Beard School is a specialty Chicago Public School that services students with special needs from Pre- K to 3rd grade. Age ranges of students attending Beard are from 3 to 8 years old. Programs are designed to have an academic focus integrated with social and emotional learning skills. Staff members are highly trained specialists in working with students on the spectrum of autism. Teaching models and curriculums used at Beard include ABA, TEACCH, PECS, Unique Learning Systems, News-2-You and VBA. Beard has two instructional half day Pre-K programs that service students with special needs requiring additional supports. In addition to our specialty programs, we also have a blended preschool program comprised of general education students from the neighborhood along with preschool students with special needs. Placement and enrollment into Beard are completed only through the Office of Diverse Learners Supports and Services.
Instruction throughout the school is highly differentiated to address the individual learning styles of our students. Home-school software programs that supplement academics include Raz Kids, IXL.com, Compass Learning, Starfall, Envision, BrainPOP Jr. and other instructional apps.
In house therapeutic services are also provided by a team of highly qualified clinicians. Beard School provides services to students in psychology, social work, speech, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and nursing based on IEP eligibility and student needs.
The extended school day has afforded students an increase in instructional minutes in the common core subjects of Reading, Math, Social Studies and Science. Students have specialized classes in Adaptive P.E., Art, Music, and Library. Over the course of the year, students will also engage in the following additional enrichment programs at Beard: Red Kite - Children’s Theater Thera-play program, Special Olympics Young Athletes Program, MeMoves, Partners in Play with Edison Gifted Regional School, IPAD Photography, Children’s Puppet Theater, Garden Science in the exploratory outdoor classroom, Science Fair, Social Skills Development, Xbox Dance, Yoga, and Cooking.
Beard School has received a Creative Schools Certification of Category 1, “Excelling” in the Fine Arts. In addition, Beard School is very fortunate to be one of the few schools in the state of Illinois to have a certified nature explore outdoor classroom developed by stakeholders of the school. The school is located on the northwest corner of Jefferson Park in Chicago near the intersections of Nagle and Gunnison.