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A Big ‘LEAP’

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News & Events

November 1, 2013

Jillian Burr, ’02, returned to her alma mater at the behest of Professor Phyllis Gimbel of the educational leadership department. She spoke to one of Dr. Gimbel’s classes about the LEAP program she facilitates at the Earl D. Taft Early Learning Center in Uxbridge, where she is a preschool teacher.

LEAP stands for Learning Experiences Alternative Programs for Preschoolers and their Parents. It immerses children with spectrum disorders into classes with typically developing children. Ms. Burr and the program were recently featured in Education Week magazine. This led Dr. Gimbel to invite her to speak at BSU.
In talking to BSU students who hope to be future educators themselves, Ms. Burr discussed using components of the LEAP program for older students. “My goal is to get regular education teachers to see the importance of teaching social skills across the curriculum, and then give them some ideas about how to do that in order to help their students with ASD learn better,” she said.

She also discussed her work with an adult student with Asperger's.

Ms. Burr went through two years of LEAP training with a consultant from the University of Colorado. (Photo by students Steve Rowell and Erin O'Leary, story by John Winters, G ’11, University News) 

Jillian Burr