Boulder Creek Academy

The Offerings at Boulder Creek Academy

About Boulder Creek Academy

A member of the National Association of Schools and Programs, Boulder Creek Academy has educated adolescents since 1993. The coeducational boarding facility sits at the base of the Cabinet Mountains near Bonners Ferry, Idaho. Operating year-round, Boulder Creek Academy serves adolescents who are clinically complex and socially immature. Students are challenged with unevenly developed cognitive skills, self-regulation challenges, and experience difficulty forming relationships. The academy features a state-recognized special education program.

Concentrating on the individual, the academy develops therapeutic, academic, and personal lessons to enhance numerous aspects of the student's life. Teachers and counselors evaluate students’ strengths and provide training on utilizing their talents. Weekly family, individual, and group therapy sessions address low self-esteem, social isolation, computer addiction, and other issues. By engaging in academic courses taught using the Socratic method and role-playing, pupils better their social awareness, communication skills, and academic confidence.

Boulder Creek Academy’s proximity to the mountains also affords students, parents, and teachers opportunities for confidence-building outdoor excursions such as mountain biking and kayaking. Ultimately, the school prepares its students with life skills that allow them to embrace their challenges, tap into areas of strength, and find self-acceptance and success.

The Effects of Adolescent Depression on Academics

Founded in 1993, Boulder Creek Academy, an Idaho therapeutic boarding school, has been helping adolescents who are troubled achieve personal growth, build relationships, and succeed academically. Boulder Creek Academy’s unique program is designed to help students who are struggling with a range of emotional and mental health challenges, such as depression.

Depression in adolescents often appears different from depression in adults, but it still has a major impact on the individual’s life, especially when it comes to academics. Studies have found that adolescents suffering from depression are significantly more impaired in terms of academic functioning than their non-depressed peers. They often have unexplained drops in test scores and grades, and they may act out in some way during class, such as interrupting teachers or getting into fights with classmates.

According to the National Association of School Psychologists, adolescents with depression often have difficulty paying attention in class. This may lead to students forgetting certain things, such as homework and school activities, and it generally impairs learning. Planning and organizational skills are also frequently impaired when adolescents are depressed, and they are more likely to withdraw from peer interaction and other social events, leading to increased school absences.

Academic Challenges of Traumatized Youth

Boulder Creek Academy, a therapeutic boarding school in Idaho, has helped numerous students with clinically complex situations and trauma histories. Boulder Creek Academy provides a positive learning environment that integrates therapy with academic growth for students aged 13 to 18.

When children of any age experience trauma, they are likely to become guarded, hyper-vigilant, and easily overwhelmed. Young people with these tendencies may become distractible in school, as they must cope with multiple sensory inputs and potential perceived threats. If their experience has led them to be distrustful of others and constantly aware of dangers in the environment, their potential for distraction intensifies.

Thus overwhelmed, traumatized youth may act out in ways that appear disruptive to the class. Because trauma also inhibits children's ability to self-regulate, they are likely to act on feelings of distress. Children who behave in this way frequently receive negative attention from peers and teachers, which can serve to reinforce their negative perception of the world and of themselves. These children frequently benefit from a learning environment that teaches to their particular learning style and offers consistent positive reinforcement for success. Many traumatized youth also benefit immensely from skills learning programs that help them to rebuild the ability to organize and process information--an ability that trauma can all but erase from the brain.

NATSAP Annual Conference Offers Youth Advocate Networking, Education

Established in 1993, Boulder Creek Academy offers a number of educational and therapeutic programs for adolescents who are clinically complex and socially immature. The school provides individualized remedial academic plans, therapeutic learning, and ample social development opportunities to help students overcome such obstacles as anxiety, depression, and social isolation. Located in Bonners Ferry, Idaho, Boulder Creek Academy offers a state-approved special education program and is a member of the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs (NATSAP).

NATSAP operates with the goal of ensuring the highest quality of care for adolescents enrolled in therapy programs. It strives to serve as a valuable resource and advocate for its member institutions, which include organizations such as therapeutic residential programs, schools, and wilderness camps.

Each year, NATSAP holds its annual conference to provide a forum for professional networking and education. The conference’s attendees include psychologists, social workers, guidance counselors, youth advocates, and therapeutic program owners and staff from the United States and abroad. The annual conference includes several presentations detailing best practice methodologies, case studies, and management insights. Additionally, participating organizations have the opportunity to share their programs' operations and accomplishments during the event’s panel discussions.

In 2015, the NATSAP Annual Conference will take place in Nashville, Tennessee, at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center. Youth advocates will convene February 5-7 and will have the opportunity to earn credit from the Institute for Continuing Education.

NATSAP Annual Conference Brings Professionals Together

Boulder Creek Academy teaches adolescents who struggle with a variety of academic, mental health, or behavioral challenges. Located in Idaho, the academy maintains a state-approved special education program. Boulder Creek Academy belongs the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs (NATSAP).

Acting as an advocate and resource for therapeutic schools and programs, NATSAP hosts numerous events throughout the year. The organization’s premier event is its annual conference. Held over the course of three days, the NATSAP Annual Conference welcomes mental health and allied health professionals.

The conference is the organization’s first event of the year and is followed by regional conferences and relation-building workshops. Attendees gain access to professional development and networking opportunities while improving their knowledge of methodologies and operations.

NATSAP has scheduled its next annual conference for January 25, 2017. The event will be held at the JW Marriott Tucson Starr Pass Resort & Spa in Arizona and will last through January 27.

Idaho SDE Offering Funding via Safe & Drug Free Schools Program

For more than 20 years, Boulder Creek Academy has provided students who possess varying social and cognitive deficits, such as learning and communication disorders, with a highly structured and individualized therapeutic curriculum. Based in Bonners Ferry, Idaho, Boulder Creek Academy is approved by the Idaho State Department of Education (SDE).

In an effort to advocate safety and positive relationship building, the Idaho SDE manages an anti-bullying and anti-drug campaign called Safe & Drug Free Schools (SDFS). The goal of the program is to foster a cooperative learning environment that will ultimately reduce bullying and substance abuse in students. Through SDFS funds and resources, schools can train teachers to address risky behaviors and provide guidance to at-risk students.

In 2016 more than $4 million was allocated to schools throughout Idaho to establish substance abuse prevention curricula and increase safety. School districts and charter schools can apply for SDFS funding by submitting detailed proposals and budget estimates at

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