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Every Student. Every Day.

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The Center for Academic Excellence enhances Maclay School’s dedication to excellent teaching and learning by supporting each person to develop their full potential.

About the CAE

The Center for Academic Excellence (CAE) serves as the central hub for academic support and enrichment on campus. 

The Vision of the CAE

  • Partner with Maclay School’s students, faculty, and parents to support and extend classroom learning 
  • Provide supplementary academic intervention and enrichment opportunities to best engage all our students 
  • Provide professional development opportunities and resources that promote excellence in teaching and learning and the pursuit of new professional knowledge. 

Enrichment is a growing area of the CAE.  Math@Maclay, afterschool enrichment classes, Math competition teams, the iTHINKers, and the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth are all apart of the supplemental education we offer.

Click here for Enrichment

Who uses the CAE services?

  • Students who receive accommodations from a variety of mild to moderate learning differences and other disabilities
  • Students who receive targeted intervention and support from a member of the learning specialist team
  • Students who receive services such as speech, occupational, or behavioral therapy during the school day
  • Students who work with a general tutor/independent contractor either after school or during a study period
  • Students in grades K-8 who attend the CAE after school math program, “Math at Maclay”
  • Students in grades 2-4 who participate in the CAE enrichment program, “iThinkers”
  • Students in grades 4-8 who participate in the CAE enrichment Math Competition elective and teams
  • Students who receive test proctoring services as part of their accommodations
  • Faculty and staff learning more about using best practices in teaching and learning, including data to inform instruction, differentiated instruction, and/or supporting students with disabilities or learning differences

Some services are included in tuition, and some are additional charges.  

Services Included in Tuition

  • Academic monitoring for all students utilizing Track My Progress, Earlybird Literacy Assessment, and other screening or curriculum-based assessments
  • Consultation with parents regarding academic concerns
  • The coordination of any psycho-educational testing including referrals to community partners
  • Behavioral or academic accommodations (Learning Profiles) for qualified students
  • Informal assessments of individual students identifying areas for growth
  • Test proctoring support for qualified students with testing accommodations in grades K-5
  • The application for ACT/College Board college testing accommodations
  • Screenings by speech/language and occupational therapists for Pre-K - Kindergarten
  • Suggested strategies and resources for faculty on supporting differentiated instruction and learning differences in the classroom
  • Coordination of the school-wide Student Support Team
  • Advocacy and resources for neurodiverse students
  • iThinkers STEM and Math Competitions course for qualified students in grades 2-8


Additional Paid Services

Targeted Intensive Support 
For a small percentage of students who require individualized and intensive support related to a mild to moderate learning disability, members of our CAE Learning Specialist Team provide intervention through small-group or 1:1 remediation. Learning Specialists are former classroom or Special Education teachers and trained in Orton-Gillingham, a multi-sensory approach to teaching reading and writing.

Students who work with a learning specialist are receiving additional scaffolds and re-teaching of the grade-level curriculum, Orton-Gillingham structured literacy support, executive functioning support, and/or math support. Learning Specialists set quarterly goals for each student, monitor their progress through progress reports, and share weekly Learning Session Summaries with families and teachers to communicate progress. Students who receive this level of services have been identified by administration through the admissions process, through one of the various school screeners, or as a result of academic performance that indicates a pattern of not responding adequately to the instruction provided in the classroom.

General Tutoring Services 
The Center for Academic Excellence partners with several former teachers and local tutoring practitioners for students who do not require targeted, intensive support but instead are seeking general, subject-specific, or college-testing tutoring. General tutoring for lower and middle school students happens primarily after school or, for upper school, during a study period during the day. Students working with specialized tutors/independent contractors, including faculty who tutor after school, are referred by the CAE. All tutors have completed background checks and are registered Maclay tutors. All on-campus tutoring is billed through the Center for Academics Excellence.

Maclay partners with a speech language pathologist, occupational therapist, and board-certified behavior analyst for students to receive services during the school day. Additional speech/language and occupational therapy screeners are provided for our youngest students (Pk/K) or as requested by families.  

For questions about services, please contact the office of the Center for Academic Excellence at cae@maclay.orgricing varies according to provider or tutor. Please reach out to

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Accommodations are provided to all Maclay students with a diagnosed learning disability or behavioral disorder and are based on the needs of the students. The academic environment at Maclay is designed for students with average to above-average intelligence and the Center for Academic Excellence supports these students with middle to moderate learning disabilities in areas such as dyslexia, dysgraphia, auditory processing, or behavioral disorders such as ADHD with additional classroom accommodations.

Accommodations are adjustments to the curriculum or instruction that remove barriers and provide students with equal access to learning and the learning environment. To receive a Learning Profile (accommodation plan), Maclay students must submit a comprehensive psycho-educational evaluation completed by a credentialed practitioner to the office of the Center for Academic Excellence. Updated testing is requested every four years. Prior to eighth grade, college-testing accommodations are applied for by the CAE Students with Disabilities Coordinator.

Students may receive short-term accommodations for mental, health, or physical considerations. Students with social-emotional or developmental diagnoses that may impact learning and performance in the classroom should reach out to their school counselor or Director of Health Services for more information.

For questions about accommodations, please contact the office of the Center for Academic Excellence.

Email the CAE

The following are accommodations that Maclay has identified as most beneficial to our students. Learning Profiles are reconsidered annually. 

  • Extended time to complete assignments, assessments, or classroom activities
  • Seating away from visual or auditory distractions  
  • Alternative testing environments or the use of a test proctor as a scribe or human reader  
  • Visual supports such as visual aids, graphic organizers, charts, or visual schedules to assist students in understanding and organizing information  
  • Accommodated assignments that involve adjusting the complexity, length, or format of the assignment. Some students may have reduced problem sets, questions, or items to complete so long as the mastery of the standard is still the objective.  
  • Assistive technology devices or software such as text-to-speech software, speech recognition tools, or calculators to support learning and communication  
  • Breaks or movement opportunities  
  • Visual or verbal prompts, reminds, cues, to support students in staying on task, following instructions, or managing their behavior.  
  • Simplified instructions. Complex directions or tasks may be broken down into smaller, more manageable steps to support students’ understanding and completion.  

Our CAE Team

Janine Couch

Janine Couch

Director Student Support Services, Director of Center for Academic Excellence
Lollie Aulet

Lollie Aulet

Learning Specialist
Paul Dickson

Paul Dickson

Learning Specialist
Suzanna Malone

Suzanna Malone

Learning Specialist
Laurie McHargue

Laurie McHargue

Behavioral Specialist
Darlene Miller

Darlene Miller

Learning Specialist
Christy Oberste

Christy Oberste

Math Specialist, Math Team Coach
Michelle Partridge

Michelle Partridge

Learning Specialist
Elizabeth Sheward

Elizabeth Sheward

Assistant Director of Center for Academic Excellence
Arie Slone

Arie Slone

Learning Specialist, Football Assistant Coach
Jodee Slone

Jodee Slone

Learning Specialist