Patric Barbieri LABBB/Best Buddies Special Olympics
Sharing best practices and promoting inclusive opportunities for students with special needs    
Interim Executive Director's

To the LABBB Community:

On June 30th, I will turn over the leadership of LABBB Collaborative to Pam Girouard and attempt once again to resume my retirement. It has been a privilege to work with the students, parents, educators, and administrators that comprise the greater LABBB community, to collaborate with the member district Superintendents and Special Education leaders who are so committed to this organization, and to spend the past year with the wonderful people in LABBB’s central office.

Collaboratives are a very special entity, unique to Massachusetts, where many students can experience success outside their public school system, without needing the more restrictive placement provided by private special education schools. LABBB goes above and beyond that standard by offering these services within the school buildings of the five (5) member districts. This important distinction allows LABBB students to attend school with their peers, to experience inclusion with excellent teachers, and to be part of the school community, which are all critically important components of a quality educational experience. The “LABBB difference” is why I was so excited to join the organization almost one year ago and why I am leaving with an even greater appreciation for the work of these very special people.

Pam Girouard is a very special leader who will build on the accomplishments of Patric Barbieri in ensuring that LABBB continues to be one of the preeminent collaboratives in Massachusetts. I look forward to supporting her work and to hearing about the accomplishments of our students and teachers in the future.

Bill Lupini


Tasty, Traveling Tuesdays
By:Peter Asklund, Belmont High School: Career Directions

Tuesday is the favorite school day of the week for many students in Mr. Asklund’s transition classroom at LABBB Belmont High School.  Every other Tuesday, students have been learning about navigating public transit as part of executing simulated activities, which occur naturally in adult, daily life and often involve problem solving.
Recently, students navigated to Fenway Park and were required to locate specific places in and around the park as if they were meeting a friend or family member in Boston for a day at the ballpark.

On the Tuesdays between travel training days, students have been learning to independently prepare various types of meals, ranging from those that are more easily prepared, such as grilled sandwiches and those that are a bit more involved, such as pizzeria style pizza.

