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Achievement Consultation

A collaborative of unique teaching techniques for our students and their families to achieve success on a long-term continuum.

Achievement Consultation focusses on female youth experiencing negative behaviors and/or behavioral health issues. This process combines the teaching techniques of our “Blueprint-To-Achievement”, a strengths-based/empowerment perspective curriculum and services delivery, integration of a value system, and gender-specific curriculum such as our Life Skills Just for Girls Forum.

Overview

Information on this page is provided by the innovator and has not been evaluated by HundrED.

Web presence

2005

Established

-

Children

1

Countries
Updated
March 2019
We utilize a unique combination of teaching techniques and methodologies, as an alternative to facility placement, suspension, and expulsion, to effectively address the negative behaviors and behavioral health issues of adolescent female youth by teaching them AND their families how to properly identify and appropriately address their own barriers to success so that they can face future adversities and become effective problem solvers through healthy self-reliance.

About the innovation

What is Achievement Consultation?

Achievement Consultation is a unique combination of teaching techniques which address the negative behaviors and behavioral health issues of adolescent female youth, and helps them and their families realize their own voice and power in controlling their own processes and outcomes so that they will be able to manage future adversities and become effective problem solvers through healthy self-reliance. Achievement Consultation is an effective alternative to suspension, expulsion, and facility placement of adolescent female youth who are experiencing negative behaviors and/or behavioral health issues.

Achievement Consultation is an innovative and positive alternative process, which combines several methodologies to produce the most beneficial outcome, for addressing the negative behaviors, repetitive behavioral health issues, and recidivism patterns among female youth, designed to help female youth grow into successful women. Achievement Consultation is a very specific combination of the methodologies which are strength-based and gender-specific for adolescent female youth.

The following outline the unique combination of teaching techniques and methodologies which make up the Achievement Consultation Process:

1) Strengths-based and empowering facilitation of curriculum and services methodology: Never ever "assuming" anything about our students and their families, instead, practicing putting the control in their hands and helping female youth and their families realize their own voice and power in controlling their own processes and outcomes. This strengths-based and empowerment perspective is carried out in facilitation of all curriculum and any services provisions. The quality services that we execute through this empowerment perspective are Family Development, Care Coordination, Life Coaching, Life Skills, Job Development, Job Readiness/Employment Soft Skills, Counseling and Mentoring for our female youth and their families. The curriculum that we suggest is our Life Skills Just for Girls Forum curriculum which was designed from a gender-specific and strengths-based perspective.

2) The second teaching technique that makes up the process of Achievement Consultation is our “Blueprint-To-Achievement” which teaches female youth the unique process of how to gain and remain in control of their own outcomes. The “Blueprint-To-Achievement” is a teaching curriculum which is our targeted distinct process of demonstrating to adolescent females how to properly identify, and appropriately address their behavioral health issues, so that they may be able to ultimately manage future adversities through healthy self-reliance. Through the “Blueprint-To-Achievement”, students are empowered by learning how to control, maintain and alter their own positive destiny. We consistently reinforce the belief of applying what they learn. It teaches students how to apply the skill sets to properly navigate through various real-life scenarios to develop common awareness of recognizing effective problem-solving methods as they mature into productive young adults. Simultaneously, we develop methods with youth and their families as to how to maintain healthy self-reliance and interdependence to properly prepare and cope with potential future adversities when family cohesion and preservation are maintained.

3) The third methodology which formulates the Achievement Consultation process, is practicing and encouraging our participants to embrace a strong value system, we recommend our “3-F’s” Value-Based system. Within this system we encourage female youth to develop a new, value-based mind-set, which helps them within their maturation process as they develop into virtuous women of society. The foundation of our 3-F’s Value-Based System are Family, Friendship, and Faithfulness, which in turn encourage love, humility, and respect. This is the value system that we encourage and teach our young ladies the art of embracing, so that the Virtuous Young Lady within them can brightly shine through!

4) Consultations involve having interactive conversations with our youth and their involved family members. Consultations should always be carried out within the group facilitation of the curriculum with the students. But equally as important, consultations should occur with the students' families as well. This not only encourages family cohesion, but it also teaches families how to help their female youth to succeed in life AFTER your involvement terminates. We suggest that private consultations with your student occur at a minimum 1x/month, and consultations with her guardian also occur at a minimum 1x/month. This provides a private space, outside of the larger group, where she can feel comfortable sharing intimate details about her life. This also keeps the guardian involved, in that their details of the young lady's and her family's life can only come from here; we can never assume anything and it puts the family in the position of the experts of their own lives. Their input is key in designating a successful plan.

