Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Wrapping Up the Year!

Spring is Here and We're Wrapping Up the Year:
I cannot believe we are half-way through May- this year has certainly flown by!  Looking back, I realize that I have not done a blog in over a month and so much has been going on. Our Unified Sports Bowling team finished up their season and Basketball began and will be finishing up soon.There have been many Positivity Project assemblies, concerts, art shows, the Jr Prom and the Sr Ball- all of which we have had students participate in. In the next month we will have so many other events going on across the District: Special Olympics, field days, moving-up ceremonies, and of course graduation. I will continue to try to keep you posted on things going on in District and around our community.

The Year End Picnic will be coming up on June 30, 2018 at Shove Park from 1:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m.  Please stay tuned for more information. The group is starting to plan for next year and would like to expand the support they provide families. They are looking for new members to join and be part of their organization.  Please see their link on the Special Education quick link on the West Genesee webpage or click here.

Summer Activities
The Exceptional Family Resources Manual has many supports, services, and activities for students and families. There is information about behavioral supports, counseling, Medicaid Coordination, and trainings as well as recreation and leisure activities. Some of the activities include Abilities Fitness, Arise at the Farm and a variety of sports opportunities. You can find the resource manual here.

I love to share information that parents pass on to me so if you have any information that you think others could benefit from, please forward it to me.

I hope you can get outside and enjoy the warmer weather that is finally here!


Saturday, March 24, 2018

Now that Spring is here and the sun is shining more, I am hoping we can all get out and enjoy some nicer weather.  There are a few events coming up I wanted to share.

The Westside Support Network:
The Westside Support Network is a group of community stakeholders who meet regularly to help plan and provide resources and supports for our community in the areas of mental health wellness and substance abuse awareness.  On Tuesday, March 27 from 6:00pm-8:00pm  at the West Genesee High School upper gym the group will be holding an evening to explore mental wellness and substance abuse disorder.  There will be speakers and breakout sessions to learn more about these topics.


WG SEPTSA has their yearly Resource Fair coming up March 29 6:30pm-8:30pm in the WGHS library.   They have 30+ vendors lined up to participate  This fair gives families the opportunity to talk to staff from local agencies that can provide support and activities for students with special needs. Some of the groups that will be there are ARC of Onondaga, ARISE, Bluebird Music Together, Camillus Massage, Discovery Toys, Starbridge, Upstate, CNY Autism Consulting, OCC, Orenda Springs, SUPAC, EFR, Syracuse University, Kelberman Center, David's Refuge, NYS OPWDD, Families Together NYS/ Youth Power, Parent To Parent NYS, Gigi's Playhouse, Access CNY, Hutchings Crisis Respite, Epilepsy-Pralid, Hope Network, Advocates, Provisions Bakery & Yogibo.

Autism Walk:
April is Autism Awareness month.  The CNY Autism Society Association Autism Walk is being held April 15 at Longbranch Park.  For more information about the walk and other events for the month of April go to the CNYASA website, here.

Enjoy spring as the weather warms up- hopefully soon!


Tuesday, February 13, 2018

The Year is Flying By!

Well, our annual review season is in full swing. It's hard to believe that the year is over half down and we are starting to plan for next school year already, the year is flying by! 

As you prepare for and attend your child's annual review meeting, please be sure to ask any questions you have about next year. Review your child's IEP when you get it in the mail and contact their current teacher if you have any questions. For parents of students moving to middle or high school, we will have a special education teacher teacher from the building they are moving up to attend the annual review so you can ask questions about the transition. We value your input into the planning as your child moves on each year.

What's Going On Around Town

Caregiver Support Group:

The East Area YMCA is partnering with Show Them How Smart You Are to bring together those who care for individuals with Autism and special needs. Feel free to join to build relationships with other caregivers, and :on you. The first meeting is Friday January 26 and they will continue to meet on the 4th Friday of each month 6:30-7:30 p.m. For more information contact Morgan Ruggeri, Inclusion Director at (315) 637-2025 ext. 211 or


The WG SEPTSA has a new new email address, if you need to contact them it's now

There are a few WG SEPTSA events coming up so mark your calendars.

Fairmount Fire Department Fish Dinners. Fairmount Fire Department Fish Dinners. The Fairmount Fire Department has generously chosen the WG SEPTSA to help at each supper and will provide us a percentage of their profits after the last dinner, the only fundraiser the WG SEPTSA conducts. The first dinner is Wednesday, February 14 from 4:00 p.m. and every Friday thereafter, February 16, February 23, March 2, March 9, March 16, March 23, and March 30.  

Resource Fair: The WG SEPTSA will host a Resource Fair on Thurs, March 29 from 6:30-8:30 PM in the high school library. Many have benefited from this opportunity to speak individually with representatives from dozens of local businesses and agencies which provide support & services to families who have a child with a disability. 

