"P.I.E. has been the best decision we have made for our son. The method of using Neuro-Education has opened my son’s mind to think outside of himself and made him more aware of everything around him. My son is learning to be more flexible with new surroundings. He has learned to think and problem solve independently. One of our best examples of independent problem solving was watching him try and build a model that he seen on a show. He sat down and tried to create this model quietly in our kitchen without any prompts from us. He was focused and it was the first time we had ever seen him try and create something on his own.
With regards to the staff, the teacher and aides at P.I.E. are just exceptional and set a high expectation for all the kids. Pauline Lee, our teacher, is always thinking of ways to challenge our kids. She has been teaching the kids to play chime bells in unison as a class to various songs. The kids helped in the community and volunteered time at the Food Banks. The school recently held its first dance. The school is planning its first music performance for the winter holiday.
With P.I.E. we feel there are no limits to what our son can achieve for the future." John and Mimi Mcguire
"My teenage son is thriving at Program for Intellectural Empowerment (PIE). This is our second year at this small but big achieving school. His growth at PIE exceeds anything we experienced in public schools and at another special needs private school. His previous disruptive behavior is gone; he stays with the group in public; and he's making noticeable progress in his communication. PIE students are met at their level yet challenged; they are taught to think and engage with one another and the community to gain social, language and life skills. Learning is very visual, such as alot of drawing out concepts to increase understanding. My son wants to go to school everyday, loves his classmates and teachers, and is excited about the next learning adventure, in and out of the classroom. The teacher and staff make learning fun (the students shop and cook in the school kitchen weekly), yet they are firm and have high expectations for each student. This is really rare, especially for special needs kids. Dropping off my son each morning gives me a great peace of mind. I know he's finally in good hands." Rich and Cecillia Tsai
"We originally were told Zach may never talk and not connect with others.
Thanks to neuro educational techniques used by Ms. Lee, we have seen leaps in Zachary's development across the board: reading comprehension, math word problems, logic, interest in science and art, music, technology. He hosts his own videos on "how to" and "cool or not cool" and creates his own soundtracks to videos. He is an editing whiz. He socializes with others, dances at parties (on the stage), has made and kept close personal friends and asserts himself as a confident part of any crowd, both with typical and friends alternate abilities. He can focus, achieving his purple belt in karate, and being part of a high school dragon boat team. Yes, the diagnosis were wrong. Pauline and PIE remind us daily that there is no limit to Zachary's future. Thank you, Pauline and PIE!"
Tom and Jane Williams
From Alex and Irina
It is difficult to explain what having a child with Autism is like. It can mean a million things and every child is completely different from the next.
We can explain how it feels when we heard that our son Ben would be better off in a residential facility or be given up on. It is awful, traumatic, and hopeless.
And more importantly than figuring out how to pay off credit cards, where to go for treatment, and how to catch up on sleep, is understanding how Ben will be accepted in society and the kind of future he can have. This “continuum of worry” starts with knowing if he will ever go to a school dance, or be able to walk through a museum without a tantrum, or go to an NBA game and not cover his ears the entire time, to knowing that he will have friends and a community that cares about him.
Fortunately, we aren’t the only ones who have these questions. Anchored by Pauline Lee, Ben’s teacher at a local public school, a few parents got together to create a place where the hopes for our children would not seem so impossible. Thus, the Program for Intellectual Empowerment (PIE) was created.
PIE has become a school where our kids not only learn academics, follow a schedule and do homework, but also a place where our kids can learn life skills, make a meal from farm to table, play music as a group, learn a dance and camp at the beach without their parents!
It is because of Mrs. Lee’s passion to educate that PIE has become a place where our kids make friends, build relationships, and learn life concepts that will help them survive as adults. PIE encompasses Mrs. Lee’s desire to give Ben and his peers what all other kids experience so freely.
I can’t think of anyone who is a better fit than Pauline to inspire, motivate and encourage our kids to be brave, to contribute to the community, and experience the many ways of learning, which has become fun for them. I know that Mrs. Lee puts in hundreds of hours of lesson planning and thought into every aspect of PIE, my son and his friends are lucky to be her students.
Pauline - Thank you so much for everything you do for our kids and for everything that you are. You have never given up on our kids’ dreams and your passion to teach your way; we are lucky to work with you and watch our kids learn and grow so happy. As PIE’s first year has passed, I can’t wait to see what the future holds, I am so excited! THANK YOU!