Clinical Services

HEC provides two primary types of clinical services: Trauma-Informed Mental Health Services and Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA). Our Trauma-Informed Mental Health Services are provided through our Skills for Life Treatment Model, which is utilized at our Brookside Intensive Treatment Unit, Highpoint Program, and Hillcrest Academy Day Program. ABA services are provided at our Hillcrest Center Program for Autism and at our Hillcrest Academy Day program.

What is Skills for Life?

Skills for Life (SFL) provides treatment for youth with a myriad of complex behavioral and emotional difficulties, often including life experiences such as trauma, losses, life disruptions, learning impairments, and/or developmental delays. It is a strength-based, comprehensive behavioral health treatment model rooted in trauma-informed care. It provides family driven, youth guided care that focuses on building skills and resources needed for youth and families to achieve their future goals.

Skills for Life Clinical Services (HP, ITU, HA)

These clinical services for Hillcrest students include weekly individual therapy sessions and weekly specialized group therapy provided by Masters Level Social Work and Mental Health Counseling Clinicians. Students will participate in group therapy for other high-risk behaviors as needed, including firesetting, substance abuse, sexual decision making, social skills, and emotion regulation. Clinical services also include crisis assessment/support as needed, and weekly staff consultation through team meetings, environmental observations, and in-the-moment coaching with staff and students.

What is ABA?

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is an evidence-based intensive treatment model that has been proven to be effective in treating individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder and other developmental disabilities. The goal of intensive, comprehensive intervention is to improve cognitive, language, social, and self help skills. ABA can also decrease severe problem behaviors that endanger health and safety, and limit educational, residential, or vocational opportunities. Initializing ABA, we look at behavior scientifically, to discover the skills that a person needs so that they can interact more effectively with their family and their community. We then teach these skills in small steps. This ensures that the individual can be as independent as possible in their own life, or that the individual learns how to access those things they need help with. The purpose of these behavioral changes is to improve the overall quality of life for that individual.

ABA Clinical Services (ASD, HA)

Students at our ASD residential program, Hillcrest Center, as well as our ASD day students at Hillcrest Academy receive ABA therapy services from Masters level, licensed BCBA clinicians. This includes in person and consultation services for each student. Clinical staff also provide parent training or coaching in ABA interventions in order to use these new skills in the home.

Family Services

Hillcrest’s treatment model is rooted in youth driven, family guided care that is delivered in a developmentally appropriate fashion. In this way, we aim to put youth and families back into the driver’s seat by providing highly individualized services that take into account the holistic view of the family. This involves utilizing a family’s strengths, honoring their spiritual and cultural perspective, and working together to identify appropriate treatment goals and interventions toward reunification and permanency. Hillcrest’s treatment model recognizes that sometimes youth and families experience barriers in developing or accessing some skills needed to successfully manage parts of day-to-day life. Hillcrest is founded on the beliefs of providing unwavering compassion, mobilizing multiple opportunities for youth and families, and believing that change is always possible.

A brief description of types of family services:

  1. Formal family therapy where coaching is provided by masters level clinicians.
  2. Family skills coaching sessions are provided by masters level clinicians and bachelors
    level clinical specialists during formal coaching sessions, on-campus family time, and
    off-campus family time.
  3. Skills coaching by youth development professionals (YDP’s), registered behavioral
    technicians, teachers assistants (TA’s) or residential supervisors. This may occur while
    supervising family time, supporting phone or video call contact, or when a family
    member calls for support while they are at home or in the community for family time.
  4. Skills coaching by clinicians and clinical specialists during family time.

These services are provided by masters level clinicians licensed in the areas of social work or mental health counseling. All clinical services are supervised by a campus clinical administrator who provides weekly supervision, as well as the agency’s Director of Clinical Services.

ASD Residential
A Hillcrest residential program offering hope for children and adolescents with the most challenging difficulties associated with Autism.

Brookside ITU
Strives to break the debilitating cycle of multiple failed placements and repeated hospitalizations experienced by our students.

Highpoint Campus
Located in Lenox, MA in a rural setting on 24 beautiful acres, surrounded by land preserved by the Massachusetts Audubon Society.

Hillcrest Academy
Hillcrest Educational Centers’ therapeutic day school, providing comprehensive educational and clinical behavior support services.