Weekly Update: February 2, 2024

Weekly Update

Click here to read in another language

Making kinetic sand was so much fun!

Information From Cotting School

Sync Your Calendar with the Cotting School Calendar

A helpful tip from Director of Marketing and Communications Amanda Balagur:

Visit our school calendar webpage–click here–and scroll down to the bottom, you’ll see a “Subscribe to calendar” dropdown menu. It allows you sync our school calendar with your personal calendar through a variety of platforms (e.g., Google, Outlook, etc.).

Questions? Email Amanda Balagur at abalagur@cotting.org.

Senior Class Valentine’s Day Fundraiser!


To raise funds for the senior trip and senior gift, staff and students will have the opportunity to purchase Valentine’s Day flowers for $3 and/or sticker sheets for $5 to exchange with friends. There will be red, pink and white flowers and a newly designed sheet of Cotting Valentine’s Day stickers available.


Please fill out the order form and labels and return them no later than Wednesday February 7, 2024. Payments can be made via cash, check or Venmo @cotting-school.


Questions? Please email Mike Teuber at mteuber@cotting.org or Marcie Garron at mgaron@cotting.org.

Cotting Parent, Guardian and Caregiver Social Events

The Cotting PTO is excited to offer two opportunities this winter for Cotting parents, guardians and caregivers to meet up and socialize! To accommodate more people, we are hosting one evening in MetroWest Boston and one evening on the North Shore. Feel free to drop in to meet or reconnect with fellow Cotting parents. Drinks will be purchased by attendees and the PTO will provide light nibbles.

Thursday, February 29, 2024 at 7 p.m.

Cook Restaurant in Needham

Please RSVP to Ali Premo at alisonpremo@gmail.com if you plan to attend.

Thursday, March 7 2024 at 7 p.m

Newburyport Brewing Co. in Newburyport

This meet up will also feature live music and a raffle to support the Cotting PTO! Please RSVP to Trish Sabulis, triciasabulis@michaudinsurance.com, if you plan to attend.

Community Resources & Events

Adaptive Snowshoeing, Kick Sledding and Cross-Country Sit-Skiing

Gardner, Goshen and Weston, MA, January-March 29, 2024. For people with disabilities, along with their family and friends. Specific dates and options for each location.

  • Gardner: Enjoy adaptive winter recreation on a groomed course with Waypoint Adventure and Charles River Recreation. Use snowshoes, standing or sitting cross-country skis, or get pushed on a kick-sled or ski-sled. Equipment can be customized and modified to fit your needs. In your session, you may be in a group or one-on-one with an instructor.
  • Goshen: Snowshoeing, kick sledding and cross-country sit skiing.
  • Weston: Adaptive winter recreation on a groomed course. Use snowshoes, standing or sitting cross-country skis, or get pushed on a kick-sled or ski-sled. Equipment can be customized and modified to fit your needs. You may be in a group or one-on-one with an instructor.

PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED or contact DCR.UniversalAccess@mass.gov.

Wheelchair Fencing With the Boston Fencing Club

Winter 2024 in Brighton, MA

Wheelchair fencing (referred to as Parafencing) is a fast-moving game of tactics and techniques. Parafencing is enjoyed by athletes with upper and lower limb differences, cerebral palsy and/or other balance and mobility restrictions.

This program is designed for new and continuing fencers 12 years and older.

  • Classes will be focused on the tactics and skills required for parafencing.
  • Athletes will learn rules of right of way, technical rules of the game and the skills required for bouting.
  • Classes will focus on foil tactics and techniques.
  • Athletes may choose to attend some or all of the clinic sessions.
  • Winter class series takes place Sundays on 1/28, 2/11 and 2/25.
  • Spring class series takes place Sunday on 4/21, 5/5 and 5/19.

Fees apply, registration is required or contact 857.204.5191 or outreach@bostonfencingclub.org.

SNAP Sing Along Chorus

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


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

Registration and payment required prior to start of session.

Led by SNAP Music Director, Marisa Giangregorio. SNAP Piano Accompanist, Harley Smith.

  • Monday group: February 5 to June 3.
  • Wednesday group: January 31 to June 5.


Cost for the spring session of Sing Along Chorus is $280. Payment can only be made via ACTIVE platform in the form of credit/debit card.


If you are NEW to SNAP, please visit our Program Page to register.


For Current/Returning Participant, please click HERE to log-in to your account and view your registration status and register.


Questions? Please email or call us at 781.325.8025.

