Showing posts from June, 2010

Red River Academy - Teens In Crisis - LifeLine - Lisa Irvin

With the recent closing of Magnolia Christian School, which was formerly Carolina Springs Academy, it seems that World Wide Association of Specialty Programs and Schools (WWASPS) is slowly decreasing in size.  Is it the economy or the fact that there are many disturbing stories out there, as well as successful lawsuits such as mine.  Currently I believe Red River Academy is their East Coast/Central States main program as Horizon Academy and Cross Creek are on the West Coast.

Are you considering residential therapy?  Are you are your wit's end with your teenager?  Researching these programs and schools can be a daunting experience.  Glowing websites and slick sales reps at many toll free numbers - how do you know who to trust?

I can't answer that except to say to remember, your child is not for sale. You will know in your gut if someone is being sincere or simply doing their job.

I am considered a disgruntled parent by WWASPS, and I will accept that since my daughter was abuse…

Sue Scheff: - Knowing What Your Doctor is Prescribing to Your Teens or Children

Prescription medications and teens and children has been a debate for years.  The controversy over ADD/ADHD medication such as Ritalin, Adderall, Strattera, Concerta and others has been hashed out in medical reports and articles for many years.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, by mid-teens more than 40 percent of adolescents have acne or acne scarring which may require treatment by a dermatologist and use of prescription drugs such as Accutane to treat their condition, not realizing the drug’s serious side effects like liver failure, Inflammatory Bowel Disease and depression which can lead to suicide. One unfortunate example of this effect is Congressman Bart Stupak’s son, who tragically took his own life after being on Accutane to treat his acne.
According to DrugWatch, on June 29, 2009, Roche Pharmaceuticals pulled Accutane from the market due to numerous personal injury lawsuits and business costs. Isotretinoin, the generic form of Accutane…

Sue Scheff: Teaching Teens To Be Financially Literate for the Future

Teaching our teens about finances, budgeting and saving is more critical today than years prior.  With the troubling economy, the loss of jobs as well as some families losing their homes, teens need to learn early how to manage their money.

The St. Johns River Chapter of Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants and SJCPLS are teaming up to offer full day workshops to teens age 15-20 between June 26th through August 7th at various branch libraries. Subjects covered will be budgeting, saving, personal investing, using credit wisely, avoiding identity theft and more.

The St. Johns County Public Library System began offering this successful program two years ago, and the program has served as a model for other Florida libraries. Class sizes are limited, so call each branch to register. Lunch will be provided at each location by the Friends of the Library.

All classes are 10:00 am to 4:00 pm (same class repeated at each location)
Saturday, June 26 - Southeast Branch Li…

Sue Scheff: Chasing the Dragon - Teen Drug Use

Have you heard of chasing the dragon?  This is slang for smoking opium and not having a care in the world about anything else, except for getting high.  Your teenager may be smoking pot today, and some parents say, "it is just marijuana, they used to smoke it too", however do they realize pot smoking today is much more serious than it was years ago?  What is the marijuana being laced with?  It is causing your teen to need it more and more?

Now that summer is officially here, teens will have more free time.  Sometimes this is not always a good thing.  How many times do we hear "not my kid?"  Being a parent in denial can only cause more problems later.
National Drug and Alcohol Recovery Month is in September, however today is when you can start to be proactive in your community. 

Join the voices for recovery on Facebook.  Find out where you can learn more about substance abuse and how you can be  part of recovery, not an enabler.

Don't wake up one mor…

Sue Scheff: June is National Acne Awareness Month - How to Talk Acne to Your Teen

Summer is here, which should mean fun in the sun and stress-free days for today’s teens. However, in today’s ultra competitive society, that is not always the case.

With so much pressure on teens to get into a good college, land that perfect summer job and other common activities, many teens may find themselves experiencing high amounts of stress. Stress can lead to teens taking on yet another worry – acne, a chronic medical condition that affects over 60 million Americans.

Acne is the most common skin disorder in the United States. Highly prevalent among teenagers, 85% of adolescents experience the chronic skin condition. However, many people don’t realize that acne is a medical condition with varying severities that can be successfully treated with help from a physician.

June is National Acne Awareness Month. It was established to educate teens and their parents about acne and the necessary steps to treat and prevent this condition.

In recognition of National Acne Awaren…

Sue Scheff: Happy Father's Day - A Chance to Better A Dad

Let's face it, parenting it not easy.  Whether it is from generations earlier or parenting today, there are always challenges.  The good news is all those mistakes usually end up in learning experiences.

These are experiences you pass on your next generation.  As we have heard time and time again, children are not born with a manual.  Although if they were, it would be on the best-sellers list and stay there for a long time.  Many parents have only their parent's to fall back on.

This can mean several things.  One very important point is, if you know that some of your mother or father's parenting skills were not helpful, you have thepower to change.  You have the options in life to correct those mistakes and be a better parent.

