The decision to send your child away to school is often a difficult, emotional decision. But for parents of children with behavioral problems, it is often the only decision. Fortunately, there are different types of facilities all over the country that specialize in helping and educating children with these difficulties, with the goal of allowing them to return home and successfully continue their education in their home public school.
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Therapeutic Boarding Schools
Therapeutic boarding schools offer the academics of regular boarding schools, but also include counseling and intervention services to help troubled teens. Those who enroll in these schools often have substance abuse or anger management problems, or a psychological diagnosis such as attention deficit disorder, bi-polar disorder or Aspergers syndrome. Most therapeutic boarding schools are for high school students, but there all schools available for younger and older people as well, including some that serve young adults up to 24 years of age. Many of these programs are co-ed, but single-sex facilities do exist. These schools offer a very structured program that includes set times for classes, meals, homework, therapy and exercise. According to CRC Health Group, scientific studies of these schools show that most students maintain or continue to improve on a long-term basis after they leave their programs.
Teen Boot Camp
Instead of sending a teen to a detention facility, a judge may sentence a teen who has shown a pattern of behavioral programs that include run-ins with the law to a boot camp. According to Family First Aid, these programs offer a military-style environment that includes a structured schedule that enforces discipline, physical training and work, including hard labor.
Outdoor Wilderness Programs offer traditional therapeutic interventions in a wilderness adventure experience. Students camp in a rural, natural area, such as the mountains or desert, and learn to make their own food, gather water and build fire. This kind of environment naturally requires cooperation and positive peer relationships. Some wilderness programs also include academic accreditation. According to Outback Treatment Center, participants in these programs show improvement in school, substance abuse, defiance, impulsivity and aggression problems.