The Children's Institute (TCI) was recently named among the 50 best private schools for special needs by Master's in Special Education Program Guide, and among the 15 best specifically for individuals with developmental disabilities. The list was published on the Guide's website in September.

Schools were selected using the following criteria:

  • Licensed and/or accredited by an appropriate entity relative to the type of services they provide;
  • Low faculty to student ratio allowing for individualized instruction when possible;
  • Community outreach or support as students re-enter the mainstream;
  • Financial assistance or paid for (at least in part) with funding from local school districts.

For more than 50 years, The Children's Institute, located in Verona and Livingston, NJ has been developing the academic, social, behavioral, communication, life and career skills of children, adolescents, and young adults across the autism spectrum and with related disabilities. At TCI the disability does not define the individual – we push the boundaries of traditional autism services. Staff focus on educating the whole individual and helping each person to discover talents, develop self-worth and value unique abilities in order to maximize opportunities for independence, self-direction, citizenship, and community integration.  TCI uses an array of evidence-based strategies including Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA), Differentiated Instruction, and Universal Design to engage students. 

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"Being included on the list of best private schools for special needs is a testament to the TCI family of over 200 dedicated and talented staff members, caring parents, and incredible students," says Dr. Bruce Ettinger, TCI Executive Director. "We are proud to work in an environment where everyone values an educational program that promotes the growth and success of every student's future."

TCI offers preschool/elementary school, middle school, and high school. Those needing assistance to transition from high school to adulthood can benefit from TCI’s Young Adult Program for ages 18-21.  Additionally, TCI offers The Center for Independence, for adults over 21.  TCI is accredited by the National Commission for the Accreditation of Special Education Services (NCASES) and is a NJ Department of Education state-approved school. TCI is a member of ASAH, The Alliance of Private Special Education Schools of North Jersey, Autism New Jersey, and the New Jersey Educational Computing Cooperative. Learn more about The Children’s Institute.

The mission of the Master's in Special Education Program Guide is to provide high-quality, well-researched education and career resources for individuals considering a master's in special education or related field. Resources and information on the site include accredited degree program listings and rankings, articles about trends in special education, career resources, frequently-asked questions about special education degrees and careers, and links for further information. Read the full article about the best private schools for special needs.