Weekly Update: November 9, 2023

Weekly Update

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Ms. Esswein’s students had a wonderful time practicing so many

great skills on their community trip to Wilson Farm!

Information From Cotting School

Reminder–No School Tomorrow

Cotting School will be closed tomorrow, Friday, November 9, 2023, in observance of Veterans Day. Have a great long weekend, see you Monday!

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Reminder that Parent-Teacher Conferences are scheduled for next Wednesday, November 15, 2023 between 1:30-6:30 p.m.

Please let us know if you have questions.

Mark Your Calendar for Our Next PAC Meeting

Friday, November 17, 2023, 9-10 a.m.

In person in the Board Room and on Zoom.

A draft agenda and link for joining online will be sent by email.

Please mark your calendars for upcoming PAC meetings, all on Friday mornings from 9-10 a.m.:

  • December 15
  • January 19
  • February 9
  • March 15
  • April 26
  • May 24

Holiday Marketplace

Mark your calendars! The Holiday Marketplace is coming to school Dec. 4-Dec.5, 2023! Cotting School’s PTO Holiday Marketplace gives students the opportunity to shop independently for holiday gifts for their families during the school day so they can bring home wrapped gifts for their loved ones (back by popular demand, including pet gifts, too!).

Coming Soon: Keep an eye out for volunteer opportunities!

Register for Basketball, Cheerleading and Boosters!

Register on the Cotting website at Resources > Families > Register for Sports!

Looking for this year’s basketball game schedule?

Click here!

Community Resources & Events

Spotlight Productions Adaptive Theater Program

A modified and sensory friendly program that will pay close attention to adjustments for all individuals to allow a supportive and inclusive environment. Students will be exposed to social pragmatic experiences that will focus on self-confidence, taking turns and supporting each other.

This year our Adaptive Program will produce SpongeBob the Musical!

The program will run from November with a performance in May (20 rehearsals).

Rehearsals will be on Saturdays 9:45-11 a.m., contact us for full rehearsal schedule.

For more details visit spotlightmedford.com or email us at  spotlight@spotlightmedford.com.

Let’s Talk About Transition

Learn from Perkins and industry experts!

  • Next session: November 14, 6:30–7:30 p.m.
  • If you’re wondering what your student might do after graduating high school and what services are out there to support them, we’ve got you covered.
  • Join us monthly, throughout 2023–24, for a series of transition-packed workshops designed to help you plan your blind or visually impaired young adult’s future.

Register for the series here.

Rock Climbing with Waypoint

Join Waypoint for a rock climbing skill-building series, where participants climb each Tuesday for one hour. The structure is a little different than other group programs–it is more of a one-on-one lesson with a volunteer instructor.


2023 Dates:

  • November 14
  • November 21


The rock climbing gym at Arsenal Yards in Watertown


Links to register and more information can be found here:

Friendsgiving with Autism Eats

Join us for an autism-friendly Friendsgiving Dinner:

  • November 14, 2023, 6-8 p.m. at the Mount Vernon Restaurant, 14 Broadway, Somerville
  • November 17, 2023, 6-8 p.m. at Michael’s Harborside, 1 Tournament Wharf, Newburyport

All behaviors are welcome.


Reservations are required

EPIC Youth Nights


EPIC is excited to announce the return of EPIC Youth Nights!


  • Third Thursday of every month
  • ​Time: 5-6:30 p.m.
  • Monthly sessions alternate between in-person and virtual. See schedule below.
  • Open to ALL youth with disabilities ages 14-26, current and past Service Warriors, as well as youth new to EPIC.

Youth Night themes change every month and are picked by the attendees. Previous themes have included: Game Night, Self-Advocacy Training, Karaoke Night and Social Media 101.


Click the link below to RSVP



Nov 16, 2023 – In-Person

Dec 21, 2023 – NO YOUTH NIGHT

Jan 18, 2024 – Virtual

Feb 15, 2024 – In-Person

March 15, 2024 – Virtual

April 18, 2024 – In-Person

May 16, 2024 – Virtual


In-Person Locations:

Boston – 89 South Street, Boston, MA 02111

Worcester – 203 Pakachoag Street, Auburn, MA 01501


Virtual Sessions will be on Zoom.

Zoom links will be sent after receiving your RSVP.

Webinars: Help With Problem Solving the Transition Process

The ARC of Massachusetts is offering a series of 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.

  • Nov 15
  • Dec 20

Registration is required.

Wheelchair Football Clinic in Foxboro

Patriot Place, Foxborough, MA, November 18, 2023. Join Adaptive Sports New England for a Wheelchair Football Clinic hosted by the Patriots Foundation and supported by Move United and the NFL/Bob Woodruff Foundation Salute to Service initiative.

