The Peak Experience

The Peak Experience

Provides intellectual, emotional, and physical opportunities which enable students to reach their highest potential.
It is our hope that these “peak experiences” will create positive impressions and be independently generalized into the students' everyday lives.

   Mission Statement

              Respect of oneself and others          

     Responsibility in work and action

Relaxation of the mind and body

"The Outdoor Education component of

The Peak Experience brought the students and teachers together in a special way.

More than anything, the outdoor program turned the group of students, teachers and staff into a team. The students learned encouragement, support, friendship, trust, tolerance and so much more. At the same time,

they were learning new wonderful skills and having fun! 

I can never thank the Peak Team enough for the opportunity they gave my son to grow and learn in such a safe, supportive and positive environment. 

Today he is a successful 11th-grader thanks to Peak."

Quote From a Parent 2007-2009


Peak Experience Team

Team Meetings occur each week to provide a cohesive program.

  • Bridget Forie            Peak Experience/Special Education Teacher
  • James Morrow         SHS Special Education Department Head
  • Patricia Goodman    South High School Psychologist
  • Joan Greenberg       South High/Middle School Social Worker
  • Carly Bank                South High School Guidance Counselor
  • Paul Ziring                District Outdoor Education Coordinator


Student Profile and Intake Process

The Peak Experience student is committed to a two-year program beginning in 9th grade.

  • The student demonstrates emotional difficulties that interfere with the ability to succeed academically.
  • The student will be able to function within the school environment with support from the PPS Team.
  • The student will be of average to above average intelligence.
  • The student will be at or close to grade level in reading and math.
  • The student will participate in all Outdoor Education field experiences.
  • The student will complete an evaluation process conducted by the team at SHS.
  • The C.S.E. will determine the student’s final placement.


Program Outline

The Peak Experience Program is located at Great Neck South High School. It is designed to meet each student’s academic and behavioral needs based on their IEP goals. The Peak Experience classroom enhances each student’s individual potential through a collaborative effort with guidance, the psychology team, and outdoor education. Parent groups and ongoing communication with the classroom teacher and School Psychologist are established as an essential aspect of the program.Functional Behavioral Assessments are developed and utilized with each student.

1. Classroom Outline: Bridget Forie, Special Education Teacher and Program Teaching Assistants

A. Behavioral Management System and Goals:

Students' goals focus on personal responsibility, respect, and positive choices. Supports are utilized with each behavior plan. It is envisioned that students will independently recognize and manage positive behaviors.

B. Instructional Delivery:

High School curriculum with modifications for individual students according to academic ability and behavioral functioning. Tutorial period to support homework and organizational skills.

2. Communication Skills: School Psychologist and PPS Team

Group and individual sessions focus on communication, social skills, group dynamics, and individual coping strategies to support IEP goals. All areas reinforce positive interactions at home and within the school environment. It is envisioned that these skills will be generalized into the everyday functioning of each student.

3. Electives:

Art-Technology Program and Spanish Exploration

General Education/Collaborative Teacher

Support Teacher: Bridget Forie

-Specialized class designed to meet the needs of The Peak Experience students

-Meets Elective Requirement/Foreign Language Requirement

4. Outdoor Education Program and Field Experiences: Paul Ziring, Outdoor Education Coordinator

Support Teachers: Bridget Forie and Program Teaching Assistants

Field Experiences provide opportunities for individual and group goals. These opportunities challenge students intellectually and physically to support the growth of positive self-esteem. The Outdoor Education Program provides a bridge to academics such as Biology, Health, Physical Science, Ecology, and everyday well being.

Refer to Field Experience tab above for further details!

Great Neck South High