Issuu on Google+

The Graham School A Partnership of Graham Windham and the Greenburgh-Graham Union Free School District


Our Graham School students achieve academic success and social and emotional growth in a nurturing and highly-structured learning environment.


Who We Are ... The Graham School is a co-educational therapeutic day and boarding school located on a bluff overlooking the Hudson River in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York. It is licensed by New York State’s Department of Education and Office of Children and Family Services and accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools and the Council of Accreditation. The school is designed to meet the needs of boys and girls ages 5 to 21 who have been referred by New York City metro area public school districts and by New York City’s Administration for Children’s Services for residential education and treatment services and, when needed, family permanency planning services. We accept children and adolescents with learning disabilities, emotional and behavioral challenges and disrupted family life.


Our Values ... SAFETY & ORDER Physical safety and emotional security are essential conditions for a child’s health, education and development. Our first consideration is always student safety and ensuring an orderly and therapeutic campus environment.

RELATIONSHIPS We use healthy, authentic and humanizing student/staff relationships to promote education, healing, growth and well-being.

GOOD CARE We care about our students. Our care is demonstrated day-in and day-out by our words, our deeds and by addressing the true needs and challenges of those we serve.

FAMILY We believe that home and family are our students’ greatest natural resource. It anchors them. It defines them. It makes them whole. We work in full and active partnership with our students’ families in the best interests of their child.


… and Beliefs EDUCATION Education is a primary force for individual and collective progress and achievement in American society. We are committed to providing our students with a strong, rich and expansive year-round academic program, carefully calibrated to the individual needs of each and every student.

STRENGTH-BASED SERVICES All the students we serve bring with them unique talents, skills and personal narratives, in addition to specific unmet needs. We are committed to a strength-based approach to practice, capitalizing on existing competencies, talents and interests to shape and implement individual education and treatment plans.

HIGH STANDARDS We believe in our students, in their essential goodness and capacity to cope, heal, learn, grow and succeed. Therefore, we set their challenge bar high, consistent with the upper limits of their promise and potential.

RIGHTS & RESPONSIBILITIES The “rights” of our students and families are important to us and honored in our work. At the same time, progress can be expected only when those rights are accompanied by an active acceptance of responsibilities. All our students and families have a voice at The Graham School and share with us responsibility for their success.


Each student’s program is specifically tailored to their individual needs and goals.


The Program Located on a beautiful 30-acre campus, The Graham School serves 300 resident and day students with a myriad of strengths and moderate-to-severe learning, emotional and behavioral challenges. The facilities include an elementary, middle and high school in two modern school buildings, 12 resident cottages, a large and historic administrative building, a fully equipped health center, a family center, two gymnasiums and an outdoor swimming pool. The program is a collaboration between Graham Windham, the nation’s longest serving child welfare agency and the Greenburgh-Graham Union Free School district, which was established in 1967 to serve the residential children of Graham Windham. The agency and school take special pride in a close working relationship which enables the program to provide fully integrated academic, clinical, youth development and enrichment services in a nurturing, highly structured and individualized learning environment, staffed by experienced teachers, clinicians, social workers and youth counselors.


What makes The Graham School Unique? The Graham School is a learning community where staff inspire students, students inspire staff and lives are transformed. THE EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM The Greenburgh-Graham elementary, middle and high schools offer a wide range of educational and enrichment programs. Small class size, with a ratio of one teacher and two support staff for every eight students, ensures personal attention for all. We assess the learning strengths and needs of each student upon arrival and provide instructional strategies and accommodations to support students with varying ability levels. Curriculum offerings meet all the requirements of the New York State Department of Education.

RESEARCH-BASED READING INSTRUCTION The Graham School uses two evidence-based instructional models to teach reading. The first is Language-Based Reading Instruction. This is an intervention program for learning disabled and struggling readers. It focuses on word decoding, spelling and grammar. The second model is called Balanced Literacy. This is an integrated approach that incorporates the use of multiple strategies to enhance reading, writing, thinking, speaking and listening skills. Student engagement and participation, and the generation of authentic student work, are the keys to success. All our reading programs are grounded in ongoing student assessment based on quarterly evaluation. Instruction is aligned with regents standards and is differentiated from the remedial level to the honors level.


In the Classroom Direct skills instruction within a small class setting helps students to reach their full potential.


MATH ACADEMY Systematic and web-based intervention programs that build foundational mathematical skills.

PROJECT BASED LEARNING Provides students with complex tasks involving higher problem solving, decision making, investigative skills and reflection.

CREDIT RECOVERY & GED PROGRAMS Alternative programs for high school students who are credit deficient.

ELECTIVE CLASSES Visual and media arts, music, drama and writing are examples of high-interest options for students.

TUTORING AND HONORS LEVEL CLASSES Additional support and enrichment geared to student need and performance.

COLLEGE CAFÉ Staff work with students to prepare college applications.

