“I love working with kids. Social Work is my passion!” These are the words of School Social Worker, Bailey DiPaolo of CPC’s High Point School as she reflects on what being a School Social Worker means to her.
Being in Bailey’s presence, it doesn’t take long to quickly absorb the exuberance she has for her profession and the dedication she demonstrates in supporting each child’s mental health journey. Bailey’s authentic approach to connecting with her students is without a doubt the secret ingredient to why so many students thrive with her support. “Connecting with each student---this is what motivates me. I seek that alignment, I want them to see me as a resource, an advocate—making sure that each student knows that I am here for them, is one of my many goals.”
Students attending High Point School come to CPC with a wide range of specialized needs including depression, anxiety, behavioral and emotional disorders, as well as symptoms such as school refusal, adjustment difficulties, and low motivation. Often the students are working towards improving their socialization, mood and attention skills while building academic competence in their grade level. High Point is equipped with expertly trained and certified special education faculty, who deliver a NJ Department of Education approved curriculum for children and adolescents ages 5-21. Beyond the caring administration, teachers, teaching assistants and Safe Team members (school staff trained specifically in conflict resolution and crisis de-escalation) are onsite therapeutic supports provided by nurses, occupational and speech therapists, social workers, and psychiatrists.
Bailey shares, “Behind every behavior there is a story of what may have brought that behavior forward. I work with the students to build trust and hold space so that they feel comfortable sharing their stories and experiences with me. This is where progress really happens. Uncovering these narratives helps both of us—self-awareness and understanding. There are many dynamics involved in a therapeutic relationship, but building trust and an environment for self-discovery is a determinant for me—it is how I help each student. When students feel safe and welcome, we make therapeutic progress.”
At CPC’s High Point School, the philosophy is to surround each child with a caring and skilled safety-net of support—it’s an approach where each child has a team of professionals who embrace their journey, every step of the way—academically, socially, psychologically, and in terms of their physical needs. The integrated approach offers individualized academics, evidence-based positive behavior supports, medication management, individual and group therapy, and comprehensive clinical programming. Bailey says, “There is not one person responsible for student success---it's everyone and it's all the time.” As Bailey goes on to describe, “there are so many supports intentionally built into our program students have every opportunity to thrive here.” The team Bailey refers to meets regularly with each other to discuss the student’s progress from this integrated perspective. This model makes all the difference in setting the stage for the gradual evolution and personal development that are distinguishing characteristics of a High Point School experience.
Bailey reflects on the students and the connections she has made with them.
“I have an office here at the school, but it is very rare for you to find me there. You can find me in the classrooms or involved with activities,” Bailey continues with a smile and laughter, “or you can even find me on the floor if needed like this morning! I go to where the students are—wherever they are, that’s where you’ll find me.”
For more information about CPC’s High Point School in Morganville, NJ, visit: https://www.cpcbehavioral.org/about-high-point or to discuss if High Point School might be a fit for your child, please email Caitlin Corradino in the Admissions office at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please know that formal referrals are made through the prospective student’s Child Study Team.
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