Back-to-school is an annual rite of passage that typical kids can take for granted each September and thanks to the Sunshine Children’s Home in Ossining, that’s even true for kids whose lives are anything but typical. The young residents of this unique pediatric nursing facility have medical needs so severe or complex that living or attending school off premises is not possible–so at Sunshine, a team of special educators, therapists and paraprofessionals bring the school experience to them.
“Every child is entitled to learn, grow and discover their own potential in a safe, loving and engaging educational environment, regardless of the medical challenges they face. We are deeply committed to providing that through Sunshine’s school program,” says Linda Mosiello, Administrator at the Sunshine Children’s Home; she describes a collaborative approach at Sunshine which encourages parents to become their children’s best education advocates. Our social workers are always available to ensure parents can stay informed and involved.”
Sunshine’s bright, colorful classrooms and innovative programs are carefully designed to support the children’s cognitive, physical and social/emotional development at every stage:
Newborn – Age 3
Sunshine’s Early Intervention Program (EIP) is a statewide program contracted with the Department of Health as both an evaluation site and provider of EI services. Sunshine’s youngest residents learn through interactive free play, gross/fine motor activity, story time, music and more. Educational outings such as apple picking, the botanical gardens and more help support community integration and social interaction.
The Sunshine Kids’ Clubhouse for Learning and Play, a state-approved, full-day preschool program, uses exploration and discovery to promote confidence, creativity and lifelong critical thinking skills.Students with cognitive and physical challenges benefit from a multisensory developmental approach to learning.
Putnam/Northern Westchester BOCES has established a satellite, full-day school program for students with unique care needs who also receive medically-supervised care by Sunshine’s clinical team, including physicians, nurses and respiratory therapists. Staff follow the well-established Pines Bridge School community-based model to provide students with a safe, creative and stimulating learning environment that invites students to learn, explore and reach their maximum potential and level of independence.
Sunshine offers many volunteer opportunities through programs such as the Sunshine’s Cuddles Club, Reading Circle, Play Groups, Tuck In program, events and outings. For more info or to set an appointment for a tour, please contact Paula Listi: firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 914-333-7090.