Weekly Update: September 15, 2023

Weekly Update

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Ms. Mayo’s Middle School students conducted a “walking water” science experiment in science with Ms. McCarron!

Information From Cotting School

Buy Tickets Now for the Fall Family BBQ

When: Sunday, September 24, 2023, 12-3 p.m.

Where: Cotting School Field

453 Concord Avenue

Lexington, MA 02421

Your BBQ ticket includes:

  • A festive outdoor open-air event with tents and tables.
  • Rockin’ music by Cotting Student DJ Jacob.
  • Delicious Food provided by Tennessee BBQ, including pulled pork, mac and cheese, baked beans, cornbread, hot dogs and more.
  • Epic ice cream sundae bar–make your personal favorite.
  • Free games, including PLINKO, with lots of fun prizes.
  • A chance to win over 30 creative raffle baskets ($1 per ticket).
  • The Cotting PTO merchandise table to purchase all your favorite swag!

Tickets are $10 per person (children five and under get in free).

Please forward any family need or financial assistance to Dr. Pamela Varrin at pvarrin@cotting.org or 781.862.7323.

Click here to purchase tickets!


Raffle Baskets are still needed for the event! Please get in touch with Sheryl at sherylannqueen@yahoo.com or 781.389.8494 to donate.

Spread the Word: Cotting Info Sessions

Know someone who would like to learn more about sending their student to Cotting School? We’ll be hosting information sessions throughout the year! Please feel free to share this information with them.

Dates: 9/29/23, 10/20/23, 11/17/23, 1/19/24, 2/9/24, 3/22/24, 4/26/24 and 5/31/24

Time: 9:30-11 a.m.

Location: Cotting School Auditorium

RSVP requested but not required (walk-ins are always welcome). For more information and to RSVP, contact Director of Admissions Elizabeth Russell at erussell@cotting.org or 781-862-7323 ext. 114.

Click here to learn more!

Upcoming Transition Listening Sessions

Preparing students for rich, independent lives has long been our mission. Most recently, supporting transition and success has been one of our defined strategic initiatives. For the last several years, with focused effort, we have updated a school-wide transition curriculum, developed better communication tools for students and families to describe transitions within our program levels, reorganized our Vocational Department and piloted two new parent transition curricula. These initiatives have augmented the work we have always done. And we will never be done working on our transition programming.


We are at an exciting juncture, and we need your help. We are in the early planning stages for a Transition Institute at Cotting School. We envision this center serving both current students and families as well as young alumni. As we build our plans and prepare to update our strategic initiatives, we invite you to join us for some listening/brainstorming sessions. WE will listen as YOU brainstorm the possibilities for this new Transition Institute.


Please join President Bridget Irish, Trustee Tim Connelly and other members of the Board and Senior Administrative Team for hors d’oeuvres, beverages and lots of creative thinking at one of our upcoming listening sessions!

  • October 4, 2023 from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. over Zoom
  • October 17, 2023 from 5-7 p.m. in the Campus Center

We look forward to seeing you, sharing our early thoughts and hearing your great ideas!

Please RSVP to Christine Dagostino at cdagostino@cotting.org so that we can plan to have adequate food and materials or to provide the appropriate Zoom link for our virtual session. Questions? Feel free to call us!

Cotting PAC Meeting

Friday, October 22, 2023

9-10 am

In-person in the Cotting Board Room, as well as online on Zoom. An email with the agenda and Zoom link will follow.

Please join us to meet our new Program Director, Valery Gransewicz!

Community Resources & Events
Introducing Waypoint on Wheels!

Have you ever wanted to test out gear to see if it fits your needs? Ever wondered what the best off-road wheelchair or adaptive bike setup is for you?


Join us for our first ever Waypoint on Wheels Expo in collaboration with GRIT! Sign up for a customized session, just for you, and try out different adaptive gear. From electric to self-propel to full assist, we have an off-road wheelchair, hand-cycle or tandem bike/trike to fit your desire for adventure! You’ll benefit from our selection of adaptive equipment, receive instruction to meet any learning style and be encouraged to reach your individual goals.


Register here.

Questions? Email us at programs@waypointadventure.org.

Grants for Local Therapeutic Programs

The Genesis Foundation of Massachusetts is accepting applications now through September 30, 2023. A limited number of grants are available to fund clinical, educational and therapy programs for children and young adults with genetic disorders, rare diseases and intellectual and physical disabilities.

  • Notifications of funding decisions will be delivered by Dec. 31, 2023.
  • The therapeutic programs that will be approved for funding allow children and young adults with rare diseases or genetic disorders the opportunity to participate in various arts and recreational programs.
  • In addition to receiving therapeutic benefits from these fun activities, children also gain new and rewarding experiences from which they develop self-confidence.

For more information or to register, click here or contact us by calling 617.367.7070 or emailing office@thegenfound.org.

Sing Along Chorus: Sing with us!

(Including Cotting Alumni!)


Do you love singing? Do you have a loved one with a disability who loves to sing?


Come join our Sing Along Chorus! Learn about music and singing, make friends and create social connections!

Registration is confirmed once payment is received. Led by SNAP Music Director, Marisa Giangregorio. SNAP Piano Accompanist, Harley Smith.


Fall session: cost $280

Mondays, September 11, 2023-January 29, 2024 from 6:30-8 p.m.

Wednesdays are FULL


Spring session: cost $280

Mondays, February 5, 2024-June 3rd, 2024 from 6:30-8 p.m.

Wednesdays, Jan. 31, 2024-June 5, 2024, 6:30-8 p.m.


To register for Sing Along Chorus, please click here.


Registration is on a first come, first served basis and enrollment is limited.

Program location: Lexington Community Center


Questions? Email us at info@snaparts.org or call 781.325.8025

DDS Intake and Eligibility Webinar

September 19, 2023, with the Charles River Center of Needham, MA. The Charles River Center’s Department of Developmental Disability Services (DDS) Intake and Eligibility Team Coordinator Anthony Mavilla will be sharing information on what the intake process looks like.

Charles River Center is a community organization that offers various services for parents/guardians and people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, such as family, day and employment and residential services.

RSVP to familysupport@charlesrivercenter.org to RSVP and for Zoom link.

Webinars: Help With Problem Solving the Transition Process

The ARC of Massachusetts is offering webinars to help problem solve the transition process:

Virtual Navigation Help with ARC staff.

  • Have issues navigating services?
  • Want tips on Turning 22?
  • Where do you start?

12-1 p.m.

  • Sep 20
  • Oct 18
  • Nov 15
  • Dec 20

Registration is required.

AANE Webinar: Understanding Disclosure and the Importance of Psychological Safety in the Workplace

September 28, 2023, 6:30-8 p.m., $25

Register now and watch this webinar live or later on demand. See below for details.

Disclosure is not mandatory. This webinar covers the ins and outs of disclosure in the workplace, including why and when people disclose (or don’t), the impact disclosure can have, how to approach disclosure as an employee and how to respond to disclosure as an employer. Additional topics include:

  • Accommodations and Universal Design
  • Recognizing Ableism and Understanding Unconscious Bias
  • Toxic Tactics such as Gaslighting & Subtle Workplace Bullying
  • The 4 Components of Psychological Safety
  • Assessing Psychological Safety at Your Workplace
  • Creating a Psychologically Safe Workplace Culture

SPEAKER: Becca Lory Hector, Director of Training AANE (She/Her) is an openly autistic professional on a mission to close the disability gap in leadership by working with companies to attract and retain disabled talent.

This webinar will be recorded. If you register and are not available during the live presentation, you will receive the video link to access the recording of the presentation two business days after the session ends. Registrants can access the recorded presentation for 30 days.

REGISTRATION: Advanced registration is required. After you have registered you will receive a confirmation email. Registrants who do not receive the confirmation email should check their email spam folder. Registration closes 24 hours prior to the event. Early registration is highly recommended as many programs fill quickly.

Have a great weekend!


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

Helpful Links
Family Resources Dashboard
2023-2024 School Year Calendar
Cotting Admissions Information
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: Reaching New Heights!
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