Prom. It is a rite of passage for many teens. This spring, the students at The Y.A.L.E. School’s Voorhees campus along with students from the Y.A.L.E. Audubon HS campus will enjoy dinner, dancing and dressing up as they arrive for the campus’s first prom. The theme, “When You Wish Upon a Star, Your Dreams Really Do Come True,’ was inspired by teacher Joy Blatherwick.
“We really want our students and their families to experience the things other students do,” said Ann Davidson, principal at the Voorhees campus. “In planning the prom, we worked to create an event that would be memorable and enjoyable.”
For those with autism, a traditional prom is often too long, too loud, too dark and too crowded. Also, most proms are held in an unfamiliar place, like a hotel or restaurant, which can add to the challenge. “We planned our prom to be ‘autism friendly,’” added Dr. Rachael Sautter, Ph.D., BCBA-D who supervises the Voorhees autism program.
Teachers and staff are volunteering their time on a Friday night so students can experience this springtime tradition. After dropping their sons and daughters off at the school, parents will get the night off to enjoy dinner or a movie.