WWASP Parent Manual - CHARACTER BUILDING PROGRAM
- 1 CHARACTER BUILDING PROGRAM OVERVIEW
- 1.1 STRUCTURED ENVIRONMENT
- 1.2 PREMIER EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS
- 1.3 SEMINARS & WORKSHOPS
- 1.4 PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT COURSES
- 1.5 ACADEMIC CURRICULUM
- 1.6 ACADEMICS PROCEDURES
- 1.7 PHYSICAL FITNESS
- 1.8 LOCATION
- 1.9 CLOTHING AND PERSONAL ITEMS
- 1.10 PAPERWORK
- 1.11 FAMILY REPRESENTATIVE
- 1.12 COMMUNICATION WITH YOUR CHILD
- 1.13 RELIGION
- 1.14 ILLNESSES AND INJURIES
- 1.15 SUPERVISION
- 1.16 PREFACE TO THE GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE
CHARACTER BUILDING PROGRAM OVERVIEW
<Name of facility> is an effective Specialty School for adolescents ages 12 through 17. These adolescents have excellent potential but are headed for some serious problems. Typically, these are Students who are determined to do their “own thing”, regardless of who it hurts or how it may alter their futures.
Parents often realize that something must be done to change their child’s present course. A Highly Structured Environment is essential. Without a controlled environment, the parents’ attempts to intervene are often thwarted by the influence of a negative peer group.
This School provides a balanced environment that includes a structured daily schedule, intensive seminars, health and physical fitness Programs, personal development courses, recreation, and individualized academic instruction.
Students at <Name of facility> are required to maintain high standards. The standards include a dress code, a strong code of conduct, and challenging courses. As Students learn to meet these standards, it prepares the Student for on-going success in the future.
The School offers tight supervision around the clock. Each Student follows a vigorous daily schedule and a firm set of rules that give the Staff frequent opportunities to challenge the Students’ in appropriate attitudes and behaviors and help them adopt productive alternatives.
We operate on a merit system that requires each child to earn status and privileges through a multi-status Program based on performances. Each new status offers additional privileges, motivating the Student to work harder. As a child advances in the School, the adolescent is given additional opportunities to make personal choices. The School becomes a testing ground to ascertain each child’s level of commitment toward changing past negative behavior.
PREMIER EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS
Premier Educational Systems, LLC, is a company that contracts with <Name of facility> to provide Seminars and Workshops, Personal Development Courses, and Academic Curriculum.
SEMINARS & WORKSHOPS
Premier provides a series of highly effective “educational seminars and workshops” specifically designed to teach character building. During these Seminars, Students learn about key character-building qualities such as: accountability, honesty, integrity, trust, choices, responsibility, anger, and especially self-esteem. While the Student is completing his or her series of seminars, the parents are invited to attend Parent Seminars and Parent Support Meetings held in many locations throughout the United States. The culmination of the Premier seminars is when parents and Students are invited to attend three effective Parent/Child Workshops. These are designed to assist each family in improving communications and strengthening relationships. (SEE APPENDIX “A” FOR MORE SEMINAR INFORMATION)
PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT COURSES
Premier provides daily Character-Building and Personal Development Course Outlines. These Course Outlines utilize many of the best available resources such as: professional audio and video tapes, selective reading material, and progress review sessions. These courses are very effective helping Students gain new insight, motivation, and direction on a day to day basis.
Premier provides <Name of facility> with a progressive academic curriculum which is individualized and competency based. This allows Students to work at their own pace and maximize the learning process. Students are not held back by others in class, lesson plans, teachers’ schedules, course offerings, or class availability.
During the initial few weeks, the Student is not placed in the regular academic system. They first must complete a skill-building course that prepares them for maximum utilization of the academic system. The skill-building course is designed to improve reading and comprehension, memory, spelling and vocabulary.
The Student’s transcripts are evaluated upon admission to the School, and the Student is assisted in designing an ambitious course of study. The academic Program is a performance-based system. A large selection of required and elective classes is offered. Students are able to complete required credits—and even earn advanced credits—in Math, English, Science, History, Physical Education and many elective classes.
The Student receives credit when he/she demonstrates that the subject matter has been mastered. (All credits are subject to the terms outlined in the Enrollment Agreement Section 11) The academic Program at <Name of facility> has been designed to work successfully for the college-prep Student as well as the learning-disabled Student.
