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Featured Programs

Following, is a brief description of the major Featured Programs & Program Initiatives provided or undertaken by the SMHFC George N Hunt Campus School (i.e., SMHFC School Programs):

The 45 Day Diagnostic Placement/Alternate learning program & Interim Alternative education Setting (IAES) Program

Program Highlights (Emphasizing the Benefits to School Districts)

  • Immediate placement into a diagnostic and/or IAES program when the need arises

  • Primary focus and commitment to successfully reintegrate the student back into the sending district after (a maximum of) forty-five days (with a comprehensive plan for success).

  • Follow up consultation and support to the school to which the student returns as well as with the family.

  • Complete array of educational related and clinical services while in the St. Mary's Home for Children diagnostic and/or IAES placements with an emphasis on strong clinical interventions.

  • Ability for school district to purchase slots at a discount, with St. Mary's Home for Children "brokering" any empty slots to other districts for a forty five day period. (Think of it as a "timeshare.)

Why This Program was Implemented

Responding to a concern often voiced by Special Education Administrators statewide, the SMHFC 45 Day DX Placement (and Alternative Learning Program (ALP) & Interim Alternative Learning Setting (IAES)) provides a true, short term diagnostic program emphasizing clinically-based assessment for students who need an in-depth look into what is causing problems at school and leading to a long term plan for success back at the local school. Slots (i.e. placements) in the program are purchased for 45 days at a time maximum! The program is set-up to provide: 1) A comprehensive, clinically-based analysis of the student to answer the (diagnostic/prescriptive) questions posed by the referring school department (e.g. "why is the student engaging in these self-defeating behaviors?"); 2) A concrete plan for the student to be successful back at his or her home school or specific and detailed exit criteria for reintegration back into the school district if such a plan for return after 45 days is not feasible; 3) A review of pharmacological intervention, if needed; 4) Evaluation reports as warranted; 5) A system of "wrap around" follow-up upon the student's return to the LEA. This post 45 day diagnostic placement component will involve consultation and support school staff as the pupil is reintegrated into and to the family, where appropriate.

This forty-five day placement can also be utilized as an ALP and/or IAES.


There are several advantages to contracting with SMHFC to operate a self-contained classroom within one of a school district's local schools. Key areas of benefit are:

  1. Staffing: both teachers and paraprofessionals with an in-depth knowledge of working with students with significant socio-emotional and behavioral needs would be provided. This instructional staff would be supported by a team of clinicians who also have expertise treating this population of youngsters to make their educational experience successful. Past experience with this type of model has shown that this cadre of individuals is an invaluable resource to building administrators and teachers and paraprofessionals, school-wide, in dealing with everyday (but often difficult) discipline issues.

  2. Cost-Effectiveness: A reduced tuition schedule can be requested and negotiated in lieu of the leasing of the classroom space by SMHFC. In addition, savings in the area of transportation can often be realized
SMHFC is proud of the successful operation of two classrooms with Woonsocket Middle School at Hamlet since the 2011-2012.


SMHFC has a long-standing history of working with some of the most challenging low incidence populations in and around RI. The knowledge gained in providing educational and clinical services can be shared, on a consultative basis, in the following areas: (1) Special Education; (2) Behavioral (Specialist) Intervention; (3) Clinical Services. Pupil populations that can benefit from this consultation are: (a) Students with socio-emotional and behavioral needs; (b) Students with Developmental Disabilities exhibiting sexually inappropriate behaviors.


SMHFC offers summer programs to meet the needs of school departments seeking Special Education instructional, related or clinical services for students requiring an Extended School Year (ESY). Placement can be arranged on a full or part time basis for a minimum of fifteen school days to a maximum of thirty-eight school days. For students needing a considerable amount of credit reclamation, The Virtual Learning Academy (VLA) can be assessed. High School senior and juniors attending the SMHFC ESY Program will be afforded the opportunity to participate on the Summer Computing Institute @ URI during the months that the project is running.


Geared for students with concomitant academic and socio-emotional/behavioral needs, in the middle and high school grades, the Community-Based Learning (CBL) Program, targets those students who require a non-transitional, hands-on, project based, experiential approach to schooling to succeed. Using "The community as the teacher", the students in the CBL Program will achieve their age and grade level appropriate standards by engaging in instructional activities in the real world, with the emphasis on community-based, hands-on learning. Student outcomes will focus on academic, personal growth (including, but not limited to socio-emotional, behavioral and personal responsibility), community living and pre-school-to-career transition skills.

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