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news: Press Release 2015: February 9:DC



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Lisa Murray

A Brown Rudnick Charitable Foundation Community Grant Helps Bridge Communication Gap for Children with Autism in D.C.

Boston, MA, February 9, 2015 – The Brown Rudnick Charitable Foundation Corp., a nonprofit, tax-exempt entity established by attorneys from the law firm of Brown Rudnick LLP, awarded a Community Grant to the Bridges Public Charter School (PCS) in Washington, D.C. to support teacher training of the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS). PECS is a unique augmentative/alternative communication intervention package for individuals with autism spectrum disorder and related developmental disabilities.

Bridges PCS serves students with a wide range of disabilities that affect their ability to communicate. The school creates communication systems for these students in order to improve their abilities to learn, to socialize, and to communicate with their families, teachers and the community.

According to Ursula Winters and Sarah Tichenor, grant applicants and speech-language pathologists at Bridges PCS, “Many of our students are subject to an Individual Education Plan which mandates use of PECS. Our speech-language pathologists work with students on an individual and group basis to improve their communication skills. It is important that the speech-language pathologists supporting these children receive intensive PECS training in order to comply with the education plan and effectively teach and support the children.”

“We are pleased to support Bridges PCS,” said Al Wallis, Executive Director of the Brown Rudnick Charitable Foundation Corp. “By helping the school’s speech-language pathologists attend PECS training, they will be better equipped to effectively address the needs of the Bridges student population immediately and in the future.”

Created to support front-line educators who often do not have a voice in funding decisions, the Community Grants subsidize small, concrete projects, which will improve inner-city education within Boston, Hartford, London, Orange County, Providence, New York, or Washington DC within the coming year. The Foundation will generally consider grant applications monthly and award grants in an amount totaling not more than $2000 in any one month. The grant applications and an explanation of the program can be found at

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