Melmark Breaks Ground on a New School Building to Serve Special Education Students on the South Shore of Boston
[Stoughton, MA] Melmark has teamed with Maggiore Construction Corporation along with Roth and Seelen, Inc. to design and build a new Melmark New England school facility in Stoughton, Massachusetts.
Groundbreaking for the school building, which will provide state-of-the-art and fully accessible special education learning and recreational environments, took place on Tuesday, January 24, 2023.
The new school is scheduled to open in May. Melmark’s New England division currently serves 132 students at its Andover school and the new school opening in Stoughton will serve up to 84 students, providing new opportunities for school districts, students, and families in need of clinically sophisticated educational services. The new school will also increase job opportunities for those seeking to work with highly skilled leaders in special education.
Melmark New England day schools are fully approved and licensed by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and serve students, ages three to 22, who require an intensive, individualized educational approach with a behavioral framework designed in an educationally appropriate learning environment. Students who attend Melmark schools typically have a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder and other intellectual and developmental disabilities, which may be secondary to complex behavioral profiles. Melmark New England is a member of the Massachusetts Association of 766 Approved Private Schools (MAAPS).
“This is a poignant time in the history of Melmark, this is a project that was slated to start during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are thrilled to stay focused on the needs of families in our communities. We are collaborating with school professionals, families, and other stakeholders to share information about the opportunities our new school will make available, as we are keenly aware of the critical, growing need for the evidence-based services we offer. The new school building will support spacious, intentionally designed classroom environments with innovative tools for learning and skills building. This growth in MA reflects our mission and strategic goal to serve children in diverse and inclusive communities who need and deserve Melmark’s specialized special education services to reach their best outcomes,” said Rita M. Gardner, M.P.H., LABA, BCBA, CDE® Melmark President and CEO.
The opening of a new Melmark day school in Stoughton coincides with Melmark’s 25th anniversary year serving children and adults in New England. The highly specialized special education services Melmark is renowned for have already received a warm welcome from parents and educators in the region who are aware of the critical need for clinically sophisticated special educational services in the area.
The new building will be a 31,000 square foot, one-story structure designed to meet the student population’s accessibility needs and ADA requirements. The new building will provide grade-level access to classrooms and other resources in 14 classrooms, clinical support spaces, offices, and fully accessible restrooms. A lunchroom will provide more meaningful social interaction opportunities for students, and offer a larger space for professional development and training as Melmark continues to emphasize commitment to its highly skilled and diverse workforce.
During the groundbreaking ceremony, Gardner shared her pride as a founding leader of Melmark New England and thanked the generous donors bolstering the organization’s financial commitment to this new building and the gold standard Melmark is known for in the field of evidence-based special education services. “Melmark is a transformational place for many students and their families. The staff we employ are highly skilled, well supported, and their mission-first dedication to students is unmatched,” said Gardner. She added, “We believe every child has a right to their Free and Appropriate Public Education and we are extraordinarily proud to provide exceptional educational services for students in New England.”
Melmark is a not-for-profit human service organization providing clinically sophisticated evidence-based special education, residential, vocational and therapeutic services for children and adults with autism spectrum disorders, developmental and intellectual disabilities, acquired brain injuries and other neurological and genetic disorders. All specialized special education services are based on the principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA) and are designed based on each student’s individual needs. Recognized as one of the leading providers in the country, Melmark has a combined staff of over 1,200 at its service divisions in Pennsylvania, New England, and the Carolinas and serves 500 individuals from across the country.
Maggiore Construction Corporation provides skilled construction management and property development services for commercial, residential, industrial, and specialty markets in New England. Visit www.maggiore.co for more information.
Roth & Seelen, Inc., is a full-service architectural firm specializing in new construction, renovation, and interior design projects for educational, institutional, corporate, and commercial clients. Visit www.rothseelen.com for more information.
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