Students are referred by their school district to attend Sierra School and are generally in grades K–8 (aged 5 to 14). They face disabilities in a variety of areas, including Autism, Intellectual Disability, Emotional Disability, Multiple Disabilities, Speech and Language Disabilities, Other Health Impairments, Speech and Language Impairment, and more.
We are proud to employ certified special education teachers, marriage and family therapists, a speech therapist, and provide occupational therapy.
By focusing on key areas — academics, behavior modifications, support services, and transition / life planning services — we are able to meet the individual needs of all students through these varied approaches to instruction. Through collaboration with a student’s IEP team, we are able to choose the most appropriate learning model based on a given student’s present levels of performance, social capabilities, motor coordination, and ability to learn in a group setting.
Utilizing four specific instructional rotations, students are assessed academically, gain self-regulation skills, learn with district-aligned academic curriculums, and utilize integrated technology.
Serving students with significant autism and developmental disabilities, our model takes learned skills and practically applies them to the multiple environments in which a student would use those skills. Students spends portions of their day rotating through different modalities of instruction, the length and the frequency of each rotation is individuality designed for each learner and based on their current skills and future goals.
Each student enrolled in the model has individualized behavior programming which is driven by Functional Behavioral Assessments (FBA). We aim to identify the behaviors that continue to disrupt our student’s ability to access their environment and learning. We then use the data collected from the FBA and classroom data to device strategies that get to the root function of the students disrupted behaviors.
There are many Responsibility Club offerings at the Sierra School, among them: Student Government, Auto Club, Art Club, Lawn & Garden Care Club, Yearbook Club, and the Sports League. Clubs take a break over the summer, but they resume each fall, with participation levels higher and higher each year! Responsibility Clubs provide our students with a great opportunity to learn new skills in an area of personal interest to them while also allowing them time to get to meet and socialize with students from classrooms other than their own. Students can belong to a maximum of two clubs at one time and must be on green or blue level in order to attend the bi-monthly meetings. All clubs are interactive and designed and planned to accommodate the needs of our specialized populations.
The clubs also build a sense of community within the student body. Student Government, for example, is responsible for planning our monthly “Big Event,” whereas the Art Club might be responsible for providing the decorations. The different clubs therefore work together to accomplish a joint goal, and this kind of interaction and collaboration provides limitless—and priceless!—opportunities for our students to learn and grow. Overall, the Sierra School’s Responsibility Clubs give Sierra students a chance to participate in enriching activities while joyfully exploring their own personal strengths and preferences. It’s a win-win situation for everyone involved!