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March 4, 2024

DESE/DDS Residential Prevention Program
Notice of Open Interest Period

What is the DESE/DDS Program?

The DESE/DDS Residential Prevention Program is a collaboration between the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and the Department of Developmental Services (DDS).  

The program provides students and their families:

  • The chance to have in-home supports including senior level therapists and skills trainers.
  • A dedicated navigator agency to identify and hire staff.
  • Life-long skills development
  • Opportunities to practice skills in their home setting and community.

Who is eligible?

  • DDS-eligible students who are at risk of a future residential placement.
  • Individuals between the ages of 6-21 who live at home.

How do I apply?

The DESE/DDS Residential Prevention Program has moved to an online submission process. Please complete the online Open Interest Form here.

If you choose to use the paper Open Interest Form, it must be downloaded, saved, and emailed to

What if I already applied last year?

You must apply again, even if you have applied in the past. The DESE/DDS Residential Prevention Program is near capacity; however, new participants are added from the Interest List as spaces become available. If your child is currently enrolled in the DESE/DDS Program, you do NOT need to fill out the Open Interest Form. 

When is the deadline?

All Open Interest Forms must be postmarked, received by email, or filled out in the online form by March 31, 2024.

Where can I get more information?

More information on the DESE/DDS Program including translated Open Interest Forms:

DDS/DESE Frequently Asked Questions:


Notes from the DESE/DDS Program Coordinator for 2024:

  • There is an online link directly on this page along with translated paper open interest forms to print.
  • A confirmation page immediately pops upon completion and a confirmation email will be sent within the week to each interested family.
  • Although the link states 2023, this is the current open interest page for March 2024. 
  • Families who previously expressed interest in the DESE program are encouraged to complete the form each year.