The Aspirant Program
The Aspirant Program enables parents to bring their child to The Institutes for an evaluation and an individually designed treatment program. Parents then return home and carry out that treatment program.
The objective of the Aspirant Program is to achieve physical, intellectual, and social growth resulting in normality in as many children as possible. The Aspirant Program provides a treatment program for parents who want their children accepted onto the Intensive Treatment Program in the future. This is a preparatory step that allows the family to understand child brain development in depth. It also gives the staff the opportunity to get to know the family and gives the family the opportunity to get to know the staff and to experience the program at home. This helps the staff and the parents to know whether the Intensive Treatment Program will be comfortable and appropriate for the family in the future.
To be admitted to the Aspirant Program, both parents must have earned the Certificate in Human Development at the Initial Parent Level in the What To Do About Your Brain-Injured Child Course. To receive an appointment, a family must have had at least one Home Program Consultation during which a complete description of the program they are doing at home is submitted and approved by the staff of The Institutes. Both parents must attend the Aspirant Program appointment.
To prepare for an appointment, parents should review all of The Institutes books, especially What To Do About Your Brain-Injured Child by Glenn Doman. Parents should also review all notes and documents from the What To Do About Your Brain- Injured Child Course. Those parents who have made this careful review invariably learn more from their visit to The Institutes as a result.
The first visit lasts three full days. Both mother and father must attend all visits to The Institutes. Each child accepted into this program is thoroughly evaluated. The staff takes a full history of the child and does a functional neurological evaluation. This evaluation is reviewed with the parents and an Institutes Developmental Profile is made for each child. A child’s neurological growth rate is determined as well as a complete functional diagnosis of the areas of brain injury. Each child receives a program that addresses that child’s physical, intellectual, social, and physiological needs. The primary area of injury determines the focus of the program being designed. The treatment program is designed so that a child on the Aspirant Program may have the benefit of a home program created by the staff of The Institutes. Each program is very carefully taught to the parents. Every detail is reviewed thoroughly so that the parents are confident they understand the principles of their child’s program and the technical details of how to carry it out. Parents are encouraged to ask whatever questions they may have. Parents return home to do the full program, usually for about six months. Each child on this program is assigned a staff member who acts as the child’s personal advocate. This staff member closely monitors the child’s progress and represents the child at all staff conferences. It is the advocate’s responsibility to see that the child is making satisfactory progress toward wellness. All communication, letters, reports, and telephone calls go through the advocate, who becomes increasingly knowledgeable about the individual child and family. This period allows parents to do a rigorous home program and decide whether the Intensive Treatment Program is what they want. It also allows the staff to get to know the family and decide whether the Intensive Treatment Program is appropriate for them.
Parents who are accepted into the Aspirant Program are qualified to conduct a home program with their own child. There is no certificate in human development awarded in this program, but some parents have received course credits toward degrees at universities in the United States and abroad.
We want each of our families to be as well prepared as possible–not only for the initial appointment, but also for accomplishing The Institutes program in the event the family and The Institutes decide this is appropriate. Parents wishing to apply for the Aspirant Program do so by completing the Home Program Consultation. Applications for this program are made to the Clinical Coordinator of The Institutes. After the first three-day visit and six months of full program, the parents and the staff of The Institutes have the information they need to decide whether or not the family should be considered for the Intensive Treatment Program. If parents are not yet able to do the full program the family may continue on the Lecture Series Program and the Home Study Program. If the family is able to do a full home program that is effective and comfortable, they become candidates for the Intensive Treatment Program. The family returns for a five-day revisit, when they are invited to join this program. They then go on to the Intensive Treatment Program.