do the certs programs work?

Families enrolling their teen at a CERTS Program sacrifice significant time, emotions, and finances in the healing journey. Occasionally we are asked, “How do you know it works?” 

This is a great question. Success is measured differently by different families. For some, high school graduation is success. For others, symptom reduction is success. Still others see independent living as success.

CERTS recognizes the need and responsibility to conduct appropriate research to ensure that our students are receiving the best possible treatment.  The CERTS Programs are proud to be designated research based programs through NATSAP (National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs). Currently we are actively participating in the NATSAP Outcome Research Project.  

Our main outcome measure is the Youth Outcome Questionnaire (Y-OQ).  The Y-OQ® SR 2.0 is a bi-product of one of the most researched outcome measures for youth in the world, and has been the subject of many studies worldwide. The Y-OQ uses a series of questions to measure the effectiveness of therapeutic treatment. It is designed to reflect the total amount of distress a teen is experiencing. Questions include information about a teen's decision making skills, interpersonal relationships, clinical issues, emotional regulation and mental health history.  A higher score indicates more emotional and behavioral distress.  The healthy range is a score at or below 46.  

We ask both parents and their teens to complete the Y-OQ upon admission to our residential programs.  While a teen is enrolled at CERTS, they will complete the YOQ on a regular basis. We then ask both parents and teens to complete it upon discharge/graduation, and again at 12 months post graduation.  We have been collecting data since 2007 and now have thousands of data points. 

In addition to monitoring student outcomes with the Y-OQ, we also ask our parents and staff to completed quarterly satisfactions surveys to help assess how we are meeting the needs of both our families and our team members. 

Contact Us

Call us at 888-406-5968 to learn more about our results.

tree with many colored leaves and roots


our outcome Data suggests that students come to CERTS in distress, achieve healing and maintain their progress long term

y-oq outcome data

parent satisfaction data

certs staff satisfaction data