Advocating Success For Kids Program | Frequently Asked Questions

What is the ASK Program?

The ASK Program at Boston Children's Hospital works with children under the age of 14 who are having learning, emotional, developmental or behavioral problems in school or at home.

ASK stands for Advocating Success for Kids and serves the Children's Hospital Primary Care Center, Bowdoin Street Community Health Center, and Martha Eliot Health Center. Children are eligible to receive ASK services if they receive their primary care from one of these health care locations.

Who makes up the ASK team

Our team members may include:

  • your child's own primary care provider
  • a developmental pediatrician
  • a nurse practitioner
  • developmental/behavioral fellows and general pediatric fellows
  • a social worker
  • an educational specialist
  • a psychologist
  • volunteer student advocates

How can my child participate in ASK?

Your child must receive primary care at CHPCC, Bowdoin Street Community Health Center, Joseph M. Smith Community Health Center or the Martha Eliot Health Center to participate in ASK.

Talk to your child's primary care provider about being referred to ASK. If your primary care provider thinks that ASK is appropriate for your child, they will refer him/her to the ASK team.

Once a referral is made and approved, an appointment will be scheduled for you and your child to meet with the ASK team. Appointments will take place within your primary care center. 

What happens at my child's first ASK appointment?

At the first appointment, you and your child will meet with a member of the ASK team (i.e. developmental behavioral pediatrician, pediatric fellow, nurse practitioner, social worker, or educational specialist). Both you and your child will talk about the problems your child is having.

This interview covers many different parts of your child's needs, including your child's developmental history, how they do in school, their family stressors, medical concerns and the way they interact with their peers in social settings.

Based on this meeting, the ASK team will create a plan to help you and your family find the most appropriate resources to help your child. Together, you will talk about what was learned and discuss treatment options, if indicated. Outcomes of this meeting and treatment plans will be shared with your child's primary care provider.

What should I bring to my first appointment?

Please bring:

  • copies of any other evaluations your child has had, including school TEAM evaluations (CORE/IEP) and copies of your child's IEP (if appropriate)


  • recent report cards and other reports from your child's teacher or school


  • a list of medications your child is taking, including the doses


  • a list of questions you would like answered

Why is it important for me to get help for my child?

  • Studies have shown that children who receive help early and have more support in school have better academic success.


  • Parents/caregivers who know their child's rights and understand the school system can better advocate for their children.


  • Having outside support services in place for your child can often help them overcome obstacles that may be affecting their learning.