Tag Archives: troubled teen

Choosing a Program (part 2)

Selecting a Placement for a Troubled Teen

Following a systematic approach to selecting a school for a troubled teen could make the difficult process a little easier. Parents struggling to find help for their defiant out of control teen may find this series helpful.

Program Staff

It has been said that a program boot camp or boarding school is only as good as it’s weakest link. This being said, a parent should spend enough time at a potential placement option to meet the majority, if not all, of the people that will be working with their child. Programs should do an exhaustive search surrounding staff to determine any potential problems the person may have had previously. This back ground search should also be accompanied by personal references. This still doesn’t assure that a staff with problems may not be hired. Parents who meet the people employed by the program will get a “feel” for the overall dynamics of the program staff.

Search the Internet

A basic search by name of the school being considered will provide some helpful results. There are a couple of sites that are dedicated to closure of every type of school that is designed to help troubled teens. We won’t name them as they have their agenda’s that are easy to spot by the vitriol and contempt for any placement option. It is important to note that they provide only one side to every story. The side they portray is that “every” placement option is evil. This is evident by their refusal to recommend any programs, and their “one sided” approach to bashing all schools and camps. Take what they have to say with a grain of salt. The allegations they make have made it difficult for many parents to place their children in any program. The sad fact is that many children who never receive help could have been helped. Instead, parents continue being abused by the teen, the teen continues using drugs, and in some cases the teen ends up much worse off than they would have been had they entered some type of structured program. If a program appears to be reputable and checks out in every other way except the negative websites mentioned, contact the program and ask to hear their side of the story, and allegations on the Internet.

Sensationalism in Reporting

One school hit by the negative site campaign reports that the articles relayed on these sites are based on articles from other sources. The information obtained is not based on facts, but on the opinions of reporters that may have an alternative agenda.  Some small town news organizations lacking substantive material to report, rely instead on what their personal perception is. This type of reporting while damaging to the person or industry isolated depends on sensationalism and innuendos. The person harmed the most may be the parent desperately seeking help. Scared by the hyped up information, and terrified to send their child away in the first place, the parent becomes frozen in their decision making process. Because of the plethora of programs and options available to parents, they may choose to discount a program based on false or partially true information. This adds credence to the fact that parents interested in a program should visit the program to make sure it is what it says it is.