Residential treatment centers vs. therapeutic boarding schools: What’s the difference? Elevations RTC weighs in

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When deciding between residential treatment centers and therapeutic boarding schools, it may be difficult to understand the differences between the two. Ultimately, your decision will be based on what type of program is right for your teen’s developmental needs.

So, what exactly is the difference between a residential treatment center and a therapeutic boarding school? The information provided below will help you better understand their differences, so that you can find the best-suited treatment for your child.

Residential Treatment Centers vs. Therapeutic Boarding Schools

The primary difference between a residential treatment center and a therapeutic boarding school is the type of approach used during treatment. In a residential treatment facility, a comprehensive therapeutic approach is taken, which includes an accredited academic program. These programs directly address behavioral and emotional issues with experienced therapists and residential staff. Typically, a residential treatment center or similar programs have a 75% emphasis on therapy and 25% on academics.

Therapeutic boarding schools, on the other hand, do not address challenges as directly as residential treatment centers. Rather, the programs in a therapeutic boarding school are more focused on creating an academic environment, with some healing benefits. While excellent for academic development, a therapeutic boarding school will not help a teen with emotional therapy in the same way a residential treatment center could.

Emotional Therapy & Academic Development with RTCs

Residential treatment centers provide a healing academic environment while focusing on therapeutic attention. For example, at Elevations RTC, teens are guided to develop their emotional and academic beings through the expression of voice. At Elevations RTC, teens are encouraged to voice their opinion and become leaders on campus.

“During our team discussions, specific students are assigned as leaders,” comments a staff member at Elevations. “Students assigned as leaders are encouraged to help lead these meetings by bringing up specific topics and communicating their needs.”

This unprecedented level of therapeutic care gives students the opportunity to support one another and provide each other feedback and ideas on how to help themselves, their team, and their experience as a whole. Above all, students who attend a respected RTC, will be provided with wonderfully nurturing care. The team of highly trained professionals will work with the students on a regular basis and provide an emphasis on individual, group, and family therapy.

“I get a lot of support from the leadership on campus, whether it be advice for how to address a situation or just to talk about stuff that is going on,” says an Elevations RTC student. “I think that leadership really does help everything go more smoothly.”

Choosing the Right RTC for Your Teen

Elevations RTC, a residential treatment center located in Syracuse, Utah, offers a comfortable, nurturing environment for teens aged 13-18. Using a combination of comprehensive therapeutic techniques, Elevations RTC’s focused residential treatment program offers guidance and support to students struggling with issues such as trauma, depression, mood disorders, anxiety, behavioral problems, and substance use.

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