About the Elizabeth Lee Black School

Welcome to the Elizabeth Lee Black School, an approved private school for students ages 3 through 21 with autism, intellectual disabilities and multiple challenges. Students from 23 area school districts throughout northwestern Pennsylvania attend classes in Erie, PA.

The Elizabeth Lee Black School at the Barber National Institute is named to honor the memory of an Erie girl challenged by debilitating illness. Elizabeth, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Samuel (Irene) Black, Jr., was born June 25, 1945. She passed away at the age of twelve from complications due to spina bifida. Her life was a testament to the love of family and hope for all children.

The Elizabeth Lee Black School was established September 16, 2002 and named in honor of an Erie girl challenged by debilitating illness.
Dr. Gertrude A. Barber, founder, and Elizabeth Lee Black

We believe that all children have the right to an education that challenges their capacity to learn utilizing scientifically-based behavior analytical approaches and other state-of-the-art educational strategies delivered in a positive, nurturing environment.

Educational programs at the school include:

Education programs at the Elizabeth Lee Black School include Autism Support

Our school is specially designed to provide a highly structured classroom environment that allows children with disabilities to develop to their fullest. Each day, students participate in educational activities presented within a very predictable routine, providing them the needed support to confidently practice new skills. Each student’s IEP directs their learning experiences, which integrate a variety of activities throughout the school day to address their academic, behavioral, and therapeutic needs.

Technology in the classroom

Services provided include:

  • Adapted playground
  • Advanced technology including iPads in every classroom
  • Behavioral services
  • Community-based instruction
  • Inclusion programming
  • Gym, pool, fitness, and art classes
  • Job skills/vocational training in laundry, deliveries, etc.
  • Library/media services
  • On-site nurses
  • Physical, occupational and speech therapies
  • Psychological and psychiatric support

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