Welcome to our family
Rosie, our therapy dog!
ACS is pleased to welcome Rosie to our family as our mascot and friend.
Rosie, who is owned and trained by our Special Services Coordinator, Shannon Rizzo, comes to us to offer joy, comfort and overall well-being. Our goal is to add enrichment to our ACS programs with this special therapy dog. Rosie is an Australian Labradoodle which is hypoallergenic and non-shedding. Fun fact: The breeder specifically chose her as a puppy for a therapy dog temperament and she will be professionally trained at least throughout the first year of life. At a year of age, Therapy Dog International Foundation provides an official test to become a therapy dog.
What is the purpose of a “therapy” dog in school?
Therapy dogs are increasingly used to support children in addressing their social and emotional learning needs in schools. This has also been found to help with literacy development. Some of the benefits recorded in school classrooms include:
- Increased school attendance
- Positive changes lead to better learning and enhanced motivation
- Growth in confidence levels
- Development of better and stronger relationships with teachers and peers due to the experience of trust and love with therapy dogs
- Reducing learner anxiety behaviors causes improvement in learning outcomes like improved reading and writing skills and levels (ATD, 2022)
Mrs. Rizzo works alongside teachers and administration to have Rosie visit both campuses throughout the week. Students LOVE seeing her in the office or hallway just as much as Rosie loves seeing them!