Our mission: Community Service Foundation and Buxmont Academy are dedicated to providing education, counseling, foster care and other services to help young people and their families to grow and change through restorative practices.
Community Service Foundation & Buxmont Academy provide programs for troubled and at-risk youth in eastern Pennsylvania. Our students and clients are boys and girls, grades 1 to 12, struggling with a wide range of behavioral and emotional problems, including: learning difficulties, drug and alcohol abuse, legal problems, family problems, impulsive or aggressive behavior, lack of self-esteem, mental health issues, ADD/ADHD, oppositional defiance disorder, sexual, physical or emotional abuse, truancy, school suspensions and expulsions. CSF Buxmont operates 5 school/day program sites, an elementary school program at one site and 4 community-based foster homes, in addition to in-home supervision programs, restorative reporting centers, restorative services for schools and the FGDM/restorative conferencing program.
Our approach to working with youth is based on “restorative practices,” which helps students learn and grow behaviorally and emotionally as well as academically. Counseling focuses on helping teens take responsibility for their choices and behavior. Emphasis is on supporting personal growth and change, balanced with structure and accountability. The staff maintains communication with parents and professionals so that all of the adults in the teenager’s life are cooperating in support of the same goals.
Restorative practices is an emerging field which maintains that people are happier, more cooperative and productive, and more likely to make positive changes in their behavior when those in positions of authority do things with them, rather than to them or for them. To find out more, read “What Is Restorative Practices?”.
Buxmont Academy schools are licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Education:
- as private academic schools for elementary grades 7–8 and secondary grades 9–12
- for special education (socially and emotionally disturbed) grades 6–12
Buxmont Academy is an approved private alternative education institution.
Buxmont Academy is an approved out-of-state private school for the disabled (emotionally disturbed and socially maladjusted) for the state of New Jersey.
Community Service Foundation is licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare:
- for day treatment with adolescents
- as a foster family care agency
- as a private children and youth agency
Community Service Foundation day treatment centers are licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Health to provide drug-free outpatient and drug-free partial hospitalization services.
The Community Service Foundation, a nonprofit corporation founded in 1977 by two Pennsylvania educators, Ted and Susan Wachtel, opened its first alternative school/day treatment program in Sellersville, Pennsylvania.
In the early 1980s CSF was the sponsoring agency for TOUGHLOVE®, which established parent support groups throughout North America and overseas. Ted Wachtel co-authored the best-selling TOUGHLOVE books.
In 1994 CSF started an international program called Real Justice, which advocates restorative justice conferencing and other restorative practices to more effectively address the impact of crime.
In 1996 Buxmont Academy, CSF’s academic school, became an independent nonprofit corporation that collaborates with CSF in providing services to struggling teens. Buxmont Academy serves the growing number of students referred directly from public schools and parents.
In 1999 CSF launched the SaferSanerSchools program to help educators improve school climate and safety, classroom management and student discipline, and founded the International Institute for Restorative Practices to provide education and research about restorative approaches to family, community, school and workplace problems. In 2006 the IIRP became a graduate school, approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. CSF Buxmont now serve as model programs for the IIRP.
Buxmont Academy was the 2006-2007 recipient of the Pennsylvania Association for Learning Alternatives (PALA) Model Program Award (a branch of the International Association of Learning Alternatives).