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ESS Provides High Quality and Cost-Effective In-District Clinical Services for Students With Emotional and Behavioral Problems 

The demand for specialized services for this population continues to grow, with out-of-district placements and other educational accommodations becoming a severe burden on school professionals and district budgets everywhere. Educators are searching for the answer on how best to provide the necessary services for these students within their district and in a cost-effective manner.

Our Solutions

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We provide innovative clinical programs for districts seeking to reduce costs while increasing the quality of their in-district education for students with emotional and behavioral problems. We provide experienced clinical staff, proven programming, sound oversight and a mature system of quality and risk management.

Our solutions include:

Wrap-Around Program

This program provides the structure and support that helps at-risk students be educated within mainstream and/or self-contained classes. Services typically include:

  • Daily group therapy, including specialized protocols for problems such as substance abuse and impulse control
  • Weekly individual therapy
  • Family therapy, available in the evening to accommodate parent schedules
  • Monthly evening parent psycho-education and support group
  • Monthly distribution of Solutions, the ESS parent newsletter
  • School avoidance interventions, including home visits
  • An independent lunch period with ESS staff to avoid the stress of unstructured time in the cafeteria
  • Study skills class, typically led by a district teacher and supported by an ESS professional

In-District Therapeutic School

For large districts with significant out-of-district placements, an in-district therapeutic school is the ideal option.  ESS will provide:

  • All of the clinical services required for a comprehensive therapeutic school, including individual, group and family therapy
  • Psycho-educational programming geared to build social, educational and life skills
  • Parent support program
  • Monthly distribution of Solutions, the ESS parent newsletter
  • School avoidance interventions, including home visits
  • Therapeutic student handbook, protocols for crisis management and a school structure for building a healthy student community

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Our Results

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ESS Services Prevent Out-of-District Placements and Dramatically Improves Grades, Attendance and School Behavior

Since its inception in September 2009, ESS has tracked every student who has received services and collected objective measurements about the impact that ESS programming has had on the students. This focus on objective measurement is a key part of the organization’s commitment in evaluating its own services and sharing the data with school and district leadership.

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Above data represents weighted average of ESS high school student performance in the four marking periods of the school year.

As can be seen in the table above reporting on the 2016-2017 school year, ESS programming has a dramatic and positive impact on its students. The need for out-of-district placements is essentially ended; only 3.7% of ESS students received such a placement. However, the success of ESS programming is much broader than just preventing placements. The grades of ESS high school students increased, on average, by 31%, absences decreased by 45% and disciplinary incidents were reduced by 68%.

In other words, once a student enters ESS, the district leadership can be confident that the student will be able to stay and benefit from the wealth of opportunities that a public school system can provide, while getting better grades, attending more frequently and behaving better in school.

What People Are Saying

“The ESS staff works tirelessly and collaboratively with our staff on behalf of our students to provide immediate therapeutic interventions to students. I often wonder how we were ever able to manage these students without the ESS program in our school. ESS provides necessary support services for students, staff, and parents to enable students to remain in a mainstream educational setting with their peers.”

“I often wonder how we were ever able to manage these students without the ESS program in our school. ESS provides necessary support services to enable students to remain in a mainstream educational setting.”

John Pascale, High School Principal, Mahwah, NJ

“I don’t know what we would have done without you guys; you took so much time and provided comprehensive support and clinical expertise. We were ready to give up and take him out of school.”

“I don’t know what we would have done without you guys; we were ready to give up and take him out of school.”

Parent

“ESS is making such a difference for our students and our district. ESS students are attending classes, getting involved in school and are now able to benefit from all that our district can provide.”

“ESS students are attending classes, getting involved in school and are now able to benefit from all that our district can provide.”

Michael Weismann, Assistant Superintendent, Westfield, NJ

We Should Talk

We’d like to share our success with your district.

The 10 Steps To ESS Success

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(Click below for more information)

ESS provides a proven, structured clinical program (including daily group therapy, as well as individual and family therapy), codified in detailed proprietary protocols and grounded in many years of clinical experience and research. ESS protocols are constantly updated as a function of experience, data and new research, and provide the framework for ESS clinicians to most effectively support at-risk students – ESS does not hire clinicians and simply place them within the district, leaving them to figure out how to work with the students based on their past clinical experience.

School avoidance is a pervasive problem in public schools. ESS has created a unique protocol that includes a specialized assessment for students and parents, parent coaching, morning phone check-ins and same-day home visits, as well as a supportive re-entry to school procedure.

Behavioral students, or students who consistently “act out”, create major challenges for school districts. ESS has developed specialized programming that allows these students to be safely and successfully educated within the public school district in a wide range of environments, including mainstream settings, self-contained classrooms, twilight programs and separate therapeutic schools. ESS utilizes the Trauma-Attuned Model™, which includes daily group skills training in emotional regulation for students, family therapy and phone coaching for parents, and summer all-day professional development plus ongoing collaboration with teachers to ensure classrooms remain non-reactive.

Another key to ESS success is the unique depth and variety of services provided for ESS parents. In addition to on-going family therapy (provided day or evening, whichever is better for the parent), ESS also implements a monthly parent support program that follows a detailed psycho-educational protocol that is regularly modified to meet the particular needs of parents. Plus, ESS distributes Solutions, a monthly newsletter that provides useful information and practical parenting tips for all ESS parents.

The ESS system of supervision is like no other. Every clinician, regardless of experience, benefits from ongoing clinical supervision. ESS on-site clinicians receive such supervision from the ESS Regional Clinical Director, who oversees multiple programs and also maintains frequent communication with school and district leadership. Executive Clinical Directors provide oversight for each region, and report directly to the ESS Executive Director.

