Jamie Fanelli has extensive experience working both with children with special needs and typically developing children in educational and clinical settings. She holds an M.S.Ed in Special Education from Simmons College in Boston, US, and a professional educator’s license. Before joining LIH Olivia’s Place, she worked as a psychometrician for the TRANSCEND Research Program, affiliated with Harvard Medical School and MIT, at Massachusetts General Hospital. As a psychometrician, she administered a full battery of neuropsychological assessments and diagnostic interviews and provided behavioral management support to infants and children while they underwent neuroimaging. Jamie has also been a special educator, with experience developing and implementing Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) and Behavior Support Plans (BSPs) and educating children with special needs using an ABA methodology and a variety of instructional approaches, including PECS, sensory integration activities, differentiated instruction, and incidental teaching methods. She has provided reading support utilizing specialized instructional approaches and conducted educational and functional behavioral assessments. She has worked with children with a variety of diagnoses, including autism spectrum disorders, sensory integration dysfunction, dyslexia, dysgraphia, ADHD, developmental delay, seizure disorder, and traumatic brain injury. She is especially passionate about helping children from disadvantaged backgrounds and enjoys giving trainings to the local community. Jamie leads our team of learning support and behavior specialists in Shanghai and Beijing. She also provides the following services:
- Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Therapy
- Individualized Learning Support
- Functional Behavior Assessments
- Functional Skills Assessment and Curriculum Planning
- Individualized Education Plan (IEP) Development
- Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP) Development
- Behavior Consultation for Parents or Teachers
- Professional Trainings and Workshops for Schools and/or Parents
- Joint Neuropsychological Assessments
How long have you been in China?
I moved to Shanghai in October 2012. I’m originally from the U.S.A but have also lived and worked in Germany and South Korea.
Why did you choose to work at LIH Olivia’s Place?
I visited a few different centers and schools in Shanghai but chose for work for LIH Olivia’s Place for their multidisciplinary team approach and mission to improve therapeutic services in China. From the moment I met with the founder, Nelson Chow, it was clear that the center was dedicated to not only providing high quality pediatric therapy to their clients but also to building relationships with the local community to help educate the local public and spread therapeutic services and inclusive education throughout China.
Why did you choose your field?
In college, I worked at an inclusive preschool and was absolutely moved by witnessing firsthand how children with ASD could fully access the curriculum when given the right supports. It was a life changing experience and led me to focus my studies on children with special needs.
What are some of the most rewarding experiences you have had in your chosen profession?
Watching the pride on a child’s face when s/he has realized that s/he has accomplished a skill that s/he originally felt was out of reach. Also, in China, it has been especially rewarding to support the many parents and teachers through LIH initiatives who are unable to receive ongoing services. It’s truly worth its weight in gold.
What’s your favorite thing about living in China/working at LIH Olivia’s Place?
No one day is ever the same at LIH Olivia’s Place or in Shanghai. Even after three years, I discover something new everyday. It’s very rewarding to be a part of such a skilled and diverse team, who truly embrace the multidisciplinary approach and continuously support each other to help both the clients and each other grow.
What would you like to be doing in 5 years’ time?
I started my adventure in East Asia 5 years ago and could not be happier at the moment. I am very passionate about continuing to work in this field and see myself in an environment where I’m continuing to broaden my knowledge while helping children and their families and other clinicians reach their full potential.