Implementation steps

Designate Your Essential Curriculum

Designate your essential curriculum, we highly recommend our Life Skills Just for Girls Forum curriculum, which can be found at our website at https://www.ruthsway.org. The curriculum needs to be gender-specific, which addresses and caters to the specific needs of adolescent female youth.

The curriculum focus needs to provide a safe space for young women to discuss their challenges and essential keys to success, including healthy relationships, high self-esteem, signs of abuse, consequences of alcohol/drug abuse, managing personal finances, job interviews, and proper behavior in professional environments. The end goal is to help young women recognize why certain behaviors are harmful and how to replace them with healthy alternatives.

Discussion is key, so the curriculum should be designed and facilitated in a manner that is intentional in group discussions.

Identify and train your Achievement Consultants

Identify who your "Achievement Consultants" will be to facilitate the curriculum and carry out the Consultations. The ACs must have the ability to carry out their work from a strength-based and empowerment perspective, we highly recommend the Strength-based Family Worker (SFW) Credentialing training program offered by The Allegheny County Department of Human Services. This specific training will teach your ACs exactly how to carry out their work from a strengths-based and empowerment perspective, which is essential for this work to be effective in the lives of your female youth. Additionally, the ACs will need to be taught how to facilitate the curriculum in a conversation-style manner. For this reason, we refer to these groups as "Forums", because they are carried out in a conversation-style, and not in a typical "classroom" style where the teacher does all of the talking. The curriculum is only used as a guide for how the Forums should be carried out and the direction to go in, but ACs always need to be mindful never to just read the curriculum to the students. Instead, the AC should always be looking for an opportunity for a discussion of the content and the students should also be actively taking turns along with the AC reading the content.

*The attached "Ruth's Way Forum Facilitation Check List" will guide you in your AC training.

Determine Who Your Students Will Be

Determine who your students will be, typically, they are adolescent female youth between the ages of 11-18 who are experiencing repetitive negative behaviors that threaten their successful futures. Referrals can come from principals, teachers, social workers, probation officers, moms, dads, grandmothers, essentially any concerned adult in the youths' life. The only requirement is that the young lady has to want to succeed in life, without that, we are wasting everyone's time.

Determine Your Strength-based and Empowering Services

Determine Your Strength-based and Empowering Services that you will provide, based on the needs of the adolescent female youth and their families that you will be serving. Based on our own observations of the needs of adolescent female youth, we recommend Family Development, Care Coordination, Life Coaching, Life Skills, Job Development, Job Readiness/Employment Soft Skills, Counseling and Mentoring for our female youth and their families. Providing these specific services provisions, from a strength-based and empowerment perspective, will produce positive outcomes for our youth and their families. If you do not have the capability to carry out these services it's okay, you can always collaborate with other agencies who do but you have to be very intentional in making sure that these services are carried out from a strengths-based and empowerment perspective. So, it would be better if you carried them out to ensure this perspective, but if you must collaborate be intentional in establishing that agency's practices are from an aligned perspective.

Designate Your Location, Consistent Days and Times

Designate the location where you be facilitating the curriculum. It needs to be a space where the students are comfortable sharing sensitive and personal information, so a room with a door that closes is essential. This space needs to be large enough to fit your students, we recommend a maximum of 10 students per AC. The space needs to contain chairs for everyone, including the AC, and have the capacity to put the chairs in a circle format. Internet access should be readily available at the designated location as well.

Determine specific days and times that you will facilitate Forum. These days and times should occur and the exact same days and times every week. We suggest a minimum of 2x's/week, for a maximum of 1 hour per week. Consistency among youth is key.

Schedule Consultations

Schedule one-on-one Consultations with your youth, and then with your youth and their guardian. Consultations should take place outside of Forum times and locations, preferably at the families' homes and at the family's convenience. If the family does not want you at their home do not be offended, it's alright, you can always offer to meet at a mutual place that is convenient for them like a library, Panera, McDonalds, etc. The family's input is key, so we must include any concerned family members in on this process in order for our youth to be successful on a long-term continuum. This process also teaches our youth how to utilize their own personal resources, vs. depending on an agency.

The flow of the Consultations should be led by the youth and the family, using the attached SFW Family Goal Plan as a guide. Remember, the youth and family input is key, and the purpose that we serve is to support them. The AC's job here is to encourage creativity regarding goals. It is very important that everyone involved, (the youth, the AC, and the family member) set deadlines for achieving their set goals. Another item of importance here is that everyone sets their OWN deadlines. People, especially youth, are more apt to stick to their goal deadline if they set the deadline themselves. The SFW Family Goal Plan is used at the initial Consultation, and then the SFW Family Goal Plan Update Sheets are used at every follow-up Consultation to track and update goal attainment, and to determine what the next goals are/what needs to be worked on. Consultations are typically carried out for a maximum of 6 months.
Integrate The Blueprint-To-Achievement

