Open Connections

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Additional Services

Additional Services

Open Connections provides additional services that are also available to the general public. For more information, or to register for any of these programs/services, please call (610) 459-3366. 

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For families registered with their school district under the Home Education Law, one of the requirements is an annual evaluation with a PA-certified teacher or licensed school or clinical psychologist. We provide this service for interested families.


Please contact us for details.

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Test Preparation and Testing


For families registered with their school district under the PA Home Education Law, one of the requirements is standardized testing in 3rd, 5th and 8th grades. 


Open Connections offers a half-day “test prep” in the late winter in order to familiarize both parents and youth with what to expect if they take their test at OC, including a chance to practice and ask questions about both the process and the content of such tests. We have found these preparatory experiences to be incredibly helpful in reducing anxiety levels and in providing insight into which areas, if any, a family might wish to practice more on their own. 


We administer the tests in May in a relaxed manner that allows for young people to fulfill the PA Home Education Law requirement in a comfortable setting. 


Please contact us for details.

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Open Connections Educational Consulting


Educational Consulting options are tailored to the individual family and youth. Typical services include (but are not limited to) the following: 

  • Working with the youth (and parents, when requested) to develop the big picture; 
  • Identifying areas of interest and helping to locate and secure tutors, mentors and other useful resources; 
  • Working to obtain an internship/ apprenticeship; 
  • Identifying long-term goals and finding ways to work towards those goals; 
  • Helping to navigate the college search process; and 
  • Assistance with applying to colleges (or signing up for individual college courses). 


There are two options that we offer: 

  • One-time consulting ($200 fee, free for currently enrolled and new families). Includes initial meeting (approx. 1••• hours) and a brief follow-up meeting; or 
  • On-going consulting ($500 fee). Includes initial 1••• hour meeting and on-going support throughout the program year. (Time is typically not tracked on an hourly basis because there are often many informal check-ins on a weekly basis. Depending on the level of support the family is seeking, the consultancy typically ranges from seven to ten hours, not including the initial meeting.) 


As Co-directors of Open Connections, Mike Hilbert and Julia Bergson-Shilcock conduct the Educational Consulting at Open Connections. 


Please contact us for details.

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“The OC Process for Creativity and Communications” Workshop 


Adults interested in learning more about the OC approach to education have a chance to develop their Process Consciousness and learn the skills that improve communication and creativity. 


Parents and other educators will learn to identify ways of thinking and speaking that dramatically increase the probability of success in any interpersonal exchange. They’ll hear how to turn conflicts into creative problem-solving sessions, even between four-year-olds; how to end whining; how to reverse the stressful effects of competition and replace them with the joys of collaboration; how to avoid the game of Rescue and replace it with a positive form of helping; how to set boundaries that will be honored; and how to nurture self-motivation and stop feeding complacency and unproductive dependence. 


Please CONTACT US for details.

"OC Speak" Glossary

What we mean when we say:

Process Consciousness

An understanding of Process Consciousness begins with the realization that when people speak to one another, or to themselves for that matter, there are two major aspects of their communication: content and process.  We first learn the distinction between these two factors, and the way they are related.  Specifically, we are interested in the impact  that process has on content, and how much the process of a person-to-person interaction affects the probability of success.  The way an idea is presented and the way in which the idea is responded to are likely to have a profound effect on the members’ ability to achieve both their immediate and long term purposes. To be conscious of process, at a deep level, is to be able to increase the quality of our results, whether our goal is simple communication--to be understood and to understand others--or to create a new solution to a problem or opportunity.  Having Process Consciousness, then, is to attend to human thought and behavior for the purpose of improving the probability of success in meeting our needs and fulfilling our goals, both personally and as part of any group.