Clinical Model.

The CARF accredited program design and interventions used at Whetstone Academy draw upon several theoretical and intervention models. These include: Attachment-Focused Family Therapy (Hughes and Siegel), Community Resiliency Model (Trauma Resource Institute), and Expressive Arts Therapy (Knill and Atkins) all within an atmosphere of experiential learning. We believe that these models best address the developmental needs of the child and family in a strengths-based approach. We assess each child for their unique developmental abilities and needs using a multi-tiered lens that addresses social, emotional, and cognitive domains which is consistent with the Wheel to Success.


In staying consistent with an attachment focused foundation, we want our students to build a secure BASE in functioning in the following areas: Behavioral, Academic, Social, and Emotional. When our students achieve confidence in these areas they will be ready to navigate their own futures.

We assess for strengths and limitations in these areas and support our students and families to create goals that are driven by their values. Monthly reviews in the BASE areas help determine  progress and readiness to graduate.

The center of our wheel is helping our students to build a core of Integrity and security in their relationships. It is our belief that without the core of integrity and security, growth in the other BASE areas will not be sustainable.

Learn About Our…

Wheel of Success

Building Relationships

Whetstone firmly believes that through a relationship-based model, we give young men a reason to change thus, a level system is not used.  This belief recognizes that children are not individuated enough from adults to motivate themselves to change because we believe that change comes from healthy interactions.  Whetstone Academy students are typically behind developmentally in one or more areas. Through the relationship-based model, our staff provide feedback and working models for healthy relationships with self and others. This is done in a collaborative atmosphere of trust and respect so the boy can take the risk to fail or succeed and know that they are still supported.


Licensed Therapists on Campus


Hours of therapy per week minimum


Students to bond and grow with

Emotional Growth

Whetstone boys arrive with a wide range of social/emotional skills needed for successful interactions. Some have all the component pieces needed for success, but they have not been using them. Others may be very limited in their skills, literally lacking the basic building blocks necessary for successful interactions. The Wheel to Success program is designed to allow students to be on a continual cycle of growth. Through practice and positive reinforcement, the child can easily build competence in these areas. Students will advance at different rates as a result of their individual needs and ability.

Whetstone believes that individuals are able to make choices and have personal responsibility for their choices. Students (and staff) are held accountable for the choices they make. The underlying assumption that we do have the ability to make choices is essential to being able to change.  For the children the first choice they must make at Whetstone Academy is to trust.

Family BASE Camp

Whetstone Academy offers adjunctive intensive experiential family therapy workshops. Our Family BASE Camps provide an opportunity for the entire family to reconnect and work on specific family goals. Whetstone’s Family BASE Camp helps provide our families with skills in order to resolve problems, strengthen ties and provide support.

Family BASE Camp provides a retreat style environment for your family to examine its unique dynamics and address core issues. This program is uniquely designed exclusively for your family and may include: rock climbing, expressive arts, or equine therapy. Family BASE Camp’s are priced individually based on your specific family needs.