Mistakes can be bumps in life that teach you to learn new ways to parent.

So this father's day, embrace your mistakes and learn from them.  Parenting is never going to get easier, but taking the good from the bad is always your choi…

Sue Scheff: Million Hours of Power - Dad's Can Change The Lives of Children

The National PTA launched their Million Hours of Power to encourage fathers, uncles, grandfathers and all men to get involved in their community through their local PTA.  In Florida, Parent Teachers Association (PTA) recently was honored with National Advocacy Award.

With Father's Day next week, it is a perfect time to think about how you or someone you know can get involved in helping children in your community.

Bryon Garrett, CEO of the National PTA and Mom Congress Advisor, believes that a male mentor can make measurable positive impact on kids social, physical and educational well-being. interviewed Bryon Garrett and he offered a few tips to get fathers engaged in volunteering:
Just ask! Don't make the assumption that dads are not interested in being involved. "The number one reason they're not involved is that they're not asked." Create a schedule with your educator "so you have shared ownership in the process." Identi…

Sue Scheff: 10 Toughest Questions Kids Ask

Guest Blogger, Phillip Lopez, as written an article that many parents will find extremely helpful.  Raising kids and teens today is challenging.  Figuring out how to answer those tough and sensitive questions can be scary and stressful to parents. Phillip Lopez writes for Christian Colleges and Universities.

10 Toughest Questions Kids Ask
By: Phillip Lopez

If you’re a parent, you’ve undoubtedly discovered that raising children is the most difficult task you’ve ever undertaken. It’s your responsibility to shape their impressionable minds – whether or not they grow up to become productive members of society and successful individuals supposedly hinges on your every move. So go figure they ask the most difficult questions early in the parenting process, when they’re most curious and you’re most clueless. Below are a handful of those questions that make parents cringe.
How are babies made?
Every parent has inevitably been asked this question in some variation. Most are…

Sue Scheff: Teens, Tweens and Body Ordor - Don't Fret the Sweat

From Florida to Memphis, Tennessee the Parent Teachers Association covers our nation through education, parents, teachers, children and our community.

June 10th launched the 114th National PTA Convention.  Karin Brown is the President of the Florida PTA and is representing our state.  She was honored this morning as the President of the PTA, Chuck Saylor, introduced each representative from all over the country.

Parents Matter is one of the themes at the convention.  Don't fret the sweat is part of being a parent and helping your child surf through the journey of adolescents.  Body odor is not a topic that is always on a parents "talking points" however when puberty hits, it is an issue that needs to be addressed.

When tweens, teens or even children that are starting younger, parents are encouraged to talk to your kids about finding the right deodorant for them before teasing or even bullying starts due to body odor.

Learn more and get coupons today!  Visit D…

Sue Scheff: Fathers Being Involved - Come work for the FBI

Here is a great guest Blog from Ganda at - Like myself, she also attended the National PTA Conference.

Dads: Come Work for the FBI

How do you get fathers to become more engaged with their children's education? All you have to do is ask.

That's what convention attendees and speakers hammered home at today's Male Engagement Summit. Men now make up 12% of the PTA. That number could (and should) grow. And an invitation may be all the incentive they need.

Michael Robbins, guest speaker and Special Assistant to the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, advocated for key strategies like early engagement before conception and making dads feel more welcome in the education discussion. "We should talk about what dads do right," said Robbins.

The meeting's other guest speakers, leaders of the Fort Wayne Area Council (FWAC) PTA, galvanized their local units into recruiting dads to join. Julie Klingenberger, President of the FWAC P…

Sue Scheff: PTA Announces Partnership with Facebook

Collaboration committed to educating kids, parents and teachers about responsible and safe Internet use

Memphis, Tenn. and Palo Alto, Calif. – June 10, 2010 – Today, National PTA and Facebook announced a formal collaboration to promote responsible and safe Internet use to kids, parents and teachers. Together, National PTA and Facebook will establish a comprehensive program that will provide information, support and news to encourage citizenship online, reduce cyberbullying and advance Internet safety and security.

The partnership is founded on the belief that awareness is essential to supporting safe and responsible Internet use. Thus, in addition to creating comprehensive and engaging resources, PTA and Facebook are committing to aggressively promoting Internet safety information to their respective audiences. National PTA will use its Website (, and actively reach out to the 24,000 local PTAs across the country with a goal of reaching every American public school. Faceb…

Sue Scheff: Teens Using Drugs? New Home Drug Test

Drug testing has been going on for years and years by parents.  Whether they buy tests at Walgreen's or CVS or have their teen drug tested with a blood test, parents want answers.

