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Recreational Education Center - About

The REC is an all-encompassing resource for families with children, adolescents, and young adults with special needs.

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About the REC

The REC’s all-encompassing resources assist those with special needs such as and not limited to; Autism, Asperger Syndrome, Pervasive Developmental Disorder, ADHD and more. We specialize in ages 3 – 22 years old.

The center is designed to provide a safe, nurturing, accepting and fun recreational opportunity for families seven days a week. Following a customized assessment for each child, a wide range of activities are offered to meet each child’s interests and needs, all based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis. All programs are data driven and follow comprehensive curriculums. Educational programs are developed by a Board Certified Behavioral Analyst (BCBA) in collaboration with Special Educators.

Because the REC offers many different programs, we invite families to come in during Open REC to view the center and all that it has to offer including the indoor playground, the art room and the brand new Teen Center!

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The REC accepts most major insurances. The ARICA bill recently signed into Massachusetts law brings coverage to children, teens and young adults diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum as defined by the DSM.

For more information on coverage at the REC, please call today and speak with our Insurance Coordinator, Julianne O’Keefe.

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Meet the Team

The REC team has extensive experience with children with autism and related disabilities. The REC is proud of the wonderfully diverse group, and each individual uses their experience and unique personality to create a fun, nurturing and safe environment at the REC.

Staff receive on-going training to stay up to date with all of the latest methods and requirements. All services are overseen by a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. Consultation and direct therapies from Speech and Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists and Physical Therapists are available and incorporated into many of our programs.

Owner & Executive Director  |  Senior Staff  |  Support Staff

Careers at the REC

Behavioral Support Staff

Job Description:

Positions available at both Peabody, MA and Londonderry, NH locations

Professional Behavior

  • Demonstrates good work attendance and arrives at appointments on time
  • Has a good working relationship with supervisors, families, and school personnel
  • Maintains child and parent confidentiality
  • Maintains professional boundaries with families and other professionals
  • Dresses appropriately for the given work setting
  • Completes session notes appropriately for each client
  • Completes timesheets/billing accurately and within the appropriate time frame
  • Returns phone calls and/or emails within 48 hours
  • Demonstrates interest in professional development
  • Reads recent articles in the field or a related field to expand current knowledge base
  • Demonstrates critical thinking skills and work efficiently to develop the company as a whole

Discrete Trial Instruction

  • Demonstrates the ability to implement teaching based on the S-R-C paradigm.
  • Sets up teaching environment prior to teaching
  • Presents clear and consistent SD’s
  • Allows sufficient time for the student to respond
  • Ensures that baseline measures are taken for each skill
  • Utilizes shaping, chaining and prompting techniques when teaching
  • Accurately follows lesson plans
  • Accurately delivers consequences (Reinforcement and correction procedures)
  • Follows maintenance and generalization procedures for each lesson plan
  • Records data quickly and accurately
  • Determines changes in targets and prompt levels based on reviewing graphs
  • Cleans up work environment and keeps materials and program book organized
  • Pace of instruction is appropriate per student
  • Promotes individual choice and functional communication with students
  • Ensures all programs are being run frequently
  • Ability to assess students using an appropriate tool such as the ABLLS
  • Writes objective yearly benchmarks for individual students
  • Develop and write lesson plans for program books along with appropriate data collection procedures for on-going progress monitoring
  • Independently makes changes to lesson plans in the best interest of the student

Incidental Teaching and Activity-based Instruction

  • Utilizes all naturally occurring opportunities to embed instruction
  • Imbeds targeted skills into student-preferred activities
  • Able to expand verbal and non-verbal communication attempts
  • Acknowledges communication attempts
  • Promotes generalization of skills through activity-based instruction
  • Designs the environment to promote incidental teaching opportunities
  • Promotes age-appropriate activities
  • Encourages interactions with students by engaging in fun, social activities

Behavior Support Plans

  • Can identify major components of a behavior support plan
  • Can identify possible functions of interfering behaviors
  • Consistently implements preventative strategies based on the behavior support plan
  • Teaches alternative behaviors (adaptive behaviors)
  • Consistently implements consequence measures based on behavior support plan
  • Maintains a neutral tone of voice and body language
  • Utilizes the least restrictive prompt required to consistently follow through
  • Manages the safety of everyone in the environment
  • Requests assistance when needed
  • Accurately records data and graphs accordingly.

“Open REC”

  • Ensure a safe environment for all clients accessing the REC
  • Follow all daily procedures for documenting, handling payments, cleaning requirements and open/closing procedures
  • Facilitate play and social interactions with children accessing the center
  • Offer support and guidance for parents including ideas for play activities
  • Foster positive relationships and interactions among families accessing the REC
  • Support families managing children during instances of behaviors

In addition to these duties, other duties consistent with your position may be assigned to you from time to time by the Executive Director.

Please send inquiries to:

Owner & Executive Director

Tricia Woolard

Tricia Woolard

Owner & Executive Director of
Behavioral Consultation

Tricia Woolard received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth where she first delved into the world of Applied Behavior Analysis through her related coursework and internship in a preschool classroom.

During this time she was employed at a non-profit agency as a Behavioral Direct Care Staff at a short-term adolescent shelter. She went on to receive her Master of Science degree in Behavioral Education from Simmons College in Boston, MA. Employed at The May Institute she received extensive training in ABA, discrete trials, and general consultation skills. Tricia was promoted rapidly within her first year of employment to the newly created position, Coordinator of Home-based Services where she supervised staff and effectively managed their caseloads.

As a Board Certified Behavior Analyst, Tricia is dedicated to providing the most effective student-driven treatment based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis. She strives at ensuring a fun, creative and motivating learning environment for all children and staff. Tricia is dedicated to working collaboratively with all members of a child’s life, through on-going consultation, communication, and training.

