Building Bridges to Success is a six-week multi-family group program that was developed specifically to meet the needs of the students and their families at Blythewood Academy and Anna Boyd School. Participation in this or another family counseling service is required in order to transition back to their home school. Over the course of the grant, approximately 750 students will be impacted.
"We provide services to families because we see the family as the key to improving outcomes for children," said Dr. Karen Cooper-Haber, Family Intervention Services Coordinator.
Based on 2014-2015 school year data, participation in the program should result in decreased truancy, absenteeism (reduced 3 percent), discipline infractions (reduced 3 percent), and drop-out rates (all participants complete an individual graduation plan). This will result in students' increased achievement, graduate rate (80 percent of participants will graduate on time) and positive attitudes about school and learning.
Housed on the campus of Richland Northeast High School, the staff of Family Intervention Services provide individual and family counseling, multi-family groups, community service opportunities and ongoing dialogue with the school and other community representatives. Building Bridges to Success, recognized as an evidence-based intervention by the National Drop Out Prevention Center, focuses on family engagement, one of the 15 Effective Strategies for Dropout Prevention, according to National Dropout Prevention Center/Network at Clemson University. Family Intervention Services is the only school district program in the Midlands that employs family counselors who provides on-going counseling services to families.