The Academy at Swift River is a clinically-oriented, therapeutic co-educational boarding school in the Berkshires for college bound adolescents (ages 14 - 18) with emotional and/or behavioral difficulties. Our mission is to help teens to get back on track by restoring relationships, rediscovering academic success, and to prepare them for the challenges of adolescence and young adulthood.
In addition to rigorous college preparatory academics, our students receive weekly counseling and participate in group counseling several times per week. The Academy at Swift River utilizes an innovative therapeutic structure, or Journeys system, that integrates an established theory of change known as the Stages of Change by Prochaska, Norcross & DiClemente, with evidence-based Dialectical Behavior Therapy, and Relational-Cultural therapy informed by the work of Jean Baker Miller. Our master’s level clinical counselors employ a range of cognitive-behavioral approaches within a psychodynamic-relational context. Specialized treatment groups include Dialectical-Behavior Therapy Skills Training, Adoption, and Relapse Prevention. Students also participate in onsite Alcoholics Anonymous mutual help support groups. Students also have access to psychiatric consultation and medication management.
Moving beyond an individual problem-child model, counseling staff at Academy at Swift River view students past and current functioning from the lens of the family system. Through weekly telephone calls, on-site workshops, and family sessions, our clinical counselors use a psychoeducational approach to help parents understand and alter parenting styles and maladaptive family dynamics.