Safe Haven School

Safe Haven School

906 Muir Ave. Lake Bluff, 60044

Please share your mission. 

We provide a psychologically and physically safe, nurturing, environment for school-age children who struggle with their emotions by building social and coping skills, and tolerance for frustration.

Describe how your organization lives/realizes its mission. 

We serve 50 students in grades 6-12 at two schools, and are poised to grow again. With our reputation for effectiveness, 25 districts refer students, resulting in diversity of race, ethnicity, and socio-economic status. Students are also diverse intellectually, ranging from average to gifted. We offer challenging, project-based, hands-on curricula coordinated with districts. An average stay is 18 months, with our goal being that students re-enter their district school, graduate, and move on to college and/or productive careers. Our graduates have gone to state universities, private or community colleges, or the world of work. Small classrooms, differentiated instruction, and a lovingly-cultivate culture of support, community, and respect define our environment. Without perceived threats to emotional and physical safety, students develop the confidence and coping mechanisms that build self-esteem and self-respect. We do this by offering: • Individual/group therapy • Mandatory weekly parent therapy • Supported attendance for school-refusing students • Collaborative problem solving • Therapeutic arts: music, drama, art • Animal-assisted therapy • Nature therapy We carefully admit about 30% of total referrals. Rather than accept all referrals, we accept only those students who will most likely benefit from our program, and who will not compromise the recovery of classmates. We partner with outside therapists/psychologists to ensure coordinated services.