Integrate the "Blueprint-To-Achievement" into the entire Achievement Consultation process. This is the process where we teach female youth and their families the unique process of how to gain and remain in control of their own outcomes. The “Blueprint-To-Achievement” is a teaching curriculum which is our targeted distinct process of demonstrating to adolescent females how to properly identify, and appropriately address their behavioral health issues, so that they may be able to ultimately manage future adversities through healthy self-reliance. Through the “Blueprint-To-Achievement”, the students are empowered by learning how to control, maintain and alter their own positive destiny. We consistently reinforce the belief of applying what they learn. It prepares our students to apply the skill sets to properly navigate through various real-life scenarios to develop common awareness of recognizing effective problem-solving methods as they mature into productive young adults. Simultaneously, we develop methods with youth and their families as to how to maintain healthy self-reliance and interdependence to properly prepare and cope with potential future adversities when family cohesion and preservation are maintained.

Within the Forum, The Blueprint-To-Achievement is guided by and we recommend using the Life Skills Just For Girls Forum curriculum content found in the "Life Skills Class 3: Personal Roadmap" which could be found on our website at https://www.ruthsway.org. During the Consultations the Blueprint-To-Achievement is guided by and we recommend using the SFW Family Goal Plan (attached previously). Here, the AC's focus is to encourage the student in the following:

1) What does SHE see as success? How does she see herself as having a successful future? How does she see herself, in the future, as an adult, in a successful position? This will be your long-term goal.

*Here the AC should be encouraging the student in a "no-ceilings/the sky is the limit" mind frame, meaning she shouldn't have any limitations in choosing what she wants to be and do with her life. *The AC should be encouraging creativity in the youth setting her goals.

2) What is her career choice, what does she want to do when she grows up?

The AC needs to remind the youth that they should choose a career goal in an area in which they enjoy, because they will be doing it every single day for the rest of their life. What makes her happy/what does she enjoy doing?

3) What does she see as a problem with her achieving that goal? What threatens her successful future? The AC will advise the youth that these would be identified as her "barriers" to a successful future.

4) The AC needs to guide the youth in exploring possible solutions to addressing these barriers. The AC should also guide the youth in identifying personal and professional resources to address these barriers. Also, the AC should encourage the youth to compare her current coping mechanisms, if any, for these barriers vs. the "appropriate" resources that will help her to successfully overcome these obstacles.

5) What can we start working on NOW, to help her to achieve that goal? What steps can we put in place to guarantee her success? The AC can ask the youth to name those items, and then advise the youth that these will be identified as her "short-term goals" so that she will successfully achieve her long-term goal.

6) How can we help her to achieve these goals? The AC should remind the youth that we are here to support her, and we will do everything in our power to help her achieve success; and if it's not within our own network then we will refer her to someone that we know and trust (an agency that you are very familiar with).

7) It is very important that the AC encourages the youth to set her own deadlines. Youth are more probable to achieve deadlines that they set themselves, and they are more probable to achieve goals that they have set deadlines for, which we have observed within our own dealings with youth and families.

*EVERYONE should be setting follow-up steps and deadlines: the youth, her guardian, and the AC.

8) Utilize this same process with the student's guardian. Youth are less likely to excel in a household where their guardian is unsuccessful because of unaddressed barriers. For this reason, the guardian's barriers to success need to be properly addressed as well, but our job here is to them how to do it.

*It is very important that the youth and their family are put in the position to guide this process, and their input is key. The AC should acknowledge that the youth and their family are the experts regarding their own lives and their personal situation, the purpose that we serve is to support them.

Encourage Youth To Embrace A Value-Based System

Within every aspect of carrying out the Achievement Consultation process, ACs should be practicing and encouraging youth to embrace a value-based system, in which recommend our “3-F’s” Value-Based system. Within this system we encourage female youth to develop a new, value-based mind-set, which helps them within their maturation process as they develop into virtuous women of society. The foundation of our 3-F’s Value-Based System, which is Family, Friendship, and Faithfulness, was derived from the values and morals of the Biblical story of Ruth. Ruth's entire journey was fueled by her faithfulness to her mother-in-law and her determination to preserve her family connections. Her journey was a lucid depiction of her virtuous spirit, which was full of great love, humility, and respect; and she cherished a value system which embraced family, friendship, and faithfulness! These are the aspects of a value-based system in which values and morals should be practiced by everyone involved as they function as a cohesive team, and in which they stand firmly upon. More importantly, these are the aspects of a value system that, once female youth are encouraged and taught the art of embracing, helps to reveal the Virtuous Young Ladies within them.

*Encouraging female youth to embrace a value-based system also increases their self-esteem.

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