BRIDGES Program

The BRIDGES Program at University School is an innovative, personalized, and technologically rich educational experience for students in grades 1-5 who have mild to moderate learning disabilities and average to gifted intelligence. Unique to this intervention program, students benefit from the academic excellence and social environment of University School and the educational support and services of Nova Southeastern University.

Philosophy

The BRIDGES Program at University School provides an environment that optimizes learning potential by focusing on the distinct learning style of the individual student. The program believes in the development of intellect and character in a safe, nurturing environment that supports mutual trust between student, staff members, and family. Classes are held in self-contained classrooms with instruction presented both individually and in small groups. We believe that students learn best when the instruction and classroom environment match their specific learning needs, based on sound educational theory and research.

Curriculum

Early intervention provides young children with a foundation for future success. The academic curriculum is based on the University School’s scope and sequence of instruction and differentiates the method and rate of instruction to fit each child’s individual needs. Teachers develop individual programming that focuses on academic and organizational skills, as well as interpersonal relationships. Each student’s plan is based on clinical diagnoses, classroom assessments, personal learning strengths, and other student’s interests and talents. Teachers implement research-based instruction that addresses students’ academic and social needs. Teachers communicate with parents regularly to report progress through written reports and personal conferences. Students receive content instruction, science, social studies, and Mind Lab, in the grade level classroom with their age group peers. Each student participates in age-appropriate University School activities including art, music, word processing, physical education, and extracurricular activities.

Staff

The staff in the BRIDGES Program has been selected for their accomplishments in the field of Special Education.  The team includes full-time Master’s level teachers with practical experience in Special Education and full-time assistant teachers. The support team includes a Speech and Language Therapist, an Occupational Therapist, a School Psychologist, and an administrator with extensive experience in Special Education.

Admissions

The BRIDGES Program at University School seeks to accept students of average to above average intelligence who are experiencing learning difficulties in traditional school settings because of mild to moderate learning disabilities and language based disorders.  Admission to the academy will be limited to students who can best achieve success in a nontraditional program geared to helping students develop academic skills, improve social interactions, and increase self-image and independence. Admissions will be denied to those students who, according to the judgment of the Admissions Committee, demonstrate cognitive limitations or behavioral difficulties which would prevent steady progress within the intervention program.

The Admission Committee will consider candidates using:

  • Psychological testing
  • Language testing and/or full scale IQ
  • Written recommendations from a psychologist
  • Previous school records and recommendations
  • A school visit and evaluation
  • Parent interview

For further information about The BRIDGES Program at University School or to schedule a tour, please call (954) 262-4506.