ESS on-site clinicians maintain detailed student records that meet FERPA standards, a system of documentation akin to that found in structured psychiatric treatment programs…and typically not found in public schools. For classified ESS students (ESS provides services for classified and non-classified students), student records reflect IEP goals and initiatives. Districts can feel a sense of reassurance in that the ESS student record not only ensures that proper care is provided, but also offers the district a unique defense should the services provided to a student come under scrutiny.

The ESS system of quality and risk management provides the highest level “insurance policy” for the district’s management of high-risk students. The ESS Quality Management team provides ongoing monitoring of each student record to ensure services provided are consistent with ESS protocols and rigorous safety standards. ESS on-site clinicians regularly participate in IEP meetings and ESS leadership attend mediation meetings as requested by the district.

The ESS system of quality and risk management provides the highest level “insurance policy” for the district’s management of high-risk students. The ESS Quality Management team provides ongoing monitoring of each student record to ensure services provided are consistent with ESS protocols and rigorous safety standards. ESS on-site clinicians regularly participate in IEP meetings and ESS leadership attend mediation meetings as requested by the district.

ESS has developed a series of objective measures evaluating the impact of the program on a district’s students and shares the results with each district several times per year, a process unheard of in the school mental health field. The data, which consistently demonstrates dramatic improvement in grades, attendance and discipline, provides a strong degree of comfort for district leadership and school boards when evaluating ESS.

ESS guarantees the quality of its on-site clinicians and will remove a clinician if so requested by a district. ESS only employs highly experienced, licensed mental health professionals who have specific expertise in working with children and/or adolescents with significant emotional and behavioral challenges. A first job upon graduation is never available at ESS!

Professional Development

Key to the success of ESS programming is the training of school district staff in managing students with emotional and behavioral problems in the public school classroom. Toward this end, ESS regularly provides training for teaching staff, both on-site within the district and off-site in intensive day-long workshops. ESS publishes and distributes Insights, a monthly newsletter for ESS district teaching staff that highlights important research topics relevant to educating students with emotional and behavioral problems and always includes practical tips for educators.

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ESS Professional Development Library

An important goal of Effective School Solutions (ESS) is to assist districts in providing educational professionals (teachers, paraprofessionals, etc.) with the knowledge and skills needed to work effectively with students with emotional and behavioral challenges. To this end, ESS provides on-site cutting-edge professional development throughout the year for ESS districts. Each of the following topics can be presented in sixty to ninety minutes. Longer presentations are also available.

(Click below for more information)

This presentation is designed to identify and address the various behavioral needs of students in the classroom. Teachers will be provided with evidence-based supportive strategies that will help maximize learning for all students. The information presented is practical and applicable.

Participants will learn how significant emotional problems can impair executive function. Assessment and surveys will be introduced along with practical approaches and strategies that teachers can use in developing executive function among students with emotional problems in the classroom setting.

This presentation will help teachers have a better understanding of what makes a “fragile child” fragile. Specific techniques will be discussed for helping students to perform better in the public school classroom.

An introduction to Howard Glasser’s “Nurtured Heart Approach,” a philosophy and technique that “focuses on energizing success and de-energizing failure.” Teachers will learn classroom techniques Nurtured Heart: Catch a Child Being Good! An introduction to Howard Glasser’s “Nurtured Heart Approach,” a philosophy and technique that “focuses on energizing success and de-energizing failure.” Teachers will learn classroom techniques.

This training will offer 10 approaches that teachers can use in the classroom to avoid getting involved in power struggles with students and triggering defiant or oppositional behaviors, and instead promote cooperation.

We all experience stress. When stress occurs frequently in the classroom, however, and particularly when it stems from the difficulties in educating students with emotional and/or behavioral challenges, it takes a toll on a teacher’s physical and emotional well-being, as well as her/his ability to teach effectively. This training helps teachers identify, understand and overcome this stress in order to increase professional satisfaction and work more successfully with difficult students.

According to the work of pioneering psychologist Pat Ogden, Ph.D., learning will only occur when students and teacher are all in “Optimal Arousal Zones.” This training will share Dr. Ogden’s work in helping teachers to recognize when they, themselves, and their students are in one of three zones of arousal—Hyper, Optimal and Hypo—as well as strategies to better regulate and maintain optimal cognitive and emotional functioning.

Participants will receive an overview of child and adolescent depression and treatment options as well as how depression impacts school performance, with the goal of helping teachers support and work more effectively with students suffering from depression.

School avoidance is a growing problem that prevents students from reaching their academic potential. A variety of effective school avoidance interventions will be reviewed, as well as suggestions for how teachers can effectively interact with parents while supporting students’ consistent attendance in the school setting.

Conceptualized by Carol Dweck, “mindset” is a simple idea based on decades of research that looks at the contrast between a fixed versus a growth mindset and how it impacts an individual’s level of success. Teaching students the view of a growth mindset creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishments.

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Districts Served

ESS serves 83 schools in 45 school districts in the Northeast. While there are many differences among these districts, all have a strong desire to provide the best possible educational experience for their students while retaining them within the district.

What Administrators Say About ESS

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Putting Solutions to Work

ESS stands ready to conduct a no-cost consultation about how we can put our solutions to work, reducing costs and increasing the quality of education for students with emotional and behavioral problems.

To learn more about our services, or to schedule an initial consultation, please call us at (973) 299-9954.

Find out how we can help

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