Upcoming Events

Emergency Closing Information

Find out if we are closed due to inclement weather or other emergencies, click the link below and search for "Hopewell".
www.emergencyclosings.com. We also send out alerts to your preferred method of contact (typically cell phone texts,email or voicemail). Contact your school to update your contact information. 

Student Handbook


Full bound versions of the Student Handbooks are sent home with each student at the start of the school year. Please contact your child's Site Director to receive another bound copy. We have included the text of the handbook below. Thank you. 


Dear Students and Parents:


As another great school year at Hopewell Academy is about to begin, I would like to take this opportunity to welcome every student and their family. We have a wonderful student body and a fine teaching staff that will provide a supportive and nurturing environment for each of our students. Hopewell provides various opportunities to students to grow and excel both academically and socially to ensure long-term success and happiness. We also provide a vast array of transition opportunities for our students so they can have the skills necessary for successful careers. Our students do various jobs all the way from volunteering in the community cleaning our parks to having steady paid employment at local businesses. Our therapy staff members also provide our students a chance to work through challenges and to help set a clearer path to a better life.


To find success this year, Parents/Guardians and Hopewell staff members must work together and communicate on a regular basis to provide the best support for each student. We must give them continued opportunities to experience success and prepare them for what tomorrow will bring. We are very excited to have each student as a part of our Hopewell Academy community.


This Student Handbook was developed to answer many of the commonly asked questions that you and your parents may have during the school year and to provide specific information about certain Hopewell policies and guidelines. Please take time to become familiar with the following important information contained in this handbook and keep the handbook available for frequent reference by you and your parents. If you have any questions that are not addressed in this handbook, you are encouraged to talk to the school principal. This handbook replaces all prior handbooks and other written material on the same subjects. This handbook does not equate to an irrevocable contractual commitment to the student, but only reflects the current status of the Hopewell policies and rules as of August 2016. If any of the policies or administrative guidelines referenced herein are revised after August 2016, the language in the most current policy or administrative guideline prevails. The rules you are about to read in this student handbook are in addition to our broad, discretionary authority to maintain safety, order, and discipline inside the school zone. These rules support but do not limit our authority. Upon entering a school zone, you are subject to all school rules.


We reserve the right to enforce policies not explicitly stated in this handbook. In no way does this handbook limit Hopewell Academy administration and teachers from enforcing reasonable rules and procedures.


Mission Statement

Hopewell Academies will integrate transitional, academic, and therapeutic services to special needs students in a safe, nurturing and predictable environment to ensure the positive, long-term growth of the students’ academic and emotional lives.



Hopewell believes that the purpose of education is to facilitate the development of the potential of each student, especially those students with special needs. Our students have encountered unique challenges that prevent them from finding lasting success both in school and in the community. We believe that the solution to those challenges lies both within the student and within the learning community. A prerequisite for every member of our learning community in meeting life’s responsibilities is competence in the use of the rational thought processes needed to make intelligent, ethical choices and decisions. If our students ultimately want to achieve their life goals in a free society, they need to be competent to solve the problems they will encounter even though their challenges may make this difficult. We feel that all students with challenges have the ability to overcome those challenges and to become happy and successful members of society.

We strongly believe that providing students with relevant and rigorous instruction, supportive and empowering therapeutic support, and meaningful and effective vocational support, will ultimately allow students to become self-sufficient individuals able to meet their own needs in a way that supports not just their opportunities but also supports the opportunities of others. We also believe that good modeling and respectful engagement of students helps to create within them the importance that they should contribute to the common good of society and be positive active members of their communities. 

Students today face growing obstacles as they seek to make positive choices in life. Their ability to handle societal stresses such as peer pressure, poverty, drug and alcohol prevalence, bullying, technology overuse, and other stresses makes learning the thought and action process involved in taking intelligent, ethical action even more imperative.

We strive to help students develop these skills by modeling those skills through our own behaviors and interactions, by teaching students what those skills are, by allowing students to practice those skills while applying constructive criticism, and by applying those skills in the community through vocational and social activities.

Hopewell is committed to helping students become better at learning, become better at getting along with others, and become better at understanding what it takes to be a happy, productive member of society.


School Hours


Regular School Year:           9:00 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.

Summer School (ESY):       8:00 a.m. - Noon



Important Contact Information


Hopewell Academy-Joliet

1009 S. Briggs Street, Joliet, IL 60433

(815) 463-9655

Fax (815) 553-0681



Hopewell Academy-New Lenox

1352 N. Cedar Road, New Lenox, IL 60451

(815) 463-9655

Fax (815) 463-4885





Non-Discrimination Policy


Hopewell Academy admits students of any race, color, creed, religion, gender, national origin, gender identity and sexual orientation to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at this school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, age, religion, gender, national origin, disability, gender identity or sexual orientation in administration of educational policies, admissions policies, and athletic and other school-administered programs. E.E.O.C.





All students are provided door-to-door transportation by their home school districts. Policies and behavioral expectations at Hopewell Academy remain in effect while the student is being transported. Our school staff works closely with the drivers and attendants to ensure that students are adhering to mandatory safety guidelines. If a student is involved in an accident either to/from school or while on a field trip, it is our policy to contact 911 and have each student assessed by first responders. If a student becomes ill or has an accident on the way to school, parents will be notified immediately. Emergency contact numbers are kept on file in the event that the parent cannot be contacted regarding a sick or injured student.


All costs related to treatment and/or medical transportation of the student by first responders is the responsibility of the parent or guardian of the student. Hopewell Academy does not assume responsibility for any costs related to the care and treatment of students involved in an accident.



School Closings


If the school is closed due to inclement weather or other emergency, a message will be sent using our AMG Alerts system. This message can be sent via a phone call to your phone, or by email or by text. To enroll in this program, please contact your child’s school. Also, for a weather related closing, please go to www.emergencyclosings.com or tune into any local radio or television station that provides closing information. If school has to be dismissed early, every attempt will be made to contact parents or emergency contacts upon dismissal. Just because a student’s home district is not in session due to weather or an emergency, it does not necessarily mean that Hopewell Academy also will be closed. If your child’s transportation is cancelled due to weather or emergency, your child is excused from school on that particular day.


