Online Resources for Students with Developmental Disabilities During COVID-19

Categories: ASD and DD, Child-focused; COVID-19 Topics

By Leah Kaufman OTD, OTR/L  
Marja Ruderman M.S., CCC-SLP 

[This column was published in The Randolph Herald.]

Many companies are providing online learning opportunities to support students at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, but navigating through all the different resources may be overwhelming. We have found the sites listed below to be the most relevant and comprehensive supports for families during this difficult time:

Here are some general tips to help support an enriching environment at home:

  • Support communication by providing choices throughout the day. Create a daily schedule together, give options for foods/activities, allow different choices for breaks.  

Do you provide care to an individual with complex communication needs? Providing visual supports as much as possible will allow anyone the opportunity to be an active participant in their new daily routine. Free communication applications such as CoughDrop and Sono Flex Lite (free, and available on both Android and Apple platforms) provide visual icons that can help individuals who are nonverbal to communicate their feelings and daily needs. 

Regardless of how you fill your day, your continued love, care and support is what matters most! 

Leah Kaufman OTD, OTR/L, is an occupational therapist; Marja Ruderman M.S., CCC-SLP, is a  Speech Language Pathologist.

About May Institute
May Institute is a nonprofit organization that is a national leader in the field of applied behavior analysis and evidence-based interventions, serving autistic individuals and individuals with other developmental disabilities, brain injury, neurobehavioral disorders, and other special needs. Founded nearly 70 years ago, we provide a wide range of exceptional educational and rehabilitative services across the lifespan. May Institute operates five schools for children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and other developmental disabilities, including one in Randolph, Mass. For more information, call 800.778.7601 or visit