This summer was packed with fun activities, field trips, and outdoor adventures for our summer school students and Camp Wanaqua campers.

From karate lessons in Long Island to a trip to the Norwalk Aquarium (pictured above and below), the kids were engaged and active as they climbed, swam, and explored nearby destinations that piqued their curiosity and interests.

All of this is due in large part to your support of our efforts - thank you!

We welcome back our nearly 300 students on September 4th for another year of learning, exploration, and friendship, and look forward to sharing all the latest NYISE news with you.

Till then, check out a recent Today Show broadcast featuring Schermerhorn student Wani and his mother Gracie Benedith-Cane the Founder and CEO of Braille Code Inc .

Heartwarming and inspiring, we hope their story and those below help start your week with a smile.

In gratitude,
Dr. Bernadette Kappen, PhD
Executive Director
PS: Click here to shop for back-to-school supplies at  AmazonSmile . For every eligible purchase, Amazon donates to the New York Institute for Special Education. Hint: Make sure to select the New York Institute for Special Education as your designated charity.

A complete list of embedded links found within this email is at the bottom of this page.


On a hot July day, our Schermerhorn students cooled off at the Stepping Stones Museum for Children in Norwalk, Connecticut.

A multidimensional educational museum for children ages ten and under, students explored science, energy, and natural resources through beautifully designed interactive exhibits.

Two of their favorites exhibits included the  Energy Lab  that explores solar and hydropower (pictured) and  Express Yourself  that teaches social-emotional skills through art, music, and games. 

For more photos, click here .

 Coinciding with this summer's celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the moon landing, Van Cleve students visited the 150,000 sq. ft. Cradle of Aviation Museum in Long Island (pictured here) that features 75 air and spacecraft.

While exploring the museum, students gained a new understanding of Long Island's aviation history ranging from some of the country's first balloon flights to the creation of the Lunar Module .

Curious to learn more about what our students saw? Click here to visit the museum's website and download a copy of their Educator's Guide.

For more photos, click here .

 Our Readiness students escaped the summer heat during our Camping Adventure Day and Water Day , where they practiced their fine and gross motor skills alongside teachers and friends.

It is hard to say which day they liked best, as smiles were abundant throughout and each child had a chance to try something new. A special treat for all present, the kids especially enjoyed strumming a guitar and thinking of songs they could sing by the campfire while stargazing.

For more photos , click here .


We're thrilled to share exciting news about NYISE alum Glynnis Santeramo (class of 2017).

An active member of our Athletics Program when enrolled at NYISE, Glynnis recently competed at the National Junior Disability Championships in Eden Prairie, Minnesota, where she became the new F34 champion in field and set a national record in powerlifting.

To learn more about her accomplishments and what they mean for her future, click here to read ABC NEWS10's coverage of her incredible athleticism.

(Hint: Tokyo 2020)

We are so proud of you!


What did Camp Wanaqua campers do this summer ?

All of this and more was made possible by the support of donors like you - thank you!

If you have yet to make your donation to Camp Wanaqua 2019, there is still time to do so by clicking here right now.

To sign up for Camp Wanaqua 2020 Application Notifications, click here .



This summer our student-run Starlight Cafe held specialty pop up events, including Parfait Tuesday, National Wing Day, and, possibly our favorite, Waffle Day during National Waffle Week in early August.

Open for staff and students throughout the year; the Starlight Cafe provides Schermerhorn students with the opportunity to practice their social and business skills, as well as gain work experience to use when applying for a job, internship, or college.

A special thanks to the students, staff, and teachers who worked together to make the Starlight Cafe a reality this summer, including students Angel, Julian, Michael, Anthony, and Jonathan, and Schermerhorn Student Council Advisor Rosalind Wright.

Click here for more photos.


NYISE strives to provide students with activities that encourage them to be active not only on the athletic field but also in their everyday lives.

One way to do this is through activities like tandem biking that this summer's campers experienced with .

A pastime enjoyed by students throughout the years (including the two shown in this photo from our archives), we encourage you to find a tandem biking experience near you. Happy cycling!


The New York Institute for Special Education's (NYISE) mission is to provide quality educational programs and support to students and families in a safe, caring environment, and to awaken and inspire student curiosity, lifelong learning, and fulfillment. Our educational programs include the Schermerhorn , Van Cleve and Readiness Programs, and our public programs include Camp Wanaqua . To learn more about our activities throughout the year, visit . Thank you for your interest and support of our efforts!


Letter from Executive Director


Stepping Stones Museum for Children:

Van Cleve

Cradle of Aviation Museum:


Starlight Cafe

Camp Wanaqua

Camp Wanaqua Sponsors
Reader's Digest Partners for Sight Foundation:
Rossiter Financial Group, Inc.:
JS Concrete & Masonry, LLC:
Hinman Straub P.C.: 
Gundermann & Gundermann, Inc./Cook Maran Associates: s/

Mission and Programs