It is very important that Parents/Guardians and students provide updated contact information and emergency contact information to be utilized during the school closing process. Please let us know if your contact information changes during the school year.


If you would like to develop another dismissal plan individualized for your child, please contact us.





Hopewell Academy has the responsibility to maintain a learning environment free from outside distractions. All visitors, including parents/guardians, are required to register in the office upon entry into the building. Please do not go directly into your child’s classroom.


All students to be picked up from school are to be met at the main office and signed out OR met in the parking lot with the student’s teacher. Hopewell Academy does not allow visits from students who are not current members of the school or are not scheduled to visit through administration approval.


While parents are encouraged to be active participants in their child’s education at Hopewell, please call to schedule appointments with teachers or staff prior to coming to the school unless a parent feels it is imperative to discuss an issue with an administrative staff member immediately.


The site director has the authority to prohibit entry of any person to the school or to expel any person when there is good reason to believe the presence of such person would be detrimental to the good order of the school. If an individual refuses to leave the school grounds or creates a disturbance, the site director may request assistance from the local law enforcement to remove the individual.


If one parent has been awarded custody of the student by the courts, the parent of custody shall provide the school with a copy of the custody order and inform the school in writing of any limitations in the rights of the noncustodial parent. Absent such notice, the school will presume that the student may be released into the care of either parent.



Parent Comportment Policy


Hopewell Academy believes that a positive and constructive working relationship between the school and a student’s Parent/Guardian(s) is essential to fulfilling Hopewell Academy’s mission and creating a culture in which students, parents, and school staff work together with respect, civility and trust. As such, Hopewell Academy reserves the right to discontinue a student’s enrollment at the school or not re-enroll a student if Hopewell Academy reasonably concludes that the actions and behaviors of a Parent/Guardian make it impossible to foster a positive and constructive relationship or cause serious interference with the school’s accomplishment of its educational purposes and mission, and the education of the student.


Should a Parent/Guardian’s action(s), inaction(s), or behavior while at the school and toward school staff be in conflict with the mission of Hopewell Academy, or its goals, or in violation of the school policies stated herein, Hopewell Academy will inform the Parent/Guardian of the issue and provide the Parent/Guardian the opportunity to cure the situation and, as applicable, change his/her problematic behavior. If there is no improvement or if repeated issues concerning a Parent/Guardian’s action, inaction or behavior arise, Hopewell Academy reserves the right to immediately disenroll a student from the school and/or not re-enroll the student in future school years.





Dress Codes


Students are expected to dress in ways that bring pride to themselves and the school community and in a manner that protects their safety. The following will serve as a guideline at Hopewell Academy:


1.     Clothes should be neat and clean.


2.     Clothes must cover all undergarments.


3.     Girls may not wear halter tops, spaghetti strap tanks, mini-skirts, or midriffs; boys may not wear “muscle shirts” that show a lot of skin. No student may wear shorts that are considered “short shorts” and that do not cover down to the mid-thigh area.


4.     T-shirts may not display cigarette, alcohol, gang, or drug logos. 


5.     No hats may be worn inside the building, unless they are part of the treatment plan.


6.     Appropriate footwear should be worn so students can participate in activities (P.E.) safely. Steel toe and heavy boots, roller-skate tennis shoes and heavy platform shoes are not appropriate footwear.


7.     Administrative discretion is allowed to determine what clothing is appropriate. Students that wear clothing that that may disrupt classroom instruction or that may be inappropriate and offensive can be required to cover up the clothing with appropriate clothing or be sent home.




Hopewell Academy expects each student to be in school every day. Students, parents, guardians, school officials, and your community share the responsibility of assuring that a high level of attendance is maintained.


Businesses, industries, and other professions expect and demand high standards of attendance and punctuality. Therefore, the education of our students must reflect these same expectations and assist students in accepting responsibility for good attendance.


Hopewell’s vision for students includes providing each student with the necessary tools to successfully transition from the school setting to the adult world. But, if you are not here, you cannot get those tools. A student that is not present cannot be taught. The daily interactions between a teacher and a student and between a student and their peers cannot be effectively duplicated. A large part of a student’s learning process is figuring out problems and challenges in a group setting and replicating what students will face in the college and the world of work. Therefore, Hopewell Academy has established the following procedures and rules for student attendance:



Absences Per Quarter Policy


1.     Students are allowed up to three (3) days of non-exempt absences per quarter for a total of 12 days per school year.

A.      Non-exempt absences include the following:

·        Excused Absences include those absences that have been properly called off to school. Calls must be received no later than 10:00 a.m. to the school secretary or teacher by a parent/guardian. Students may make up any missed work for those absences that have been classified as excused.


Examples include but are not limited to:

1.     Sick Days (while not under doctor’s care)

2.     College Visits

3.     Non-family funeral


·        Unexcused Absences include those absences that have not been properly called off. Students may not make up any missed work for those absences that have been classified as unexcused. Examples include, but are not limited to:

1. Absences called off after 9:00 a.m. the next school day (a day late).

2. Absences due to the refusal of student to come to school that are not approved by a Parent/Guardian.


2.     Students are allowed a limited number of exempt absences per school year. The total number of days allowed are subject to administrative review on a student-by-student basis.

3.     Exempt absences include but are not limited to

·        Being under the care of a medical doctor (with a letter from Doctor/Dentist)

·        Family funeral

·        Pre-approved family vacation should not exceed five (5) days per school year (form available from school)


Students are expected to be in attendance every school day.


Absences and/or illnesses should be reported to the school and to the district transportation provider. Please call the school as soon as you know your child will miss school. Please leave a message if the call is made before or after regular school hours.  If you need the phone number for the local transportation company, please contact us.


If a student becomes ill or has an accident at school, parents will be notified immediately.

Emergency contact numbers are kept on file in the event that the parent cannot be contacted regarding a sick or injured student.





Breakfast is served each day consisting of cereal and/or pastries with juice and/or milk. There is no fee for breakfast.


Lunch is served daily from our culinary arts program in New Lenox. The cost is $2.50 per lunch. On a monthly basis students are sent home with an order sheet of the schedule of meals for the upcoming month. Payment should be included with the completed order sheet and by the deadline indicated on the order form. Students on the Free Lunch program must provide proof of eligibility from their home school district.


