Mission and Goals
The Southeastern Massachusetts Educational Collaborative (SMEC) has established a tradition of high quality services for more than 40 years. The SMEC philosophy and mission have been forged from the belief that individuals with disabilities are also individuals with abilities who, when given the opportunity, can and do become productive members of their community.
The SMEC Therapeutic Learning Center was created at the request of several of our member districts as an alternative educational option for young students whose social, emotional, and/or behavioral needs are interfering with their ability to learn within a traditional classroom setting. Our primary program goal is to provide students with intensive instruction in self-regulatory skills so that they can effectively engage in learning, and, ideally, to ultimately facilitate a successful transition back into their community schools.
SMEC’s Therapeutic Learning Center (TLC) is designed for students in grades 1-4 who have not been successful in traditional classroom settings due to their social, emotional and/or behavioral needs. Most of our TLC students are working at or slightly below grade level; students’ academic difficulties, in general, are directly related to their overall emotional regulation.
In order to best meet the needs of our students, TLC offers the following services:
- Tailored academic instruction
- Counseling Services
- Behavior management and support
- Social skills development
- Coping skills development
- Instruction in executive function and self-regulatory skills
- Regular, structured opportunities to generalize skills to community settings
- OT, PT and/or Speech therapy as needed
The Therapeutic Learning Center provides the above services in a highly structured classroom and school environment. We believe that with consistent routines and expectations, direct instruction in needed skills, and the proper supports and scaffolding, all students can and will contribute positively to the classroom community.
TLC employs a wide range of educational and therapeutic theories and methodologies, recognizing that students come to us with different backgrounds, needs and learning styles and that in order to be most impactful, instruction must be tailored to meet the needs of, and build on the strengths of, each individual learner.
In addition to direct instruction in social, coping and self-regulatory skills in individual and group settings, these skills and related expectations are embedded into all academic instruction and school routines. Students are taught to understand and effectively manage their emotional reactions to situations in order to respond in a manner that is respectful, responsible and safe.