Laura Rice, LICSW

Director, STEP Assessment Program


Laura graduated from Boston College with a master’s degree in social work and is an LICSW.


Laura was the director of the Short-Term Educational Placement (STEP) program for three years before taking a short break to explore new programs. After her brief hiatus, Laura returned to resume her role as director of the program. Laura provides administrative guidance and teamwork in clinical and crisis services, education and specialized programming to students during the 40-day STEP assessment period. Laura is passionate about working with students and families and is dedicated to learning how to provide creative opportunities for them to find success during this journey.


Over her 20 year career, Laura has employed her considerable social work credentials and experience being a positive leader/participant in overseeing and developing programs in public, private and alternative educational communities, including the Newton (Mass.) Public Schools, Germaine Lawrence School Inc., the Willow Hill School, the Walker School and the Department of Children and Families.



Kristin Blake

Clinical Director, STEP Assessment Program


Kris graduated from Simmons College with a master’s degree in social work and is an LICSW.

Kris started her professional career as a family therapist in residential programming, where her passion for working with children and families was solidified. After this enriching experience, she transitioned to work at Dearborn Academy and later to the STEP program. Kris was the director of STEP for a year and then moved into the clinical director position. 


Kris has worked for Schools for Children for the past 20 years in various leadership roles. Continuing to thrive in her current role, Kris oversees the clinical component of Dearborn STEP assessment that is inclusive of supervising clinical interns from various colleges in New England.