Valuables, Cash, And Personal Belongings

It is strongly recommended that valuables, cash, and personal belongings remain at home. Hopewell assumes NO responsibility for theft, loss, damage, or vandalism to valuables, cash and personal belongings brought onto its property.


Privacy and Dignity Policy

Hopewell School maintains a policy of privacy and dignity for all students regarding the issues of toileting and other activities of personal care. The school facility will be functional and hygienic. Separate restroom facilities are available for both male and female students. All restroom facilities will be equipped with functional doors and locks for each individual stall to ensure the privacy and dignity of each student. Each staff member will be trained annually regarding this policy as well as all new staff members in the orientation procedure. The population of students at Hopewell will not include any students who need direct assistance with toileting or personal care including diapering.







Confidentiality and rights to privacy of students and families are very important at Hopewell Academy. Along the following guidelines, the staff members at Hopewell Academy maintain policies of confidentiality consistent with that of the Illinois Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Confidentiality Act, 740 ILCS 110/1 and the Illinois School Student Records Act, 105 ILCS 10/1.



Required Notes


Hopewell Academy requires notes from parents/guardians in the following situations:


1.     For dismissal during school hours.

2.     For permission to go home by some method other than the student’s usual method.

3.     For permission to attend a field trip.



No Smoking Policy


Illinois state law prohibits the use of tobacco on school grounds at any time. Failure to adhere to this policy may result in the use of legal action and/or other disciplinary measures.



Use Of Wireless Communication Devices

A "wireless communication device" is a device that emits an audible signal, vibrates, displays a message, or otherwise summons or delivers a communication to the possessor. The following devices are examples of WCDs: cellular and wireless telephones, pagers/beepers, Smartphones, Wi-Fi-enabled or broadband access devices, two-way radios or video broadcasting devices, laptops, and other devices that allow a person to record and/or transmit, on either a real time or delayed basis, sound, video or still images, text, or other information.

Students May Not use wireless communication devices (WCDs) because they create a distraction, disruption or otherwise interfere with the educational environment.



During instructional time, these devices may be allowed only when authorized by the classroom instructor for educational purposes related directly to classroom curriculum. WCDs must connect to the school network for Internet access, even when alternative sources are available.



When authorized, students using personal devices in school, on school property, and at school functions are required to follow the guidelines in the student handbook, and violations of the guidelines are subject to disciplinary action. Under no circumstances may personal devices contain/store or be used to share or view pornography or any other material that is obscene, objectionable, inappropriate and/or harmful to minors or in violation of State or Federal laws.



Students may use WCDs while riding to and from school on a school bus or other school vehicle during school-sponsored activities, at the discretion of the bus driver or classroom teacher. Distracting behavior that creates an unsafe environment will not be tolerated.

Students are prohibited from using WCDs to capture, record or transmit the words (i.e. audio) and/or images (i.e., pictures/video) of any student, staff member or other person in the school or while attending a school-related activity, without express prior notice and explicit consent for the capture, recording or transmission of such words or images. Unless authorized by the building site director, using a WCD to take or transmit audio and/or pictures/video of an individual without his/her consent is considered an invasion of privacy and is not permitted. Students who violate this provision and/or use a WCD to violate the privacy rights of another person may face disciplinary actions and have their WCD confiscated and held until the end of the school day.

WCDs, including but not limited to those with cameras, may not be possessed, activated or utilized at any time in any school situation where a reasonable expectation of personal privacy exists. These locations and circumstances include but are not limited to locker rooms, shower facilities, restrooms, classrooms, and any other areas where students or others may change clothes or be in any stage or degree of disrobing or changing clothes. The building site director has authority to make determinations as to other specific locations and situations where possession of a WCD is absolutely prohibited.

Students are prohibited from using a WCD in any way that might reasonably create in the mind of another person an impression of being threatened, humiliated, harassed, embarrassed or intimidated.

Students are also prohibited from using a WCD to capture and/or transmit test information or any other information in a manner constituting fraud, theft, cheating, or academic dishonesty. Likewise, students are prohibited from using their WCDs to receive such information.

No expectation of confidentiality or privacy will exist in the use of WCDs on school premises/property. Hopewell Academy has the authority to access a student’s personal WCD to verify compliance with the school’s policies.

Violations of this policy may result in disciplinary action and/or confiscation of the WCD. The building site director may also refer the matter to law enforcement if the violation involves an illegal activity (e.g. child pornography). Discipline will be imposed on an escalating scale ranging from a warning to an expulsion based on the number of previous violations and/or the nature of or circumstances surrounding a particular violation. If the WCD is confiscated, it will be released/returned to the student's parent/guardian after the student complies with any other disciplinary consequences that are imposed. Any WCD confiscated by staff will be marked in a removable manner with the student's name and held in a secure location in the building's main office until it is retrieved by the parent/guardian. WCDs in Hopewell custody will not be searched or otherwise tampered with unless school officials reasonably suspect that the search is required to discover evidence of a violation of the law or other school rules. If multiple offenses occur, a student may lose his/her privilege to bring a WCD to school for a designated length of time or on a permanent basis.

A person who discovers a student in possession of or using a WCD in violation of this policy is required to report the violation to the building site director.

Students are personally and solely responsible for the care and security of their WCDs. Hopewell assumes no responsibility for theft, loss, damage, or vandalism to WCDs brought onto its property, or the unauthorized use of such devices.

Parents/Guardians are advised that communication through wireless communication devices with their child is not permitted during instructional time. Parents are encouraged to notify the office for emergency situations in order for the school to assist the children when necessary. Students may not communicate with their parents through wireless communication devices during instructional time.





Education & Curriculum


Academic Expectations


At Hopewell Academy we believe that a student’s academic achievement is essential to a successful future. Academics include not only meeting Illinois academic standards but also developing classroom, transition, and social skills. Our students learn how to become lifelong learners, as well as how to manage frustration when learning presents challenges. Our students also are expected to progress through a standard curriculum with modifications that are determined according to their Individual Education Plans.


