Welcome to FamilyLight!
Let the Internet be your consultant. For USD$25.00 per month you have unlimited access to our online guidance in planning for a family member and search for a therapeutic facility. This includes ability to ask questions of our experienced Educational/ Therapeutic consultant. While we expect to raise that price at some time in the foreseeable future, we guarantee that the price you pay when you join will stay the same for you for at least a year. We hope to extend that so it is the same for as long as you remain a member. We guarantee that for a year.
Educational/ Therapeutic consulting is one of the few professions that discourages second opinions. We think that is wrong. If you have engaged a private consultant, you may also use this website to see other thoughts on the matter. (If you use this website as your principal guide, we encourage you to seek information from other sources as well. Especially, take us seriously in those cases where we express an opinion AND tell you that other consultants we respectfully disagree with us).
We know that most families seeking a private placement for a child or young adult with a need for therapeutic services turn to the Internet to research what is available and to find the best choice for their family. We are trying to provide a means for those families to perform that task themselves with the expertise of a professional consultant and some help from the Internet. For a detailed account of how this works please look at Virtual Consultant. (If you like to memorize URLs, this also takes you there: virtual-consultant.org. That is probably easier to remember than the actual URL. While we are thinking of easy to remember URLs, bit.ly/FamilyLight will bring you back to this page.)
If you represent a school, therapeutic program or other provider we suggest you to go to this page before you go to Virtual Consultant. (The rest of you may go there too, if you are curious)
If you are an Educational/ Therapeutic Consultant with limited experience in therapeutic consulting, please feel free to join us. We will coach you through your tough cases. Same price. That may change in the future, but for now that holds.
Note: The following warning is being moved to our new Warnings and Warnings -- Introduction pages. This particular warning will remain available to the general public as it will be on the Introduction page.
Warning: Most "guides" to schools and programs on the Internet are actually marketing fronts for the programs to which they will refer you (as are "free" or "no fee" consultants). We were contacted by a company operating more than a dozen such websites. They wanted to buy this website. That company is a marketing company that contracts with schools and programs to find people to enroll. Some of these marketing companies are very elaborate operations. Others are "Mom 'n' Pop shops." Many have their own staff on phone lines at toll free numbers giving advice. And it is all free. That can only mean one thing. Someone else is paying the bill. That means that these people are on commission. They are being paid by someone. Ultimately, that is the program seeking referrals. Whether that is a website operated by the company operating that program or freelance individuals on the phone or there is a marketing company in the middle, these services are being paid to direct people to the programs that pay the bill, not to the best choice programs.
We recall one person who started a not for profit organization and then billed herself as a "free" consultant. She started guiding families to certain programs. When the referral was complete, she would then solicit a "donation" from that program. If the school/ program donated, she would keep referring. If not she stopped referring.
In most cases, "free" assistance is only out to help the programs to which they refer whether or not that is the best choice for the family at issue.
Please note that we accept no advertising and disclose conflicts of interest when they occur. Most pages restricted to members have a corresponding Introduction page open to the public. These pages will give non-member readers an indication of what is on the corresponding page only for members. This may help people to decide whether the corresponding page contains information worth purchasing.
We will offer free access on a rotating basis, to some pages that are normally Subscribers/ Members. Usually this will consist of one program review and one article on a topic of interest to families who use our website.
Current free offer:
- Benchmark Transitions Review (and some related pages)
- Residential Treatment, Therapeutic Boarding, and other Services: A Guide to Terminology
Please read our full disclaimer. You are responsible for verifying our information before acting on it.
Virtual Consultant (full explanation and guide to our online consulting service)
Last Update January 13, 2018