"There is more in us than we know. If we can be made to see it, perhaps, for the rest of our lives we will be unwilling to settle for less." Kurt Hahn
Most of our residents have educational goals that they'd like to work on while at Cornerstones. Many of them arrive to us after one or a series of academic struggles. Our education team works with each resident to assess their academic history and identify any future academic goals. If a resident has academic or educational aspirations, our staff works with them to find resources that match their aspirations and then supports them throughout their participation in our program.
At Cornerstones we support a diverse array of educational opportunities, including:
Classes at local universities and colleges (see below)
High school diplomas through online classes or distance learning (Ex. Maine Virtual Academy)
Dual enrollment programs (Ex. YCCC's Dual Enrollment Program)
F-1 visa acquisition or transfer
Each program house is provided with a full-time dedicated education coordinator who works one-on-one to support them in reaching their academic goals. Our education coordinators are teachers with many years of classroom experience and a strong understanding of executive functioning issues, learning differences, academic strategies, and pedagogical approaches. Upon arrival to our program, an education coordinator provides a resident with an intake that assesses a resident’s education history and future goals. Once these education goals are identified, our team works collaboratively with the residents to find ways to achieve these goals. Our program model and methodology is to help our residents find educational opportunities in the real world. Usually, this will include enrollment in a local college or university. Through these opportunities, our residents learn to succeed in the academic arena and develop an awareness of the resources they will need to support their ongoing academic efforts after they leave our program.
The basis of our approach to education is to provide a framework of unconditional positive regard to all of our residents. We seek ways to help residents reframe negative education experiences by aiding them to shift their perception of school from a place of failure to a place where success is possible. We then work with students to help them understand their personal learning style and develop effective academic strategies. We also emphasize a commitment to sustained effort and perseverance as the key to success. We ask that residents take their first step with us by finding one class that truly inspires their interest. Being able to build success in that class becomes a bridge that they will bring to their future classes. We work with the residents to understand that educational success is created through effort, grit, and commitment.
Individualized Academic Planning
Residents with academic goals develop an individualized education plan which includes a review of a resident’s personal history and includes relevant information from past psychological and educational evaluations and assessments. We then work with the resident to develop educational goals for the long and short term. Finally, we provide strategies and methods for addressing individual learning differences.
If additional assessments are needed then we may recommend and coordinate testing. We are able to provide some of the testing internally and every resident who enrolls in our program is eligible to receive the Greenwood Assessment as part of participation in our program.
Local Educational Resources
Southern Maine is home to many academic opportunities with excellent high school, community college, and four-year universities as well as on-line options. Below are some educational resources in the southern Maine area. This list includes four-year universities, community colleges, and trade schools.
Southern Maine Community College
Saint Joseph’s College of Maine