The staff members are sensitive to the challenges and difficulties that the students have experienced before they entered our program. We are also aware of the difficulties that have occurred at home involving homework in a student’s previous placement. While we do assign work to be done at home, we do so in a way that matches each student’s current progress and necessary supports. However, we feel strongly that expectations need to be set for these students to continue their social, emotional and academic growth so that they can succeed not just at Hopewell but also in the least restrictive placement such as their home school. Many of our students graduate and attend college or trade schools. We make it a priority to prepare them for the rigors of postsecondary school




In the classroom, students will receive letter grades for six courses per semester including, but not limited to: English, Math, Social Studies, Science, Physical Education and Social Development. Each test, quiz, in-class assignment or homework assignment will be assigned a point value. Student’s earned points are then translated into a percentage:


90-100%          A

80-89%            B

70-79%            C

60-69%            D


Report Cards & Progress Reports


Progress reports are issued at the end of each nine-week grading period. In the progress report, the student’s classroom teacher will indicate the student’s progress towards his/her Individual Education Program (“IEP”) goals and the student’s academic progress in each course. Semester grades are issued in report cards after each eighteen-week grading period.


Parents are welcome to discuss their child’s progress at any time during the school year. Conferences with your child’s teacher and/or therapist may be scheduled by contacting the site director. Parent-teacher conferences are typically scheduled after the end of the first grading period in October or November.



Therapeutic Treatment Modalities


A variety of therapeutic modalities are utilized within the program at Hopewell Academy. Upon entry into Hopewell Academy, each student is assigned an individual therapist. Group therapy occurs with the student’s classroom group.


Individual Therapy


A student will be seen in individual therapy with the frequency determined according to the specifications of the individual education program (IEP). Individual therapists are clinical psychologists, social workers or counselors. Treatment goals may include, but are not limited to, increasing awareness of internal states, increasing one’s ability to identify and verbalize feelings and developing more effective coping strategies.


Family Therapy


Parental involvement is crucial to a student’s emotional and academic success at Hopewell Academy. Family therapy is offered to each family of each student. Every effort is made to meet the unique scheduling needs of the family. Family sessions allow Parents and Guardians an opportunity to coordinate efforts between school and home.


Group Therapy


Students receive group therapy daily. The group leaders are our counselors and groups may include classroom teachers, classroom aides and students. Group leaders utilize a variety of techniques within the group but primarily use verbal exchange, depending on the social and developmental level and needs of the group members.


Goals of therapy include improved social interactions with peers and adults and an increased ability to process feelings.





Behavior Management


At Hopewell Academy all efforts are made to manage behavior positively, proactively and in an individualized manner. The staff members intervene in a variety of ways and settings to interrupt inappropriate behavior and assist students in developing coping and problem solving skills.


If students do not respond to a less restrictive intervention, the following interventions may be used to manage unsafe and disruptive behavior.


1.     Redirection. The student’s inappropriate behavior is redirected for one to five minutes. Redirections are utilized for failure to follow directions, name-calling, bullying, or swearing. A redirection is used in order to allow a student to calm down and reassess their behavior.

2.     Removal from Classroom. If a student is unable to be redirected by a staff member, the student is removed from the classroom to the hallway for one-on-one verbal redirection.

3.     Administrative and/or counselor Intervention. If a student needs additional time to calm down or is not responding to the staff member, an administrator will intervene and either accompany the student to the main office for further discussion or will accompany a student to a therapist/counselor office for an individualized session.

4.     Parental Involvement. If the student does not respond to the positive interventions listed previously, the administrator will contact the Parent or Guardian which may result in a parent conference that day, an early dismissal for student, or an in-school or out-of-school suspension. 


Hopewell Academy prohibits the use of any form of corporal punishment.



Physical Restraint Policies and Procedures


Hopewell Academy is committed to the regulations set forth by the State of Illinois as it applies to the use of physical restraint on students at publicly funded elementary and secondary schools (23 Il Admin Code, Sub A, Section 1.280 & 1.285).

Any behavioral intervention shall be consistent with a student's rights to be treated with dignity and respect and to be free from abuse.

Any behavioral intervention used shall be consistent with the student's most current IEP and with the student's behavioral intervention plan (BIP), if applicable.

Efforts shall be made to eliminate or minimize the need for the use of restraint with a student, including the use of prevention, positive behavior intervention and support, and conflict de-escalation prior to the use of seclusion or restraint, except in the case of an emergency.

Restraint shall be used only: 1) as a last resort safety procedure employed after another, less restrictive procedure has been implemented without success; and 2) when there is an imminent risk of injury to the student, other students, school employees, or visitors to the school.

Restraint shall be used only for a short period of time or until the imminent risk of injury has passed.

Hopewell Academy does not use a seclusion room for “isolated time outs” and therefore, has no policy in place regarding its use.


Pursuant to state law, the use of physical restraint is subject to the following requirements:


1.                 The student poses a physical risk to himself, herself or others;

2.                 There is no medical contraindications to its use; and

3.                 The staff members applying the restraint have been trained in its safe application.


Students will not be subjected to physical restraint for using profanity or other verbal displays of disrespect for themselves or others. A verbal threat without a means to carry out the threat does not constitute a physical danger.


Mechanical or chemical restraints will not be used at any time.


Any application of physical restraint will take into consideration the safety and security of the student as well as the student’s need for privacy, and the educational and emotional wellbeing of other students in the vicinity. A student will be released from physical restraint immediately upon a determination by the staff member administering the restraint that the student is no longer in imminent danger of causing physical harm to himself, herself, or others.




1.                 “Physical restraint” means holding a student or otherwise restricting his or her movements. “Physical restraint” as permitted under state law includes only the use of specific, planned techniques.

2.                 “Physical escort” is defined as momentary periods of physical restriction by direct person-to-person contact, without the aid of material or mechanical devices, accomplished with limited force and designed to:

a.      prevent a student from completing an act that would result in potential physical harm to himself, herself, or another or damage to property; or

b.     to remove a disruptive student who is unwilling to leave the area voluntarily.

Staff Training


All administrators, teachers, therapists and other staff members receive annual CPI Nonviolent Crisis Intervention restraint training regarding this policy. Training will include the use of interventions to de-escalate problem behavior in order to avoid the use of restraints, the types of restraints and related safety issue for each, and employing physical restraint in accordance with known medical or psychological limitations and/or behavior intervention plans for each student.


