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New Perspectives - September, 2001 Issue #85 

Heritage Center
Provo, Utah
Mary Ann Smith,
Admissions Director

Heritage Schools, Inc. is a non-profit, co-educational, sub-acute residential treatment program for adolescents ages 12 to 18. Its goal is to “build on the positive aspects of supportive relationships to provide nurturing and security together with clinical assistance and structured care.” They have a 20-acre campus, equestrian program and mountain surroundings that provide “a diverse environment for encouraging youth to confront challenging activities and learn more productive use of leisure time.” They are “committed to providing adolescents with opportunities and experiences that will assist them in recognizing patterns or behaviors which are limiting their growth.”

“The Heritage Center approaches the treatment of its adolescents from the point of view that the most crucial issue is one of emotional attachment.” Typically they admit adolescents who are experiencing Disorders involving Attention Deficit/’Hyperactivity, Substance Use, Mood, Anxiety, Impulse Control, Schizophrenia and other Psychosis, Conduct, Oppositional Defiance, Personality, Learning, Eating, Identity, Cognition, Attachment, and/or Relations. They accept pregnant clients, moderately aggressive and adjudicated clients, if they meet the other admission criteria.

Heritage Services include individual, group and family psychotherapy, milieu therapy and therapeutic recreation, along with a variety of specialty groups. The on-campus academic program provides an individualized curriculum for grades 7-12 that varies from special education classes to accelerated learning formats. Treatment teams consist of a psychiatrist, primary therapist, nurse, teacher, and recreation therapist. Mental health workers are assigned to each housing unit, where 10 to 16 adolescents live, sharing bedrooms with two to three other students. Staff/student ratios are 1:8, with 24-hour nursing services. They also have facilities to stabilize and re-direct clients who are at risk to themselves or others, in an area that is secure with a staff to student ratio of 1 to 3 or 4.

Established in 1984, they are JCAHO accredited as a child and adolescent psychiatric facility, and the Northwest Association of School and Colleges accredits their academic program. This facility works with various agencies to meet the needs of adolescents by negotiating rates and contracts, while “also providing excellent clinical care.” “Medication management and basic medical care are provided by the on-site Medical Department. Local hospitals provide services for medical emergencies.”

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