Working Together: Disability Transition-to-Adulthood Training in English and Spanish


Part of the free webinar series provided in partnership by Massachusetts Advocates for Children, The ARC of Greater Haverhill-Newburyport and MassFamilies. In English on February 6, 2024, 6:30-8 p.m. In Spanish on February 8, 2024, 7-8:30 p.m.

  • This series is free, but you must register for each one.
  • February 6: Transition to Adult Training. This workshop will address the transition planning and services required for youth with disabilities ages 14-22 and will focus on the transition special education services needed to prepare youth for employment, independent living and further education.
  • This training will also address compensatory services still available, and how to ensure districts fully address students’ transition needs.
  • Using case examples, parents and professionals will learn strategies that can help ensure students receive important transition services required by special education law.
  • The workshop will also provide information about the transition to the adult human services system, including Chapter 688, the state law that helps plan for youth with disabilities after they leave school.

Spanish/Taller de TransiciĂłn [TRABAJANDO JUNTOS] February 8.

All webinars are free, but registration is required.

Todas las presentaciones son gratuitas, pero se requiere registraciĂłn.

Click here for more information or to register or contact hello@massfamilies.org or 774.855.6001.

Sibling Support: Building Resiliency Among Siblings of Youth with Disabilities

Webinar, February 7, 2024, with the Chris Walsh Center in Framingham, MA. Emily Rubin, LICSW will provide you with an overview of the sibling experience, as well as practical strategies that parents, caregivers and providers can utilize, to help increase sibling resiliency.

  • There will be time for you to have your questions about how to best support siblings answered by the presenting clinician, including recommendations that are applicable to a wide range of families.

Register to here or contact 508.215.5630 or chriswalshcenter@framingham.edu.

Access to Arts Programs with Partners for Youth with Disabilities

Winter and Spring in Boston, Burlington and Needham, MA.  Access to Arts (ages 14-24) is an inclusive hands-on art programs for teens and young adults with and without disabilities.

  • Artistic mediums featured include drawing, painting, sculpture, theater, improv, dance, music, textiles and design.
  • ATA programming takes place after school, during school breaks and over the summer across the Greater Boston community.

There will be three ATA Programs running for Winter and Spring 2024:

  • Music, Rhythm and Songwriting – Needham. February – June 2024.
  • Theatre and Improv – Burlington, MA.  February 7 – May 29, 2024.
  • Music Studio Sessions in Boston. Collaborate with others to make music and write a song in a professional recording studio. Spring Break, April 16 – 19.

To register or for more information visit click here  or contact sbobbette@pyd.org or 617.556.4075.

Coffee Convo: Clinical Care and Resources for Autistic Adults

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

6:30-7:30 p.m.

The Lurie Center for Autism invites you to join Chris McDougle, MD, Director, Lurie Center for Autism, and Sarah Campbell, Senior Research Coordinator, Adult Autism Health Resources, Harvard Medical School, for a presentation on Harvard Medical School’s latest initiatives designed to improve healthcare for autistic adults.

Dr. McDougle will discuss Clinical Care for Autistic Adults, a free CME course for clinicians designed by HMS faculty and experts who lead their fields in autism care. The course explains what it means to provide autism-competent care and explores how some medical conditions present differently in autistic patients.

Ms. Campbell will present Adult Autism Health Resources (AAHR), a patient and family website that provides information, tools and resource links to assist autistic patients and their caregivers at key points in the adult lifespan. AAHR gives specific advice on health conditions common in autistic adults and provides tools for understanding and communication about those conditions. Time will be left at the end of the presentation for questions.

Coffee Convo presentations are offered monthly. All events are conducted virtually, free of charge and are open to the general public. Register here for the February event. Event meeting link will be sent to registered participants the day before each event.

Housing Options: Exploring Alternatives


Free Parent/Guardian Training

Date: Thursday, February 15, 2024

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

via Webinar (Zoom link will be sent following registration)


The journey to safe, affordable and accessible housing for our loved ones can be long, but Minute Man Arc is not standing still. With valuable input from multiple families, we have been refining the micro unit model as a creative and flexible path to living more independently. Details on this option as well as updates on the progress that has been made will be addressed. General housing questions are also welcome.

Andy Richardt joined Minute Man Arc in July 2022 as Housing Development Manager. His passion for creative, affordable and supportive housing inspired a partial career change as Andy now divides his time between Lexington Wealth Management and Minute Man Arc. He is also a co-founder of the Miracle League of Massachusetts which provides an opportunity for those of all ages and abilities to play baseball. Most importantly, Andy is the proud father of 20-year-old Henry, who is working on achieving life’s typical milestones, but on his own schedule. Andy is excited to talk with families about their hopes, dreams and needs related to housing whether that journey has been successful or has not yet begun.

