Intake Process

The intake department receives referrals from the following agencies through phone calls, faxes and encrypted email. Most agencies initiate contact with the intake department via phone, communicating directly with the intake coordinator(s) to discuss their children’s needs and current openings.

Child Protective Services (CPS)

The Department of Social Services placement workers submit referrals upon their County Behavioral Health Department and the assigned judge. These children must also have been reviewed by the Interagency Placement Committee in their county and been certified as meeting criteria for residential placement.

Probation Departments

Juvenile Probation Placement Officers submit their student’s referral upon the assigned judge’s approval. These children must also have been reviewed by the interagency management and Authorization committee in their county and been certified as meeting criteria for residential placement.

Educationally Placed Students

SELPAs, LEAs and School Directors submit the referral in collaboration with parent(s) or Guardian and IEP Team. The child’s Individual Education Plan (IEP) will need to identify Mountain Valley programs as the appropriate residential and educational setting. The IEP will also specify what mental health services will be necessary to support the student while in our programs.

Client Interviews

Prior to acceptance, children are typically interviewed by a Mountain Valley Director, Administrator, Clinician, or Program Specialist. Interviews take place at school districts, juvenile halls, residential or psychiatric facilities, child and family services offices, or at our campus (which may include a tour of our facilities).

Interviews are an opportunity to engage prospective clients in a dialog to determine the appropriateness of our program to their needs. Children are given the opportunity to interview us first, and may end the interview at any time. Throughout the interview process, we reinforce the voluntary nature of placement.

Interviews typically cover the child’s:

  • Their story, including anything they think we should know about them including history, goals, etc.
  • Family, siblings, parents, extended family, friends, etc.
  • Hobbies and interests
  • Community supports, church, school, club, etc.
  • Perspective on being referred to treatment, what they feel they need to work on, and interventions that have helped them in the past and what they feel we can do to help them in the future.
  • Goals for the immediate future, transition from residential and long-range such as college, career aspirations, living situations, etc.

Upon successful completion of the interview, children are offered an overview of the programs including, when possible, a slide show of the grounds, facilities, activities, etc.


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