  • Clinic participants will learn the fundamentals of wheelchair football and develop new skills over the course of the session.
  • Youth and adults, especially U.S. military veterans, are encouraged to register.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Clinic participants must have a permanent physical disability that reduces the function of the lower limbs to a degree where they cannot play running football.
  • Players must be able to propel themselves in a manual wheelchair, but do not need to be an every day wheelchair user.
  • Sport chairs will be provided for those without their own.

Click here to register or for more information or contact Sam Bernstein, Program Manager, sam.bernstein@adaptivesportsne.org, 339.440.2245

Especially for Me Free Events

All-Access Evenings

Saturday, November 18, 2023, 5-8 p.m.

Registration not yet open*

Evenings for Families with Deaf, Hard of Hearing and KODA Children

Saturday, December 2, 2023, 5-8 p.m.

Register Now

Sensory-Friendly Afternoons

Sensory-Friendly Afternoons are all about inclusion. During these events, the Discovery Museum is open to the general public, but group visits and birthday parties are not scheduled to avoid crowding and support access to exhibits. Try a fun hands-on activity and use your sense of touch to explore a variety of textures.

Bounce Out the Stigma

This camp is geared for children with autism, ADHD, epilepsy and emotional needs. Kids with learning disabilities and slow motor skill development along with social interaction issues will do well in our nurturing camp environment.

Three-Hour Basketball Clinic

Ages: 8-21 coed

Date: November 19, 2023

Time: 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Location: Winchester High School Gym

80 Skillings Road, Winchester, MA

Camp Fee: $75.00 per attendee. Each attendee receives a camp basketball and tee shirt.

Pre Registration is Required

Deciphering the Medical Insurance Maze

Free Parent/Guardian Training

Please join us and bring your questions.

Date: Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Time: 6:30-7:30 p.m. via Webinar

(We will send you the Zoom link following registration)

Do you have questions about how Medicaid, Medicare or private insurance work for your adult disabled dependent?


What happens when you retire? What is the difference between SSDI and SSI?

Attend this free workshop to learn about navigating this often-tangled web as you pursue assisting your loved one.

Our speaker, Terri Farrell, is a senior project director at the Insurance Resource Center for Autism and Behavioral Health. She came to this work through her son, who was diagnosed with autism at age 3. Terri is the event chair for AFAM’s (Advocates for Autism of Massachusetts) annual Autism Awareness and Advocacy Day held at the State House as well as the chair of AFAM’s Government Affairs Committee. In 2017, Terri joined the MBHP (Massachusetts Behavioral Health Partnership) Family Advisory Council and was appointed to the Massachusetts State Autism Commission 22+ employment sub-committee that same year.

To register for this workshop, R.S.V.P. by Monday, November 27, 2023 to

FamilyTraining@minutemanarc.org. Please include your phone number and e-mail when registering.

Visit our website for more information.

2023-2024 School Vacation Programs

They’re back and registration is open!

December 26, 27 and 28, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

February 20, 21 and 22, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

April 16, 17 and 18, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

Multi-age program for ages 5-12. A great alternative for families who live a distance!

Reserve your spot(s) here! No deposit required.

Tuition: $400/week cash discount or $425/week by check/Venmo.

Drop-in available $140/morning.

Caregiver to Caregiver Respite Network

Families of children with disabilities and specialized support needs are warmly invited to join the Caregiver to Caregiver Respite Network (C2C) to give and receive respite.

  • “Caregivers” are anyone with primary responsibility for supporting and raising children. This could be parents, foster parents or other family members.
  • “Respite” is the opportunity to take a break from caregiving. Time away creates space for taking care of yourself and other members of the family.
  • Our goal is for you to find someone you trust with your child because their child has similar needs, too. And, for them to find you!

Learn more here.

Questions? Email us at c2cRespite@fcsn.org.

Sunschein Photography

I am a Metrowest Boston area portrait photographer who captures fun, playful images of you and the most important people in your life.

My specialty is photographing individuals with disabilities and special needs.

My son is medically complex and I know full well how difficult he is to photograph. Special Needs Portraiture is what I do. I know what it takes to finally get the beautiful images that have been missing from your gallery.

With preparation, patience, understanding and flexibility, I will create an environment in which everyone feels comfortable and relaxed, and, most importantly, has fun.

We all deserve to have beautiful portraits of our people. My goal is to make sure you have yours.

Learn more here.

“Navigating the Holidays for Parents of Autistic Individuals”


Read the full article by Cornelia Elwood, MA Parent Support Specialist, MGH Aspire here.


The holiday season arrives with a flurry of flashing decorations, gifts, social gatherings, songs and enticing aromas wafting from the kitchen. While this time of year is synonymous with joy and celebration, many parents of children on the autism spectrum often face unique challenges. The sensory overload, social demands, transitions and unstructured times that accompany holidays can be overwhelming for autistic individuals.

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
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