Everyone at this school is there because they are somewhat different, though I wouldn't say most of them are specifically "learning" differences. The staff here take the time to develop every single student the way they need to be developed.
I was a student at Discovery School of Virginia and it absolutely changed my life. I would be nowhere near where I am today if it weren't for them. I am still in touch with some of the staff, and speak to parents whoa re considering sending their children.
We went through a very dark time in our family. We didn't know how to cope with our daughters behavior. It was BAD. She was fighting, arguing, trying drugs of all sorts, running away, breaking things in the house, putting us down every chance she could. We lived our lives every day wondering what was going to happen next and then it started being hour by hour and minute by minute.....wondering what would happen next with her.
Once we decided on her going to Discovery she was there for a year. It was the hardest thing we have ever done. We saw her struggling through many emotions and fighting as hard as she could to not feel the pain of the emotions. But, eventually she did feel and accept that her behavior was wrong, for herself and the family.
When my daughter finished the program she said that it saved her life. I fully believe her.
I hated it there. They were verbally abusive. And they work you like a mule. There were a few times I thought I was going to die. The staff are nice to parents and outsiders but vary mean to the students. Mr outland is the worst. He will make you eat potted meat and move rocks for a week straight. Until late your hands bleed!! And he will yell at you the whole time. It's a godawful place. If you want your kids to hate you forever then send them here. I ran away for 5 years after I got out of the discovery school because I was so traumatized by this experience. I wish everyday that I never went here and I wouldn't wish this upon my worst enemy.
My daughter went to the Discovery School for Girls at 17 and stayed one and a half years. Sending her away was the most difficult decision and a total leap of faith. This was our last chance to help her before she turned 18. Discovery School taught her how to become a responsible member of a group, both giving help and asking for help. She was made accountable for her behavior, both present and past. She graduated two years ago and is a Freshman in college. She is doing very well. The school helped her develope a sense of pride and confidence. She has had "slip-ups" but handles them in the open. She is aware of the type of thinking that leads to bad decisions and "trouble". Had she not attended he Discovery School, she would have been in and out of rehab, the school gave her a life and I am very grateful to have my daughter back in the family.