Intensive training will include:


1.                 Appropriate procedures for preventing the need for physical restraint, de-escalation of problem behaviors, relationship building, and the use of alternatives to restraints;

2.                 Description and identification of dangerous behaviors by a student which may indicate the need for physical restraint and methods for evaluating the risk of harm in individual situations to determine whether restraint is warranted;

3.                 Simulated experiences in administering and receiving physical restraint, instruction regarding the effects upon the person restrained, including the monitoring of physical signs of distress, and obtaining medical assistance;

4.                 Instruction regarding documentation and requirements and the investigation of injuries and complaints, and;

5.                 Demonstrations by participants showing that they are proficient in administering physical restraint.


All staff members will review any individual BIP pertaining to special techniques to be used with identified students.


Reporting Requirements


1.                 A staff member who administers the restraint will verbally inform the educational director or designee as soon as practical that day and by written report no later than the next school day.

2.                 The written record of the physical restraint will maintained in the student’s temporary file and will include:

a.      The student’s name;

b.     The date of the incident;

c.      The beginning and ending times of the incident;

d.     A description of any relevant events leading up to the incident;

e.      A description of any interventions used prior to the implementation of the physical restraint;

f.       A description of the incident and/or student behavior that resulted in the physical restraint;

g.     A log of the student’s behavior during the physical restraint, including a description of the restraint technique used and any other interaction between the student and the staff;

h.     A description of any injuries, if any, to staff or student or any property damage;

i.       A description of any planned approach to dealing with the student’s behavior in the future;

j.       A list of the school personnel who participated in the implementation, monitoring, and supervision of the physical restraint;

k.     The date on which the written parental notification took place.

3.                 The written report will be provided to the Parent/Guardian within 24 hours.


If a student remains a danger to himself, herself or others after a period of time beyond 15 minutes the following is necessary:


1.                 A certified staff member trained in the use of physical restraint will evaluate the situation.

2.                 The evaluation will consider the appropriateness of continuing the procedure in use, including the student’s potential need for medication, nourishment, or use of the restroom, and the need for alternative strategies (assistance by police or fire department EMT).

3.                 The results of the evaluation will be committed to writing and copies of this documentation will be placed in the student’s temporary student file and sent to the local school district official.





Prevention Of And Response To Bullying, Intimidation And Harassment


Bullying, intimidation, and harassment diminish a student’s ability to learn and a school’s ability to educate. Preventing students from engaging in these disruptive behaviors and providing all students equal access to a safe, non-hostile learning environment are important goals for the Hopewell Academy.


Bullying is contrary to Illinois state law and the policy of Hopewell Academy. However, nothing in this policy is intended to infringe upon any right to exercise free expression or the free exercise of religion or religiously based views protected under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution or under Section 3 of Article I of the Illinois Constitution.


Prohibited Bullying & Cyber-Bullying:


Bullying on the basis of actual or perceived race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, physical or mental disability, military status, unfavorable discharge status from the military service, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender-related identity or expression, association with a person or group with one or more of the aforementioned actual or perceived characteristics, or any other distinguishing characteristic is prohibited at Hopewell Academy. No student at Hopewell Academy shall be subjected to bullying:


1.     During any school-sponsored education program or activity;

2.     While in school, on school property, on school buses or other school vehicles, at designated school bus stops waiting for the school bus, or at school-sponsored or school-sanctioned events or activities;

3.     Through the transmission of information from a school computer, a school computer network, or other similar electronic school equipment; or

4.     Through the transmission of information from a computer that is accessed at a nonschool-related location, activity, function, or program or from the use of technology or an electronic device that is not owned, leased, or used by Hopewell Academy if the bullying causes a substantial disruption to the educational process or orderly operation of the school. This Paragraph 4 applies only when a school administrator or teacher receives a report that bullying through this means has occurred and does not require Hopewell Academy, including its school personnel, to staff or monitor any nonschool-related activity, function, or program.


For purposes of this policy, bullying includes cyber-bullying and means any severe or pervasive physical or verbal act or conduct, including communications made in writing or electronically, directed toward a student or students that has or can be reasonably predicted to have the effect of one or more of the following:


1.     Placing the student or students in reasonable fear of harm to the student’s or students’ person or property;

2.     Causing a substantially detrimental effect on the student’s or students’ physical or mental health;

3.     Substantially interfering with the student’s or students’ academic performance; or

4.     Substantially interfering with the student’s or students’ ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities, or privileges provided by Hopewell Academy.


Cyber-bullying means bullying through the use of technology or any electronic communication, including without limitation any transfer of signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, data, or intelligence of any nature transmitted in whole or in part by a wire, radio, electromagnetic system, photo-electronic system, or photo-optical system, including without limitation electronic mail, Internet communications, instant messages, or facsimile communications. Cyber-bullying includes the creation of a webpage or weblog in which the creator assumes the identity of another person or the knowing impersonation of another person as the author of posted content or messages if the creation or impersonation creates any of the effects enumerated in the definition of bullying. Cyber-bullying also includes the distribution by electronic means of a communication to more than one person or the posting of material on an electronic medium that may be accessed by one or more persons if the distribution or posting creates any of the effects enumerated in the definition of bullying.


Bullying may take various forms, including without limitation one or more of the following: harassment, threats, intimidation, stalking, physical violence, sexual harassment, sexual violence, theft, public humiliation, destruction of property, or retaliation for asserting or alleging an act of bullying. For purposes of this policy, this list is meant to be illustrative and non-exhaustive.


Prevention and Response Plan:


As required by the Illinois School Code, Hopewell Academy maintains a bullying prevention and response plan that advances the school’s goal of providing all students with a safe learning environment free of bullying and harassment.


Students are encouraged to immediately report bullying. A report may be made orally or in writing to the principal or assistant director or any staff member with whom the student is comfortable speaking. Anyone, including staff members and parents/guardians, who has information about actual or threatened bullying is encouraged to report it to the principal or assistant site director or any staff member. Anonymous reports are also accepted via phone or mail.


