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Archive for the ‘Alternative Education’ Category

Therapy Dogs Help Soothe Anxiety In Troubled Youth

February 7, 2017

Mac (5) and Isis (10) are therapy dogs that visit the Hillcrest campus residential homes and the school classrooms in Dubuque. 2 nights a week they come to work with me to interact with the kids in the residential homes. The kids look forward to their visits and some make treats for them during their […]

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Trauma-Sensitive School Back in Session

August 26, 2016

As the school bus doors open and the children file out, they are welcomed by a crowd of teachers, paraprofessionals, and administrators. With each wave there are smiles, laughing, high fives, and hugs. School is back in session at the Anna B. Lawther Academy at Hillcrest Family services in Dubuque, Iowa. The Anna B. Lawther […]

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The Dollars and Cents of Treating Troubled Youth

June 21, 2016

After completing my thesis at Mt Mercy University on How Parents of Autistic Children Adapt and Persevere, I was asked to join a project with Dr. Jacob Christenson.  I was truly excited about the opportunity to participate in the research and writing process of this project. Our article was published in the “Child and Family  Studies Journal.” The […]

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A Student Art Show, Shows More Than Art

May 23, 2016

On Tuesday, May 10, 2016 students of Anna B. Lawther Academy were featured in our first annual Art Show. Mary Jo Pancratz, our certified Art teacher, organized and presented the Art Show. Students began this school year by studying the elements of art, then moving forward to one point perspectives, still life drawing and watercolor […]

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Announcing Awakenings Academy

March 8, 2016
The Holistic Home

Hillcrest Family Services Announces the Opening of Awakenings Academy, a Residential Treatment Facility Open to Youth Across the Country. Dubuque, IA – March 8, 2016 – Years in development, supported by countless hours of research, with an unparalleled commitment to the most advanced and effective teaching, treatment and quality control methods, Hillcrest Family Services announced […]

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Mentoring is Modeling

January 11, 2016

January is National Mentoring Month. It’s time when we reflect on the incredible power of the little things that make a big difference in the lives of a child. Last month, I got to hear one of our matches from the Mentor Dubuque program talk about their experience to a big group of people. The […]

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“Stressed Brains Can’t Learn”

December 21, 2015

In 2010, Jim Sporleder went to a conference with no idea of the impact that the information was going to have on himself, or the change that it would influence. The Principal of an alternative high school in Walla Walla, Washington, Sporleder had charged himself with the task of turning around a school populated with […]

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Mental Health Matters: We’re not the only ones counting!

September 11, 2015

When talking about mental health it sometimes feels like no one is listening.  While millions of people are affected by mental health issues, there still is a stigma around TALKING about it.  So when I saw the Forbes article What Does Your 2016 Presidential Candidate Say About Mental Health, by Emily Willingham, I was excited to […]

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The Missing Link

September 11, 2015

The Missing Link: How the Symptoms of Mental Health in Children and Their Educational Needs Often Times Clash For many years, and through many classroom observations, educational trainings and meetings, I’ve wondered why educators, at times, struggle with understanding children with mental health issues.  They often times don’t see that these children are not trying […]

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Adverse Childhood Experience

August 6, 2015

The Adverse Childhood Experience (commonly referred to as the ACE study) was co-authored by Dr.’s Robert Anda and Vincent Felitti from the Centers for Disease Control and Kaiser Permanente, respectively. It was designed to address scientific gaps between certain known risk factors and poor overall health, both physical and mental. The risk factors included five […]

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