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San Bruno, CA: School for "moderate to severe autism" opens

WINGS opens at previous Rollingwood campus to serve the Peninsula

The WINGS Learning Center celebrated the opening of the school for individuals with moderate to severe autism Jan. 31 at the San Bruno Park School District’s previous Rollingwood Elementary campus.

WINGS Learning Center is leasing the school property from the district as a part of a consolidation that has seen the closure of three San Bruno Park elementary schools — Rollingwood,  El Crystal and Crestmoor. Administrators and San Bruno officials celebrated the partnership at the ribbon-cutting event.

School administrators began transitioning from their previous facility in August 2023 and students came in starting October 2023, Emily Carambat, WINGS family liaison coordinator, said.

WINGS Learning Center, which serves individuals ages 5 to 22, currently enrolls 22 students with moderate to severe autism, tailoring the educational curriculum to each student — many come to the school from all across the Peninsula….

 “This is a largely residential neighborhood, where generations of families came to school here. So there was a lot of concerns from the residents and the surrounding neighborhoods of, ‘what will they do with the property?’” she said. “Based on the feedback that I've heard from this community, the community is happy that it's being used as a school.”…

Typically, school districts will fund the cost for students to attend WINGS, according to Carambat, although a few families pay out of pocket. There is a waitlist for attendance….

WINGS Learning Center also aims to provide a change from the experience many parents have in public schools potentially ill-suited to properly serve students with autism.

“Parents come in here with a lot of, being guarded and fearful because of their experience where they were. But once they understand our program and come and observe and see what their child is doing and the little milestones that they're making, because of this individualized program, that's what that's what we're all about,” Carambat said….


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