To register for this workshop, R.S.V.P. by Monday, February 12, 2024 to

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

The Jody Acford Conference – Building Interdependence – Practical Tools for Neurodivergent Adulthood

Virtual Conference, March 8, 2024, with the AANE of Watertown, MA. This conference will provide valuable insights and practical tools for Autistic and other Neurodivergent individuals navigating the complexities of adulthood.

  • Emphasizing the importance of interdependence, AANE will offer a day of learning designed to foster capability and confidence in adulthood, including information on healthcare, financial literacy, housing and more.
  • For Cotting parents who have questions about future housing for your students, this conference will have a workshop dedicated to exploring the possibilities – this information can be applicable to adults with a range of disabilities: Finding/Navigating Housing Solutions – Desiree Kameka Galloway from Autism Housing Pathways
  • Conference registrants will gain free access to the 2023 recorded presentations on accessing federal benefits.

Fees apply, registration is required or contact events@aane.org.

John’s Crazy Socks Sixth Annual Autism Can Do Scholarship


There are three scholarships available, with the top prize of $5,000 to advance the winner’s education. Applications are due by March 15, 2024.

To enter, an applicant must live in the United States and be on the autism spectrum. Applicants must have finished high school or be in their last year of high school. They can apply the scholarship to any form of education or skill development.

The application consists of three parts:

  • A simple application form
  • A brief personal statement
  • Submission of a sock design

Learn more and apply here.

Massachusetts Down Syndrome Congress 2024 Conference

Worcester, MA, March 23, 2024. Celebrate MDSC’s 40th Anniversary UnstoppABLE Conference, where the MDSC will mark the organization’s and community’s four decades of Building Brighter Tomorrows.

  • For self-advocates with Down syndrome, as well as parents and caretakers, grandparents and siblings, health care professionals, educators and others.
  • Hear the latest research findings and timely information from regional and national experts on the full range of topics as it relates to Down syndrome.
  • This 40th Anniversary Conference will put a particular focus on the state of research in Down syndrome, including innovative clinical trials, studies and initiatives across the country which promise to improve the lives of people with Down syndrome.
  • Throughout the day, you will have access to dozens of expert-led sessions, each providing invaluable information and resources for all attendees — families with young children through adulthood, educators, medical professionals, siblings, and, of course, self-advocates. information from national and local experts on a range of topics related to Down syndrome.

Fees apply, registration is required or contact 781.221.0024.

Apply for the Waypoint Adventures “Leaders-In-Training” Program!

Are you a young adult (age 16-28) with a disability looking to further develop your leadership skills? Do you love adventure, community and the outdoors? We are accepting applications for our next group of Waypoint Leaders-In-Training! From May through November, join us for an adventure each month alongside an awesome and supportive community, growing as leaders along the way.

The application process includes filling out an application and participating in a short interview, as well as a program fee (scholarships available if needed).


We are looking for applicants who are able to do the following:

  • Have a formal interview with a Waypoint staff member
  • Be reasonably familiar and comfortable with social settings
  • Can participate in group discussions around a theme or goal
  • Can answer open ended questions
  • Can generally follow multi-step instructions or stick to a task independently (or with few prompts)
  • Commit to attending and participating in all LIT programs

Click here to learn more or apply today!

Applications due March 25, 2024.

Save the Date! Disability Connections: A Massachusetts Office on Disability Networking Event

Join the Massachusetts Office on Disability (MOD) for Disability Connections, a networking event for the Massachusetts disability community. Hear about MOD’s latest work promoting accessibility across the Commonwealth, and connect with leaders from local and state government, nonprofit disability services, advocacy groups and all who make up the vibrant Massachusetts disability community.


Disability Connections: A Massachusetts Office on Disability Networking Event

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

10 a.m.-1 p.m.

Mass General Brigham Assembly Row

399 Revolution Drive, Somerville, MA

This event will be live streamed on Zoom. It is free and open to the public. Registration will open in February. ASL interpretation and CART services will be provided.

Summer Camps

Find information on camps for children and teens with disabilities here.

Discover Adaptive Fitness Programs for People with Disabilities

We are redefining fitness for every athlete, including those who are neurodivergent, autistic, have Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, brain injury, ADHD, rare genetic disorders and other special needs.

Explore Our Programs or contact 617.901.0081.

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!
Follow us on social media for more photos, videos & updates!
Facebook  X  Instagram  LinkedIn  YouTube

Categorized in: