. The conversations will include Community-Based Residences, Shared Living, Independent Living and an overview of options that are being explored in other parts of the country that could be feasible in Massachusetts. The focus will be on YOU and your family’s wants and needs as information is shared in each session.


The schedule is as follows and will be accessed by the link you receive after registering:

  • Community Residences 6:30–7 p.m. (Ryan Haskins)
  • Shared Living/Independent Living 7-7:30 p.m. (Shailee Anderson)
  • New Ideas 7:30-8 p.m. (Andy Richardt): Technology and creativity are driving new housing options. Andy will provide an overview of what’s happening elsewhere and what might come next.

To register for this workshop, please RSVP by Monday, May 22 via email to

FamilyTraining@minutemanarc.org. Please include your phone number and email when registering.

Northeast Regional Inclusion Summit | Creating Welcoming Communities Where Everyone Belongs

Tuesday, May 23, 2023, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at the Lexington Community Center


Participants will learn concrete strategies for supporting inclusion and have opportunities to connect with like-minded people seeking to create a culture of inclusion. The summit consists of an expert-led workshops, diverse panel discussions, lunch and networking. This event is ideal for organizations that serve the community. $25 per person. Learn more and register here.

Questions? Contact Phoebe Goodman at goodman@arcmass.org or Rachel Hayward at rhayward@arcmass.org.

How To Talk to Kids about Gun Violence

What: Boston Globe “Parenting Unfiltered” columnist Kara Baskin has helped us assemble a live panel version of two of her most important articles that all parents should read: “How to talk to kids about gun violence” and “Will our kids ever be safe”.


Join us to hear Dr. Patricia Crain de Galarce, Dr. Neena McConnico, and Dr. Anthony Rao—specialists in child behavior, trauma and exposure to violence—discuss how to answer children’s questions about gun violence and manage our own fears as we try to keep them safe.




  • Dr. Neena McConnico is director of Boston Medical Center’s Child Witness to Violence Project
  • Dr. Patricia Crain de Galarce is director of Lesley University’s Center for Inclusive and Special Education, overseeing the Lesley Institute for Trauma Sensitivity
  • Dr. Anthony Rao is a pediatric psychologist, lecturer and author
  • Moderator Kara Baskin is the “Parenting Unfiltered” columnist for The Boston Globe


When: Wednesday, June 7, 7-8 p.m., live via Zoom


Free with advance registration, which is required.

The event will be live captioned. Certificate of attendance is available upon request to events@discoveryacton.org.

QBS Training: Safety Care for Families

Virtual Event on Thursday, June 8, 2023 from 11 a.m.–1 p.m.

Safety Care for Families was developed by QBS as a resource for families/caregivers to provide a basic set of prevention skills when working with a person who may engage in challenging behavior. We will meet online to review the essentials part of the manual from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Option to conduct this training in person, as well, if virtual isn’t ideal.

In-Person Event on Thursday, June 15, 2023 from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

For families that require training surrounding physical procedures to keep yourself and your individual safe, we will meet in person to review the remainder of the course and complete module 3 .

This course is ideal for families or caregivers of the individuals we currently serve. All participants will be required to fill out training agreements prior to the course electronically, need access to a computer with a webcam for the course and be able to participate throughout the course.

After you complete your registration, you will receive the Zoom link for the virtual meeting on June 8. Cost: $150 for modules 1 & 2, $175 for modules 1,2,& 3

Sign up here.

Accessible & Adaptive Recreation Fair

Artesani Park/Herter Park, Brighton, MA, June 10, 2023, 10 a.m.–3 p.m. With the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) Universal Access Program. Free and open to the public.

  • The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation’s Universal Access Program provides outdoor recreation in Massachusetts State Parks for all abilities.
  • Join DCR’s Universal Access Program and many other regional adaptive recreation organizations that offer hiking, cycling, power soccer, sport kite decorating and other accessible activities.
  • Enjoy scenic views of the Charles River and social connections while signing up for disability-friendly adaptive summer programs like sailing, kayaking, canoeing, cycling, hiking and more.
  • 2023 Vendors, Supports and Exhibitors TBA.

For details or to register, please click here or contact Mary at 413-545-5760 or marcy.marchello@state.ma.us.

Boundaries and Consent Training

Tuesday, June 13, 2023 from 4:30 – 6:30 p.m.

This course is ideal for teens and adults who need more information regarding establishing boundaries, respecting others boundaries and consent.

Taught by Christina Gravina, BCBA, an experienced sexuality trainer, the participants will learn these topics through discussion, videos and role playing, with additional visual aids to assist. This is part 1 of our Sexuality training series and can be combined with part 2 or taken alone.

Parents are welcome to sit in on the class if they would like to also hear how the materials are presented or drop off and pick up/come with a 1:1. The main objective of the course is to have individuals come away with the understanding of their own boundaries, how to respect others’ boundaries, know what consent is and how to handle situations where others are not respecting your boundaries.

Click here to sign up.

Have a great weekend!


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

Helpful Links
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2022-2023 School Year Calendar
Cotting Admissions Information
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