About Project Assist
Project Assist (PA) is a service that originated in 2005 at the request of local Superintendents of Schools who recognized the occasional need for consultative assistance with school initiatives. These school activities be inordinately time consuming due to their complexity and timing. In essence, this service is targeted assistance wherein a school district, as the client, defines the scope of services desired and PA aligns specialized human resources and proven paradigms for success.
PA has offered highly qualified expertise to school superintendents and school committees in their effort to provide school services that are competent, efficient and cost-effective. PA employs consultants with demonstrated skills who are typically drawn from the ranks of experienced Superintendents, Business Managers, Administrators of Special Education, Principals and Transportation Directors.
Dr. Joseph Gilbert
508-420-6950 x 12
Project Assist Services
Our staff of consultants can be available on short notice and for varying lengths of time, including multi-year projects. Both informal and formal assistance to districts is provided in the following areas:
- State Audits (DOE, DOR, PQA, EQA, SBAB Assistance)
- Strategic Planning
- Accreditation (New England, Massachusetts, Vocational Schools)
- School Finance (Chapter 70, Special Education, Circuit Breaker, Regional Districts)
- Data Analysis (Municipal Finances, Town Population/Growth, District/Regional Finances)
- Transportation (Bids, SPED Programs)
- School Building/Renovations (Training Building Committee, Finance Analysis, Financial Projections)
- Training (School Committee, Individual Administrators, Administrative Team)
- Negotiations (Teachers, Central Office, Secretarial Staff, Nurses, Maintenance, Paraprofessionals, Transportation Contracts)
- School Maintenance
- Grant Development
- No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Reports
- Annual Yearly Progress (AYP) Analysis (Regular Ed./Vocational Programs, Curriculum)
Autism Spectrum Disorders
Small class size allows students to learn at their own rate, supported by a high staff-to-student ratio. Academics and vocational skills are modified aimed at increasing attending, organization and independence. Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks serve as a foundation and all students required (by chronological grade level), participate in the MCAS or MCAS Alternative Assessment. Social skills are supported through direct lessons, facilitated reverse inclusion activities, participation in school-based activities, community outings, and home/family support.
Teaching approach may include:
- Incidental and naturalistic teaching
- Applied Behavior Analysis (including, but not limited to Discrete Trial Training and Pivotal Response Training)
- TEACCH influence
- Visual supports (schedules, contracts, organizational tools, sequencing, etc.)
- Augmentative Communication (e.g. PECS, Voice-Output device, etc.)
- Structured teaching
- Structured classroom environment
Research supports that a variety of methodologies, especially focused on intensive early instruction can improve a student’s ability to attend and discriminate information around them. Interventions may be implemented 1:1, pairs or small group, or within large group instruction through a variety of methodologies.
Developmental Training Class
The program works in consultation with OT, PT, Speech and nursing to promote attending and independence to the best of the student’s ability. Individual health care plans, feeding programs, and equipment needs are developed to support individual needs. Assistive technology is explored to promote student access and active participation.
Emotional Disorders/Behavior Disorders
The EBD classrooms support students with diagnoses including: ADHD, Bipolar, Asperger Syndrome, Mood Disorder, PTSD, and other emotional or trauma-based needs. There is an understanding that addressing the emotional and behavioral needs of students in a proactive manner will bring about educational success. The program incorporates a framework of a positive and supportive school environment. Staff are trained in de-escalation techniques and focus on helping children develop trusting relationships with peers and adults. Collaboration with community collaterals is incorporated to support home/school communication.
The program incorporates a level system based on five points of respect: Self, Peers, Adults, Personal Space, and Materials/Environment. Each point has a minimum of 10 check-in opportunities within the school day building to a possible 50 points per day. This provides ongoing reinforcement and facilitation for interactions through the student’s day. A token economy system is also built into the program system. All students begin on “yellow” level and earn points/privileges to advance to “green” and then “blue” levels. The teaching of emotional/behavior regulation is embedded within the program protocols. Consultation with social worker, behaviorist, occupational therapist and speech therapists builds teaching of regulation and social skills