Our students are working to overcome past personal problems. Developmentally, all adolescents are working to establish stable personal identities while learning how to relate to others in a positive way. Our school guides adolescents back to a healthy developmental trajectory without dependence on psychotropic medications or traditional psychotherapy.
By actively engaging in the
John Dewey community with responsible care for themselves and others, our students grow
in maturity and self-respect. Students gain a sense of competence and autonomy as they set and reach realistic goals, both academically and personally. In group settings, they offer insight and suggestions to their peers and in return they receive feedback and advice. These peer-generated comments often catalyze powerful self-exploration and change. Work in the group setting helps our students accept responsibility for their past self-destructive behavior, which allows them to make true changes as they move toward health and wholeness.
Our primary goal is to nurture the psychological, moral, and spiritual growth of adolescents. Students support one another in this process, but they also receive support from their primary clinical advisors. Advisors work closely with students and their families; they also keep in close touch with teachers to develop a comprehensive picture of each student’s progress.
Four to six times a week, students meet in staff-led groups, including a gender-based group. Every evening, students participate in a student-only group which promotes a sense of ownership and responsibility for their community. In addition, seniors participate in a year-long group experience designed specifically to address the transition from high school to college.