Dr James Schaller
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The following is an exerpt from Dr. Schaller's Upcoming Book: 60 Real Options For Out of Control Youth.

Special Residential Schools

Marianne worked as a private school psychologist and sometimes needed to offer residential schooling options to parents. She used to believe residential schooling was never necessary, but now appreciates for some youth it is the only option. Here are some of the types of places she considers. But her first advice would be to get a solid educational consultant who specializes in residential schools.

One realization is that any option tried can be for a duration that fits your parental goals. Some youth attend a mere summer specialty camp for a month to give them a "boost," while other youth require years to truly develop the abilities to function successfully. Some youth benefit from a short-term "boost" at one of these types of facilities and others do much better with a longer program. Some options can be 10 minutes from home and others quite far away.

In this abstract I am merely discussing types of school treatment solutions, which happen to be national schools. Your educational consultant or school advocate may know all the options closer to your home. Also, it is important to know the law in terms of school placement, so that you do not pay for a necessary special school, which is required for an adequate education for your child. Remember that an appropriate education is a right in the USA for every child. But it does not just happen with limited resources.

  1. Intensive Psychiatric and Psychological Educational Settings -- Youth with severe bipolar illness, severe ADHD, learning troubles, schizophrenia and major depression who would benefit from 24 hour professional care. A sample facility would be:

    Island View
    Residential Treatment Center for Adolescents
    Syracuse, Utah
    801 773 0200
  2. Seriously Conduct Disordered Residential Facilities -- These would be for youth with a long history or illegal behaviors, stealing, fighting, fire-setting, harm to people or animals, no remorse and very manipulative. A sample facility would be:

    Devereux Foundation
    Devereux National Address
    444 Devereux Drive
    P.O. Box 638
    Villanova, PA 19085
    National Referrals: 800 345 1292
  3. Therapeutic Boarding Schools -- These are moderately intense schools that also have emotional treatment often using group therapy and the leadership of mature senior students who direct and model appropriate behaviors. Most students have mild psychiatric problems like chronic oppositional defiant disorder, motivation troubles, mild substance abuse, moderate ADD/ADHD or learning challenges. A sample school would be:

    Rocky Mountain Academy
    It is an emotional growth boarding school in Idaho. Intentionally placed away from past life pressures. They tightly integrate one of the nation's strongest wilderness education teams, the traditional CEDU emotional growth curriculum and the Brown School's expertise in therapy education, along with a serious college prep program.
    (877) 457-6170
  4. Structured Character and Maturity Schools -- These focus on developing character, self-esteem and enhancing family relationships. A sample school would be:

    Hyde School System Options
    (boarding school for students grades 9-12)
    616 High St.
    Bath, Maine 04530
    Admissions: 207-443-5584

    (boarding school for students grades 9-12)
    150 Route 169
    Woodstock, Connecticut 06281
    Admissions: 860-963-9096

    Hyde Leadership Public Charter School
    (Hyde-DC, public school for students grades K-3, 6-12)
    101 T St. NE
    Washington, DC 20002
    Admissions: 202-529-4400

    Hyde Leadership School Of Greater New Haven
    (Hyde-New Haven, public school for students grades 9-12)
    306 Circular Drive
    New Haven, Connecticut 06514
    Admissions: 203-946-8121

    The Biggest Job® We'll Ever Have
    Parenting and Teacher Workshops

    616 High St.
    Bath, Maine 04530

    Hyde Wilderness School
    616 High St.
    Bath, Maine 04530
  5. Mayor Sensory Deficit Schools -- usually these are schools with an ability to help with basic severe sensory deficits like blindness, deafness and information processing. Many of them can be taught through programs associated with local school district. However, if they also have clear behavior problems which make them "out of control" other options might have to be considered.

    Any school that is considered for education and behavioral treatment should be familiar with the common tools of the disability. For example, can a blind child read from disks or cassette tapes? If they are not able to do it, the school is being anti-educational. Further, using a blind child as an illustration, if they are not aware of the following options for books on disks or tapes they know little about helping this child's problem.

    Sources for Books on Disk or Tape:
    Nonprofit and government organizations

    Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic, Inc.
    800 221-4792

    American Printing House for the Blind

    Library of Congress--Service for
    the Blind and Physically Handicapped

    For this type of child, schools are bested picked out with the help of an educational consultant or a local child advocate, unless options are minimal. Occasionally some treatment schools have scholarships -- It never hurts to ask.
  6. Complex Learning Disability or Non-Verbal Disability Schools -- these are schools that will not tolerate severe acting out. They are for youth that are not conduct disordered, but have learning problems like dyslexia, reading disabilities, writing disabilities, math disabilities and attention disorders like ADD or ADHD. Typically, a youth's primary problem is a learning disability with no major social/emotional issues. Sometimes, youth get frustrated with their disability and it effects their social and emotional functioning. Admission staff will help you determine if your youth is socially and emotionally functional enough for the school. It is rare that the only problems a youth has are 100% learning based. So do not hide other weaknesses. Simply, try not to force your youth into a school that might not be a good fit.

    Ideally, such schools have daily one-to-one tutorial help with a tutor who is more than a fellow student. One-on-one help should be at least 75 minutes a day if needed. A school goal must be helping the youth to experience success by very intensive tailoring of their education. Most students should have a learning disability. Why? So they do not feel any stigma or shame. A sample school would be:

    Pine Ridge School
    1075 Williston Road
    Williston, VT 05495
    Phone: 802 434 2161
    Fax: 802 434 5512
    World Wide Web: https://www.pineridgeschool.com

Other Sample Placement Option Resources:

  • Places for Struggling Teens, $ 40.00
    Self-published Directory of 100+ schools and programs nationwide, screened for reputation, longevity and effectiveness. Includes listings of experienced educational consultants and transport agents.
    Call 208 267-5550 for ordering instructions.
  • Woodbury Reports Newsletter-12 issues $ 33.00
    A monthly 30-plus page newsletter. Designed to be a networking newsletter for professionals working with children and young adults. It focuses on Emotional Growth Schools and Programs that are less expensive alternatives to hospitals, residential treatment of rehabilitation programs for children with behavioral or emotional problems.
    Call 208 267-5550 for ordering instructions.

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