Special Needs Inclusion

Special Needs Inclusion Programs for Children, Teens and Adults

The YMCA has been the leader serving those with disabilities, special needs, and developmental challenges. Learning to read, tying your shoe, going on your first field trip, working at your first job, or simply making a new friend are experiences that create lasting memories. For students who have special needs, reaching these milestones come with unique challenges.

The Y currently offers inclusion afterschool programs at elementary and middle schools with programming above and beyond the quality standard using evidence-based components:

  • Project Based Learning /STEAM
  • YFit using SPARK curriculum
  • Family Involvement Initiatives
  • Literacy Activities and academic enrichment through homework help and technology

Our high school programs provide opportunities for older special needs students to learn, grow and thrive as independent members of a community.



The Y MOST (Maximizing Out of School Time) program is designed for children, teens and adults beginning at age 4 through 22 with a wide range of special needs, including physical, developmental, sensory and learning disabilities. The service structure and program schedules closely mirror that of a typical Y afterschool program.


Y STEP (Supported Training Employment Program) is designed to help teens and young adults with special needs ages 16-22 transition to independence. During the school year, Y STEP students identify and explore post-secondary career and educational interests to develop the skills needed to become successful adults.


Y I-CAN is a program for high school students with special needs. The activities are planned for the teens by the teens. Teens realize their full potential through activities.

Y ADAPTIVE SPORTS (Inclusive Sports Program)

Y Adaptive Sports is an exciting program for children of all ability levels that incorporate the Y character values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility with skill development. Volunteers and players alike enjoy interacting with each other while they experience the benefits of sports such as volleyball, basketball and aquatics.


YMCA Family Center Locations

Elementary and Middle School Special Needs Locations

  • Atlantic West Elementary, Margate
  • Bethune Elementary, Hollywood
  • Castle Hill Elementary, Lauderhill
  • Country Isles Elementary, Weston
  • Cypress Hammock Park Center, Coral Springs
  • David Park Center, Hollywood
  • Deerfield Park Elementary, Deerfield Beach
  • Hollywood Park Elementary, Hollywood
  • Horizon Elementary, Sunrise
  • Larkdale Elementary, Fort Lauderdale
  • Maplewood Elementary, Coral Springs
  • Oakland Park Elementary, Oakland Park
  • Park Springs Elementary, Coral Springs
  • Pasadena Lakes Elementary, Pembroke Pines
  • Pinewood Elementary, North Lauderdale
  • Silver Lakes Elementary, Miramar
  • Silver Ridge Elementary, Davie
  • Thurgood Marshall Elementary, Fort Lauderdale
  • Walter C. Young Middle, Fort Lauderdale
  • West Hollywood Elementary, Hollywood
  • Wingate Oaks Center, Fort Lauderdale

High School Special Needs Locations

  • J.P. Taravella High, Coral Springs
  • Stranahan High, Fort Lauderdale
  • Cypress Bay High, Weston