Residential Treatment Centers

What are residential treatment centers?

  • Boarding schools
  • Long-term therapy facilities
  • An intervention method
  • Rehab for drugs & alcohol
  • A way to discipline a child.
  • A way to stop an out of control teen.
  • A strict environment where discipline and bad behavior is not tolerated.

Therapeutic residential treatment centers are all of those things listed above. They serve to correct a host of problems your child might be struggling with. They attempt to solve academic, emotional, physiological, behavioral, and family problems all in one setting. While most centers make academics an important role in the students life it is not the only goal. Developing stronger family ties may be the most important thing a center can do for you. By working on family relationships changes can be longer lasting than merely making behavioral changes while enrolled in a center.

The decision to place a child in a school should be taken with care. To many, sending your child away should be a last resort. The cost and commitment are significant. The decision should be made in love with the safety of your child being the primary reason for enrollment. While a major event or catastrophe may have caused the enrolment process your decision should not be motivated by discipline. Students respond better to treatment when they are there to heal and not to be punished for something they did.

All centers will have 24 hour, 7 day a week, supervision. Some centers will be more strict than others. The stricter schools usually take kids with more dangerous or violent behaviors. Those schools tend to maintain safety and structure at the expense of academics and extra-circular activities. If your child has mild or non-violent behavior problems try to avoid these strict schools. If you know your child is violent don't try to enroll them in a light security center. In all likely hood the center would not except those youth but as a parent you should use your judgment.

There are three areas therapeutic centers will focus on; residential care, academic success, and therapy. Residential care includes the child basic needs of food, shelter, laundry, and a place to call their own. Success in the residential area is measured by the way they interact with their peers, the staff, and how well they follow the rules. Daily and weekly reports are filled out on each child's performance. Academic progress is measured by study habits, grades, and test scores (much like a regular school).

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