Cotting School Innovation and Excellence Through the Years

  • Cotting School celebrates its 125th anniversary and launches first
    capital campaign in 30 years,
    Embracing Our Legacy, Building Our Future.
  • Cotting moves to a 14 - acre campus in Lexington to provide more students with a spacious, light - filled building and opportunities for recreation.
  • Chapter 766 becomes law, entitling all children with disabilities to a free and appropriate education from ages 3 - 22.
  • Ten years in, the Trustees build the School’s first permanent home at 241 St. Botolph Street. By 1926, an addition funded largely by a bequest from Isabella Stewart Gardner triples the size of the building.
  • Cotting School, America’s first school for children with physical disabilities, is founded in Boston by Drs. Edward Bradford and Augustus Thorndike. In the first year, volunteer teacher Mary Perry teaches 7 students with polio, tuberculosis of the spine, and injuries due to industrial accidents.

Looking Ahead

Looking ahead, we have developed a sound, realistic response that provides more collaborative spaces for planning and learning, dedicated spaces for what we know our students need today, with the flexibility built in to allow us to adjust to the future learning needs of our community.

Continued investment in our academic program is our first priority. Our dedicated professional development sessions spent building curriculum materials specific for our students’ diverse learning needs and styles offer the best returns on student outcomes. Moreover, we know that this investment enables us to attract and retain remarkable special educators who are invigorated by this collaborative model.

We want to ensure that all classrooms are optimally sized and outfitted to best serve the academic, vocational, and transition needs of our students for years to come. Our next phase of classroom reconfiguration will relocate and reconfigure our Transition and Vocational, Technology, and Library spaces to increase flexibility and better equip us to fully actualize curriculum changes already in progress, such as small groups of students engaged in differentiated instruction.

Building two new classrooms to house Performing and Visual Arts will yield adequate spaces to enhance current arts programming and offer older students a chance to explore after school arts classes such as filmmaking, music technology, and photography.

For some time now, it has been apparent that we have outgrown our undersized current gym. Our athletic programs have become more accessible and popular because they enhance students’ social connections and sense of wellness. A new gym will increase access for our students, families, and community.

Cotting School Annual Reports

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