Check out the latest issue of the NATSAPPress!

Hot off the virtual presses!

To see the latest news at NATSAP, take a gander at the NATSAPPress. There you will find information about past regional conferences, our DC Fly In, the Gathering of Associations and our latest Link n’ Learn. You can also find out about upcoming regional conferences, our next Link n’ Learn and our President’s message. All that and more!

Say Hello to New Friends

Compass Rose Academy accepted as NATSAP Associate Program Member

School earns recognition from the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs

 Wabash, Ind. – Compass Rose Academy is the newest member of the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs (NATSAP), a distinguished recognition that showcases the school’s dedication and professionalism in serving struggling young people and their families.

NATSAP recognizes schools and programs that serve children, teens and families in crisis while maintaining outstanding levels of professionalism. All NATSAP schools must be licensed by a state agency that oversees the program’s therapeutic and behavioral health care services, offer therapeutic services with oversight from a qualified clinician, and aspire to the NATSAP Ethical Principles and Principles of Good Practice.

As a member organization, Compass Rose will be able to participate in NATSAP’s national and regional conferences, learning programs and networks. In addition, it will receive continuing education opportunities for staff, government representation and funding and scholarship opportunities.

“We are excited to join such an outstanding organization that successfully supports and champions great programs throughout the country who serve very deserving teens and their families at the highest clinical and therapeutic level,” said Dee Gibson, CEO of White’s Residential & Family Services and Compass Rose Academy.



About Compass Rose Academy

Compass Rose Academy is a privately funded affiliate of White’s Residential & Family Services, one of Indiana’s largest and oldest nonprofit social services agency offering residential, emergency shelter care, foster care, independent living, adoption support and home-based services. Designed to expand upon White’s overall mission to preserve the well-being of youth and families through prevention services and an on-site residential treatment center for troubled teens, Compass Rose is committed to enriching the lives of teens and their families through emotional healing, personal development and spiritual growth. For more information about Compass Rose, please visit


We had some truly amazing presentations at our 2014 annual conference…

and we are looking forward to seeing the presenters for 2015!

Before we can get to that point though, we need your help:

NATSAP Call for Papers
Are you interested in presenting at our 2015 Annual Conference in Nashville, Tennessee?  We are currently accepting proposal submissions. The deadline is Friday, 8/29.

The Call for Papers application is available as an online application form, and a PDF form.  To access either version, refer to the following link:
Want to see a little preview of what the presentations were like last year? Check out our YouTube channel:


In November 2013, NATSAP embarked on an enhanced public relations effort by hiring a PR professional to assist us. One of our new PR campaign goals is to share NATSAP member programs’ success stories with external audiences–particularly journalists.

Sharing these compelling stories is just one way to inoculate external audiences–particularly journalists, with good news about therapeutic schools and programs. That way, when a negative situation happens, reporters will be familiar with our success stories and even in light of the negative story being told, our hope is that the end-result is a more overall, well-balanced story.

To this end, we are seeking success stories from your program. These stories can be told from the viewpoint of the graduate, a counselor (with permission from the student), a teacher (with permission), parents or guardians, siblings or other family members or friends. Each success story should follow these guidelines:

  • Be personal and told in the first person (I)
  • Be a realistic account of the circumstances surrounding the before and after
  • Describe not just what happened, but include the author’s true thoughts and feelings about what happened and how their lives were affected before and after
  • Run no longer than 400 words.

We plan to use these stories in a number of ways including:

  • As a blog posted on NATSAP’s website
  • A press release featuring one or more stories
  • As a testimonial posted on NATSAP’s website (may be shortened to fit the space)
  • An excerpt from the story that NATSAP might use as a quote in materials such as a press release, marketing materials, etc.
  • As a video on our YouTube channel for those who give explicit permission for us to post a video.

PLEASE NOTE: For anyone who submits a story and prefers to remain anonymous, we do not need to use your name, age, gender, geographic location or any other personal identifying information in your story. Our goal is to protect the privacy of graduates and their families while keeping the integrity of your story intact.

Please submit your initial success stories, as many as you’d like, to NATSAP’s office by Friday, September 26. Thereafter, don’t hesitate to send us others as they occur. All stories should be sent to


We have lots of great stories to tell. It’s time we told them. Thanks so much.


