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Meliora Academy (Meliora) is a private educational program designed to provide intensive and comprehensive educational services to students with autism spectrum and related disorders. Meliora’s special education program provides students with an integrated curriculum model designed specifically to reduce the fragmented learning that often occurs with youngsters on the autism spectrum. Based on the findings of an initial comprehensive assessment, a data-based instructional curriculum as part of a transdisciplinary teaching program is designed for each individual student utilizing research-based interventions including, but not limited to, ABA. While direct instruction across all domains occurs intensively, an emphasis is placed on the development of language and communication, relatedness, cognitive flexibility and social cognition across all curriculum areas in the context of functional real-life activities. Specific individualized behavior support programs are developed to assist students in decreasing inappropriate behaviors and learning positive behavioral alternatives. Given the needs of our students, a 1:1 ratio of staff to student is provided at the outset. As students progress, small group and finally classroom instruction is offered when appropriate. Meaningful inclusion is supported, use of district curriculum materials modified to the student’s level and participation in the student’s home school district are encouraged when students possess the necessary skills. Services to support a smooth transition process, as our students enter post-secondary, is provided through out the transition program. This program is designed to ensure that the necessary skills are acquired, as well as adequate services provided, to make the transition to life a smooth journey for our young adults. Meliora is committed to working with parents, families and community settings in order to ensure generalization of student skills across contexts.
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