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New Perspectives - Apr, 1996 Issue #39 

Hancock, N. Y. 13783
Robert J. Runge, Admissions
by Linda Shaffer, 208-263-8394

The Family Foundation School, in rural Hancock, N.Y., is a private, year-round New York State registered college prep boarding school which opened its doors 25 years ago. Its educational philosophy, methods, and course curriculum are in accordance with the guidelines set by The New York State Department of Education. Its students are average to bright struggling high school and college students who can draw upon the school's alternative to traditional therapeutic setting. 

The staff members at The Family model the 12-step principles in their interaction with each other and with the students. Before enrollment, students may not have been working up to their academic potential. Other issues may be poor relationships with those in authority, drug and alcohol experimentation, running away from home, eating disorders, and struggles with anger and blaming. 

The Family's comprehensive recovery program interrupts the adolescent's efforts at controlling the home setting. The Family School fosters a sense of community and shared responsibility as students participate in a structured lifestyle that teaches productive living with the day beginning at 6:00 a.m.. Daily activities are designed to stress the importance of family unity, healthy peer relationships and a strong work ethic. All members have jobs for which they are responsible -- cooking breakfast, cleaning dorms, etc. After morning chores, there is a half hour of quiet time for prayer, meditation or studying of 12- step literature. 

Weekly sessions are available with the school's consulting psychologist as recommended and requested. 

Weekend seasonal activities include: hiking, soccer, bowling, tennis, soft-ball, basketball, skiing, skating, movies, dances, swimming, canoeing, picnics and scheduled home visits. State competitions in music and athletics are also offered. 

Recommended length of enrollment is from one or two years. Mentors and small classes are another feature of the school. Tuition fees are closer to boarding school costs than to many therapeutic setting costs. 

Copyright 1996, Woodbury Reports, Inc. (This article may be reproduced without prior approval if the copyright notice and proper publication and author attribution accompanies the copy.)

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