"Triesha and Patty at Open Doors have been a huge blessing in our lives. Our family was completely unsure about navigating the world of special education and they were our best guides: calm, warm, professional, respectful and thorough. They listened to our every concern and provided us helpful insights along each step of our process. We had a lot of concerns that hiring an advocate might mean the relationship with the school district would take on an adversarial tone but that couldn't have been further from the truth. Having advocates meant that the school district took us very seriously. It signaled to the district that we were absolutely committed to getting the most appropriate services for our preschooler. During the few moments when there was tension with the district, Triesha and Patty coached us on how to diffuse the tension. Not only did they help us achieve all our goals for our child's needs, they also brought us peace-of-mind during the process. We are grateful for their assistance and would recommend them to other families without any reservation." Marcy N., Poughkeepsie
"Our family is extremely grateful to Triesha and Patty at Open Doors! We had major concerns with the district particularly for one of our twins upon entering kindergarten. Triesha and Patty are very knowledgeable, professional, respectful, and heartfelt. Our goals were definitely achieved in addition to receiving additional services. We will always recommend Open Doors Educational Advocates. We truly believe that using an advocate especially upon entering the public school system sets a precedent and what your expectations of the district are going forward." Michelle & Jim H. ,Hopewell Junction
Open Doors Educational Advocates
Helping families navigate Special Education services
"I am an attorney, and the father of two elementary school aged-children with special needs; my wife was a stay at home mom to our boys. When my boys' special needs manifested themselves, my wife moved heaven and earth to figure out what special education resources were available for the boys, and how to access them. This was not easy, but she learned about the IEP process and how to best advocate for our boys at CPSE/CSE meetings. I would attend these meetings, but I was not familiar with what went into the preparation for the meeting, or even figuring out what to advocate for.
When my wife passed away, I had to prepare for two rapidly upcoming CSE meetings. Although I was prepared to advocate as necessary, I quickly realized that this was well outside of my expertise, and that advocating for my children in the context of a CSE meeting was very different than advocating for my commercial clients in a courtroom. Although, as an attorney, I was initially inclined to reach out to a fellow attorney in this practice area, on the recommendation of a friend I reached out to Triesha at Open Doors. Triesha, being a former special education administrator, was clearly familiar with the IEP process, what services and accommodations were available for my boys (and what services and accommodations were appropriate). Triesha quickly put me at ease that I was in good hands. Triesha and her team evidenced their knowledge and professionalism in the way they advocated for my boys, and the results of both CSE meetings (and those since) showed that. While I won't hesitate to retain appropriate counsel if such ever becomes necessary, Triesha and her team provide me with the security of knowing that is not likely to happen." Greg S., Poughkeepsie
"It is with great confidence that I recommend Open Doors Educational Advocates. It is for their attentiveness, flexibility, knowledge, and determination that I make this recommendation. I have worked with the group over the past two school years to care for my son’s 504 plan. This was a very unique situation in the sense that my son already had an existing 504 plan, but due to its loose wording, it was being violated without the awareness of given teachers. Because of my emotional state, I decided to reach out to the group to represent my son to be sure that his needs were being met. Before our meeting at the school, I met with a few of the advocates to discuss the current conditions and review his 504 plan. In this meeting, they made very concrete recommendations and helped me to channel my emotions in a way that served my son. At our meeting with the school, administration was made aware of the violations and was informed that more specific language would help my son andhis teachers. From this point forward in the meeting, the school was compelled to work collaboratively with our advocate. In instances where the school was hesitant, the advocate provided strong rationale for why each accommodation was necessary and why the language had to be such. In addition to adding and rewording accommodations and testing modifications, the advocate further developed the 504 through adding specifics in terms of the health impairment affecting my son. After 6 years experience of navigating this on my own and also using other advocates, this was by far my best experience. I felt as though my son was thoroughly understood, supported and was being represented by those well informed of educational law and pedagogy.
Arguably the best part of my experience is the group’s continued interest in my son’s education as they check in with us frequently to be sure that his needs are being met by his 504 plan and that the particulars of it are being honored by the school. It has been two years of tremendous strides for my son and strongly recommend their services to anyone looking for an educational advocate." Carla K., Port Jervis