In order for the Student to earn credit for a class and move on to the next course of study, each class must be passed at a level of 80% or better. This means Students must earn A’s or B’s. This requirement ensures that the Student has truly mastered the material before he or she receives any credit for the class.
The academic Program is based on a module system. When a Student enrolls in a class—Algebra, for instance—he/she is provided with a module (a module is the equivalent of a chapter) for that class. The Student starts with the first module and then completes the assigned work. Staff is generally available to assist them. At the end of the module a test is given, and the Student must pass the test with a score of 80% or higher. If the test is not passed, the teacher assists the Student in evaluating the areas of the test that he/she did not pass. The Student is able to go back and study the specific material he/she has not yet mastered. The Student can then take another test for that module. When the module test is passed, the child goes on to the next module. This requirement that a Student master each module before progressing to the next module ensures that the Student has the foundation of knowledge needed for later, more advanced modules.
While the School provides an Independent Study system that can allow the Student to accelerate their credits and academic competency, the School does not award credits for time in class, but only for work completed and competency achieved. The School cannot ensure, nor be liable, for how quickly the Student will receive credits, or that the Student will receive credits in any certain subjects, or that the Student will receive credits on any kind of accelerated basis, or that the Student will even receive any credits at all. Since the academic courses are part of an Independent Study Program the teacher/tutors working with the Students do not need or may not necessarily have U.S. Credential or Equivalent.
Please make sure all necessary transcripts have been sent to <Name of facility> so that your child’s educational plan may be created. Be aware that schools typically will delay forwarding transcripts for reasons such as outstanding library fines, books not returned, etc. Transcripts are to be faxed to:
Physical fitness is an important component of a well-rounded, healthy person. For this reason, daily physical fitness sessions are provided at <Name of facility>. This may include: walking or running, exercise of weight-lifting, and participation in sports.
<Name of facility> is located just <information removed> only a few hours drive from many major cities in the Central United States. <Information removed>
CLOTHING AND PERSONAL ITEMS
Students wear uniforms which minimize the need for any additional clothing. We also recommend that personal belongings are kept at a minimum. We specifically caution against the Student having costly or valuable items. WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND THAT SUCH ITEMS BE SENT ONLY IF INSURED AGAINST LOSS OR DAMAGE UNDER YOUR HOMEOWNERS POLICY. As stated in the Enrollment Agreement (See Items #16), we cannot be responsible for lost, stolen, or damaged items although we make every effort and precaution to see that this does not occur.
We wish to utilize our resources in working closely with the Students, rather than spending a lot of time and resources in Administrative and Bureaucratic duties. Therefore, we keep, maintain, and retain only minimal records and paperwork. The records and paperwork that we keep is in our sole discretion, of what we deem necessary to keep, maintain or retain.
One of the key members of our Staff Team is the Family Representative. The main role of the Family Representative is to make sure your child is receiving quality care and effective growth opportunities. The Family Representative is in regular contact with your child and is your contact person with the School. The Family Representative will contact you to set a regularly schedule phone call for the purpose of coordination of updates and progress reports. The norm for these regularly scheduled phones calls is every two weeks, however your Family Representative will establish the schedule on an individual basis. Due to scheduled office hours, other previously scheduled phone calls, scheduled meetings, and other various commitments working with Students, there may not be much flexibility for your Family Representative in scheduling your regularly scheduled phone call. Your family representative works a two week rotating schedule. For example, a family rep works Monday, Wednesday, and Friday one week and then the following week they would work Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. One of the three days that your family rep is working is designated as his/her call and email day. <Name of facility> requires your family rep to make all their calls and emails on this designated day. However, this call day switches every other week with the family rep’s rotating schedule. We appreciate your understanding in this matter. It is very important to call the Family Representatives at your regular scheduled time. If parents are unable to call the Family Representative within 5 minutes of the scheduled time, they will need to call at the next scheduled time. Except in cases of emergency, Family representatives have prior scheduling commitments that do not allow them to receive or make calls in between regular scheduled phone calls; however, your Family Representative may be contacted by email, if needed, between scheduled phone calls. Any calls from the Family Representative to the parents would only be for some special purpose, and would be made on a collect basis. Please be aware that due to staff changes, promotions, and other factors, your Family Representative may change.
