Pabian & Russell is proud to announce its new partnership with the Autism Higher Education Foundation’s Paralegal Assistant Track (PLAT) program. The PLAT program trains students on the autism spectrum on various skills needed in a legal office or court setting, including filing, scanning and organization. It then places qualified students into the court systems so that they can apply the skills they have learned throughout their schooling. The program began in the Suffolk, Norfolk, Barnstable, Essex, and Bristol court systems, with the support of Chief Justice Angela Ordonez of the Massachusetts Probate & Family Courts.
Overall, the PLAT program has three main phases that help prepare students for their future careers in a professional setting. Phase one of the program begins in the ninth grade and continues throughout high school. During this time, vocational training is embedded into the student’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP). Some of the areas taught include developing communication skills and office vocabulary, as well as more specific skills, like shredding, copying, document management, and book-keeping support. In phase two, students from twelfth grade to age 22 are enrolled in transitional programs. During this time, students work as interns in local courts, focusing on a variety projects like scanning, shredding, file inventory, and data entry. Individuals that successfully complete the transitional program work with an agency dedicated to employment support, education and training and will begin their careers in local law firms and other professional businesses.
Pabian & Russell is proud to be one of the first law firms in Boston to join the PLAT program and work regularly with an individual who has completed the transitional program. We have committed to helping teach these young adults valuable tools they can carry with them throughout their careers. We encourage others to learn more about this amazing program at http://autismhighereducationfoundation.org/vocational-programs/ .