Contact Information for:


Name: Will McDermott, Principal, Hopewell Academy-New Lenox

Address: 1352 N. Cedar Road, New Lenox, IL 60451

E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Phone: 815-463-9655 x 7202


Name: Titus Payton, Principal, Hopewell Academy-Joliet

Address: 1009 S. Briggs Street, Joliet, IL 60433

E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Phone: 815-463-9655 x 7301


Name: Dennis Parsons, Site Director, Bridgepoint Academy

Address: 11520 W. 183rd Street, Orland Park, IL 60467

E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Phone: 815-463-9655 x 7203


Consistent with applicable federal and state laws regarding students’ privacy rights, upon receipt of information of a student’s alleged involvement in an incident of bullying, the parent(s)/guardian(s) of that student will be informed promptly and, as deemed appropriate by the school, will be offered available services, including social work services, counseling, school psychological services, and/or other interventions.


Hopewell Academy will promptly investigate and address reports of bullying by:


a)     Determining first whether the reported act of bullying is within the permissible scope of the school’s jurisdiction;

b)    Making all reasonable efforts to complete the investigation within 10 school days after the date the report of a bullying incident was received and taking into consideration additional relevant information received during the course of the investigation about the reported bullying incident;

c)     Involving appropriate school support personnel and other staff persons with knowledge, experience, and training on bullying prevention, as deemed appropriate, in the investigation process;

d)    Notifying the Building Principal or Site Director or his/her designee of the reported incident of bullying as soon as possible after the report is received;

e)     Consistent with applicable federal and state laws regarding students’ privacy rights, providing parents/guardians of the students who are parties to the investigation information about the investigation and an opportunity to meet and/or discuss with the Building Principal or Site Director the investigation, the findings of the investigation, and the actions taken to address the reported incident of bullying.

f)      As deemed appropriate, Hopewell Academy shall inform the resident school district of the incident, in order for the resident school district to determine whether to provide the involved student(s) with information regarding services that are available within the resident school district and/or community, such as counseling, support services, and other programs, and/or to convene an IEP meeting, as determined appropriate by the resident school district.


Hopewell Academy offers the following interventions, which may be amended, altered or discontinued from time-to-time, to address bullying situations: social work services, social-emotional skill building, counseling, school psychological services, and community-based services.


Hopewell Academy strictly prohibits reprisal or retaliation against any person who reports an act of bullying. A student’s act of reprisal or retaliation will be treated as bullying for purposes of determining consequences or other remedial actions deemed appropriate by Hopewell Academy.


No student will be punished for reporting bullying or supplying information, even if the school’s investigation concludes that no bullying occurred. However, knowingly making a false accusation or providing knowingly false information will be treated as bullying for purposes of determining consequences or other remedial actions deemed appropriate by Hopewell Academy.


Suggestions and or feedback regarding this bullying prevention policy are welcomed and should be directed to Chad Kollross, Administrator, Hopewell Academy and Bridgepoint Academy, 100 Batson Court, Suite 102, New Lenox, IL 60451 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 815-463-9655 x 7102.


Hopewell Academy shall conduct a review and reevaluation of this policy and make necessary and appropriate revisions every 2 years. This includes Hopewell Academy’s responsibility to evaluate and assess the outcomes and effectiveness including, but not limited to, the frequency of victimization; student, staff, and family observations of safety at a school; identification of areas of a school where bullying occurs; the types of bullying utilized; and bystander intervention or participation. Information developed as part of the policy evaluation will be made available on school’s website, if any, or by other means to school administrators, school personnel, parents/guardians and students.



Drugs, Alcohol & Weapons


Hopewell Academy absolutely forbids the possession of any weapon, including objects that are not normally considered weapons but are being used as a weapon (example: using a pencil or pen as a weapon) in school or on school owned or leased property, including at any school activity, whether on or off school grounds, and on a school bus or van or any form of school transportation, or property adjacent to school grounds.


Hopewell Academy absolutely forbids the possession, use, sale, and being under the influence of or otherwise furnishing to others a controlled substance or alcoholic beverage or drug paraphernalia, or intoxicant of any kind, in school or on school owned or leased property, including at any school activity, whether on or off school grounds, and on a school bus or van or any form of school transportation, or property adjacent to school grounds.


A violation of this policy will lead to disciplinary action including, but not limited to, suspension from school, termination from the program, and/or police intervention. Hopewell Academy complies with the Illinois School Code with regard to any mandated reporting to local authorities related to drug-related and firearm incidents.   



Suspension Of Students And Termination From Program

Hopewell recognizes that removal from the educational programs of Hopewell, whether by suspension or termination, is one the most severe sanctions that can be imposed on a student at Hopewell.

A student is subject to suspension and/or termination from school if his/her behavior represents misconduct or substantial disobedience while the student is on school grounds immediately before or during school hours, or immediately after school hours, or at any other time when the school is being used by a school group; off school grounds at a school activity, function, or event; or traveling to or from school or a school activity, function, or event.

In addition to the grounds specified above, a student may be suspended or terminated for engaging in unlawful activity on or off school grounds if the unlawful activity may reasonably be considered to be an interference with school purposes or an educational function, or the student's removal is necessary to restore order or protect persons on school property, including any unlawful activity during weekends, holidays, other school breaks, and the summer period when a student may not be attending classes or other school functions.

Furthermore, a student may be suspended or terminated for bullying, regardless of the physical location in which the bullying occurred, whenever:



the individual committing the bullying behavior and any of the intended targets of the bullying behavior are students attending a school; and






disciplinary action is reasonably necessary to avoid substantial interference with school discipline or prevent an unreasonable threat to the rights of others to a safe and peaceful learning environment.

The following specific acts set forth below are examples of student misconduct and/or substantial disobedience. These acts are prohibited and offenders may be subject to suspension and/or termination for such misconduct or substantial disobedience:



Using violence, force, noise, coercion, threat, intimidation, fear, passive resistance, or other comparable conduct constituting an interference with school purposes, or urging other students to engage in such conduct prohibited by this subdivision:






Occupying any school building, school grounds, or part thereof with intent to deprive others of its use.






Blocking the entrance or exits of any school building or corridor or room therein with intent to deprive others of lawful access to or from, or use of the building, corridor, or room.






Setting, or attempting to set fire to, any school building or property.






