top of page
Gillis Class Picture.jpg



At Chestnut TAG there are two classrooms made up of the Life Skills Program. Jephthe Colas (teacher of Math and Science and Special Education Coordinator) and Elizabeth Rivera (teacher of ELA, Social Studies, and ESOL) run the program throughout the year. Our main focus is to introduce new "life skills" to our students so they can embed them in their everyday lives to help them become more independent. The bases of our teaching is using real world problems to challenge our students to solve which will better them for the real world. Our classes are structured with no more than 12 students per class so each student can receive as much one on one assistance as they need to be able to grasp the subject being taught. Hands on Projects are used often throughout the year so students can visually see and comprehend what is being learned and their understanding of what the outside world has to offer will expand.


Contact Info: Jephthe Colas

                          Elizabeth Rivera


 Developmental is a program for students with severe disabilities. There are two teachers; Samantha Rivers and Jullynette Vazquez. They work with no more than 12 students to a classroom with paraprofessional and nurse support throughout the day. Their main priority is to work on social skills and to assist students in gaining more independence.


Contact Info: Samantha Rivers

                          Jullynette Vazquez 


Hello Everyone! My name is Samantha Rivers, and this is my forth year teaching here at T.A.G in the Developmental program alongside Ms Vazquez. I have worked with the special needs community for the past 10 years. It’s become my passion to help these students make progress, and I’ve never felt more gratification than being a part of my students growth and success. I am currently working on my Masters in Special Education at Springfield College so I can continue on this journey with my students. 

I look forward to working collaboratively with you to make sure this is an easy transition for all! Here’s to an awesome year!! 

Hola! My name is Jullynette Vazquez I am one of the Special Education teachers here at Chestnut TAG Middle School. I will be working side by side with Ms. Rivers. This is my sixth year teaching Special Education, before that I was a teacher’s aide for 10 years. All 16 years in this building. I am so excited to teach your little one and see what this year brings. We will learn a lot and we are going to have a lot of FUN. 


LINKS is program designed specifically for children with autism. We learn all of our core subjects together through out the day with our teachers Migdalia Rivera- Ortiz,  Juwan Moody, Patricia Rosado, Pete Gladstone and Karen Bolden-King. You will find us growing our social skills applicable to real life situations. We refuse to stay in our classroom and love to get out and interact with all of our friends around the school! When we aren’t working hands on with academics we can be found helping around the school picking up breakfast bags or in the school garden!






Contact Info: Migdalia Rivera- Ortiz

                          Juwan Moody 

                          Patricia Rosado

                          Peter Gladstone

"I love seeing my students succeed and achieve their full potential. " Mr. Gladstone strives to help build a community with diverse voices by empowering his special needs students

Everyone of my students have improved on their most recent ELA/Reading diagnosis through I-Ready with Math showing improvement as well! 

                          Karen Bolden-King

bottom of page