KidsPeace told to make changes -- the...

KidsPeace told to make changes -- themorningcall.com

There are 214 comments on the The Morning Call story from Sep 22, 2007, titled KidsPeace told to make changes -- themorningcall.com. In it, The Morning Call reports that:

The state is giving KidsPeace six months to fix its problems at two Lehigh Valley centers or face losing its license to counsel troubled youths in Pennsylvania.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at The Morning Call.

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PCM IS A JOKE IN YO TOWN

Hillsborough, NJ

#1 Sep 22, 2007
Please take a second to check this out, if you’ve ever had the temptation to sign-up for KidsPeace:
1. The HR department loves college graduates. You say you have a BA in Communications from Kutztown? Slow down Jerry Maguire…you had less than 1100 on your SAT’s and a degree from “Allen High School’s 13th grade”will open some KidsPeace windows.
2. Congrats, you were hired by KP! Take careful notice to the HR Dept. as they NEVER answer their phones. To be honest, they are more useless than the stone “lions” from Shankweiler’s Drive-In, which is located 20 feet from the building.
3. Congrats again! KP has opening w/benefits! Welcome to 23,000 a year and working weekends! Oh yeah, most of your co-workers don’t even have a B.A. yet alone your Supervisor!
4. PCM Training! YEAH! Time to have some out of shape, burned-out former CCII tell you “Walk with me” on the never-washed wrestling mat…ripe with impetigo and worse.
5. By now, if you’ve made it six weeks, you start to realize that everyone at KP is there for 6 months…or 6 years! Supervisors always have Sunday’s off and are full of War Stories.
6. If you work in “Residential” you will get to see the laughing joke, that is KP Schools.
7. WORD SEARCHES??? The teachers routinely assign these for HMWK…yet, they have absolutely NO EDUCATIONAL VALUE!!!
8. NEW YORK KIDS HAVE A DIFFICULT TIME PASSING THE “REGENTS”…SEE #7 –MORE $ FOR KP
9. The teacher’s aides almost NEVER have college degrees, but are happy to be home by 2:45pm
10. KP cares about “filling beds”, in other words, they make $ off intake from N.Y. The recent debate over PCM is lame. The counselors are trained…if anything, they are over-trained. Well. With exception to the KP ”teacher’s aides” who misspelled “Disruptive” as “Dissruptive”. GO DIERUFF HIGH SCHOOL!
reality

AOL

#2 Sep 22, 2007
This organization has been a last resort for kids who no one else wants. The employees have to deal with some very emotionally disturbed kids and those that just cannot be helped, but the system has decided that incarceration for the older ones is not an option. Over the course of the years that this organization has been taking kids in, the kids have changed. Years ago, it was just that they needed some sort of guidnace for a while to straighten out. Look at what Kids Peace has to deal with today- kids on drugs, violent tendencies, etc. And the state is saying that diffusing the sitauation VERBALLY is going to work???? Get real,,,any of them had to deal w/ an ADHD kid who also had anger management issues??? I personally know several people who work for Kids Peace. It seems that keeping counselors is a problem. Once they get a taste of what they have to deal with, they leave. How about the counselors that have been injured by the kids because "talking" didn't work? Or how about the fact that sometimes, you have to physically restrain someone who is threatening to hurt themselves o someone else? Keep expecting "talking" to diffuse a situation without any physicality on the part of the counselors, and when the situation DOES result in injury to any kid by another kid or themselves, then Kids Peace will again be in hot water for not preventing it. I feel their hands are being tied by the state. Let those same state workers come in and work at Kids Peace for one month, and I am sure they wil; change their tune.
amy

Allentown, PA

#3 Sep 22, 2007
the last comment must have been from a former employee.And a graduate of Allen or Dieruff,and more then likely didnt even get to take the sat's because they did not get to college. And, the reason why they are not a present employee is for all the above and plus they did not have the intellect to stay and work with these children.
The current employees----- most have degrees and advanced degrees.The ones that don't usually can't hack it.And leave .Please get over yourself
Band