On a few occasions this past school year, students shopped for pizza and salad ingredients and prepared delicious pizzeria style pizza and salad, which was among most students’ favorite meal to prepare and eat!
It’s wonderful to see our students gain valuable skills and independence while they have fun doing so. We hope to continue to make Tuesdays a student favorite!
Clinical Corner: The Baby in the Backseat
By: Nathan Kittridge
Imagine you're late for work; you've just pulled in behind one car at the red light. The light turns green, but the lady in the car in front of you is looking in her backseat, not at the light. The light turns yellow, red and green again, but still the woman is looking in the back seat. Finally, on the third red light, you get out of your car to go complain.
Imagine how annoyed, even angry, you are by now. You were late for work before, now it's worse. But when you knock on the car window, the woman looks up at you with tears in her eyes. You look in the backseat and see a baby turning blue. Everything just changed, didn't it? Your anger has been replaced with empathy for the woman and a desire to help the baby, right?
So how many times in life do we get angry at people, when in fact, if we knew the circumstances, we might be more forgiving? This circumstantial way of viewing problematic behavior is called behavior analysis.
The Circumstantial Challenge:
The next time someone cuts you off and takes your parking place, challenge yourself to think circumstantially. Maybe they have a sick child at home and are picking up a prescription. Think about what baby might be in their back seat and cut them a little slack. So, you get in a few extra steps in the parking lot. It's not the end of the world.
The next time you hear a neighborhood kid shouting words you wish they weren't into their cell phone, think before you berate. Just imagine for one minute that they've failed a calculus test that afternoon and now their significant other is breaking up with them. Instead of adding to the scream fest, you can walk away without adding to the emotional pile-up. Or if you're feeling brave, ask them if they'd like to talk. Either way, you've not made a judgment on them as a person but considered what might be going on behind the obvious melt-down.
Easier Isn't Always Better:
It's always easier to make assumptions and be angry with someone when they present difficult behavior. But wouldn't the world be a better place if we could all stop for just a second and consider what might be causing this person to behave the way they are?
Wouldn't we all feel so much better at the end of the day, or the week, if we'd granted people grace? If we took a circumstantial view of their behavior? Wouldn't it be easier to grant ourselves some of that grace as well if we're bestowing it on others?  
Challenge yourself to step back and accept that you don't know why people behave the way they do. Imagine the baby that might be in their backseat. Chances are, at the end of the week, you'll feel better about others, the world and yourself.
Credit Dr. Pat Friman
5/16/2022 LABBB Best Buddies Special Olympics
By: Bedford Classroom 112
The 2022 Best Buddies Special Olympics was just that, SPECIAL! It was a day of celebrating and competing in sporting events, and spending time with our Best Buddies, friends, and family! We also enjoyed having a big barbecue! One of the favorite parts of the day was hanging out with our Best Buddy! They were a friend and a helper for the day! They helped us in our events, with arts and crafts, and face painting! They helped us navigate our way through the awesome day! It was the best day of the year! Thank you so much to all of our Bedford Best Buddies!
Here are some quotes from Bedford LABBB classmates about our Special day! 
Lucas ~ “I loved running in the race on the track! I loved my family watching me and having a barbecue. I came in first place, I was fast!”
Evan  ~ “I enjoyed running the 50-meter dash and getting 1st place!”
Grace ~ “I enjoyed the glitter tattoos and watching the events that my classmates were in. I was nervous, but I tried the races!”
Brigitte ~ “My favorite part of the day was walking the track during the 50-meter walk and spending time with my Best Buddy Jada, who is a senior at Bedford High School!” I had my face painted into a fox too!”
Daniela ~ ”I enjoyed the 50-meter run and getting 3rd place, and I also had a barbecue that I liked! I ate a burger, hotdog, watermelon, and a cookie! I also did arts and crafts. I drew a pizza!”
Arshiyah ~ “I enjoyed hanging out with my Best Buddies, Matteo and Selena! Also, seeing my teachers and my parents who came to watch me compete!”
Rachel  ~ “My favorite part of Special Olympics was spending time with my Best Buddy, Ani, and having my parents come and watch me compete in my events! My friends came too!” I loved having my face painted with Hello Kitty!”
Audrey ~ “I enjoyed the food and the running!” I enjoyed hanging out with Alexandra, my Best Buddy, because she is awesome!”
Saul ~ “My favorite part of Special Olympics was running with my Best Buddy, Lauren! I loved seeing my Mom and Dad! My dad took a video and my parents cheered me on!” I also enjoyed hanging out with my friend and classmate, Brigitte!”
Lindsey ~ “I loved that my family my Mom, Nanny, and Georgie came to watch my events for Special Olympics. I participated in the 25 and 50-meter walk, and the tennis ball throw. I got all gold!” 
Sasha ~ “I ran around the track and I got 1st place in the 100 meters! I also did the softball throw and I got second place!” 
Avery ~ “My favorite part of Special Olympics was hanging out with my friends and winning first place in my run!”
Arthur ~ “I enjoyed running and coming in first in the 50-meter race and the 10 meter race! I forgot my sneakers and ran in flip flops but still won! I also liked the barbecue lunch and enjoyed that my mom came to watch me in my events!” 
Mindful Minute written by the LABBB Mind/Body Team

“The quieter you become, the more you can hear.” -Anonymous
-taken from Harvard Health Publishing, Harvard Medical School
Be well,
The Mind/Body Team

LABBB Belmont High School Transition Program Volunteering at Community Servings
By Mr. Avery

Recently, Community Servings in Jamaica Plain, one of LABBB’s Community Partners, profiled LABBB in their social media features that they wrote during National Volunteer Month.
“We work hard to make the volunteer experience as inclusive and accessible as possible. Every week we host the LABBB Collaborative and Lesley University Threshold Program. LABBB provides special education services that promote academic, social, and career independence, while Threshold aims to prepare young adults with learning, developmental, and intellectual disabilities for future jobs.

Community Servings complements the mission of LABBB and Threshold by offering students a supportive, yet realistic environment in which to learn new skills. By working alongside fellow volunteers and CS team members, students have been able to meet new people and form strong relationships. LABBB and Threshold have both seen their students growing in self-confidence, in part thanks to our partnership.

We’re so grateful to host our All Abilities groups!”

