Entry to School Program

The OAP Entry to School program is a six-month group-based program for young children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, 3-6 years old, who are entering school for the first time (starting kindergarten or grade one). The program consists of two stages the first being a 6 month in-person half day group based program, followed by up to six months of transition supports offered to families and educators to ensure your child is set up for success.

KidsAbility’s Entry to School program is run by Instructor Therapists overseen by a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst (BCBA), who work together to create an individualized intervention plan for your child and deliver services using a collaborative approach. The team will work together to support your child’s skill development in areas such as, communication, play, social interactions, functional routines, self-regulation, and early academics. Our classrooms are supported by Speech and Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists and Resource Consultants to create a truly multidisciplinary program. Learning opportunities will be embedded in typical play activities to maximize children’s participation and learning time. Skills will be broken down into small, teachable steps and the children will be provided with praise and encouragement along the way! A high level of on-site supervision will be provided by the Clinical Supervisor, who holds a Board Certified Behavior Analyst designation (BCBA).

To meet the unique needs of families, KidsAbility offers two entry points for the Entry to School Program:

  • Spring Cohort - staggered entry in March and April
  • Fall Cohort - staggered entry in September and October

Your child is eligible if:

  • They received a letter from the Ontario Autism Program (OAP) inviting them to be part of Entry to School.
  • They are 3-6 years of age.
  • They are starting Kindergarten or Grade 1 for the first time.
  • They have an OAP number.
What does Entry to School offer?
  • This half-day program runs Monday to Friday for up to six months.
  • The program operates in a classroom environment led by Behaviour Therapists, with support from an Occupational Therapist, Speech-Language Pathologist, and Resource Consultant.
  • Includes consultation with your child's home-school for up to six months following your child’s completion of the program to support their ultimate transition to school.
  • Focuses on school readiness skills, including: communication, play, social Interaction, functional routines, behavioral self-management, pre-academics and learning and attention. 
Where is the program located?
  • At one of our KidsAbility sites in Cambridge, Kitchener, Guelph, or Waterloo.
  • Please note: transportation is not offered to/from the program.
How do I apply?
  • Call us at: 519-886-8886, ext. 1214 to speak to our Intake Social Worker
  • Email us at: intake@kidsability.ca
  • Acceptance is offered on a first-come, first-served basis
Do you have more questions?
  • We can help with specifics related to your child, and any questions you have about your child's OAP services or funding. This includes whether or not you have also received an invitation to participate in the Caregiver Mediated Early Years Program. Please reach out to our Intake team, we are here to help!