COMMUNICATION WITH YOUR CHILD
You may correspond by mail as often as you desire (but your child will receive mail only on scheduled mail days). Once a week is plenty, and suggested by the Family Representative. Phone calls, as stated in the Enrollment Agreement (see Addendum #5), are a privilege that your child must earn by attaining Advanced Status. The time for this is individual to the Students’ progress and is an important and necessary process. Your child will appreciate the phone calls to you much more when he/she has to work hard to earn them. Phone calls any earlier in his/her progress would be destructive and disruptive, as the Student then becomes more preoccupied with trying to convince you that he/she should be taken out of the School rather than focusing on progress or necessary changes. Even when phone calls are permitted, they are short and not too frequent. This helps keep the cost down for the parents, as all calls, as stated in the Enrollment Agreement, are on a collect basis. Plus, all phone calls require a substantial amount of effort and logistics to complete. Again, it is critical that your child earn the phone privilege, otherwise we are all short changing this progress. PLEASE DO NOT ASK US TO MAKE AN EXCEPTION!!! This is totally unfair to the other Students and their parents. Exceptions affect all Students, you can imagine all of the Students asking “why does Tom get to make a phone call and I don’t?” or “don’t my parents want to talk to me on the phone as badly as Tom’s parents want to talk to him?” This creates such a problem that we put in the Enrollment Agreement (see Addendum #5) that no phone calls are allowed before the Student earns Achievement Status. Once the Student has earned the phone privilege, the Student is not allowed to call anyone other than his/her parents/guardians.
We recommend your first visit is the Parent Child I (PCI) workshop held at the School. You will be scheduled for a PC I workshop shortly after your child has been in the school 7 months. Students need to have completed orientation, discovery and need to have been enrolled for 7 months . Parents must complete Discovery. Upon review and approval of the School, a PC can be scheduled earlier if the parent has completed Focus and the student has completed Discovery. It is also important that we set an example by adhering to the School rules ourselves. For this reason, we ask that you REFRAIN FROM REQUESTING ANY EXCEPTIONS, as it negatively affects not only your child’s progress, but the other Students’ in the School. This was agreed to as part of our accepting the Student in the School. (See Enrollment Agreement Item #13). Visitors other than parents must be approved by the parents and Family Representative, who, together, will determine the structure of the visit. All visits (on grounds, off grounds, and home visits) are scheduled with the Family Representative. The initial visit will only be approved if the telephone calls with the parents have been productive.
Once your child reaches Honor Status, your child is eligible for overnight visits, within the vicinity of the School. The Family Representative will confer with the Progress Review Committee to determine eligibility. Honor Status students who have graduated from PC-2 also begin to be eligible for home passes.
When your child achieves High Honor Status, home visits are encouraged and recommended. Home visits are crucial as testing ground for the Student’s eventual return to the home. Home visits are considered before the Student is on High Honor Status if they are a PC-2 graduate. Home visits are determined on an individual basis according to your child’s progress.
All mail sent to the Student may come only from parents. All mail sent to the Students is opened with a Staff present, so it is monitored for contraband or inappropriate items. All mail sent out by the Student is mailed to the parents; the parent can then disperse it as they see fit. Please obtain a return address stamp or stickers, and send them to your Family Representative. This will help assure that mail is coming only from and going to parents.
Your child will receive mail on Monday and Friday nights. Parents who choose to email letters to their child can do so but the emails must be received by 3:00pm CST Sunday and 3:00pm CST Thursday. The mail will be logged and accounted for at 3:00 PM on these two days. Any mail that is received after 3:00 will be distributed on the next available mail day.
Packages may be sent only on Student’s birthday and Christmas. Students will often ask their parents to send them packages at other times. Some of the items requested may not really be needed or even appropriate. We are always happy to verify the need of any requested item. Even if your child has a legitimate need for some item, it is usually better to let us obtain it and then have you reimburse us. Sending a package takes a long time and runs a very strong risk of being lost, stolen, or having items spoiled or damaged. We especially ask that parents do not send snack foods, as this undermines the Status Privileges.
No specific religion is taught or advocated. This is considered a personal and individual decision, and respected as such.