Bethlehem, PA

#4 Sep 22, 2007
I am just curious about how many of those police calls you mentioned in the article were for assaults on staff members since I know that there have been alot more in the last year. I think a balanced article would have a break down of that.
Joe

Warminster, PA

#5 Sep 22, 2007
Shame on you Morning Call. I am an ex-employee of KidsPeace and over the years have been appalled at the irresponsible reporting of the Morning Call. KidsPeace has done many positive things for their clients and staff over the years, but not one of those has appeared in the newspaper. It seems that the only time KidsPeace is in the Morning Call is when something bad happens. As far as restraints are concerned, they are an unfortunate necessity when working there. There already is a major focus on verbal commands, de-escalation techniques as well as preventative measures such as interventions for kids to use before they get out of control. Restraints are a last resort for any staff member. Lets face it, if these kids listened to verbal commands all the time then there wouldn't be a need for them to be at KidsPeace. Also, injuries to staff are never reported because they would need to use the whole front page to cover that. Lets look at a real situation and see what the Morning Call or other readers who think restraints aren't necessary think. The names are not actual client names. "Billy" who is 6'1" and 250lbs (he's 15 years old by the way) is walking down the hallway with a sharpened piece of wood that he broke off a chair to go and stab "Johnny" because he doesn't like him. Who thinks saying, " Now Billy, you know it's not nice to stab Johnny. Let's go sit down somewhere and talk about why you're mad" is going to work. If you do your nuts. It doesn't work at this point because the client is irrational and you can't be rational with an irrational person. Once the client is calmed down, therapy can begin. The bottom line is the kids at KidsPeace are getting more intensive and the staff have less and less control. I would hate to see how often the police and ambulance are at KidsPeace when the staff are not longer allowed to use restraints.
2nd amendment

Bushkill, PA

#6 Sep 22, 2007
reality wrote:
I feel their hands are being tied by the state.
Likely so just as the "state", has some absurb regulations regarding LTC.

The level of violence is increasing at the same time the "state" is requiring less physical means of crisis intervention. Where do you think that's gonna lead?
trakfence

Saylorsburg, PA

#7 Sep 22, 2007
as a former vendor at KP, I can tell you that I've seen plenty while on campus. These kids are more like the people that you see in the movies, that are high on PCP and freak out.I couldn't believe what I would see there and often thought "better you than me" because I would have quit after one day of that crap. I commend those workers for what they do.
Beavis

Allentown, PA

#8 Sep 22, 2007
If you have never lived with a psycho kid, you wouldn't understand.

Obviously the liberal do-gooders in Harrisburg don't understand it either.
Lissa

Easton, PA

#9 Sep 22, 2007
As the wife of a current kp child care counselor, I can see that some of the comments being made are definately from disgruntled staff memebers who are most likely not employed there anymore.
My husband has been with kp for 20 years now, he loves his job, and yes, makes much more than 23,000 a year. Sure, he works weekends on and off, but it's because they can't find the people who WILL tolerate the abuse from these kids. Most of the time yes, they hire college graduates who think they know it all, but they are wet behind the ears cause they only last a week and then don't show up for work cause they cant hack it.
This article is so biased it isn't funny. I honestly think if an mcall staff writer would take the time to spend a week at kp working with someone, they would be changing their tune.
oh, and, working weekends isn't a problem, the money is a nice benefit when your saving for two kids to go to college.
Just Me

Bethlehem, PA

#10 Sep 22, 2007
I have a few family members that work in the facility and what they have to do to try and reach out to these kids makes you take for granted what you have to do to make a living.
The commentors above me got it right when you can't control most aggressive kid with "verbal commands".
I've seen various bruises and injuries on family members over the years they spent working there.
One that sticks in my mind was when they lifted their arm sleeve to reveal the imprint of teethmarks on their arm after giving the client a "verbal command".
True something more needs to be done,the kids are becoming more aggressive and I'm sure the state would frown upon tasers.
James