SAT PREPARATION Academic decathlons to encourage studying and preparing for college entrance exams.

DIFFERENTIATED INSTRUCTION Provides students with different avenues to acquire knowledge.


Faculty and Staff Nothing impacts the academic achievements of our students as much as the quality of the teaching they receive.

Our classrooms are staffed with trained, certificated and deeply committed educators who know their way around special needs students, challenging behaviors, cutting-edge pedagogy and New York State standards. They prepare each student to meet with success on state assessments and go far beyond the standards to enrich our students’ learning experience and address their personal interests. They know how to help our students find the best in themselves.


Graham’s highly trained faculty refuse to ratify failure. They zealously draw students and their families into the education process and direct their focus laser-like on enhancing academic achievement.


A Restorative Environment On Campus, all the forces of order, education and therapy are allied in a powerful circle of support. THE THERAPEUTIC COMMUNITY The Graham School is an intentional community. We conduct our day-to day-activities through strong social contracts that explicitly emphasize program values and the responsibility of all staff to engage students in a sustained, disciplined effort to succeed in school and in life. This web of caring relationships creates a sense of belonging and an atmosphere of trust and security. It promotes pro-social and pro-self behavior and a fervent belief that growth, development and success is not only possible but firmly within each student’s grasp.

CLINICAL EXPERTISE All students are assigned their own clinician. Individual psychotherapy and pharmacological therapy is provided when needed and approved by the student and/or family, who we involve in all clinical planning and decision-making. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) is available to help students identify and cope with specific concerns. Students participate in weekly peer group meetings and themed group sessions such as Girls Circle, norms training and transition planning. Our clinical staff is comprised of child psychiatrists, psychologists, psychiatric nurse practitioners and licensed clinical social workers.

HEALTH AND WELLNESS A modern Health Center, staffed by a pediatrician, nurse practitioner, RNs and LPNs, provides primary health care to all resident students and, on an as-needed basis, to day students. Comprehensive, integrated health care services include initial health evaluation with follow-up assessments, prevention and health promotion activities, and care for common illnesses, injuries and medical complaints. More specialized services are provided by a network of carefully selected specialists. Nearby St. John’s Hospital provides emergency care. Dental care is provided by Westchester County’s Mobile Dental Van.


Family Support Families are respected and involved. FAMILY-CENTERED CARE Families play a primary decision-making role in planning for the care and the education of their children. This involvement includes deciding the appropriate mix of supports and services, goal setting, designing and implementing their child’s individual education and treatment plans and monitoring the outcomes of those plans. Family counseling, support groups and parental skill building in key areas such as parent-child communication, developmental expectancies, guidance and discipline and problem solving are also offered.

INTENSIVE FAMILY WORK Sometimes families need assistance in providing a safe home environment for their children. When this is the case, we work with urgency to help the family create and enact a solution-oriented plan to restore safe and healthy family functioning. If these efforts do not succeed, we work with the student to consider other family options, including being welcomed into a new, loving and permanent family. Our cadre of highly professional case planners and social workers are trained in Solutions-Based Casework, a family-centered, evidence-based casework practice model that helps families build on existing strengths to solve issues which interfere with the safety and well-being of the home.

TRANSITIONING One of our key challenges is to help students maintain their behavioral and educational gains after they leave Graham, and to continue their growth, development and education going forward. Post-graduate/discharge planning starts on day one of admission and continues throughout the student’s enrollment at The Graham School. Student success is measured not only by how well they do while here, but also how well they do after they leave.


The Day has 24 Hours AFTERSCHOOL AND EVENING ACTIVITIES A rich program of skill mastery, educational supports, recreation and cultural activities helps students develop strong, positive and healthy functional identities. Activities include life skills workshops, tutoring and homework help, intramural sports, crafts and performing arts, BENGALS (student council and leadership training), ECAD (service dogs training) and field trips to museums, concerts and parks. With over 90 campus jobs, our salaried student employment program is designed to help students develop job skills and positive workplace behaviors.

COTTAGE LIFE The cottage is the resident student’s “home base”. It is where they sleep, eat (when not using the central dining room), attend to personal hygiene, study, recreate and relax. Most cottages house 12 – 14 students, usually 2 per bedroom. Cottages are staffed by experienced Youth Counselors who are carefully recruited and trained to provide personalized care, emotional support, skill mastery, behavioral support and recreational activities.


Editor-In-Chief: Poul Jensen Managing Editor: Sandra April Designer: Mayra Pacheco Photo Credits: Julie Beers and Jeffrey Fleisig

The Graham School One South Broadway Hastings-on-Hudson, New York 10706 www.graham-windham.org www.greenburgh-graham.org

For more information, please call us at 914-478-1100 Ext 235 914-478-1106 Ext 427 Editor-In-Chief: Poul Jensen Managing Editor: Sandra April Designer: Mayra Pacheco Photo Credits: Julie Beers and Jeffrey Fleisig


The Graham School Brochure