Other Upcoming Events

Transition after High School Event
ARISE and Cayuga Onondaga BOCES are co-sponsoring "Mission: Transition, Life After High School" a Transition Fair for high school students to be held at the Cayuga Onondaga BOCES Campus on March 22, 2017 from 9:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Students and families will learn about the options available to young adults to guide them through the process of transitioning from high school to employment and/or secondary education. There will be information tables with representatives from local agencies which provide post high school services that may be available to students and parents such as independent living services, employment services, social/recreation programs, transportation, military service, as well as information on benefits counseling. Light refreshments will be provided. For further information, contact Sara Douglass or 255-3447 x318 ( or Alyssa Militello at (315) 671-4656 (

SUPAC Events:
The Syracuse University Parent Advocacy Center offers many workshops throughout the year.  Click for their webpage to get information on a variety of upcoming events on topics such as Understanding Diploma and Credential Options for Students with Disabilities on February 28 and  Transition from Preschool to Kindergarten: CPSE to CSE on March 15.  Information and registration for these and other workshops are on the web page.

Enjoy what is left of this crazy winter weather; spring will be here soon enough!  And as always, please contact us if there is anything we can help with.


Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Valentine's Celebration for High School Students

High School Valentine's Day Celebration

The West Genesee Student Council is working to help include our students with disabilities into more events in the building so they can develop connections with peers.They will be hosting a Valentine's Day event for our high school aged students. Here is an excerpt from the letter they sent home to parents:

The West Genesee High School Student Council is hosting a Valentine's Day Celebration on February 13 from 2-3:30pm in Cafe 1. We would like to be unified in meeting the needs of all students and their social integration,comfort and sense of belonging in the high school. This celebration is geared toward promoting positive social connections and a fun outlet for our students. Your son/daughter is invited to attend.  There will be staff assistance at this event.

Student council members will be buddied up to students that attend and students will choose from options  such as dancing, crafts, and games. We want all students to feel connected and a part of their home school. Student Council would like to expand the concept of unified into our school setting in addition to the athletics. 

The students should have received a letter from their special education teachers with a permission slip to return if they would like to attend. If you have any questions about this event, please contact School Counselors Maura Secor or Lauren Navarra.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Unified Sports Update

Well, it seems the snow finally stopped and we may have a bit of a warm spell this week! The snow sure looks beautiful but the temperatures were way too cold for me.

I just wanted to share an update with you all regarding our Unified Sports. As you remember, last year our District joined the inaugural year for Unified Sport in Section III. The basketball program was wonderful for all involved; even the spectators.

This year Mr. Burns our Athletic Director has worked to add a Unified Sports Bowling team to our District. We are excited to have this available for all of our 9-12 grade students starting this month with basketball to follow once the bowling season is done in early April.

Here are the details for the Unified  Sports Bowling team. You can register for the team on the Athletics webpage from the District site. If you have any questions regarding the Unified Sports Program, please contact Mike Burns, Athletic Director at 315-487-4560.

  • Practices (3): 2 the week of 1/29 and 1 the week of  2/5 (on our own...home lanes after school)
  • Matches (4): 2/8, 2/13, 2/15, 2/27 (Strike and Spare)
  • Culminating Event (1): 3/1 (Strike and Spare)

  • ​3 rounds
  • 3 scoring matches per round
  • 2 of the matches during a round are comprised of 1 partner & 1 athlete, the third match in a round will be comprised of 2 athletes and 2 partners.
  • A team combines their scores and earns one point for a win over an opponent (total of 9 points available; 3 points per round)
  • Teams can be switched up at the end of each round
  • Minimally, you will need 4 partners and 4 athletes to field a full squad.
  • Extra competitors can compete in exhibition matches.
  • Ramps are allowed for students that need them.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

December is Flying By!

It is hard to believe it is already December already;  this year is flying by! The snow is flying and it is time to think of activities to keep children busy. As everyone gets ready for the holidays and upcoming winter weather I wanted to share a couple additional upcoming opportunities that a parent has shared with me.

Social Skills Group
The question about a local social skills program comes up on a regular basis. The Department of Psychology at Syracuse University is offering a 10 week Social Skills program for children ages 7-12 with Autism Spectrum Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder who experience social difficulties beginning in late January/early February. Contact Heather Potts at for more information.    

Fit Families Program at Syracuse University
Luis Columna, Ph.D from Syracuse University is in the process of recruiting families for their spring FIT Families program. They are looking for parents of students ages 4-12 to participate. Click here for more information about this program. They are also looking for input from parents of autistic students who are of Hispanic decent. For information regarding this click on this link.

Wizard of Oz
Syracuse Stage will be doing a sensory friendly performance of the Wizard of Oz on December 30, 2017.  Click here for details.

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season with your families and friends!

Happy Holidays!


Thursday, November 16, 2017

Fall is Here!

Fall is Really Here Now!

Well it certainly feels like fall now with the chilly nights and the leaves falling. Hopefully, everyone was able to enjoy the extra doses of warm weather we had earlier this fall. It has been wonderful to get out and visit classes and talk with teachers as we moved quickly through this first quarter of school; there are a lot of great things happening!

Upcoming Events

As we are quickly approaching the winter season I will try to share upcoming events for families and students I as I hear of them. Here are a couple of upcoming events.

The WGSEPTSA  has shared some information on Special Olympics Winter Training. Please click here for more information.

The Syracuse City Ballet will be holding a sensory friendly performance of The Nutcracker on December 3 and 10:00 a.m. at the OnCenter Crouse Hinds Theater. Click here for a flyer for the event.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving!