Burbank, California, is known as the “Media Capital of the World” because of its vast resources in the media and entertainment industries. It is home, for instance, to major facilities of such companies as Warner Bros. and The Walt Disney Company.
The city also offers various resources in special education. From schools to nonprofit organizations, Burbank provides special education professionals, students and parents with online and on-site resources that include therapy programs, seminars, online publications and legal support.
Educational Resources for Special Needs Teachers and Families in Burbank
The Burbank Unified School District provides several links on its website that are useful to parents of special education students. There’s an online Parent Handbook, which provides information pertaining to, among other topics, IEP meetings and special education laws. Links also direct parents to brochures and pamphlets, which address parents’ rights, childcare and an Early Start program.
The Burbank Unified School District is part of the Foothill Special Education Local Plan Area (SELPA), which contains a Community Advisory Committee (CAC) that provides parent training workshops and special education policy review. The CAC also holds quarterly meetings for parents, teachers, school administrators and community members.
Foothill SELPA’s website also provides online literature regarding parents’ rights, a glossary of special education terms and acronyms and links to various advocacy services.
Recreational and Therapeutic Resources for Special Education Students and Parents
A few nonprofit organizations devoted to specific behavioral or learning disorders have a presence in or near Burbank.
Autism Spectrum Therapies, with locations in Arizona, Washington and Louisiana as well as throughout California, has a Burbank office offering diagnostic, analysis and social development services to autistic children. These services include behavioral analysis, occupational and speech therapy, social skills programs and psychological evaluations.
Meetings of the SFV (San Fernando Valley) Autism Families in North Hollywood, approximately five miles west of Burbank, offer workshops, lectures and conferences. There’s also play activities for children with autism that help them to build social skills.
The Help Group, a nonprofit organization with various clinical and support programs for special needs children and their families, has a location approximately 20 miles south of Burbank. Services includes an after-school rehabilitation program, weekend and after-school activities such as basketball, tennis and a gaming club, and camps that integrate social development, trips and activities. These activities range from art to sports.
The Help Group is there for parents as well. Classes, seminars and conferences focus on topics such as stress management and communication techniques. Parent support groups are also offered.
Located approximately 15 east of Burbank in Altadena, California, Education Spectrum has programs for both autistic students and their parents. Play therapy and family therapy programs, social skills training, community integration and parent training classes are among the main offerings of this organization. Its website provides links to national autism organizations and research news.
Pasadena-based California Special Needs Law Group (CSNLG) offers its services throughout California. These services include mediating conflicts between special needs families and school systems and assistance with IEP development.