Prevention of or attempting to prevent by physical act the convening or continued functioning of any school or educational function, or of any lawful meeting or assembly on school property.






Continuously and intentionally making noise or acting in any manner so as to interfere seriously with the ability of any teacher or any of the other school personnel to conduct the educational function under his/her supervision.





This subdivision shall not, however, be construed to make any particular student conduct a ground for termination where such conduct is constitutionally protected as an exercise of free speech or assembly or other right under the Constitution of the United States.






Trespassing, vandalizing school property, causing or attempting to cause substantial damage to school property, stealing or attempting to steal school property of substantial value, or repeatedly damaging or stealing school property of small value.







Intentionally causing or attempting to cause substantial damage to valuable private property, stealing or attempting to steal valuable private property, or repeatedly damaging or stealing private property.






Intentionally causing or attempting to cause physical injury or intentionally behaving in such a way as could reasonably cause physical injury to any person. It is Hopewell’s position that students must learn to deal with conflict in a mature manner. This includes learning alternative responses to physical confrontation.






Self-defense or reasonable action undertaken on the reasonable belief that it was necessary to protect some other person does not, therefore, constitute a violation of this provision.






For the purpose of this policy and code, "reasonable action" shall mean the course of action which:






Utilizes physical force only when non-physical alternatives (e.g. retreat, or notification of supervisory personnel) are not available.






Does not constitute the initiation of a physical confrontation.






Does not utilize excessive force.






For the purpose of this policy and code, "reasonable belief" shall be:






Belief that no non-physical alternatives were available;






In response to unanticipated use of physical force.






Threatening or intimidating any student for the purpose of, or with the intent of, obtaining money or anything of value from the student.







Knowingly possessing, handling, or transmitting a knife or any other object that can reasonably be considered a weapon. A student who must use a knife as part of an organized activity held by an organization that has been approved by the principal of the school is exempt from application of this subsection so long as the knife is used as part of or in accordance with the approved organized activity.






Knowingly possessing, using, transmitting, or being under the influence of any narcotic drug, hallucinogenic drug, amphetamine, barbiturate, marijuana, alcoholic beverage, or intoxicant of any kind. Use of a drug authorized by a medical prescription from a physician is not a violation of this subdivision.






Engaging in the unlawful selling of a controlled substance or engaging in a criminal law violation that constitutes a danger to other students or constitutes an interference with school purposes or an educational function.






Failing in a substantial number of instances to comply with directions of teachers or other school personnel during any period of time when the student is properly under their supervision, where the failure constitutes an interference with school purposes or an educational function.






Engaging in any activity forbidden by the laws of Illinois that constitutes an interference with school purposes or an educational function.






Violating or repeatedly violating any rules that are reasonably necessary in carrying out school purposes or an educational function.






Knowingly possessing or using on school grounds during school hours an electronic paging device or a handheld portable telephone in a situation not related to a school purpose or an educational function.






Engaging in conduct or in speech that threatens, intimidates or coerces a teacher, administrator, supervisory employee, or adult volunteer who is in the performance of his/her duties.







Engaging in speech or conduct, including clothing, jewelry, or hair style, which is profane, indecent, lewd, or offensive to school purposes.






Engaging in sexual misconduct in any form whether by word or action, inclusive of sexual harassment.






Wearing any type of apparel or grooming style that interferes with the educational process, creates an actual or potential health or safety hazard, or causes, or threatens to cause damage to school property.

All suspensions will be approved by the student’s home school district Special Education Director before the student begins serving the suspension. For purposes of this policy and the Administrator’s guidelines, the following definitions shall apply:


"Suspension" shall be the temporary removal of a student by the school principal from Hopewell’s program for a period not to exceed ten (10) school days.





Search And Seizure

Hopewell recognizes its obligation to balance the privacy rights of its students with its responsibility to provide student, faculty, and authorized visitors with a safe, hygienic, and alcohol/drug-free learning environment.

In balancing these competing interests, Hopewell utilizes the following principles:

1.     School Property

School facilities such as lockers and desks are school property provided for student use subject to the right of the Administrator and his designee to enter the facility as needed and inspect all items in the facility searched. Students shall not have an expectation of privacy in any facility provided by Hopewell and will not be permitted to deny entry to a Hopewell administrator by the use of a lock or other device.

2.     Student Person & Possession

Prior to a search of a student's person and personal items in the student's immediate possession, consent of the student will be sought by an administrator. If the student does not consent, such a search shall be permitted based only upon the administrator's individualized reasonable suspicion to believe that the search will produce evidence of a violation of a law, school rule, or a condition that endangers the safety or health of the student or others. Searches of the person of a student shall be conducted and witnessed by a person of the same gender as the student and shall be conducted in a private place. A searched student's parent or guardian shall be notified of the search within twenty-four (24) hours if possible.

3.     Student Vehicle

Permission for a student to bring a vehicle on school property shall be conditioned upon consent of the search of the vehicle and all containers inside the vehicle by a school administrator with reasonable suspicion to believe the search will produce evidence of a violation of law, a school rule, or a condition that endangers the safety or health of the student driver or others. The student shall have no expectation of privacy in any vehicle or in the contents of any vehicle operated or parked on school property.

4.     Law Enforcement


The Administrator may request the assistance of a law enforcement agency in implementing any aspect of this policy. Where law enforcement officers participate in a search on school property or at a school activity pursuant to a request from the Administrator, the search shall be conducted by the law enforcement officers in accordance with the legal standards applicable to law enforcement officers.

Anything found in the course of a search pursuant to this policy which constitutes evidence of a violation of a law or a school rule or which endangers the safety or health of any person shall be seized and utilized as evidence if appropriate. Seized items of value shall be returned to the owner if the items may be lawfully possessed by the owner. Seized items of no value and seized items that may not lawfully be possessed by the owner shall be destroyed.

The Administrator or designee will promptly record in writing the following information for each search pursuant to this policy:


The information upon which the search was based.




The time, date, location, students, or places searched, and persons present.


A description of any item seized and its disposition.




The time and date of notice to the parent or guardian in the case of the search of the person of a student.




Health Concerns


If your child has a special health problem, please indicate the details of their health issue on the emergency form. This could include chronic asthma, food allergies, bee sting allergies, etc. If your child takes daily medication at home, please notify the teacher or administration so that any side effects that may occur will be more easily recognized.



