Clarinda Academy in southwest Iowa is a residential foster care facility for adjudicated delinquent males and females between the ages of 13 and 18. The school environment focuses on the establishment of a positive peer culture, the intervention of negative behavior and positive pro-social change. Licensed by the State of Iowa to provide residential treatment, the program is highly structured and currently serves 172 males, 60 females and a 24-bed shelter for males. The residential programs are not co-ed.
Students attend on-campus individualized academic and vocational education programs, accredited through the Clarinda Community School District. The academics provide standard middle school/high school curricula, remedial education, special education and GED curricula while the vocational program offers a large range of classes and experiences to prepare students for the world of work. Clarinda also offers a full athletic program that is accredited through the IAHSAA.
Clarinda Academy uses a cognitive behavioral approach to assist youth in developing new ways of behaving and thinking while receiving constant feedback from peers and staff. Students work together with peers and staff to set concrete goals and determine the steps to achieve those goals. Progress in all areas is constantly monitored and related back to the student's daily behavior and decision-making. Students are challenged to experience success and analyze failures in most areas of life throughout their entire stay.
Typical length of stay at Clarinda is six months to a year depending on progress, with a minimum screening referral of 90 days. Clarinda does not provide services for sex offenders, youth with significant fire-setting issues, or children with an MMR diagnosis.
Note:The information in this New Perspective was submitted by the program.