SSLC Milestones

1994

Mariellen Cupini, Director and Speech Pathologist at Rochester Children’s Nursery, opens a fully inclusive early childhood program serving children with and without special needs.

1994

The program,Stepping Stones Learning Center, is operated out of one classroom in the former St. Thomas the Apostle School Building in Irondequoit.  The first class has a total of nine children and is staffed with two teachers.

1995

Stepping Stones Learning Center receives approval from the NYS Department of Health and the NYS Education Department to service children with special needs.  By the end of the year, 26 children were enrolled in the classroom and an additional 22 children were being seen in their homes.  Services are now provided in Monroe,Wayne, and Ontario Counties.

1995

Receives approval by the Department of Health as an Early Intervention service coordinator, service provider, and as an evaluation site.  Also approved by the State Education Department as a 3-5 evaluation site, integrated classroom provider, special education itinerant provider, and related service provider.  Granted a provisional charter from the NYS Education Department.

1996

Stepping Stones Learning Centerd evelops and offers Autism specific therapy, utilizing Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA).

1997

Begins hosting student teachers and graduate student observers from all educational disciplines from regional colleges and universities.

1998

Stepping Stones Learning Center expands Autism Programming to include Developmental Individual Relationship Model (DIR) Therapy.

1999

Stepping Stones Learning Center designs and operates the “Leap Frog” classroom; a reverse mainstreaming model for children with Autism.

1999

Opens the Minnow classroom in the school building, joining Polliwogs, Tadpoles, and Frogs in serving children ages 2-5.

2002

In response to a growing demand for services, Stepping Stones Learning Center enters into a collaborative agreement with Hillside Family of Agencies to operate additional classrooms at an offsite location.

2005

In response to a growing demand for services, Stepping Stones Learning Center enters into a collaborative agreement with the Wayne Central School District to operate classrooms in a Wayne County school.

2005

The National Institute of Health awards the University of Rochester and Strong Memorial Hospital a grant to study the impact of the gluten and casein free diet on children with Autism, as well as to study the impact of Autism Therapy.  They select Stepping Stones Learning Center as the host study site. 

2005

Now using the entire building owned by St. Thomas, Stepping Stones Learning Center improves and renovates classrooms, hallways, clinics, and meeting spaces.

2005

Stepping Stones Learning Center opens a wrap around program for children in its classroom program.  This allows families to drop off and pick up children up to an hour before or after class.

2006

Based on the success of its satellite classrooms, Stepping Stones Learning Center enters into a collaborative agreement with Heritage Christian Services to operate a classroom at Springdale Farm in Spencerport.

2006

In response to a need from employees, Corning Inc. collaborates with Stepping Stones Learning Center to develop an Autism Therapy program in Corning, New York, Steuben County.

2006

Stepping Stones Learning Center begins providing services to children in Genesee County.

2006

Stepping Stones Learning Center seeks and receives approval from the NY State Education Department to operate an 8:1:3 full day classroom for children with severe special needs.

2006

Families, the community and funders design and install a Sensory Garden Playground on site, transforming an open space into an outdoor educational area.

2007

Awarded a permanent charter from the State Education Department.

2008

Awarded funding from the Finger Lakes DDSO for a Respite Camp program for children up to age 8, a Behavioral Consultation Program for children up to age 21, and Medicaid Service Coordinator for individuals up to age 21.

2008

Opens a second 8:1:3 full day classroom for children with severe special needs.

2008

Awarded designation as a Rochester City School District Universal Pre Kindergarten Program.

2009

Awarded approval to be the Monroe County provider for Intensive Behavior Services for children ages 3-21. 

2010

Stepping Stones Learning Center initiates a Feasibility Study with Danforth Development to determine if a Capital Campaign is feasible to support the future growth of the school.

2010

Awarded funding from Office of People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) for Autism Support program.

2011

Favorable results from the Feasibility Study resulted in a decision to initiate the Campaign for Kids.

2011

Received approval to conduct a half day special class for children ages 3-5 with behavioral challenges or diagnosed to be on the autism spectrum.

2011

Received approval from OPWDD for a “Coffee House Social Group” for children with developmental disabilities age 13 – 18.

2011

Mariellen Cupini, our CEO and Don Sinton our P & R Development Coordinator, attended the signing of the Autism Bill in Albany,NY

2012

Received approval from the Office of People with Developmental Disabilities for Community Habilitation Services.

2012

Press Conference by Assemblyman Joe Morelli to announce Community Campaign for Kids, for the down payment and closing costs for the new building.

2012

Expanded services for children and youth under the umbrella of the Office of People with Developmental Disabilities.

2013

Finalized plans for a new office and school building to be renovated at 2111 Hudson Ave.  Established plans to move to the new building in Sept 2014

2013 Administration, Board and Staff worked with the Advertizing Council on new Branding for the agency.  The ultimate goal will be a new logo and tagline for the agency.

2013

SSLC Named Community Non Profit of the Year by the Federation of Social Workers

2013

SSLC Breaks Ground at new Hudson Ave. Location