Personal Academic Teaching Horizons
The PATH Program is a personalized and supportive self-contained academic program within the Ringwood Public Schools that provides a small, structured environment to foster independent learning for students who may struggle with learning, communication, or multiple disabilities.
The PATH program follows each student’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP), which contains individualized modifications and goals and objectives that address skills necessary to access New Jersey Common Core State Standards (CCSS).
A continuum of program options is available as it is our goal to make sure all students are placed in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE). Students are able to be mainstreamed into inclusion settings with general education peers for physical education, music, art, media center / technology, lunch/recess, and other academic classes depending on the student's IEP. The IEP team individualizes each student’s program to meet his/her specific needs.
The PATH program educates students grades kindergarten through eighth grade and has three separate multi-grade level classrooms servicing students K-3, 4-5, and 6-8. The PATH program is staffed by a special education teacher and trained paraprofessionals. Students have access to the Ringwood Public Schools staff of School Psychologists, Social Workers, LDT-C, and School Counselors. Our classes are all equipped with state of the art SMARTBoard technology and maintain a low student to staff ratio.
Life Skills development is crucial in developing independent learners. As part of the PATH program students receive twice monthly, group Life Skills training from a School Psychologist and/or Social Worker that addresses the following areas: communication skills, safety awareness, interpersonal skills, personal finance, personal skills, self-esteem/awareness, social responsibility, citizenship, and executive functioning skills. These life skills are also integrated into the grade level curriculum and reviewed daily by the classroom teacher.
School-based Speech and Language, Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy services are provided as per each student’s IEP.
Speech-Language Pathologists may address the following areas: articulation, expressive / receptive language, voice, fluency, conversational skills, and auditory processing skills.
Occupational Therapists may address the following areas: fine motor skills, sensory motor integration, visual / perceptual deficits, and assistive technology.
Physical Therapists may address the following areas: postural control, balance, strength and stability, motor control and coordination, endurance, functional mobility and accessibility within the educational environment, and gross motor skills.
Extended School Year (ESY):
The PATH program offers a 20-day Extended School Year program that runs during the month of July, which continues a challenging academic program to maximize student growth as well as enjoyable activities. The Extended School Year program helps avoid summer regression and makes for a smoother transition to the new school year. Enrollment in the ESY program is determined by each student's IEP team.
Family Communication / Collaboration:
Communication with families is critical in meeting the needs of all students. Teachers regularly keep in touch with families regarding both academic and social/emotional progress. Progress is formally shared three times a year via report cards and progress reports on how students are developing towards meeting their individualized goals and objectives.
If you are a Ringwood family and interested in having your child attend the PATH program please contact your case manager. For non-Ringwood families, please contact your local case manager and ask them to call the Ringwood Director of Special Services, Mr. Steven Fiedeldey, at (973) 962-7063 x32 and request that they forward the following:
(1) Your child’s current IEP
(2) Most recent child study team evaluations
(3) Current reports from teachers / therapists / specialists
These records can be emailed to Mr. Steven Fiedeldey, Director of Special Services at firstname.lastname@example.org or faxed to (973) 962-0362.
After your information is reviewed, your local case manager will be contacted to arrange an intake appointment. Your local district case manager, the student, and his/her parents/guardians should all plan on attending the intake appointment. This intake appointment allows the district case manager and family to visit our classrooms and our staff to meet with the student. Please allow one hour for the intake appointment.
Question: Can non-Ringwood students attend the PATH Program?
Answer: Yes! The PATH program accepts tuition-in students from outside of Ringwood. Please refer to the admissions section on how to enroll in the PATH program.
Question : Does my child need a specific classification to attend the PATH program?
Answer : Students with all different classifications and diagnoses are accepted into the PATH program including but not limited to: Specific Learning Disability, Communication Impaired, Multiply Disabled, and Other Health Impaired. Our placement decisions are based on student need, not classification.
Question : Can my child receive physical therapy as part of the PATH program?
Answer : Yes, all related services are determined by the IEP team and outlined in each student's IEP. For non-Ringwood students, your local district must contract directly with the Ringwood School’s physical therapist or another provider of your choice as physical therapy is not included in the cost of tuition. These providers work seamlessly with the PATH staff to make sure your child’s needs are met.
Question : My child’s IEP calls for a Reading Specialist as a related service, can this be offered as part of the PATH program?
Answer : Yes, all related services are determined by the IEP team and outlined in each student’s IEP. For non-Ringwood students, Occupational and Speech and Language services are part of the standard contract, while a Reading Specialist can be included to the contract for an additional fee. All related service providers work seamlessly with the PATH staff to make sure your child’s needs are met.