Our History

Margaret Gifford

In 1964 Margaret Gifford was about to retire as director of the Dearborn Scho
ol in Cambridge, but she was not quite finished with her work.

She saw the desperate need for more special education school settings. So with few resources and a great resolve, Ms. Gifford rented a house on 384 Broadway in Cambridge and founded The Gifford School.

The new school was small in the beginning, with one building and very little play area. Progressively, the size of the program grew as did the need for new physical space. In 1971 the School relocated to its present 27 acre Weston site.  Margaret Gifford died in 1974, but her vision was carried on by a succession of experts in the field of special education. Though each decade has brought new challenges and opportunities for the school, a dedicated staff and administration have made sure to preserve Margaret's legacy.

Today our enrollment is over 100 students from more than 60 different communities. Our campus consists of seven buildings including three separate school buildings for each program, a multi-purpose building housing a state of the art music and drama studio, gymnasium, greenhouse, computer lab, and kitchen. It also includes an art room, library, and woodshop. Our 200 year old main building, the Bassichis House, was dedicated in 2015 to Mike Bassichis, Gifford's Executive Director who retired after 40 years of service. The level of professionalism, the quality of our educational and clinical programs, and the longevity of our competent and caring staff who carry out our mission each day are a testament to Margaret Gifford's legacy and vision.