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socialcompSocial competence is a key deficit area for most high functioning autistic spectrum disorder children. Our social competence program is based on the principles that social skills must be learned in context and the students need for a safe environment with genuine opportunity to form friendships and acquire social competence, a key step in mastering social skills.

In social understanding is a major component of our everyday classes. Students learn about non-verbal communication including facial expressions and body language, the “hidden curriculum”, manners in different contexts, the process of making friends, learning personal boundaries, trying new things, dating and relationships, and will have time to address various issues that are either student generated or Ridge School Team generated.

Teachers are trained to teach social skills and promote social understanding throughout the day, both in and out of class, and either when a particular subject presents an opportunity to explore a social practice, or when a situation arises among students that can become a teachable moment for social understanding and skill building. With gentle guidance, encouragement, and instruction, students learn the social competency they need to make friends and develop personal relationships, interact with others in public, and function successfully in the workplace.