Advocating together for full inclusion of our disabled community members, in our city and in our schools.

be heard

Americans living
with a disability
0 %
Students in Massachusetts
getting IDEA services
0 %
People with disabilities
who are employed in MA
0 %
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Why Anti-Ableism?

Anti-Ableism is when we act to come up with strategies on how to challenge ableist attitudes, inequalities, prejudices, and discrimination based on developmental, emotional, physical, or psychiatric disabilities.  Anti-Ableism believes that people with disabilities belong in every place and every situation. 

Ableism is a set of beliefs or practices that devalue and discriminate against people with disabilities and often rests on the assumption that disabled people need to be ‘fixed’ in one form or another in order to fit into our society.  Ableism is so pervasive and so deeply woven into our society that the vast majority of people are used to it being normal or have no idea that it is a problem.  Therefore it is not enough to be ‘not ableist’, we have to learn how to be ‘anti-ableist’ if we want our disabled community members to truly belong and be included in every aspect of our lives.


There are many areas in our community that can benefit from better accessibility and inclusion.  We can all be anti-ableist by actively helping to break down the inclusion barriers we notice and see around us. Your first step in being an ally is awareness. Your first step in being an advocate is to join us!

NECP Accessible Playground

City Playgrounds

Can your child and their peers interact with each other in all areas of the playground? Do you notice a child being left out somewhere either because they don't have access or because they might be feeling unsafe or anxious?

Sensory friendly zone at Newton Harvest Fair

City Fairs & Events

Does the event offer a sensory friendly area? Does the Carnival offer any accessible rides? Is there enough accessible parking available for people of all ages who have mobility challenges? Is an ASL interpreter available for stage performances?

Chess and game table at the Newton Harvest Fair


Do grandparents who have mobility challenges have safe access to observe with their family at sports outings? Are accessible restrooms/porta-potties available? Is the inclusion of disabled children being thought through in all activities?

Accessibility & Inclusion Challenges in Newton Public Schools

Field Trips

Parents of disabled students have a long history of being chaperones during field trips as they see it being the only way their child can fully participate, be safe, and be included in all activities. Some field trips are not inclusive or accessible, so a commitment to education and understanding is needed.

Emergency Evacuations

It is not uncommon to exclude disabled students from emergency evacuation drills. The reality is that many disabled students and their aides need this practice more than most students given the many challenges they face in an emergency situation. Does your school have an Evacu-Trac for wheelchair users?

School Events

Is the Halloween haunted house wheelchair accessible? Do students with sensory challenges have a quiet room they can use for breaks during loud school events? Can students with mobility challenges get on stage with their peers for performances? A little bit of planning and will, often goes a very long way.


Good news! Newton's upcoming new school buildings and renovations will have fully accessible and inclusive playgrounds, as of this writing in 2023. That still leaves the many older playgrounds that are not fully accessible, a place in the school environment where students should be practicing their social, emotional skills.

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