The Lawrence F. Hickey Center For Child Development


Lawrence F. Hickey CenterLocated at 4010 Dyre Avenue, the “Little Red Schoolhouse” was built in 1877 as a two-room public school (P.S. 15) and has always been known in the community by this name. The building was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in April 1981.

The Lawrence F. Hickey Center is a NYS Education Department approved 4410 special education preschool which is also licensed by the New York State Office of Mental Health as a Children’s Day Treatment Program.  Also known as “The Little Red Schoolhouse”, the center is named after Lawrence F. Hickey. Mr. Hickey was a board member and a dedicated supporter of Astor and our mission, who was instrumental in acquiring and renovating the school in 1992.

We serve children:

  • between the ages of 2 years, 9 months  and 4 years, 9 months
  • who have behavioral and emotional challenges

Children attend a 12 month, 5 hour day in a center-based, self-contained classroom with a classroom ratio of 8:1:2.

Our goals at the Hickey Center

  • Prepare children with behavioral challenges to succeed in school
  • Improve the social and emotional functioning  of each child
  • Develop and enhance social readiness skills
  • Support the child within the family and community
  • Provide parenting support and skills training

Services Provided 

  • Special Education Services
    • High Scope Approach to Early Child Development
    • Field Trips: Extended Learning Opportunities Outside the Classroom
    • Therapeutic Crisis Intervention
  • Evidence-Based Clinical Services
    • Individual and Group Therapy 
    • Parent/Child Interaction Therapy
    • Parent Skills Training
    • Weekly Evening Parent Support Group Meetings
    • Behavior Management Techniques


Intake Procedure

Referrals approved by the Committee on Preschool Education are accepted from:

  • The NYC Department of Education
  • Early Intervention Programs
  • Pediatricians
  • Day Care Centers and other preschool programs

Each child will receive a comprehensive evaluation at no cost to the family
Each family will meet with a school psychologist, a special educator, and a social worker to assess the strengths and needs of the child and family
Each child will receive Speech, Occupational Therapy, and Physical Therapy evaluations  


Contact Us:

For more information or to make a referral to this program, contact:

Celesta Parisi, M.Ed., SBL, Principal
Tel: (718) 515-3000, ext. 101 
Email: Please use our Program Contact Form »

More Information:

Program brochure (PDF file)

Folleto del programa (archivo PDF)

Learn about Astor's other Bronx Community-based programs:

  1. Care Management 
    Ensures appropriate access and service management via care coordination and service integration.
  2. Counseling Centers 
    Provides counseling, psychiatric services and case management to children and adolescents, and their families.
  3. Day Treatment
    A school-based intensive treatment program that integrates mental health and special education services for students grades K — 8. 
  4. Lawrence F. Hickey Center for Child Development (Little Red School House)
    Special education therapeutic preschool
  5. Prevention Services
    Time-limited, evidence-based model that utilizes a home-based approach to address both the concrete and clinical needs of the child and the family.
  6. Residential Programs
    The Residential Treatment program is a therapeutic out-of-home placement serving children aged 5–13 who have emotional challenges that exceed community-based interventions. The program is located in Rhinebeck, NY, and accepts children from all counties of New York State.
    Residential Treatment Center
    Residential Treatment Facility
  7. School-Based Behavioral Health Treatment (SBBHT) 
    Services provided to schools in New York City.
  8. Serving Youth iN Their Communities (SYNC)
    Through supportive skill-building and clinical services, SYNC helps to build a strong foundation so that youth and families can be active and productive members of their communities
  9. Transitions 
    Provides services to school-aged youths, 4-18 years old, who exhibit behavioral difficulties in order to promote academic stability and successful promotion to the next grade level.