Director: Sheryln Brown
The Educational Services Department focuses on the individual skills that every student needs to be as independent as possible through all stages of their lives. Teaching in all the educational programs is conducted in small groups and when needed with one-on-one instruction by teachers, active treatment technicians, and the other specially trained educators. Staff members often use technology as a teaching tool. Specially designed educational materials are used in Educational Services and are frequently based on a client’s educational goals and personal preferences. Additionally, meaningful activities are pre-planned and individualized to make learning interesting and rewarding. Prompt levels from least to most intrusive are implemented as is appropriate to empower every student to achieve their goals and to improve their self-confidence. Some other learning activities available in each educational program are structured classes in cooking, music art, leisure, and computer technology. Further opportunities to promote skill growth are in the participation of aquatics, recreation, and community enrichment/awareness trips.
LIFE SKILLS ADULT EDUCATION PROGRAM
The Life Skills Adult Education Program is designed to meet the needs of individuals with severe/profound intellectual and developmental disabilities who have limited basic skills in self-care, self-determination, problem-solving, and decision-making. A life-skills developmental curriculum and a direct instruction approach are used in this educational program to foster learning. Five of the life-skills developmental areas actively taught are in communication, bathing, grooming, dressing, and personal hygiene. With the area of personal hygiene, improved abilities can be obtained in self-feeding, self-cleaning, and tooth-brushing along with other necessary personal hygiene habits. Additional life-skills developmental areas are sensory awareness, task attendance, and daily living. Social-emotional competencies and fine/gross motor skill developmental can also be achieved in the Life Skills program. Meaningful goals and activities are further incorporated within natural environments in the cottages and the various classrooms at the Stovall School.
STOVALL ADULT EDUCATION PROGRAM
Individuals enrolled in the Stovall Adult Education Program receive intense instruction in functional academics, basic mathematics, and communication skills. Learning modules promoting skills in daily living, language arts, and word recognition are available as well. Lesson plans that increase choice-making, self-monitoring, and self-organizing abilities are also offered in this adult education program. To reinforce learning, preferred tasks, sensory integration, and technology assistance are frequently utilized in group activities. Vocational interest, employment-related skills, and social-emotional competencies are combined with functional academics to ensure that each student experiences success and is afforded many opportunities to progress towards a higher level of independence. Examples of other evidence-based practices implemented within the Stovall Education Program include structured classes, differentiated learning, and systematic instruction.
HOPKINS ADULT EDUCATION PROGRAM
Individual participants of the Hopkins Adult Education Program master skills leading to more independence in many different settings, such as the home or workplace and in the community. Functional academics and daily living are two of the skill areas included in this education program. The three basic types of communication (verbal, non-verbal, and written) are also integrated into class activities and daily routines. Necessary skills for successful employment and community living are emphasized through active goals which increase social-emotional competencies, self-management techniques, and self-advocacy skills. Because the Hopkins Education Program enhances work-related skills, the students’ vocational strengths, career interest, and employment preferences are all determined and documented in their person-centered plans. Additional opportunities to enhance learning are offered through a variety of arts and crafts, small group projects, and unique entrepreneurial ventures. Other employment-related learning experiences involve classroom recycling, greenhouse production, and volunteering options as well as the minimum-wage shredding contracts from several local community businesses.
Education staff in the Community Transition Services Department provide training in many areas including functional academics, daily living, employment skills, community awareness, and self-confidence. Consistent instructional methods which focus on job readiness, money management, banking/budgeting, meal preparation, and community integration are essential elements of this training. Enhancing these skills is necessary to ensure that individuals with intellectual disabilities can actively participate and contribute in the communities in which they live and work. Higher levels of independence in these areas are also important for people to successfully move into more integrated settings.
SENIORS EDUCATION PROGRAM
The Seniors Education Program is designed to specifically address the physical, social, and emotional needs of older adults who are actively retired or prefer a semi-retirement status. Different from the traditional educational settings, this program includes senior citizens, mature adults, and other individuals who are experiencing significant medical challenges or some signs of dementia. Programming is offered that maintains present skill levels and creates new and rewarding experiences by using personal preferences and fun activities. This program is implemented in several cottages and in two seniors’ classrooms in the Stovall Education building. A safe and predictable environment that provides social interactions with friends and novel opportunities to fully enjoy the special events presented throughout the year are at the very heart of the Seniors Program.