Gerard Community Mental Health Services

New Dominion School —
Inspiring Lifelong Learning

Contact New Dominion School: 507-434-8650

New Dominion School provides an integrated full-day educational program for students in residential treatment at Gerard Academy.

Located on the Gerard Academy campus in Austin, MN, New Dominion School is a contracted, non-public school located within the boundaries of Austin Public Schools, District #492.

New Dominion School follows a traditional school calendar. Students who qualify for general education or special education services in the summer receive up to six weeks of additional schooling over the summer months.

All New Dominion School general education and special education teachers are licensed by the Minnesota Department of Education, and classroom curriculum and instruction is based on Minnesota State Standards and formalized testing.

We believe that all students are capable of academic achievement, regardless of their history, mental health diagnosis, and/or past school experiences. It is our job to provide a new educational experience that meets the students where they are and supports them to move toward their newly discovered potential as a lifelong learner.

  • Accredited by AdvancEd.
  • School Administrator
  • Staff is comprised of certified and non-certified personnel and includes the following experts:
    • New Dominion School Administrator
    • Educational Coordinator
    • Administrative Assistant
    • General Education Teachers
    • Special Education Teachers
    • Behavior Specialists
    • Paraprofessionals
  • Courses for K-12 are offered in the following subjects:
    • Language Arts
    • Math
    • Science
    • Social Studies
    • Read 180 (for students who qualify)
    • Art
    • Physical Education
    • Health
    • Life Skills
  • Curriculum at New Dominion School aligns with the Austin Public Schools. New Dominion School also utilizes numerous supplemental curricular items to reach all learners.
  • Classroom Placement is determined by evaluating Scantron Performance Series Assessment scores and students' records from their school district of residence.
  • Classroom Ratio is maintained at 1 teacher and 1 paraprofessional per 8 students for elementary; middle school and high school is 1 teacher and 1 paraprofessional per 8-10 students.
  • Special Education services are assessed and accommodations provided according to students' individual education programs. The special education team follows all due process procedures and timelines as defined by the Minnesota Department of Education. Clinical support provided by Gerard Academy.
  • Education and Supply Costs are purchased through Gerard Academy. The cost of educational services is billed to the resident district of each student in a tuition bill. Supplemental instructional support can be purchased through federal title dollars.
  • Family Involvement is important to all students' academic and behavioral success. New Dominion staff maintain consistent and meaningful communication with parents, guardians, and service providers.
  • Extracurricular Activities are not offered through New Dominion School. Students performing well in school can participate in field trips and activities in the community and surrounding area.
  • Vocational Training is offered through experiential college courses in noncredit-bearing technical exploration and skills training offered to qualifying New Dominion high school students through a partnership with Riverland Community College.
  • Education and Transfer Credits accumulate toward graduation while a student is at New Dominion School. Staff work closely with the resident district to compile transcripts that accurately reflect their credit count and identify the courses necessary for graduation.
  • Community School Transition is coordinated by New Dominion School staff. The team works diligently to ensure that all students have a successful transition to their community school. New Dominion School communicates the upcoming educational environment regarding what has provided each student with a successful learning experience. Staff provide detailed and thorough Individual Education Programs to support students who receive special education services.
  • Experiential College Courses are available to students when they reach a point during their senior year where only a few credits are needed for graduation. At that point, students may be enrolled in the local community college, and these credits become dual credits.
  • Disciplinary Concerns are handled with school staff. All New Dominion School staff are certified in Life Space Crisis Intervention, which allows the team to effectively intervene with self-defeating patterns of behavior. School performance is tracked specifically and barriers are identified for each student. Plans are individually developed with each student according to their learning style and ability.
  • Educational Grievances are resolved with the New Dominion School Administrator.
  • Graduation is held at a student's resident district or at New Dominion School. Students who choose to have their formal ceremony at New Dominion School receive their diploma from their resident district.

Michelle Olsen
Contact New Dominion School
Michelle Olsen, NDS Administrative Assistant
Phone: 507-434-8667
Fax: 507-433-1627


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