Placing your child in a boarding school or treatment center can be a difficult decision. That decision isn’t made any easier by the vast array of schools and programs available. How can a parent get the boarding school info they need to make such a decision?
The best place to start your search for boarding school info may be with your child’s counselor. He or she has specific knowledge about what type of treatment your child needs, and can provide you with particular boarding school info and other facilities that match your child’s requirements. If your child’s counselor or therapist does not know of a school or facility to recommend, or you don’t agree with their recommendation, you may also consider working with an educational consultant. A consultant will gather info about your child and recommend the boarding schools or treatment programs best suited for your child.
When choosing a boarding school or treatment center, there is a lot of boarding school info to consider.
- The school should be accredited and licensed, both for treatment and for academics. Because some states don’t offer such licensing, it’s important to ask why a facility isn’t licensed or accredited if it is not.
- Licenses of the clinical staff members should be verified. Most states have a website available for patients and clients to check the licensing status of practitioners. Make sure the licenses are in good standing.
- The status and cost of counseling should be made clear before enrollment. Is the counseling staff on-site or are those services provided by outside personnel? Are the costs of counseling included in the quoted price?
- The school or center should have good references. Are references readily provided? Regardless, be sure and check with independent sources, such as nearby counselors and physicians.
- Visit the school or center and talk with the students. Find out how the students perceive the programs and whether they have any concerns about the programs.
- Ask for assessments of the programs being offered. Do they have a successful track record? Can they show improvements over time?
- Find out what the expected length of stay is and what criteria is used to determine when a child is ready to return home.
- Know what methods of punishment the school or center uses.
- Ask about family involvement and whether there are restrictions on family access and communication. Although most schools will have some restrictions, families should be encouraged to be involved in the treatment program.
- Learn about how the school or program tracks progress, and get a description of the process they use to encourage positive behaviors.
- Finally, find out what options are available for after-care, or when your child completes the program.