New Haven's values-based levels help our students take positive control of their lives by teaching them to shift control from an external locus (others control her) to an internal locus (she controls herself).
Our levels are given names that have special meanings: Safety, Expectation, Exploration, Insight, Integrity and Interdependence. The second two levels begin with the prefix "ex" to suggest that the student is still being controlled or motivated by outside influences. The last three levels begin with prefix "in" to represent the student's shift from being controlled by outside forces to taking control of herself.
Each level has a set of requirements which the student and her family must complete before they are eligible to advance to the next level. Each level also has specific privileges which the student may enjoy once she has reached it.
The Safety Level provides an opportunity for the staff to get to know a new student and for the student to get to know the staff. This initial stage usually lasts just a few days. Students show that they can be safe and then they are moved to the next level.
When a student arrives at New Haven, she is automatically placed on the Safety Level. The new student is introduced to and begins to work on our values program. Each new student is assigned a peer mentor. The peer mentor is a higher-level student who shows the new student how the program works, gives the new student a tour, and introduces her to the other students. Peer mentors also help with the check-in process and help new students to feel comfortable.
At the Expectation Level, the student continues to learn New Haven's rules, boundaries, structure, the Values Program, and other expectations. The student is reminded of family and societal expectations. Her locus of control is still external, so she requires strict structure from staff. This student must be safe to herself, others, animals, and property.
The student may have visitors at New Haven, but may not go off campus with visitors. She may, however, go on all off-campus activities. She may call her family for twenty minutes unsupervised, but may not call friends. She continues to be in staff sight at all times. She may have jewelry, room decorations, and approved personal reading materials.
At the Exploration Level the student is still externally motivated, but begins to internalize new values. She learns and establishes an attitude of openness to new information about herself, specifically her self-defeating behaviors. The student still manifests the necessity of continual staff redirection. She is mostly teachable, open to learning in therapy and school, and is compliant with reasonable requests. The student is able to give feedback in respectful ways and receive it non-defensively. She is able to identify and acknowledge her treatment issues.
In addition to all the privileges of the Exploration Level, the student may be alone for fifteen minutes at a time with staff approval. She may participate in off-campus visits (not out of state), but may not visit anywhere overnight. She may call her family for thirty minutes each week unsupervised, but may not call friends.
At the Insight Level honesty becomes very evident in the student. She is aware of defense mechanisms and their destructive nature. She begins to recognize avoidant behavior in herself, verbalizes personal insights in treatment settings, and is honest with staff and peers. She recognizes inappropriate behavior without justifying it, verbalizes new plans of action, accepts prompts from staff, and takes reasonable feedback and direction without complaint. She gives insightful, constructive comments to others, and is able to accept feedback from her family. She participates maturely in family therapy. She shows evidence that she is moving towards becoming internally motivated.
In addition to all the privileges of the Exploration Level, the student may go on approved overnight, off campus, out of state visits not exceeding three days and two nights. She may have a family phone call once a week for sixty minutes at a time with staff approval and one phone call with an approved friend for ten minutes. She may participate in private lessons of her choosing.
Integrity means wholeness. A student with integrity is consistently learning and demonstrating internal control. She goes beyond cosmetic compliance and is mature and insightful. She manifests a genuine change of heart and attitude. She is consistent in her behavior over time, has no ulterior motives, her peers acknowledge her leadership and positive changes, she is sincere in family therapy and proactive in discharge planning. The student excels in all areas of treatment.
The student continues to have all of her previous level privileges and may call her family once weekly unsupervised and untimed. She may call three approved friends for fifteen minutes each. She may be alone for up to sixty minutes with staff approval. She may participate in one-on-one off-campus activities with staff members (not overnight). She may go on multiple day and night visits with her family and approved friends.
On Interdependence Level the student has demonstrated that she values interdependence, growth and responsibility. She knows that her behavior affects everyone in her life. She is driven by an internal locus of control and she values life, agency, and trust.
The student continues to have all the privileges of the previous levels. She may manage her own money. She may be unsupervised for pre-determined amounts of time when she approves it with the residential director. She may use the phone whenever she chooses. She must still attend group therapy, recreation therapy, school, and community meetings unless she receives special permission from treatment team.