Programs of Study

  • Advanced Work Class (AWC)

    Advanced Work Class (AWC) is a full-time program at the Joseph Lee School that provides an accelerated academic curriculum for students in grades 4, 5 and 6. Students in AWC study the same topics as those in general education classes, but in greater depth.  Students are expected to complete more schoolwork and more home study. In math, they study the curriculum for their own grade plus part of the work for the next grade level. In English Language Arts, students do more writing and read more challenging literature than in the general curriculum.  Students also study Spanish as part of a foreign language requirement. Parents cannot place their child into an AWC class. Student participation is by invitation only and is based on the student’s scores on an eligibility test.  BPS administers the TerraNova, third edition, to determine eligibility for the AWC program and the SUPERA test to determine eligibility for the Spanish AWC program. Boston Public Schools reviews these exams and mails invitations to qualified students in January.

    ASD - What is Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Autism are both general terms for a  neurological variance that affects over 2 million individuals in the U.S. and tens of millions worldwide. Each individual with autism is unique. Many of those on the autism spectrum have exceptional abilities in visual skills, music and academic skills.  Common characteristics of autism include different sensory experiences, nonstandard ways of learning and problem solving, deep focused thinking and passionate interests, atypical and/or repetitive movement, need for consistency and routine and difficulty understanding and expressing communication.

    The ABA Program at the Joseph Lee K-8 School

    Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the practice of applying the research-based principles of learning theory in a systematic way to alter behavior. The practice is used extensively in education, healthcare and even business management. It is particularly prominent in the education of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), for which it is one of the only scientifically valid therapies.

    At the Joseph Lee School, we take great pride in our ABA program.  Our program includes 18 substantially separate classrooms and 7 inclusion classrooms with academic and social inclusion opportunities for students and ABA focused workshops for families. Students participate in swimming and sensory arts classes as well as music, movement and physical education. Student progress is evaluated through their IEP goals and objectives and will receive quarterly progress reports instead of general education report cards.  

    Students in the Joseph Lee ABA program have created many large mosaic murals using tens of thousands of pieces of cut construction paper.  The murals have been featured in numerous news stories and have been visited by the Boston Celtics and former Mayor Thomas Menino.

    After School Program for Grades

    The Lee afterschool program offers a safe environment and nurturing afterschool experience for all Lee School students in K0-8th grade throughout the school year. The program runs Monday-Friday from the end of the school day at 2:15 until 5:00pm and provides a combination of homework support and enrichment activities to students.

    Homework Support

    Students are provided with 45 minutes of homework completion time from 2:15 pm - 5:00 pm Mondays-Thursdays.


    The extended day program provides an opportunity for students to be exposed to new ideas and allows them to expand their creativity. Each day from 4:00 - 5:00 pm students engage in hands-on enrichment activities allowing them to explore art, dance, sports, science, and other areas.

    The cost of the program is $75 per student and $25 for each additional sibling. We also accept vouchers from Child Care Choices.