A Message To Parents of Students Who Are New to Cotting School

David Manzo, President


I want to warmly welcome each of you to Cotting School. I am sure you have a variety of emotions– anticipation, excitement, nervousness and hope.

Our first job is to introduce you to our school family. To make you feel welcomed and listened to. Please pause and take a deep breath and be assured that your child is in good hands.

You will hear a great deal of information in your first few weeks at Cotting School. In each message you hear, one theme should come through again and again. We want you to know that we want to be partners with you in the education of your child. We want to work together!

About Cotting School

Let me offer a few observations about Cotting School:

First, Cotting is a place of contradictions and surprises. Here, sometimes things are not always as they appear to be.

When people come to visit the school for the first time, they often expect to see kids who are sad and staff who are tired. They find the opposite is true. Our students are happy and our staff is energized and creative.

Second, Cotting prides itself on exceptional care for children that I often describe by two seemingly opposite adjectives: tough and tender.

I find tenaciousness in our students. They each have a fighting spirit, an “I can do it” toughness that has helped each of them overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles. At the same time there is tenderness as they treat others with exquisite kindness.

Third, in many ways, the world often measures success the wrong way: where do you live, how many things to you own, how much money do you make or how much does your car cost? This is the wrong way to measure success.

To assess the true measure of success you need to answer the following question: Did YOU do your BEST with the gifts that YOU were given?

Each of our students has special talents and our job is to bring those talents forward.

What Can You Expect from Cotting School

Here are seven things you can expect from us:

Safety – Your child will be safe at school.

Professional and Skillful Work with Children – You will see this professional and skillful work in every department at Cotting.

Partnership and Respect – We will treat you and your child with respect. We will see you as partners in caring for your child. We will welcome your input. There may be times that we don’t agree. But we will work together, listen and treat you with respect.

Responsiveness and Timeliness – We will respond rapidly to your calls or emails. Our standard is that every call from a parent is returned within 24 hours or less.

Innovation –Cotting will develop innovations and solutions that are tailored to the specific needs of your child.

Excellence –Your child will receive an excellent education at Cotting. I can only imagine the obstacles that you and your child have faced to be here today. You have a right to expect a great deal from us and we will deliver.

Generosity of Spirit – There is a warmth here, a good humor and a generous spirit of caring. You will see it in how the staff work with each other and how the students enjoy each other.


In the weeks and months ahead I hope that you have the opportunity to appreciate the passion for education and commitment to excellent care that embodies every one of our staff members from our reception and secretarial staff, to our kitchen and maintenance crews, to our teachers, specialists, nurses, therapists and administrators.

They are here because each one is committed to independence and success for your child. Each member of our staff knows that you have placed the education and care of your child, your most precious gift, in our hands. And I would add, the hands of the finest special education school faculty and staff in the nation.

Together we join in a partnership, a team. At Cotting we believe that the teamwork of parents and staff makes us all stronger. Thanks for joining the great Cotting School tradition where teaching independence means building opportunities.

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