Riverview literally turned my world upside down for the best. It all started in 2006 during the summer program. I was nervous at first, but then I really got used to it. The school has incredible teachers and a wonderful environment. Nurturing, caring and people who understand what people need emotionally and socially. I've been out of the school for 2 years now after spending 3 years at the GROW program (2012-2015) and it was one of the greatest decisions I could have ever made. I miss it already.
Our daughter has flourished at Riverview. She has become far more independent and confident. For the first time in her life, she has a large group of friends and a wonderful, thriving social life. We have never seen happier. Also, she has gained critical vocational skills and job opportunities. Sending her there has been a leap of faith, and we are so grateful we did! We have peace of mind that she is safe and happy while gaining vital progress to help her fulfill her potential.
"I see my daughter, and all the students at Riverview School developing confidence and competence in all areas of their lives. It is really beautiful - a dream come true! Thank you to all the teaching staff, residential-dorm staff, administration and all staff at Riverview, truly exceptional people!" ~Grateful and proud parent
My son's social and language disabilities have improved significantly. He is much more independent that I ever thought he would be. Riverview has informed us regarding his triumphs and his missteps. They have viewed all of his mistakes as "teachable moments". They scaffold the learning, so he faces challenges that do not overload his stress capacity. In this way, he can function without a huge amount of anxiety. The staff also helps with socialization as well as academics. Our son now operates as a member of our family. When we first came to Riverview, our family was completely centered around him. He helps plan vacations, cleans the house, calls relatives to stay in touch, and takes care of his own priorities and possessions. Riverview has a plan for their own growth (i.e. vocational programs, employee benefits, and infrastructure) which in turn, is instrumental in the growth of their students. Whenever I have called with a question or concern, I have felt satisfied with the interaction. My son has tried new activities, foods, and experiences at Riverview. Riverview has helped him move out of his comfort zone and move into a learning zone. We can't thank them enough!
I don't even know where to begin. My son Justin was at Riverview for 5 years. He began as a junior and continued until he graduated from the GROW program. The life skills he learned, the friends he made and the staff that guided him were priceless. A bonus is that my husband and I have made lifelong friends also. Best education ever. Thank you Riverview .
Very disappointed - We were enamored by RV and how good it looked, and the reports from other parents. Our son liked it a lot and seemed to make friends. However the teachers and dorm staff have a very variable skill level, and some where clearly out of their depth. The school also does not want to deal with any 'behaviors', which is astounding taking into account that these are special ed kids. Far to keen to throw out kids which are generally doing well, and a few not unanticipated behaviors show up and the school gives up completely - very disappointed and disillusioned with the school, which we had high hopes for and advocated and fund raised for - what a waste of time and money!
My son was treated well for seven and a half years. I agree that coaching for independence and direct instruction is missing. The academic expectations are very low. Over the years the student to staff ratio increased as more students were enrolled and a broader range of disabilities served. More students were enrolled at both the high and low end of ability. During his final year, a behavior problem developed. I was not notified of the concern, and no attempt by the school was made to help my son overcome his difficulty with a specific staff member, who had treated him disrespectfully in the past. No contact was made with his local therapist. Before expelling him, we were asked to have an expensive evaluation performed. After he came home, no one from the school contacted us to see how he was doing. I so regret the fundraising I did and the help I gave freely.
Attending Riverview for 6 years was transformational for our daughter. All the teachers, sports coaches, residential staff, art teachers , you name it, are trained to bring out the best in each kid with lots of positive reinforcement . Social skills training is incorporated into everyday life at Riverview. The staff really work as a team getting to know each student really well and helping them overcome challenges. The kids there are happy - for the first time, they have a social life and are in a place where people understand them and value them. My daughter matured so quickly there, and gained enormous self confidence participating in the many activities they offer to the students. I can't say enough good things about this remarkable school.
An incident occurred and my son took the fall for his friend’s misconduct. Subsequently it was discovered that peer pressure was brought to bear on my son to confess to an action he was not involved with. The truth became known after he was punished.
Riverview school could be the right choice if you have no expectation of your child being independent. There pedagogy is practically nonexistent lacking both direction and efficacy. The faculty and staff view them selves as babysitters/caregivers instead of professional educators committed to the advancement of their students. The one positive aspect is that the students are happy. If your child is uneducable, want him/her to be happy, and have money to burn this school is perfect.