Seeking Berkeley area preschool recommendations for ASD 3 year ol
My son is approaching 3 years old and already has a diagnosis of ASD. I'm approaching the IEP process but prior to this, wanted to parallel path multiple options. He has minimal behaviors and enjoys environments with other kids, however he is preverbal (has motivation to vocalize / hum songs and will say a word here or there but not articulating clear words regularly/with consistency) and doesn't yet follow directions (developmentally closer to 12-15 months). He's not rigid with routine so a more fluid environment is probably OK. We think he would benefit from having a calm environment with a lot of sensory-social play (songs, bubbles, etc) and peer interactions but that doesn't demand he follow specific structure just yet but would help him become accustomed to that.
Our insurance would provide a 1:1 ABA aide with him in the preschool environment, which is why we don't necessarily have to go the public route.
I would love recommendations for preschools in the Berkeley area that may fit the description of his personality and would also love to hear from others on the experience in the BUSD program. Our concern would be if he was in a crazy / overwhelming inclusion environment, which would lead us to go the private route. We're looking for smaller classes, calm, sensory-social environment that would help him learn practical skills and play, and where his self confidence wouldn't be damaged by his lack of language just yet (we're hoping with more exposure plus continuing ABA, speech and OT that his functional communication will improve).
Thanks in advance!