Alumni Responses

Below is a story that was sent to one of our member programs from a former student:

Success Story

When I felt like everything was falling apart and that there were no answers, and no one understood me, my life seemed impossible. Prior to arriving at the Chrysalis school, this was a constant struggle and a reality. The most frustrating part was that I felt that my good days felt shorter and less frequent than the bad ones, that I was in so deep that there was no turning back. An intervention in the form of a massive therapeutic overhaul was needed to show me something important. And that thing was not all my faults, in fact, it was that I was strong enough to overcome my mistakes and move forward.

What I realize now is that desperation makes us feel helpless, and in that state of mind there are indeed very few ways to change. Once I owned my fear and my failures and the imperfection of my process, I could accept the help of others and treat myself with compassion. Through various experiences at Chrysalis, I grew into the young woman I am today.

I am a hiker, biker, musician, friend, cook, student, and a human being. I discovered through the course of my treatment that all of these things and more are true about me, and that I can share them with the world.  Now, I can inspire and change the world because I have found a way of living that allows me to enjoy my time on this earth. And that, not my problems, makes me who I am.

The two years I spent at a therapeutic boarding school were about my experience in the classroom, my outdoor and extracurricular activities, and my friends. Those things were building blocks, but the true alterations to my thought processes and the nurturing of my spirit came from within me.

Chrysalis was the school I attended. It was my home, and it guided me in the correct direction as I moved through my journey. Treatment doesn’t change you, which is a common misconception. It is simply a platform to build upon.

We as humans need others to help us to look at the hard things that are happening, to support and to teach us, to love us. Chrysalis provided that because I needed more than what my family and friends could provide. Now I am a success. Be brave, and step forward into healing.


Spectrum College Transition Program had 6 of their students start the first Asperger’s Fraternity in the U.S. They did not want to be in a “program” anymore, so normalized their supported college experience by starting Sigma Tau Epsilon. Sigma Tau Epsilon is the first and only national Greek letter fraternity representing Asperger’s Syndrome undergraduate professionals. Since its inception, the students have pledged their community service efforts towards helping the local Ronald McDonald House, and Feed My Starving Children Foundation.

Check out a clip and listen to the student’s describe their experiences:


Committees Help to Drive NATSAP

To get the most out of your membership, NATSAP encourages all new members to participate on one of our many committees. Our committees act as the planning bodies that guide NATSAP in policy and philosophy. Participating on a committee allows members to contribute ideas on how to better improve the Association. Innovative ideas from committee members have served as a guiding light for NATSAP as we continually improve upon our core beliefs. We can only benefit further from ideas that a new member brings.

We are pleased to announce the 2014-2015 NATSAP committee structure along with a concise role description of each.

NATSAP 2014-2015 Committees

Alumni Council The Alumni Council maintains relations with parents and former attendees of NATSAP member programs.

Best Practices Committee This Committee reviews the standards set by NATSAP programs in an effort to further improve our organization and the underlying mental health industry.

2015 Annual Conference Committee The Annual Conference Committee plans NATSAP’s Annual Conference, which occurs in early February each year.

Finance CommitteeThe Finance Committee plans the ongoing finances for the Association.

Government Relations Committee The Government Relations Committee seeks to create relationships with leaders on Capitol Hill and reviews pertinent legislation that could affect our industry.

Membership Committee The Membership Committee designs the layout of all NATSAP membership categories and examines how new members are accepted into the association.

Member Services Committee The Member Services Committee continually seeks to improve the organization by creating services that our members could find beneficial.

Public Relations Committee The PR Committee reviews information related to NATSAP and responds within our core philosophy.

Regional Conference Committee The Regional Conference Committee plans the seven regional conferences throughout the calendar year.

Research Committee The Research Committee oversees new research within the therapeutic program industry including the University of New Hampshire Outcomes Research Project.

Strategic Planning Committee The Strategic Planning Committee creates a blueprint for how NATSAP will evolve into the future.  


Please reach out to NATSAP directly if you have an interest in being involved on any of these committees (

Welcome to the NATSAP blog!


We are excited to begin our new blog. Join us as we discuss upcoming conferences and events. Keep an eye on this site for alumni and program member perspectives. Tell us about the latest trends and studies in therapeutic programs. Provide us with your ideas on how to better improve our association. Chastise me for my inability to spell common words. Let us use this as a platform to discuss anything and everything. Feel free to contact me ( and we can discuss highlighting your program and alumni.

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube!

Looking forward to interacting with all of you!