About The Pathway School

A nonprofit special education school, Pathway builds academic, social, and life skills

The Pathway School is a nonprofit special education school licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Founded in 1961, Pathway serves students with Autism Spectrum Disorders, Intellectual Disabilities, serious emotional disturbances and other neurological impairments. Pathway’s programs are licensed by the Pennsylvania State Board of Private Academic Schools and approved by the Pennsylvania Bureau of Special Education to serve students ages 5–21.

Mission: Promote success and independence

The mission of The Pathway School is to build academic, social, and life skills in students with special needs to promote their success and independence after Pathway.

History: Among the first schools of its kind

At its founding in 1961, Pathway was among very few schools in the Greater Philadelphia area designed exclusively for learning disabled children by unifying the disciplines of psychology, psychiatry, medicine and social work with education.  Since then, Pathway has increased enrollment and staff who support the students, developed a vibrant learning environment on a 12-acre campus in Montgomery County, and solidified its reputation as a leader in innovative, high-quality programs and services.

A Message from Pathway's President & CEO

Dear Pathway Families and Friends:

This year, 2020, has presented us all with many challenges. In March, The Pathway School was directed by the state to suspend on-campus operations in response to the growing Coronavirus crisis. To the credit of our dedicated faculty (and hearty Pathway parents!), we quickly retooled our operations and began offering virtual learning to our students. There were fits and starts along the way, but we all persevered and became proficient in distance learning.

At the time, we did not realize that this experience from the spring would end up preparing us for our first month of school this autumn. When it became clear that a full campus reopening was not going to be possible, the Pathway community rose to the challenge and we are offering our students, their families, and our faculty, the option of returning to in-person learning OR to remain online for virtual distance learning. Today, approximately 100 students spend two days per week on campus and the remaining three days learning from home online. Nearly 70 students (and their families) have elected to remain 100% online and are connected, via technology, with their classmates in the classroom. Today, Pathway is operating two separate and distinct learning models. This is no small feat for a school of our size!

I applaud our faculty for their willingness and ability to re-tool their lesson plans to meet the challenge of a hybrid and virtual education. Kudos as well to Pathway students and their families. They have been heroic in their dedication to persevere through the chaos and uncertainty of this year. I am humbled and inspired by their dedication.

The preparations necessary to welcome back even one student would have been complex, and I am thankful to the many people who worked long hours this past summer to prepare our lovely campus for a safe and healthy reopening. We continue to monitor the health and welfare of all in our community including students, families, staff, and others, and we will make fact-based decisions on how we operate as the school year progresses.

Despite the numerous challenges, we are confident that The Pathway School will continue to thrive this year as well as in the coming years. I should also mention that this is Pathway’s 60th year operating as a supportive school environment for students who learn differently. We hope that you will join us in celebrating this significant milestone. We remain grateful for your continued support of our school and look forward to your participation in our success.


David J. Schultheis
President & CEO

By the Numbers




School Districts & Charter Schools Served

Annual Donors


Therapy Dog Visits Pathway

Pathway’s Art Teacher Ms. Schuler has a therapy dog named Tessa who is a shepherd/husky mix. Throughout the year, students have the opportunity to meet, pet, and interact with Tessa! Many benefits come from therapy animals in schools such as...

STEM for all Pathway Students in our New Innovation Center

October of 2018, campus was buzzing with planning and construction activity as the General Lafayette building began its transformation toward becoming a brand new, state-of-the-art Innovation Center! This exciting new center is enabling Pathway to...

Learn about our Academic Programs and Services

Explore what The Pathway School offers as academic programs and integrated services for our students to achieve success in their lives today and years to come!