"The comment from 5/30/2012 "I would love to see schools for the parents of
these kids who are going awry. After all who raised them to become a mess?
The influence and environment should be alleviated if they are ever to be
helped permanently, " is insensitive and naive. These are good children
with loving parents, and life happens and children cope effectively or not
so effectively - the same as parents. Did you ever think that some of the
children could have been traumatized in some way - death of a parent or
sibling, victim of bullying, sexually abused. You are cold hearted to cast
judgment on all these people. My mother always said, "There, but for the
grace of God, go I." Think about it.
"I would love to see schools for the parents of these kids who are going
awry. After all who raised them to become a mess? The influence and
environment should be alleviated if they are ever to be helped
"I saw the post about Monarch School from an obviously disgruntled
ex-employee. I have to say that I'm surprised by the post since my child
was their for the years of 2010 and 2011. We had a very positive
experience with the school and the nurturing enviroment combined with
excellent therpay saved our child and brought our family back together.
Our child is now in college and doing very well. We still attend the
regional workshops they provide and are always appreciate Patrick the
founder being involved in all aspects of the school. We chose Monarch
because the other schools we looked at the school leadership was very
removed from the daily lives of the students. I highly recommend this
school for those students that can be accepted.
"In regards to the 02/21/11 post, I would like more information about the
reference to "check You Tube for details.
" I really like the concept of residential treatment centers for those
teenagers that are struggling with various teenage problems. The programs
recommended by the NATSAP are seems to be very extremely effective and
profitable for the troubled teenagers. Wilderness programs for struggling
are also a good alternative for treating the troubled teenagers.
"I introduced a boarding
school for teens
to a friend of mine before and it turned out
effective to the troubles that his teen was going on. I found it amusing
that I became a bridge to a parent like me in taking care of a teen. And I
really agree so much on what is written here.
"Having worked at the Monarch School for a number of years (over 4) I would never recommend this institution for parents and their children. The majority of the upper administration (directors) are only interested in keeping actual 'numbers' in the school -- the bottom-line, money. The founder of the school consistently presents 'as if' he has the best interest of each student's individual needs in minds/parents, yet does not support the teachers and program staff appropriately to support these needs. To make matters worse Monarch consistently enrolls students they CAN NOT serve (see above + untrained faculty). Students with extreme social and other neurological defecits have and continued to be enrolled there. The faculty and program staff are NOT TRAINED in how to deal with these deficits, and therefore, students DO NOT receive the services they need and therefore, negative self beliefs are reinforced. This school should NOT BE recommended, it also largely comes from !
an old CEDU model (program and staff) which is confirmed abusive -- check You Tube for details. "
"FYI, there is no such thing as a for-profit charter school. Some charter
schools are run by for-profit management companies, but the schools
themselves receive public dollars to run the school. While I do agree that
some of these management companies are shady (Mosaica and White Hat come
to mind) not all are (Edison Learning and EdVisions for example). By the
way, I work for one of the state charter school associations and am basing
this on 5 years of observation and experience--not an over generalization
of limited or bias.
As with any schools, parents and students need to go visit and be sure the
fit is right for them. I am hard pressed to believe anyone other than the
family can truly find the a school that will work for them. Even if the
consultant knows a lot about some schools, you should still go visit a few
to get a feel for yourself. I personally would never pay someone to do
this job for me. "
"There are also a number of public schools, both charter and district or
even state run, whose mission it is to get back on track. Parents do not
have to be able to afford 5-9K per month to get help for their troubled
teen. I encourage parents and teens looking for schools to contact their
charter school associations (most states with charters have one) or
districts to ask what kind of alternative education options are available."
"Having worked in the area, I would consider it very hard to make the right
choice as a parent based on the advice of an educational consultant
because often the economy between the consultant and the school seems to
be more a relationship between an employee and an employer than ordinary
business deals between two independent firms.
Second as a parent you need a plan for the time once your child have left
the school. It is easy to create success in a isolated environment because
all the temptations are removed. Once outside it is the question of the
time-out the teenagers have gotten from real life was long enough so they
are adults in their mind. People learn from the failures they make, not by
not doing anything, which very often is the case in boarding school where
they cannot get life experience."
"These are all excellent schools that are mentioned above, however each has
its own unique culture and 'fit' depending on the student. Yes, it is
possible to find these schools through the internet, but what you get with
an educational consultant is 'hands on' information from professionals who
have visited these schools, sent families to them, and can give you
current information on staff and programs. We find that often the 'half
life' for information on schools is about three years. Louise Slater, The
Price Group, Educational Planning Services, Columbia, SC Professional
Member, Independent Educational Consultants Association"
"These sound like wonderful schools for families with disposable income
that is more than my family makes in a decade. Where is a family who
earns less than $100,000 gross to look? We make too much for state or
federal aid and not enough to pay out of our pockets. A much more
practical answer would be appreciated for the majority of us. Thank you
for your time."
"my 14 yr. old daughter was in foster care but i got a attorney and now
she's back in my custody, she was in foster care for 5 yrs. but i was in
her life, i know we would have issues from the past and present, going
into the 9th, she was making F's but raised her grades to pass in to the
9th, we love each other and very glad we
're back in each others lives, at times we would pick her up walking the
streets high and alone and would run away from the foster parent, we work
on our communication, and tell each other ahead of time what we want to do
or don't want to do."
