Highland Residential Center

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Description

Highland Residential Center is located in the Hudson Valley region of New York State, approximately nine miles from Poughkeepsie on the west side of the Hudson River. It is accredited by the American Correctional Association. Youth are in five residential buildings. There are four educational buildings on the Highland campus.

The youth served at Highland are male, juvenile delinquents between the ages of 13 and 18 placed with OCFS by New York State Family Courts.

Services

Counseling

Each youth engages in specific group counseling based on the support team’s identification of the youth's needs. The counseling program's philosophy and methodology are based on a cognitive-moral approach utilizing psycho-educational curricula such as:

  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
  • Sanctuary Psycho-Educational Groups
  • Substance Abuse (Seven Challenges Program)
  • Innervations
  • Victim Awareness

Behavioral modification approaches such as DBT use skill building and therapy.

Education

Programs offer remedial education, special education, and academic and vocational instruction for individuals and small groups. Subjects include math, reading, science, social studies, English, health, and physical education. Test Assessing Secondary Completion and college prep are available. Regents exams in all subejuects are being phased in each year by New York State standards.

Vocational Opportunities

Instructors provide trade skills training in technology, computers, keyboarding, building and grounds maintenance and carpentry.

Health Services

The health care team is comprised of a physician, nurse practitioner, a nurse administrator and registered nurses full time, day and night, every day. Services include those of a part-time psychiatrist and a part-time optometrist. A dentist and registered hygienist are in the facility's dental unit five days per week. Local hospitals are used for emergencies; ambulance service is available when necessary.

Intensive Treatment Unit

This unit is designed to provide mental health care and treatment in a clinically enhanced, structured, and therapeutic environment. Services are focused on the assessment, clarification, and stabilization of acute mental health symptoms. This unit has a 10 bed-capacity and has two licensed clinicians. Group therapy is provided daily; individual therapy is provided twice per week. Groups include DBT, Sanctuary, and psychoeducation groups. Services provided on this unit include yoga and music to promote self-awareness and development.

Discrete Substance Abuse Unit

There is a specialized discrete substance abuse unit that implements the "Seven Challenges" treatment-based curriculum, monitored via the Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services. There are two licensed clinicians and a CASAC worker assigned to this unit providing individual and daily group therapy for youth admitted to the program. Services on this unit also include DBT and Sanctuary groups.

Recreational

Full-service recreation facilities include gymnasium, athletic fields, outdoor basketball and handball courts, and a recreation/game building. There is a specialized building for canteen purchases and leisure time recreation.

Religious Services

Youth can attend religious services on site. Religious counseling and education are offered through the facility chaplain and community volunteers.

Orientation and Assessment Unit

All admissions are first assigned to this unit to prepare for facility living and allow for the creation of the initial support plan. A wide battery of assessments is conducted and orientation on drug and HIV prevention and PREA are is accomplished.

Discrete Substance Abuse Unit

There is a specialized discrete substance abuse unit that implements the Seven Challenges treatment-based curriculum, monitored via the Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services. There is two licensed clinicians and a CASAC worker assigned to this unit providing individual and group therapy for youth admitted to the program. Services on this unit also include DBT and Sanctuary groups.

Community Involvement

Volunteers help facilitate cultural, recreational, and educational activities. Highland has an active community advisory board.

Pre-Release Orientation

To prepare youth prior to their release, a special program addresses relapse prevention. HIV prevention is also addressed.