About Us

We are a nonprofit organization dedicated to learning for all as we recognize that all great minds don't think alike.


Meet Our Team

Meet our professional staff of diagnosticians and instructors versed in a wide range of disciplines.


Success Stories

Read stories and testimonials about learners of all ages who found academic and social success at the Stern Center.


Course Calendar

Join our knowledgeable and experienced staff in learning research-proven strategies in the areas of literacy, social cognition, math, and more.


Courses & Workshops

Browse our entire collection of Professional Learning offerings. Find a course for yourself or design a customized remedial program for your school/district.



Discover the program that teaches early care and education providers as well as parents how to foster early literacy skills in children ages five and under.


Communication Services

Our Communication Services program is designed to meet the needs of college students and adults in Vermont and throughout New England who struggle with speech and language difficulties or who find it challenging to socialize with peers and coworkers and would benefit from social learning.

Our team of special educators and speech-language pathologists (SLPs) works with students to develop a customized program that serves their unique learning styles and helps them find success. We work with students who have social learning needs, including:

  • social cognitive challenges such as autism (ASD) and Asperger’s
  • nonverbal learning disability (NLD)
  • attention deficit disorder (ADD)
  • attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • mental health issues
  • cognition issues including attention, memory, executive functioning, and visuospatial skills

We also have experience with medical and behavioral diagnoses including selective mutism, social emotional disturbances, dyslexia, stroke, traumatic brain injury, and cerebral palsy. We offer a variety of different social learning programs in both one-to-one and group settings, including Social Thinking® groups and autism therapy.

Speech and Language Services

Our speech and language therapy services provide individualized intervention plans for students experiencing language, speech and/or dysphagia (swallowing) challenges.

Social Learning Services

We focus on social emotional development, helping children and teens navigate social situations through direct teaching, coaching, and practice to learn the fundamental building blocks of social success. We provide one-to-one instruction as well as group programs, including our Social Thinking® groups and our summer camps.

Social Learning Services

Social Thinking® Groups:

Children, teens, and adults can benefit and are welcome to participate in our social learning groups at our Williston, Vermont location. Our instructors are trained to coach students with various social challenges, such as autism, Asperger’s, nonverbal learning disability, attention deficit disorder, and mental health issues. Groups are formed by combining similar social learning profiles.

For younger participants, group format might include a 50-minute instructional session followed by a 10-minute group meeting with parents to help carry over new social learning throughout the week. For older participants, groups might explore the community to ensure that learners’ needs are addressed across multiple environments. 

Our groups use a cognitive behavioral approach to teach participants to understand the thinking that motivates their words and actions. Differing from traditional social skills practices, when participants learn that thinking motivates their words and actions the improved social understanding approach creates more generalized use of skills. In addition, students who struggle with social skills and who participate in social emotional learning programs have been shown to achieve higher academic test scores.

Our groups meet once per week for an hour. Most groups meet after school, generally between the hours of 3:00pm and 6:00pm, Monday through Friday. However, groups can be scheduled anytime during business hours as long as enrollment is met for that time period. We also offer two summer camps, one for children and one for teens.

Individual instruction in Social Thinking® is also available.

For additional information Camp Compass or our Team Building Summer Institute, please visit our Summer Learning Opportunities page. 

Speech-Language Therapy Services

Our certified SLPs provide comprehensive evaluations and individualized intervention plans for students experiencing language, speech, and dysphagia (swallowing) challenges, including:

Language needs to include understanding and/or expressing correct:

  • Syntax (sentence structure)  
  • Semantics (meaning)
  • Pragmatics (social use of language)
  • Morphology (word parts)
  • Phonology (how words sound)

Speech needs include:

  • Articulation, the formation of basic speech sounds
  • The mechanics of voice, how we use various vocal muscles and breathing to produce sounds
  • Voice challenges such as hypo/hypernasality, disorders due to cleft lip/palate, and dysphonia
  • Fluency, the rate and rhythm of speech

Dysphagia (swallowing) needs include:

  • For children, treatment focuses on oral-motor and feeding issues
  • For adults, treatment focuses on acquired and neurological issues impacting ability to meet nutritional needs

Registration Form

If you are a returning client, we look forward to continuing our relationship with you. To get started, please feel free to download our registration form or complete the contact us form below. 

Communication Services Registration Form | PDF

Frequently Asked Questions

Does insurance cover the cost of Communication Services?

Unfortunately, we are not an insurance provider. If you feel that our services are covered by insurance, we recommend that you contact your insurance provider directly.

How much does it cost?

Although cost may be a factor in making a decision, we offer high-quality, research-based instruction that is individualized for our students. Most clients receive a scholarship, or additional assistance, to reduce the cost of services. We encourage you to review our Scholarship and Financial Aid section and to talk with a staff person about potential assistance before making your decision.

What does the cost of Communication Services include?

  • 50 minutes of intervention

  • 10 minutes of communication with client or families to generalize session and provide strategies when appropriate

  • Progress Reporting

  • Year-end report that provides progress summary and recommendations

Do you offer financial assistance?

Yes. Through the generosity of individuals, organizations, and foundations, we are able to award scholarships and provide additional assistance. We welcome you to review our Scholarship and Financial Aid section and to talk with a staff person about potential assistance.

What is the frequency and length of your sessions?

For most students in Grades K-12, we offer after-school sessions to accommodate their school schedules. However, students and adults can meet during the day and evening hours. Most students meet once per week for an hour.

Do you offer individualized speech therapy and Social Thinking® Groups off-site?

Yes, we can tailor our services to meet clients’ needs.

When can I begin services?

Social Thinking® Groups and Speech and Language Therapy services are offered year-round and you can begin at any time. In addition, during the summer months, we offer some unique opportunities for children and teens and welcome you to visit our Summer Learning Opportunities section for more information.

How do I begin?

Please contact our Communication Services department by calling 802-878-2332 or by completing the form below. It is important for us to learn more about you and what your needs are before we begin.

Does the instructor collaborate with school or college personnel?

The success of our students is important to us and to gain a better understanding of your needs, it is often helpful to collaborate with other professionals.

Do you offer services during the summer?

Yes, we offer some unique opportunities for children and teens and welcome you to visit our Summer Learning Opportunities section for more information.

What programs are used by your clinicians?

Talk to us!

Talk to a real person

If you're still uncertain or would like to get started, give us a call to discuss what options would be the best fit. Our knowledgeable staff members are here to help.

1-800-544-4863 or (802) 878-2332

Email Us


Your gift will improve lives.