Bethlehem, PA

#12 Sep 22, 2007
I worked at KP for 9 yrs, loved working with the kids, hated KP as an employer. Started at 17,500 with a 4 yr degree. 5 yrs later was making 24,000(with college degree and significant training/ experience.)That's not much compensation for what the job requires. The job was tough, in order to work out some of the issues these kids have, you have to talk about them, bring up the issue. THAT evokes MANY feelings and behaviors from the kids. Can't tell you how many kids we restrained (properly) that appreciated the safe handling while they "went off." Great counseling happens sometimes after a restraint when the child is physically and emotionally exhausted. But sometimes too, a restraint can remind those acting as inmates that they are not running the unit, them thinking they are can be VERY dangerous. Anyway, there's little support from the rich VP's of the company for its dedicated employees and bad things do happen.
Keystone Gal

United States

#13 Sep 22, 2007
20 years ago I worked at a facility that if the children didn't make it ... they went to Kids Peace. I was hired to be a teacher -- I taught very little. It was the hardest job I have ever had. I was hit, threated with a knife, and I would come home bruised from bite marks.

Though I will say there were a few people who seemed to "get off" from restraining children, they were far and few between.

I commend KidsPeace for not giving up on these children. Twenty years later ... I can't even imagine how much harder the work has become ... but it is necessary that we not give up, not on children.
Way to Go

Reading, PA

#16 Sep 22, 2007
amy wrote:
the last comment must have been from a former employee.And a graduate of Allen or Dieruff,and more then likely didnt even get to take the sat's because they did not get to college. And, the reason why they are not a present employee is for all the above and plus they did not have the intellect to stay and work with these children.
The current employees----- most have degrees and advanced degrees.The ones that don't usually can't hack it.And leave .Please get over yourself
Amy, you are delusional! Most of the KP staff DO NOT have degreees...They would love to hire people with degrees, but the reality is that people with degrees are TOO SMART to work at KP. Duh!!
Christina

Nazareth, PA

#17 Sep 22, 2007
I have a great idea...

why doesn't The Morning Call have a few of these "kids" be interns in the editorial department???

Then, they can report FIRST HAND how wonderful these kids are, and tell us (from actual experience!) how easy it is to "talk" instead of using physical discipline!!

The Morning Call editorial department could hold a training academy for the Kids Peace staff.

LOL!
Annoyed

Palmerton, PA

#18 Sep 22, 2007
PCM IS A JOKE IN YO TOWN wrote:
Please take a second to check this out, if you’ve ever had the temptation to sign-up for KidsPeace:
1. The HR department loves college graduates. You say you have a BA in Communications from Kutztown? Slow down Jerry Maguire…you had less than 1100 on your SAT’s and a degree from “Allen High School’s 13th grade”will open some KidsPeace windows.
2. Congrats, you were hired by KP! Take careful notice to the HR Dept. as they NEVER answer their phones. To be honest, they are more useless than the stone “lions” from Shankweiler’s Drive-In, which is located 20 feet from the building.
3. Congrats again! KP has opening w/benefits! Welcome to 23,000 a year and working weekends! Oh yeah, most of your co-workers don’t even have a B.A. yet alone your Supervisor!
4. PCM Training! YEAH! Time to have some out of shape, burned-out former CCII tell you “Walk with me” on the never-washed wrestling mat…ripe with impetigo and worse.
5. By now, if you’ve made it six weeks, you start to realize that everyone at KP is there for 6 months…or 6 years! Supervisors always have Sunday’s off and are full of War Stories.
6. If you work in “Residential” you will get to see the laughing joke, that is KP Schools.
7. WORD SEARCHES??? The teachers routinely assign these for HMWK…yet, they have absolutely NO EDUCATIONAL VALUE!!!
8. NEW YORK KIDS HAVE A DIFFICULT TIME PASSING THE “REGENTS”…SEE #7 –MORE $ FOR KP
9. The teacher’s aides almost NEVER have college degrees, but are happy to be home by 2:45pm
10. KP cares about “filling beds”, in other words, they make $ off intake from N.Y. The recent debate over PCM is lame. The counselors are trained…if anything, they are over-trained. Well. With exception to the KP ”teacher’s aides” who misspelled “Disruptive” as “Dissruptive”. GO DIERUFF HIGH SCHOOL!
To begin with if you do not like KidsPeace then don't put an application in. Second of all, if you have all the answers. Then tell the school how to get a student (who does not give a dam) to complete the work. When the teacher stands in front of the class an tries to teach. Almost every student has their head down or they are provoking other students (not listening to the teacher at all). Tell me, How would you teach that?? When their is a student who wants to learn, they get their work done and is willing to do more. BUT most of the students there do not care about their education. All they care about is the gangs an who they can beet up.
As to the word searches. They are given out for quiet time in between class work. They are NEVER sent for home work. Some UNITS don't allow school to assign home work. On the few exceptions that school was allowed to, the work never was returned back to the school.
Then to the Teaching Assistants not having educational background for their positions. I BEG TO DIFFER! Many of them to have diplomas in Teaching Assistant, Some are even going or have their Degrees in teaching or Special Education. Some are even going on for their bachors. Many have been doing their positions for many years and continue to grow in their field. Those who come aboard with other degrees do go an get educational background.
Not sure why you felt to lash out at the school? What does that have to do with the subject of the article in todays paper? Maybe if you would focuse on your job an not the eduction part of kidspeac and start working as a team. Both the units and the school could benefit from this. I thought we all are there for the kids. So stop pointing fingers, grow up an work together. After all the kids are who matter.
Joe

