Seeing Possibilities Beyond Disabilities

St. Coletta of Greater Washington is a registered tax-exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. The program at St. Coletta includes: functional academics, skills of daily living, community based instruction.

View Our Jobs


  • Every day here at  St. Coletta there is something to be proud about; whether it is students excelling at their IEP goals, students annunciating letter sounds, or just stating a request. Overall, working at St. Coletta is an awe-inspiring experience.#GoColetta”

    Andrea Williams
    House 1 Teacher


Our History

St. Coletta was founded in 1959 by parents of a child with Down Syndrome. The school began in the basement of St. Charles Borromeo School in Arlington with five students. Over the intervening years it moved to several different locations in Arlington and in 1996 school leaders made the decision to purchase a permanent facility in Alexandria that would allow for growth. The larger facility allowed the school to begin an adult day program as well as to expand the student population.   In September 2006 we moved our school program to our DC campus. In 2008 we started an adult program in Rockville.

Our Program

The Adult Program offers adults age 18 and older opportunities to participate in vocational and employment readiness training, supported employment, life skills training, and community integration in order to achieve greater independence.

The program is constantly evolving to meet the needs of each participant and to find outlets for his/her many talents. Our approach is person centered so each participant can work toward his/her goals.

We combine work opportunities, enrichment activities and life skills training in ways that suit the participant. The main focus, as in all St. Coletta programs, is community integration. We favor real world, hands-on activities that allow individuals to be part of the wider world and participate in all aspects of community life. We have opportunities for competitive and volunteer employment for those who are capable of working with support, as well as employment readiness activities.

Our Approach

Our more than fifty years of experience has confirmed that the real focus of education needs to be on the individual learner and the skills he/she needs to be successful in life. We believe that individuals learn best by doing.

To that end, we plan hands-on, theme-based activities that allow for experimentation and trial and error. Instruction occurs as often as possible 
in the natural setting, thus our adults and students spend a lot of time in 
the community.

Coletta Collections

Coletta Collections is our social enterprise that sells jewelry, accessories and home décor made by the adults in our programs and sometimes by our older students in their vocational training program.

We began Coletta Collections so our adult participants could have meaningful work in a setting that would provide them with the support they need to be successful. The items are sold on-line at, in our fashion truck and at our retail stores attached to our adult program sites. The skills learned working for Coletta Collections – time on task, following directions, working with a team – are basic work skills that transfer to any job. We offer training in weaving, beading, fused glass and other hand crafts.

Our Diversity

Our Schools

Our Students

Our Teachers

About Us

At St. Coletta we celebrate individual strengths each day. We serve students and adults with intellectual disabilities, autism and secondary disabilities. We moved our school program to our state of the art building in Washington, DC, near RFK Stadium, in 2006. This enabled us both to serve more students and adults and to offer a wide-range of programs that engage, educate, and enrich our students’ lives. Our core program includes: functional academics, skills of daily living, community based instruction, adaptive physical education, arts education, computer skills and vocational training. Students earn a certificate of IEP completion upon graduation. We believe in the inherent worth of the individual regardless of their rate of development and capacity for learning. Every person has the right to the training and support necessary for them to reach their full potential.

Our Mission 

The mission of St. Coletta of Greater Washington is to serve children and adults with intellectual disabilities and to support their families.



St. Coletta of Greater Washington

1901 Independence Avenue SE
Washington DC 20003

School Hours

M-F: 8am – 4pm
Weekends: Closed



Our President

At St. Coletta we believe in the immeasurable value of the individual human spirit and the right of each individual to live as full and independent a life as possible. We respect the dignity of all persons entrusted to our care and our goal is to serve them in an atmosphere that encourages their talents, celebrates their successes and builds their self-esteem.

Sue Goodhart



Student to Teacher Ratio

Teachers & Staff

Teacher Starting Salary

Career opportunities

Location: 1901 Independence Avenue SE , Washington DC 20003

Telephone: 202-350-868

School Hours: M-F: 8am – 3pm


St. Coletta of Greater Washington admits students and clients of any race, color, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, gender or age to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded to or made available to students and clients of St. Coletta. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, age or veteran’s status in educational programs or in other school-administered activities, St. Coletta does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, veteran’s status, or any other factor protected by local, state, or federal law with regard to employment.