Medication Administration

Administering Medications To Students


Certified staff members, by law, are allowed to administer medication to students. Staff members, except certified school nurses, will not be required to administer medication to students. We strongly encourage parent(s)/guardians(s) to administer medications to their children at home.  Administering medication during school hours or during school-related activities is discouraged unless it is necessary for the critical health and wellbeing of the student. A student may possess medication prescribed for asthma for immediate use at the student’s discretion, provided the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s) have completed and signed a “School Medication Authorization Form.”


Medication Will Be Provided To A Student After:


1.     Receipt of the appropriate authorization form, completed and signed by the licensed prescriber and the parent/guardian.  This is for all prescribed Medication.

2.     Medication must be in a properly labeled container with the name of the student, the prescribing physician, name of the medication, dosage, route, time to be given, and the pharmacy name.

3.     Non-prescription medication should be in the original manufactures package and the student’s name affixed to the container. 

4.     Medication must be brought to school by the parent/guardian or other responsible adult.

This is to insure student safety and for the prevention of any loss or misuse of the medication.

5.     Acetaminophen may be given to students with parent/guardian signature on the Medical Information Form for Acetaminophen. Standing orders have been approved for use under supervision of the school nurse.


Self-Administration of Asthma Medications or Epi-Pen


1.     Some students may need to carry their emergency medication (asthma inhalers and Epi-Pens) on their person, and use it on an “as needed” basis. These situations require a doctor’s order and written parental/guardian authorization as indicated on the appropriate Medication Authorization Form.

2.     The school nurse will complete a self-administration of medication assessment. If the student does not show responsibility with the medication, the parent/ guardian and physician will be notified. The student will be further educated about the proper reason and proper use of the medication.

3.     A student agreement to carry the specific medication will be signed indicating understanding of the medication and proper use, that the medication will not be shared and that they will notify a responsible adult if there is no marked improvement after the prescribed dose is given. 

4.     Permission allows the student to possess and use his or her medication while in school, while at a school-sponsored activity, and while under the supervision of school personnel.


In cases where the medication dosage is altered, another “Request for Administration of Medication” form must be completed or the doctor may re-write the order on his prescription pad and the parent will sign a new medication form.   If your child’s medication is to be discontinued, both the parent/guardian and the physician must notify the school in writing.  


It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to pick up any unused medication at the end of the school year.  Medication that is not picked up will be disposed of.  



Immunizations & Physical Examinations


In accordance with Illinois State regulations, a copy of the immunization record must be in the student’s chart and students are required to have a documented physical examination on file.  The dates of the physical examinations must coincide with beginning of ninth grade.

1.                 Immunizations must be current and updated. It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to make sure that the student is up-to-date on all immunizations.

2.                 For specific immunization requirements, please contact your child’s home school district. A list of Illinois minimum immunization requirements can be obtained from Hopewell Academy, if needed.

3.                 All required immunizations must be completed and the documentation provided to the school by October 15 or the student will no longer be allowed to attend until the requirements are met.



Student Accidents


In the event of an accident occurring at school, the following procedures will be followed:


1.     The school will attempt to contact the parents/guardians immediately.

2.     If the parent/guardian cannot be contacted, the emergency contact provided at the beginning of the year will be called. (Please keep emergency contact numbers up-to-date.)

3.     The adult assuming responsibility must sign out any student leaving during school hours at the main office.

4.     In the event of a serious accident or injury, a Hopewell staff member will contact 911. The responding emergency personnel will make the decision whether the student needs to be transported to a hospital. Typically, an injured student will be transported to Silver Cross Hospital in New Lenox. An employee of Hopewell Academy will accompany the student transported to the hospital when appropriate.

5.     Any parent/guardian objecting to medical treatment in an emergency should instruct Hopewell Academy in writing on the procedure to follow.



Student Records


Every effort is made to ensure the rights of parents and students as provided under the Illinois School Student Records Act 105 ILCS 10/1 et seq. Confidentiality and rights to privacy of students and families are very important at Hopewell Academy. Along the following guidelines, the staff members at Hopewell Academy maintain policies of confidentiality consistent with that of the Illinois Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Confidentiality Act, 740 ILCS 110/1 and the Illinois School Student Records Act, 105 ILCS 10/1.

Student records shall be available only to students and their parents, eligible students, designated school officials and designated school personnel, who have a legitimate educational interest in the information, or to other individuals or organizations as permitted by law.

The term "parents" includes legal guardians or other persons standing in loco parentis (such as a grandparent or stepparent with whom the child lives, or a person who is legally responsible for the welfare of the child). The term "eligible student" includes any student who is eighteen (18) years of age or older, or who is enrolled in a postsecondary institution regardless of his/her age.

In situations in which a student has both a custodial and a noncustodial parent, both shall have access to the student's educational records unless stated otherwise by court order. In the case of an eligible student, that is a student who is (eighteen (18) years of age or older), parents will be allowed access to the records without the student's consent, provided the student is considered a dependent under Section 152 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Hopewell Academy maintains only a temporary file for each student. Upon the occasion that a student is terminated from the program for any number of reasons, the temporary file is returned in complete form to the referring school district.



Fire & Tornado Drills


Fire and disaster drills are practiced throughout the school year at various times. Students are instructed to move quickly and quietly to the designated areas and follow procedures that are posted in each classroom.


Tornadoes are prevalent in the Midwest during the fall and spring. Students are instructed in procedures and participate in drills during the year. Hopewell Academy is part of an early-warning network operated by the Will County Emergency Center. When conditions are favorable to severe weather, school personnel are instructed to take emergency action. When a Tornado Warning has been issued, school buses will not run and students will not be dismissed from school. When conditions change from Tornado Warning to All-Clear condition, school will resume normal operations. Safety is the primary concern.





Graduation is a special time in a student’s life. The student is making a transition from middle school to high school or from high school to college/work. Many events take place at Hopewell Academy to celebrate graduation. The students, the student’s family and friends and the school staff are included in these events. Students are welcome to participate in Hopewell Academy’s graduation ceremony. If students wish to participate in their home school graduation ceremony, please contact your local school district contact person for more information.