Arbor Bay School’s middle school is described as a “safe haven” during what can be a trying time of a child’s development. With a low student:teacher ratio of 4-6:1 at the middle school level, our students feel a sense of security and are willing to take on new academic and social challenges to prepare them for high school.

The Arbor Bay School experience is characterized by:

  • Multi-disciplinary, integrated educational teams
  • Research based curriculum and instruction tailored to each student
  • A multi-sensory, experiential environment with a whole child approach
  • Highly skilled specialized and credentialed teachers in every classroom and a small class size
  • On-site speech/language and occupational therapists and counselors
  • Academic, social, and emotional growth curriculum

Arbor Bay School’s program is very much alive with the energy of students at work and play. We use curriculum that meets Common Core State Standards alongside specialized textbooks and recourse materials designed for students with learning differences. Middle School students also leverage the latest technology platforms on iPads and laptops and teachers make lessons interactive with eBeams.

Incorporated into the program are speech pathologists, occupational therapists, and counselors. Once weekly therapy groups occur focusing on areas of need. There is also a constant stream of consultation/collaboration between the therapists and teachers as well as quarterly team meetings.

As part of the Arbor Bay School whole child development, students participate in specialist directed programming including yoga, meditation, physical education, health education, social-pragmatics groups and music.

Furthermore, students enjoy recess and lunch at beautiful Burton Park, which is adjacent to Arbor Bay School. ABS middle school students also have the opportunity to participate in mainstream social situations during recess and lunch, with ABS staff facilitation, through an established partnership with a nearby middle school.

Middle School students also engage in service learning, where they may participate in a beach clean up, sort food at a food bank, and/or engage with seniors at the local senior center. To create a deeper connection among classmates while establishing leadership skills, students may also participate in ropes courses and other sessions at Jones Gultch.

Lastly, due to their seniority, Middle School students have the privilege to go on teacher-supervised walks to downtown San Carlos for occasional lunches, which further enhances community social skills, is an ABS right of passage and is a lot of fun!


Because ABS special education credentialed teachers adapt the program depending on the needs of each student, we have a variety of curriculums available, including:

  • Language! Comprehensive Program: Reading, Writing, Grammar, Spelling, Phonics
  • Merill (textbooks)
  • Wilson Reading System (Wilson Language Training Corp.)
  • Stepping Up in Reading (Preventing Academic Failure)
  • Scholastic News (Scholastic, Inc.)
  • Selected Literature
  • Explode the Code (Educators Publishing Company)
  • Lexia Software Program

  • Kidspiration (Inspiration Software Inc.)
  • Visualize and Verbalize (NanciBell Company)
  • Fusion Writer

  • Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing (The Learning Company)
  • Type to Learn

  • Connecting Math Concepts (SRA, McGraw Hill)
  • Marking Math Real

  • History Alive (Teachers Curriculum Institute)

  • Science Daybook (Great Source Education Group, Houghton Mifflin Co.)

Arbor Bay School’s ultimate goal is to give students the tools to successfully transition to a larger classroom environment.