The Winston Knolls School at Hoffman Estates Campus recognizes that the high school years are the years during which each individual forms his/her adult personality, basic values, and attitudes. Students in this age group often also have a strong need for group belonging. The Winston Knolls School at Hoffman Estates Campus hopes to establish a learning environment where all students are able to have a sense of belonging within the school community. The Winston Knolls School at Hoffman Estates Campus hopes to build the student social skills through the social nature of adolescents. Opportunities are given throughout the day for students to socialize with one another and with the teachers and related service providers. These social opportunities take into consideration that many students feel vulnerable and are not comfortable interacting with peers or adults. We also address relationships and social interaction with the opposite sex by working on appropriate topics of discussion, non-verbal communication, and issues related to different genders.

Adolescents greatly need and are influenced by adult role models. Teachers, program assistants, and related service providers are seen as role models to build a trusting relationship with. The student’s classroom teacher is not just someone who provides academic instruction, but an adult who is expected to answer, “how can I help you get through the school day better?”