LABBB is happy and proud to have Community Servings as a Community Partner, as their mission, vision and values match ours perfectly. Once per week, students from our Transition Program at Belmont High School volunteer with Mr. Lumley, an amazing LABBB Community Instructor. The students help prepare meals for those who experience food insecurity. They do a great job, are valued volunteers, and enjoy being part of the Community Servings Team.

Excellent job LABBB Belmont High School Transition Team. Thank you for helping such a wonderful cause!
Pictured above are Luke, Mr. Lumley, and Ryan.
Butler Moving On Ceremony
By: LABBB Butler Staff

Congratulations to LABBB Butler’s 4th grade students, you’re moving on! Four LABBB Butler fourth grade students participated in Butler School’s moving on ceremony this June. It has been remarkable to watch each of them grow into the amazing middle school students that they have become. We are sending them on with this message. Remember you are successful. Remember you are smart. Remember you are stronger and braver than you think you are. Remember that you are amazing! See challenges as an opportunity to grow and make sure to acknowledge and celebrate your successes. Have a great break and good luck in middle school!
LABBB Butler Staff 
Middle School Graduation
By: Jenn Malenchini

On Monday, June 13, students, staff, and families came together to celebrate our 8th graders who will be moving on to high school. Six students from Chenery will soon attend LABBB classes at Lexington High School and Burlington High School and one student from Ottoson will be attending Shawsheen Valley Technical High School next year. 

We are so proud of the academic and social accomplishments these students have made during their middle school years. It is always a delight to think about how these students began with us as little kids and to see the emerging young men and women they have become. During graduation, we were all impressed with the way several of our graduates stood before the audience in the auditorium and gave heartfelt speeches, sharing their memories, their gratitude, and their feelings about these years. After the ceremony, families joined all of our students and staff for photos, refreshments, and more time to celebrate. It was a fun afternoon of smiles, laughter, and happy tears! To our graduates and their families – we will miss you and wish you the very best as you begin this next chapter!


UMass Lowell students will serve as Unified Partners for this program. Registration is on a first come, first served basis. Athletes can register here.

LABBB Adapted Physical Education, Recreation and Social Opportunities

It is with great excitement that this article can be written about the Patric Barbieri LABBB/Best Buddies Special Olympics that occurred on May 16, 2022. Patric’s name was added to this event before the games began, with a plaque commemorating this change of title. We could not have asked for a better day weather-wise. It was sunny, but not too hot.

Every one of the 250 athletes had a buddy match to help them navigate the day. There were 9 different events held throughout the day, and athletes competed in 3 out of the 9. 

DJ Conor provided music all day, the Olympic Town tent offered all sorts of creative activities, and food was provided by Whitson’s, Mo’s Ice Cream truck and What the Fork Catering truck.  

We had over 700 volunteers for this event, which helped make it a huge success. Smiles and laughter were heard throughout the track and field all day. The photos in the links show the story more than words. Click here

To view the sign up sheets for the 2022/2023 school year Recreation Activities please Click here

Remember to follow @LABBBREC on Twitter
Updated LABBB Brochure

Click here or on the image to view the new LABBB brochure.

Patric Barbieri, Hosts a Podcast talking about special needs planning and resources related to our community

In episode #22 we talk about our journey in building a mindful culture in LABBB. It is one of our core values that is posted throughout our collaborative. There is a significant difference between just talking about these practices and actually doing them. We made a commitment to offering mindful practices for all students in all our classrooms every single day. We also believe for us to be successful we need to offer and teach this to our staff as well. We are a community practicing together and this is the only way to get the true benefits. We have been fortunate to have many staff persons who have a myriad of unique mind-body skills to bring into our environments for both students and staff. 

This initiative started organically back in the early '90s. We realized that these practices have a significant impact on managing the pervasive anxiety symptoms that people are feeling. Our mission was to bring these practices directly into our schools and for staff and students to know they have permission to practice at any time. When one individual is practicing it is benefiting their entire community!

Rayne Pratt and Lisa Poirier, LABBB Occupational therapists, join me in this podcast. They are members of our LABBB Mind/Body team and they are also the creators and facilitators of our all-day staff retreat that we offer. 


LABBB Contacts
LABBB Collaborative
123 Cambridge Street, Burlington MA. 01803|