Today there is a new DrugWipe that is hitting the market.  A small drug test that the manufacturer says will reveal with 100 percent accuracy if children are doing drugs is new on the market.  DrugWipe® offers results in 5 - 10 minutes, a broad spectrum of detected drugs, confidentiality of testing, and best of all, the person (teen) doesn't need to be present to be tested.

According to the manufacturer, you rub it across any non-porous surface that the person touches enough to leave fingerprints, such as a door knob, computer mouse or bedroom dresser.

Watch this video, view the demo and learn moreClick here.

This product is newly released, however has been used by the FBI and other authorities.  The cost is about $50.00. Parents, you can be the anti-drug.

Be an educated parent, you will h…

Red River Academy, Lisa Irvin, Help My Teens, Teens In Crisis, Jane Hawley - Magnolia is Closed

This week I have received numerous emails from parents, grandparents, relatives and others about the closing of Magnolia Christian Academy, formerly Carolina Springs Academy in Due West, SC.

Whether is was pressure from the Attorney Generals office or the bad economy, it is my opinion this has been a long time coming and thankfully kids will not be subjected to what my daughter endured there.  It is all well documented in Wit's End, as well as trial transcripts.  Those sales reps (marketing arms) such as Help my teen or Teens in Crisis - (Lisa Irvin or Jane Hawley and the sales people that work for them) will continue to say I am a disgruntled parent - yes, I am, they abused my daughter - or they tell parents I own - operate - manage - my own schools (I don't) to  excuse my experiences.

Now they have a few others programs to market - and I understand that Red River Academy or Horizon Academy is the latest one that people are sharing with me.  Are you considering it?  I won'…

Sue Scheff: Teen Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

Summer brings more summer employment for teenagers.

Sexual harassment in the workplace is unacceptable. When you hear about it happening with teenagers it is more deplorable. Who is responsible for your teen's safety when they go to their job?

MSNBC recently report on this epidemic that is in many workplaces.  Making matters worse, many teens are more accessible than ever thanks to social networking sites and mobile devices, opening them up to more potential abuse. Texting is being used to send subtle and not-so-subtle messages.

Teens, especially those that are working at their first job, are unsure about how to report these incidents or fear if they do, will they be fired?

Is your teen being victimized at their job?  Visit Teen Victim Project and learn more about sexual harassment.

Tips for parents of teens from E.J. Graff, a researcher for Brandeis University’s Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism, that will be starting a job:
Ask her to check the atmosphere o…

Sue Scheff: June is Gay Pride Month - Gay Teens

Homosexuality can be a sensitive subject, however  today there are many resources to help educate parents and teens on sexuality.  No matter what your beliefs are, teens will be teens and going through puberty is not easy, whether you are gay or straight, life has challenges.  However society can be harsh when they are not tolerant to different lifestyles.

This is not about right or wrong, it is about differences.  Differences is what makes the world go round and makes our country a wonderful place to live.  Freedoms to be who you are and be proud of it.
How many times have you said something you wish you could take back? How many times have your children repeated things you wish you never said? As many parents know, what goes in their little ears can come out of their mouth - when you least expect it or want to hear it!

How about when your teens repeat personal matters in your family? If you are sharing private information with your teenagers, you may want to be clear it …

Sue Scheff: National PTA Conference in Memphis - 40 Years of Helping Schools, Parents, Teachers and Students

On June 10th through June 13th the National PTA (Parents and Teachers Association) will have their annual conference.  There will be many workshops, book signings, lectures and learning experiences for all the attendees.  They will bring back to our local areas the vast amount of resources and informational tools to continue to educate and help the children of today and tomorrow.

Forty years ago this month, the National Congress of Colored Parents and Teachers (NCCPT) and the National Congress of Mothers united to form the National PTA, adapting the same mission they had operated under separately: to improve the education and well being of every child? Today, while many great accomplishments have been made there are still obstacles that we must conquer, both inside and outside of the classroom and across ethnic backgrounds. So at this year’s national convention there will be much to tackle:
The nation’s K-12 public education system is in crisis. Our students lag behind comp…

Sue Scheff: Social Networking Quick Tips for Parents, Teens and Children

As the World Wide Web grows at an ever expanding pace, it is up to us to keep up with the changes as well as keep our lives safe virtually. Being virtually safe can literally lead to being physically safe. Chat rooms are dangerous places for adult, not to mention children. Meeting people online can be fun, but it can also be misleading.

Keep in mind when online the following tips, consider it Social Networking 101 crash course.
Use privacy settings. This is a no-brainer. Keep the strangers out of your profiles and photos. Don't make yourself an easy target for predators and for bullying. Check your privacy settings weekly to be sure they haven't changed.Think before you post. In the same respect, think before you hit send. Imagine a teacher, a parent, a family member, college admissions, potential employer seeing this post and consider whether it is appropriate or not.Trust your gut. If someone is bothering you, block them. If you have suspicions, feel threatene…