ILLNESSES AND INJURIES
Many of the activities in which the Student may participate involve some risk. These risks include, but are not limited to such activities as transportation, swimming, hiking, etc. There is also some inherent risks of illness, including but not limited to illnesses that are contagious; illnesses or health risks that are common to the geographic location, including mosquito bites, sores, hives, rashes, slow-healing cuts; illness connected to food services, etc. There is also risk of hurricanes, earthquakes, and other acts of nature, etc. While the School goes to great lengths to prevent illnesses and accidents, the School cannot accept any liability for illnesses or injuries or other damages occurring to the Student during his enrollment (See Enrollment Agreement Item #17).
All medications are self administered by the Student under the general supervision of a non-medical Staff member. Because of the difficulty and logistics involved with medications, it is possible there may be times the Student may not have access to medications for certain periods of time. Because all medication is essentially self-administered, problems or mistakes are possible. For these reasons, the School accepts no liability (See Enrollment Agreement Item #12) for problems associated with the disbursement of medication. Parents should also understand that Students who are on prescription medications need ongoing review by a Physician or Psychiatrist every 30 to 90 days. The cost of these reviews varies by physician.
The School Staff have to make numerous decisions about when to seek medical/dental help for Students ranging from small to serious ailments, injuries, or needs. We try to make our decisions taking into consideration a balance between added costs to the parent for medical care, and true medical need of the Student. The Staff, like any parent, can miscalculate the timing or need of medical intervention. Such miscalculations can result in the Student not getting medical intervention as soon as would be recommended or to avoid complications. The School staff makes these “judgment calls” for and on behalf of the parents. Any such “judgment calls” are subject to human error, especially since many of these judgment calls would have to be made by a non-medical staff. For these reasons, the School or its Staff are not liable for any illness, complications or damages occurring to the Student because of a miscalculated “judgment call” made by the Staff in terms of the need or timing of medical intervention for the Student. Furthermore, the School makes no representation or accepts no liability for the performance of any physician, dentist, clinic, or hospital to which the Student is delivered for medical intervention. (See Enrollment Agreement Item #13). Please be aware that there is only one RN on Staff at <Name of facility>. She will be available most weekdays, and usually evenings, and weekends, and in an emergency. When a Student needs medical attention our first priority is to get them that attention, which may mean we seek the needed attention before you are notified.
The amount of supervision varies with each Student depending on the Student’s current status. We provide a high level of supervision but it is understood that the supervision provided, regardless of status, does not guarantee that serious or minor accidents, injuries, self harm, harm from others, fighting, acts of physical aggression, runaways, suicide attempts, sexual activity/stimulation or use of alcohol, tobacco or other harmful substances cannot happen. These risks are present in any segment of society no matter how controlled or protected.
PREFACE TO THE GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE
Occasionally Students make it difficult for their parents by claiming that they have been treated unfairly or they feel that certain conditions exist at the School that are not in their best interest. You may wonder if your child is manipulating you or if there is a valid concern. The grievance policy allows Students and yourself to bring these concerns to the surface and have them properly reviewed by persons inside and outside the School.
RESIDENT GRIEVANCE POLICY
Philosophy To insure that all residents receive fair and equitable treatment within the policies and procedures of <Name of facility>.
If a Student feels that he/she has been treated unfairly, he/she may file a grievance by filling out a form and placing it in the grievance/suggestion box (located in the dining area) or giving it to the School Director. All grievances are reviewed by a Staff assigned by the administration. All findings may be appealed.
Levels of Appeal Special Review Team assigned by Director Independent Review Director
Whenever your child has a complaint, encourage them to use the grievance procedure. This will allow your child’s concerns to be directed to administrative personnel and we are more than willing to send you a copy of the grievance and the findings on each level of appeal.
Resident Grievance Form Student Name_______________ Family Rep. ____________________ Date_______________ Student’s Family____________________ Date consequence was issued______/______/_______ I am filing this grievance for a consequence I received. YES NO If “YES” what was the code and category of the consequence given? __________________ What staff member gave me the consequence? ___________________________________ To insure that points are awarded back and situations are investigated properly students need to fill out their grievance completely and accurately.
Failure to do so will indicate to those who review the grievances that it is not a priority to you as a student
Answer the following question: 1. How was I treated unfairly or shown disrespect? (please give specific details) _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ I think an appropriate solution would be: _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________
Date___________ Do not fill in any information below this line Investigator___________ Does the investigator feel that the consequence should be removed or altered? NO YES Investigation notes: _____________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________ Does the student want to appeal the decision of this investigation? YES NO Investigator’s Signature__________________________ Student’s Signature_____________________________