"As an educational consultant whose practice is limited to working with
students who are struggling, I would like to note that 30% of my time is
spent visiting schools ( I have visited all on your list) and my purpose
is to keep a current understanding of the culture, leadership and efficacy
of the work of each program. My work with each client is focused on fully
understanding their cognitive, academic and clinical profile so that I can
suggest schools that can meet those needs. Your list is quite diverse,
but Mr Marcus does not do families a service by listing schools without
sorting through the criteria he uses to make these judgements. Parents
trust that the suggestions I make are based on the individual needs of
their child and while the schools you mention do excellent work, they also
appreciate the work of a consultant because we make referrals to them
based on an intimate knowledge of our clients and they type of student
they best serve."
"For profit charter schools are only in it for the money. Very few are
"Ms. Ellison correctly notes the dramatic growth in the number, scope and
specialization of therapeutic schools and programs in recent years. What
is less clear is the often dramatic differences in mission, philosophy,
therapy and success rates of the hundreds of programs that exist. It are
these very differences that makes the role of the educational consultant
Dave Marcus suggests parents start with a web search where they are likely
to find materials well prepared by a school's marketing firm or extreme
comments on both ends of a continuum. By contrast, professionals who
belong to the Independent Educational Consultants Association have visited
scores, (often more than a hundred) program sites, examining with a
professional's critical eye all aspects of the program. They have
extensive training in special needs issues and placements. They track
their clients experience to learn not only what programs succeed, but how
they fare with particular types of adolescents and particular
difficulties. For example a program that succeeds with teens acting out
violently due to attachment issues may fail miserably with teens
exhibiting similar symptoms, but based on learning, substance abuse or
These teens are already in tenuous situations and families are often on
edge. This is why many of the most reputable programs ONLY accept
adolescents who have worked closely with an educational consultant to
identify the best possible fit among the hundreds of options.
-Mark Sklarow, Executive Director, IECA"
"Unlike many of my fellow educational consultants I agree with both David
Marcus and Katherine Ellison that parents can, with due care, select a
school or program for their son or daughter without the assistance of an
educational consultant, if they exercise due care. I agree that the
www.strugglingteens.com website is a valuable resource. That is where my
The content of this article demonstrates the gross incompetence of
Katherine Ellison (and David Marcus, if she is quoting him accurately) on
the subject this article addresses. I am very concerned about the kids who
will be harmed by taking the advice given here. Three schools mentioned are
schools about which I sound a very strong note of caution: Hyde
(http://bit.ly/bYZASX), Carlbrook (http://bit.ly/danypI), and Academy at
Swift River (http://bit.ly/90kYlI). In the case of Carlbrook, many of my
educational consultants would disagree with me and agree with what was
written. For a complete assessment of the school, multiple points of view
must be considered. In the case of Academy at Swift River, I would have
agreed with what David Marcus (wrote according to Ellison) at the time it
was written, but it is out of date.
Of the remaining schools, I agree that they tend to represent quality, but I
see no logical reason to single them out. I also emphasize that careful
school choice does not arise by comparing Ã¢â‚¬Å“good schoolsÃ¢â‚¬Â� with Ã¢â‚¬Å“bad
schoolsÃ¢â‚¬Â� but by determining what is the Ã¢â‚¬Å“best fitÃ¢â‚¬Â� for your particular
son or daughter from among the Ã¢â‚¬Å“good schools.Ã¢â‚¬Â�
Just like buying or selling a house without a real estate agent is something
that can be done, but to do that with proper due diligence without
professional support is a very complex task. It is totally irresponsible
for Ms. Ellison to represent the task as so simple. I am slowly developing
a section of my website at http://bit.ly/d2nSUO to be a meaningful help to
such parents, although frankly it is much too early in its development to be
a stand-alone resource. This is not for self promotion, but what is
already there demonstrates the complexity of the task."
"It seems this article is extremely East Coast focused, other than the
school in Montana...there are other schools, such as Catalyst in Lafayette
Colorado, which assists At-Risk Youths and kids who have been
traumatized...I think this piece is limited and you could have gone beyond
the East Coast."
"Didn't read the whole article so shouldn't comment, but what about schools
on the West coast? or Southwest?
"This is an informative article and immediately caugt my attention. I had
troubles with our teen and been to several counselors, therapists,
counseling centers, anger management etc. Nothing would work. She
admitted she would just tell them what they wanted to hear. I had her
evaluated and she was classified. After several trips to her school for
her getting into trouble and doing everything possible that the school
requested to get her back on track and still she was failing all her
classes and TONS of attitude. After a lot of pushing through the school,
I was able to get help through the school psychologist to place her
elsewhere. She is a happier person and doing very well in her classes and
now has a career path. It took a few years and of a lot of stress on our
family but success can happen. I keep my fingers crossed every day that
she keeps up the hard work."
"My daughter could not do well she got all E at Romulus High the kids were
to mean and it seam like they ran the school not the adults, so I took her
out and put her in Romulus Community High and she was on the honor roll
ever seance and just graduated in June 2010"