Senior Staff

Mark Williams

Clinical Director

Mark Williams recently joined the REC as Clinical Director. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester. It was there he realized his passion for teaching. Mark earned his Masters in Education for Intensive Special Needs from Simmons College in 2000 and then his BCBA from Northeastern University. He has worked in special education for his entire career in local school districts such as Lynn and Marblehead and also at the May Institute where he received ABA training.

Heather Giurlando

Behavioral Consultant

Heather received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Northeastern University and continued there to complete her Masters in Applied Behavior Analysis and then received her BCBA. Her passion for special education began early when she volunteered in middle school at an Extended School Year summer program. While working towards her degrees, Heather gained experience through various internships at day camps, daycares and the Brookline Public Schools. She also completed co-op work at Kennedy Day School at Franciscan Children's Hospital. After completing undergrad, Heather worked at the May Institute for almost 13 years where she had experience in both the classroom and home.

Scott Yavarow

Business Manager

Scott Yavarow received his Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Information Systems from Bentley College in 2002. Before earning his Masters in Elementary Education from Rivier College in New Hampshire, he worked as the Business Manager to the REC’s sister company, Creative Behavioral Solutions. He has played an integral part incorporating insurance into the admissions process at the REC. Scott’s business background and past experience working at local schools and camps made for a seamless transition to the REC’s Business Manager.

Paula Antista

Marketing & Events Manager

Paula Antista graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish and Psychology from Siena College in 2003 and began working in the travel and education industry before she found her calling with marketing and events. She spent the past 3 ½ years as an Event professional at Virtual Inc. of Wakefield, MA where she managed all aspects of events and marketing for both small and large events which included her assistance in creating and managing event websites, marketing campaigns and the onsite execution of the events. She also spent time as a member of the Meeting Professionals International: New England Chapter as the Social Media Manager.

Nancy Pierce

Program Coordinator

Nancy Pierce attended the University of Massachusetts at Amherst where she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Communication Disorders. Nancy completed graduate level certification coursework in Applied Behavior Analysis at the University of Massachusetts at Boston. Prior to joining the REC, Nancy worked as a Behavioral Consultant at the in-home service based ABA program, and also REC’s sister company, Creative Behavioral Solutions. Nancy has also worked as a Program Coordinator for Melmark New England where she gained experience working with children with autism. She has been a Behavior Specialist for the Lynnfield Public School system since 2005 where she worked with both elementary and middle school aged children in both inclusion and substantially separate classrooms.

Reagan Cassidy

Program Coordinator

Reagan Cassidy attended Salem State College where she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. She continued her education through the University of Massachusetts at Boston where she completed her Applied Behavioral Analysis for Special Populations Certificate. Prior to joining the REC she worked at Milestones Day School in Waltham and the Peabody Public School System. Reagan is originally from Peabody and continues to be a huge asset in introducing the local community to the great resources offered at the REC.

Gina Tremblay

Program Coordinator

Gina Tremblay graduated from Assumption College in Worcester, MA where she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Human Services and Social Rehabilitation. Her experience working with children and adolescents includes her time as a D.A.R.E. Camp Counselor, volunteering as an after-school mentor and interning at an assistance program for adolescents with mental health issues and/or substance abuse problems.

Julianne O'Keefe

Admissions and Insurance Coordinator

Julianne O’Keefe has quickly become the REC’s admissions and insurance expert by assisting new families through the intake process. She earned her Bachelor of Arts Degree from Providence College and prior to the REC she perfected her organization and research skills as a realtor for Coldwell Banker.

Support Staff

Jonathan Dodd

Behavioral Support Staff

Jono Dodd graduated from University of Massachusetts at Lowell with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Sociology. He continued on to earn his Masters of Elementary Education also from UMASS Lowell and following that taught at local public schools before joining the REC Team. Jono can often be found at the REC before or after hours helping with center improvements by utilizing his finish carpentry skills.

Molly LaPointe

Behavioral Consultant

Molly LaPointe attended the University of Massachusetts at Amherst where she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. She continued onto Simmons College where she received her Masters in Behavior Analysis and became a BCBA concurrent with working at Nashoba Learning Group. Molly gained further experience as a BCBA within the local school districts such as Watertown and Arlington. She currently works for both the REC and its sister company, Creative Behavioral Solutions, as a Behavioral Consultant.

Robert Duggan III

Behavioral Support Staff

Bob Duggan graduated from Fitchburg State College and his experience includes working as an Applied Behavioral Analysis Therapist in the Marlborough, MA Public Schools and working at Melmark New England in Residential Services.

Jessica Ross

Behavioral Support Staff

Jessica is currently working towards her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and a concentration in Child and Adolescent Development at the University of Southern New Hampshire. She has a long history of working with Applied Behavior Analysis therapies and has been working with children for over 15 years. Jessica has worked with children with special needs in every aspect of their lives: at home, in school and now at the REC. Her skills with data collection and behavior management make her an asset in the field and a seasoned REC staffer. Jessica also works in the Lynn Public School District.

Kristina Musto

Behavioral Support Staff

Kristina is currently enrolled at Salem State University and double majoring in Early Childhood Education and Psychology. She has a compassion and understanding for children with special needs due to her experience with a loved one on the Autism Spectrum. Kristina has also observed in various local classrooms as part of her studies.

Rachel Viger

Behavioral Support Staff

Rachel recently graduated from Anna Maria College and earned her Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education. She has extensive training in Applied Behavioral Analysis therapy and also currently works as a paraprofessional in the North Reading Public School District.


83 Pine St. - Peabody, MA 01960    (978) 717-5062
10 Mohawk Drive - Londonderry, NH 03053    (603) 260-6167