Horizon Family Solutions,
Welcomes Susanne Buxbaum Aboard.
May 16, 2006
Horizon Family Solutions, LLC, a Bend, Oregon education consulting
business serving at-risk youth and their families across the country,
has recently welcomed an experienced education law expert and
children's rights advocate aboard.
Susanne Buxbaum, MA, MS, joins Dore Frances, Educational Consultant,
in her efforts to assist families in conflict, particularly parents
with "special needs" children, to locate the right path,
one which is highly individualized in the best interest of the
Susanne and Dore have been professional colleagues for several
years with an appreciation for each other's areas of expertise.
Susanne's career with special needs children began while she
was working as a long term substitute teacher and private tutor
for different learners in Southern California nearly twenty years
ago. Concurrently, she coached children and adults with ADD/ADHD
and other learning differences in the areas of learning strategies
and life skills. As an independent contractor, she worked, as
needed, for the Betty Ford Center and a year before relocating,
initiated a support group for the parents of children with Attention
Deficit Disorder and Learning Disabilities, community supported
and at no cost to attendees.
When she moved her family to Central California, her business
also moved and took on a greater scope when she taught a course
specifically designed for those with learning differences (or
"disabilities"), the Master Student Class at Monterey
Peninsula College for college-age, transitioning students and
returning students at Monterey Peninsula College. She soon taught
a modified version of this course at Chartwell School, a unique,
central coast campus for dyslexic children from grades K-8.
As a result of her success with these academic presentations,
Susanne has stated that she felt re-energized with new and exciting
teaching strategies when she signed on at Monterey Peninsula College,
as adjunct faculty, to teach remedial English courses.
In 2002, Susanne became a member of the San Jose based nonprofit
organization, Unity Care Group's Wraparound division as their
Resource and Mentoring Coordinator. Wraparound is a strength based,
family centered process designed to identify the needs and strengths
of a child at risk of losing his/her placement in the home and
change a family's involvement with "the system", one
in which the court directed many family decisions through the
Department of Social Services, the Department of Children's Behavioral
Health and possibly the Department of Juvenile Probation, reversing
that process to "family centered" with collaboration
from those agencies. Wraparound began as a strategy to keep potential
foster or group home children in their homes, partnering with
those county agencies in a less formal, less deficit-based manner.
Susanne soon became that Central Coast Wraparound team's Program
Manager, was promoted, eight months later, to Program Director,
continuing to provide advocacy for children and their siblings
receiving Wraparound services.
She received certification and began delivering community trainings
at Hartnell College's Wraparound Academy for families and professionals
through a ten week course in partnership with Hartnell College
and SB 163, the Wraparound Initiative of Monterey County.
Although Susanne recently decided (April of 2006) to resign from
her position of Program Director with Unity Care Group, she was
happy to return to advocating for the rights of child and adolescents
via natural collaboration with Dore Frances. She plans to continue
to provide trainings regarding education law and special needs
children through Kinship Center, an adoption agency celebrating
twenty years of providing adoption, foster and relative care services
to the children and families of California.
Additional Wraparound trainings are also on her schedule with
Hartnell Community College's Wraparound Academy and trainings
in communities, in some of the twenty-six counties where Wraparound
services have become an entitlement for all residing foster children.
Susanne and Dore are currently designing a separate curriculum
for professionals (providing CEU's when appropriate) and care
providers to assist them with the challenge they see as family-specific
but which can be identified as obstacles which families with children
with special needs have in common. Horizon Family Solutions, LLC
uses the term "special needs" to identify children experiencing
difficulties with their academic or family/social relationships.
These challenges may be the symptoms of unidentified or unaddressed
learning disabilities (which can be identified through a battery
of diagnostic assessments performed by public school psychologists
or those licensed to provide private assessments), behavioral
problems as demonstrated in school settings, at home or in the
community as a result of issues which may be both mental health
or environmental in origin. Children whose best interests (safe
living circumstances, drug free homes, parental encouragement
and participation with school success and strength-based foundations)
are not recognized in the home, at school or in the community
are also the children who get the attention of this organization.
For further information or to learn more about Horizon Family
Solutions, LLC, please visit www.guidingteens.com or call 866-833-6911.