North Shore Academy (NSA)
North Shore Academy (NSA) is a therapeutic day school that serves students who struggle with the social, emotional, and behavioral demands of school. The students and families of NSA are strong and resilient, caring and courageous. They work diligently to create a safe and supportive community in which change and growth are possible. The skilled and compassionate staff at NSA partner with families, students, school districts and community agencies to foster the dreams and hopes of students and families whose lives often feel derailed by the challenges of school.
Everything we do is driven by the values of the Circle of Courage and the core belief is that each student can succeed. Our staff will team with you and your child to create a structured path that prepares them for a happy and successful return to a less restrictive setting. The power of our philosophy, the strength of our commitment and the experience of our staff allow us to help students with a wide range of emotional concerns discover their voice and renew their belief in their dreams.
Students who require the supports of a therapeutic school like North Shore Academy have complex therapeutic and educational needs. If their problems were simple, bright and caring parents and school staff would have been able to support them effectively in their home school. To address the complexity of our student population we have honed the essential skills of collaborative teamwork and effective problem-solving. Through this process, students, parents, and NSA staff work together to develop a plan that will meet the very individual needs of each student.
Like most therapeutic programs, we have programmatic structures to support their success in school. We have a high staff to student ratio that allows us to individualize academic work and to have staff available to support students when they are struggling to problem solve effectively. Our classrooms teams typically have 8-12 students, a teacher, a therapist, and 1-2 teaching assistants. We have a point sheet that students complete each period to allow us to track progress, and our level system allows us to monitor each student’s readiness to transition back to their home school.
In addition to the traditional structures listed above, NSA provides additional supports that allow us to tailor our program to meet specific student and family needs. These supports include academic accommodations, intensive therapeutic programming (including family therapy), transition services, service-learning activities, mentoring, supportive attendance, after school programming, student council, and sports and arts programming.
With these supports, we are able to wrap services around students and tailor our program to meet their needs during this critical and challenging time in their lives. The power of our philosophy, the strength of our commitment, and experience of our staff, allows us to help students with a wide range of emotional concerns discover their voice and renew their belief in their dreams.
Although we have many resources and talented staff to support students and families, the key to our work is our ability to develop strong relationships with students and parents. It is through these partnerships that the magic of change happens.
Kendra Wallace, Principal and Director of Social Emotional Learning
North Shore Academy Middle and High School
754 Red Oak Lane, Highland Park, IL 60035