Students are referred by their school district to attend Sierra School and are generally in grades 8–12+ (aged 13 to 22). They face disabilities in a variety of areas, including Autism, Intellectual Disability, Emotional Disability, Other Health Impairments, multiple disabilities, and more.
We are proud to employ Certified Special Education Teachers, Staff trained in Pro-Act, OT, Speech, PT, family therapy, Individual therapy, group therapy, and more.
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Sierra School of Eastern Extension is one of the oldest nonpublic schools in the greater Sacramento area, founded in 1968. Our mission has always been in line with that of our parent company, Catapult Learning: to build the confidence and competence of our students through personalized academic interventions. The Sierra School believes in educating our students from a dual perspective. Thus, integrating mental health and support services with special education classes addresses student needs in a systematic and holistic fashion. We couple this two-part approach with an effective system of behavior management, and within the safe and structured learning environment this creates, students are better able to focus and perform academically.
In serving our students, the Sierra School follows all IEP (Individualized Education Program) mandates and adheres to California State Standards for curriculum, scope, and sequence of required subjects and areas of learning. As a California State Department of Education certified nonpublic school, we can issue both diplomas and Certificates of Attendance, with the ultimate goal being to transition as many students as possible to a less restrictive program individually prepared for each student. To facilitate our efforts, our full-time therapist delivers comprehensive services, meeting with students in both group and individual settings to assist with behavior modification and to nurture our students’ self-esteem, emotional self-worth, and overall well-being. Carrying out such an important mission requires Sierra’s highly talented and strength-based multidisciplinary staff consisting of credentialed special education instructors, a licensed psychotherapist (LCSW/MFCC), and BA- or BS-level teaching assistants.
Sierra’s goal is to build the confidence and competence of children facing learning, language, and social challenges through personalized academic interventions. Sierra is committed to achieving success with each student even in the face of obstacles, challenges, and excuses. The program is geared toward preparing youth to become responsible adults who are able to participate in their communities and lead self-fulfilling lives. We aim to build each student’s skills and self-esteem to a level that allows them to return to a mainstream school and become fully functioning members of society. In order to achieve this, Sierra has developed the following expected school-wide learning results. Sierra students will be:
Healthy individuals who:
- Effectively maintain appropriate peer relationships
- Take responsibility for their own physical and emotional heath
Demonstrate healthy life choices
Technologically literate individuals who:
- Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of various computer programs
- Utilize a variety of current technology tools
- Demonstrate awareness of assistive devices that will allow them to better access academic curriculums
Independent individuals who:
- Develop strategies to set specific and attainable goals
- Set priorities and manage time effectively
- Develop a plan for the future
- Develop their ability to have acceptable work habits
Academically competent individuals who:
- Read, write, and speak effectively
- Practice learned strategies to effectively problem solve
- Complete assignments, display organizational skills, and practice study skills
- Access and apply learned information and utilize notes on assigned curriculums
Our program also includes Transition Services that aim to prepare students for life beyond school and for productive, fulfilling adulthoods. As such, we offer employment options through a WorkAbility I grant issued by the State of California Department of Education. This program component allows us to train, supervise, and place students in employment situations both on and off campus, providing valuable work experience opportunities.
Our Therapy Department provides individual and group counseling for students struggling with emotional and behavioral management. Sierra School therapists are trained in a number of different modalities in order to best treat the mental health needs of our students. The goal of counseling in the school is to help students process strong emotions, gain insight, and teach skills that will assist them in achieving success in the academic environment.
Students attend groups focused on anxiety, anger management, social skills, art therapy, self-esteem, and music therapy. These groups, in conjunction with individual support, benefit a wide spectrum of disorders and disabilities. Our therapists work as a collaborative team with parents, school personnel, and outside agencies to best serve our students.
The Sierra School at Eastern Extension has partnered with All About Equine to give students the opportunity for an exceptional experience, equine therapy. Once a month, Sierra School students will arrive at All About Equine, a horse rescue. Sierra students learn about horse behaviors, horse ownership responsibilities, basic handling and care, the rescue situation, and much more. The students will select a horse they feel connected with and will learn about their specific horse’s life and how their specific animal ended up at the rescue. Students will observe demonstrations and participate in feeding and cleaning as well as grooming. This is a unique, hands-on experience that is exclusive to the Sierra School.