Oley, PA

#19 Sep 22, 2007
Close Kids Peace down. Or cut their enrollment down 50%,. Send these kids elsewhere. Maybe KP is under staffed. Do not let anyone fool you KP would close the minute it stopped making money. 70% for money 30% for helping kids.
Concerned

Allentown, PA

#20 Sep 22, 2007
Unless you have dealt with these kids, you have no idea! The moral fiber of our society is breaking down. There is no respect for others. The anger issues are escalated with drug and alcohol abuse. I speak from experience.I support KP for doing a job few would do.I don't care if you do or do not have a degree. I thank you for working with these kids. The gov't puts more and more rules and regulations but if they would do that job for 1 wk they would see what it's like!
amy

Allentown, PA

#21 Sep 22, 2007
Thank-you Morning Call for the only good thing you havr done is unite the staff at Kids Peace.Because we all(even former workers) know and believe in the fact that more children are helped then not.
Also, this is why I subscribe to NY Times. Because the so-called writers for Mcall -couldnt get into anywhere else but Kutztown or Ceder Crest
maggie

Dalton, PA

#22 Sep 22, 2007
as far as the teacher aides go, they are trained more than teacher's aides in the parkland school district, and last time I checked, Parkland or any other school district for that matter does not require degrees for T.A.'s People, this could be a blessing in disguise. Finally the higher ups will take a close look at the clients being admitted. Hopefully administrators will hire more staff, and keep hold of the ones that continue to work there. The morning call should know about the clients who do walkathons for cancer research, and other charitable works. Not all the clients are thugs. I believe these changes will improve working conditions for the staff that presently work for KP. And you people that write all these negative comments,most likely are ex KP people. I'm sure KP gave you an excellant review to get your present job. Lots of changes need to take place, but I think in the end things will straighten out. Their are some very dedicated staff that still are employed there, and will welcome any change to better serve our clients, and the STAFF.
you wipe

Bath, PA

#23 Sep 22, 2007
Concerned wrote:
Unless you have dealt with these kids, you have no idea! The moral fiber of our society is breaking down. There is no respect for others. The anger issues are escalated with drug and alcohol abuse. I speak from experience.I support KP for doing a job few would do.I don't care if you do or do not have a degree. I thank you for working with these kids. The gov't puts more and more rules and regulations but if they would do that job for 1 wk they would see what it's like!
BRAVO!

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