Families are drawn to our school because we meet the multiple demands of raising a child with severe disabilities.

SAIL at Ferncliff Manor provides quality, innovative educational programming for the residential children at Ferncliff Manor. In addition, the school accepts a small number of children from surrounding commuinities as day students. Each class is staffed by a New York Certified teacher of Special Education who is assisted in the class by at least three additional staff. The focus of the child’s educational program is on functional life skills. The school has identified five areas of concentration that address the child’s current and projected levels of function. Each student follows an individualized plan that anticipates his/her future needs. Meetings are held on a regular basis to provide updates on the students’ progress against goals. Additionally the teaching staff provides the child with basic academix skills that will carry them through their life after leavinSAIL at Ferncliff Manor . The ultimate goal is to prepare our students as functional members of society upon their discharge from our program.

SAIL at Ferncliff Manor is recognized by the New York State Department of Education for the innovative and appropriate programming it provides for all of its students.”

S.A.I.L. | Adaptive Physical Education | A.P.E. Activities | Photo Gallery

Our School

The School for Adaptive & Integrative Learning at Ferncliff Manor

Director of Education

Adaptive Physical Education

Adaptive Physical Education

What is A.P.E.?

Federal law (PL 94-142, PL 101-476, PL 105-17) mandates that physical education be provided to students with disabilities and defines Physical Education as the development of: physical and motor skills, fundamental motor skills and patterns (throwing, catching, walking, running, etc) and skills in aquatics, dance, and individual and group games and sports (including intramural and lifetime sports).

Adapted Physical Education is Physical Education which has been adapted or modified, so that it is as appropriate for the person with a disability as it is for a person without a disability.

Exercise utilizes the whole body and effectively diffuses many of the body’s energy. With that in mind our goal is safety first, then, getting used to and comfortable in the activity.

Play in the gym should be the bridge to social development. Meaningfulness is the goal; to learn to run, to kick, to throw, to hit, are the objectives that can be met out in the gym with peers and staff as models and motivators. Children get proprioceptive feedback by learning to do physical activities. Through a consistent policy within a controlled and safe environment I believe we will be able to broaden and develop the individuality and interests of each child.

Each and every student benefits from each of the core goals in the gym. We guide each student to lessen any sense of fear, and in turn arouse an interest in sports and in gym, fostering eagerness in each student. This is the foundation for all learning. Also in the gym we provide guidance that allows the students to direct their interests onto a variety of activities, not fixating on one. And, I believe most importantly, to not just give technical guidance in terms of accomplishing an activity, but providing leadership that gives a psychological self confidence and outlook on life.

We are, as an overall goal, lessening the restless activity driven by mood, excitation and agitation and are refocusing it towards play, relationships and socialization.

Some of the activities we work on in Adapted Physical Education at SAIL are:

Calisthenics: Modified push up’s, sit up’s and walking
Team Sport: concentrating on skills and drills and team aspects of activities ranging from volleyball, floor hockey, soccer, basketball and balloon tennis.
Obstacle Course: With hurdles, tunnels, tumbling/tackling balance beams and climbing
Weights: Involves utilizing free weight exercise such as curls, military press, and squats to promote physical strength and enhance self esteem.
Free Play Friday: We utilize all of the above mentioned activities plus scooters, where all the staff and students are encouraged to interact in a “free play” environment.


A Place of Compassion & Support!

Sail (The School for Adaptive and Integrative Learning) at Ferncliff Manor admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.”


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