Special Care Needs Consultation Services in Newburyport, MA

Children’s Health Care recognizes that children with special care needs often require a different approach to learning and communicating. It can be difficult to navigate through complex special care needs programs, such as the 504 Plan and the Individualized Educational Plan. From social skills and school behaviors to program application assistance, we offer our full support in your endeavor to raise a happy and healthy child.

Barbara Kneeland is our veteran special care coordinator, providing assistance to families of children with special care needs. She brings with her not only a background in nursing but also over 28 years of personal experience raising a son with special needs.

Our special care consultation services are exclusively reserved for the patients and parents of Children’s Health Care. To address your special care needs child’s concerns, please contact Children's Health Care in Newburyport to to request a consultation with Barbara Kneeland. You may also contact Barbara Kneeland directly with minor issues.

Contact Our Special Care Coordinator

Barbara Kneeland

Phone: (978) 388-7250

Fax: (978) 462-2922

Email: barbara.kneeland@chcmass.com

Hours: Monday – Thursday

Please be aware that Barbara receives a high volume of calls each day. She always does her very best to return calls the same business day but cannot always guarantee this. Your patience is much appreciated! Email is often an easier way for both families and Barbara to communicate. Please do not hesitate to utilize this option.

Suggested Reading

Divorce & Loss

  • Was It the Chocolate Pudding? A Story for Little Kids about Divorce by Sandra Levins
  • What in The World Do You Do When Your Parents Divorce? by Kent Winchester & Roberta Beyer
  • Talking with Children About Loss, Words, Strategies, and Wisdom to Help Children Cope with Death, Divorce and Other Difficult Times ISBN #0399525432
  • After The Tears, Parents Talk About Raising a Child with a Disability by Robin Simons

Special Education

  • The Complete IEP Guide, How to Advocate for Your Special Ed Child by Attorney Lawrence M. Siegel
  • 800+ Measurable IEP Goals and Objectives/For Use in the K-12 Classroom by Chris De Feyter
  • Wrightslaw Special Education Law by Peter and Pamela Wright
  • Writing Measurable Functional and Transition IEP Goals by Cynthia M. Herr & Barbara D. Bateman, PhD
  • Parenting a Child With Learning Disabilities, The Experts Speak ISBN #1930877013

Transitions and Post Secondary

  • Legal Planning for Special Needs in Massachusetts by Barbara D. Jackins, Atty.
  • Writing Measurable Functional and Transition IEP Goals by Cynthia M. Herr & Barbara D. Bateman, PhD
  • Many Shades of Success, Other Views of Post Secondary Options by Teresa Alissa Citro


  • My Brother is A World Class Pain – A Siblings Guide to ADHD/Hyperactivity by Michael Gordon PhD
  • Toilet Training for Individuals with Autism and Related Disorders by Maria Wheeler, M.Ed.
  • The Out-of-Sync Child – Recognizing and Coping with Sensory Processing Disorder by Carol Stock Kranowitz
  • Taking Seizure Disorders to School – A Story About Epilepsy by Kim Gosselin (for ages 4-8 yrs)
  • Children With Autism, A Parent’s Guide edited by Michael D. Powers

Welcome to Hollandby Emily Perl Kingsley

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability – to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this...

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip – to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland". "Holland?!" you say. "What do mean Holland? I signed up for Italy! All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."

But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay. The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place. So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around...and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills...and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts!

But everyone around you is busy coming and going from Italy...and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time that they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that’s where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned." And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away...because the loss of that dream is a very, very significant loss.

But...if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things...about Holland.