Programs & Services

Academic Improvement & GED Prep

Students attend Academic/GED program five days per week from 8:00 AM to 12:30 PM each day. Afternoon classes are offered as needed according to enrollment or to accommodate individual needs. Students can work toward earning their GED or returning to public school. Each GED student will complete a TABE test to determine his or her academic level and length of time it will take to be prepared for the test. Each GED student will use the PACE software program and receive individual instruction. Students returning to  Decatur City or Morgan County school systems will work on the computer-based credit recovery program provided by each system in order to achieve grade level. Students returning to other systems will use the PACE software program and receive individual instruction to meet the state requirements for each course. All students participate in a physical education program and life skills classes daily. They also receive vocational instructions bi-weekly. Clients will need to meet with one of our Academic Instructors to complete the enrollment process.

Boys Residential

The HANDS Home provides emergency shelter for up to 21 days to assist in the alleviation of the problems of runaway, and homeless teenage boys and boys at risk of running away or homelessness. The HANDS Home helps reunite teenage boys with their families, strengthen their family relationships and helps teenage boys in determining a constructive course of action for their future. Boys' home also offers an aftercare program for boys returning to the community from out of home placement. The home also provides a “time out” for families in crisis situations, experiencing separation, divorce, etc. Potential clients should contact Lyndell Maxwell, the Residential Counselor.

Girls Residential

The HANDS Home provides emergency shelter for up to 21 days to assist in the alleviation of the problems of runaway, and homeless teenage girls and girls at risk of running away or homelessness. The HANDS Home helps reunite teenage girls with their families, strengthen their family relationships and helps teenage girls in determining a constructive course of action for their future. The girls' home offers an aftercare program for girls returning to the community from out of home placement. The home also provides a “time out” for families in crisis situations, experiencing separation, divorce, etc. Prospective clients for HANDS Home should contact Taylor Aldridge, the Residential Counselor.

Parent Project

Parent Project is a training program designed for parents of strong-willed or out of control children. Classes meet weekly (Mondays 6-8 PM) for ten weeks and are facilitated by a certified parent coach. Topics include reducing family conflict and arguing, improving school performance and attendance, identifying and intervening with alcohol and other drug abuse, supported with power point presentations, guest speakers, videos, and role plays. The last few weeks include a support group format to give parents and opportunity to receive support and encouragement from each other.

ROPES Confidence Course

Certified instructors start with icebreakers to introduce the group’s members to each other and then introduce a series of obstacles that increase in difficulty in which the group members have to work as a team to complete. The ROPES classes are usually limited to 6-10 group members. The ROPES course encourages team work, discipline, structure, positive interactions, setting goals, self-esteem, trust, following directions, leadership, problem solving, decision making and confidence. SOS has an ACCT approved lower elements ROPES course on site. 

Shoplifting Intervention

This program utilizes the Youth Educational Shoplifting (Y.E.S.) home-study course produced by the National Association of Shoplifting Prevention (NASP). The program is presented on audio CD’s that students follow with their workbook to learn about laws and consequences of shoplifting, how shoplifting becomes an addiction, as well as the social and financial impact of their behavior. Students meet as a group for program orientation where they are given an overview of the program materials and receive instruction in completing the course. The home study must be completed within three weeks at which time the student must attend a follow-up individual session with the program coordinator to score their answers, review their personal plan to stop shoplifting and complete a psychological profile analysis and risk assessment. Program orientation is held on the 3rd Wednesday of each month from 4:15-5:15 p.m. The cost of the home study kit is $50 and must be paid at program orientation. Additional program fees may be assessed at screening. 


Tobacco Prevention

The tobacco video,  Perfect Together,  graphically introduces teens to the many types of damage that tobacco causes to the body and presents hard- hitting interviews with smokers and their families as they battle with smoking-related diseases. The program stresses an important message to students: it is best never to start smoking, but current smokers are encouraged to reclaim their lives by quitting. Students will come away with the vital understanding that tobacco and death are undeniably linked, and that rejecting tobacco is one of the most important steps toward a healthy life they can make. This video is shown to each client of all programs at Morgan County System of Services.

Vocational Counseling

Vocational Counseling

Vocational Counseling and training is offered to students as part of their academic program. Counseling services, such as; career exploration, job readiness, job referrals, application assistance and vocational aptitude are designed to help prepare the student for a particular vocation. Microsoft skills, and soft skills for vocational students who are 16 years or older are provided as an opportunity to do Work Keys in preparation for the workforce. Hands-on opportunities are prearranged for students to job shadow and interact with business managers which in turn, gives way for teens to be personally assessed on workplace performance. Our career guidance program helps develop their individual's competencies in self-knowledge, educational and occupational exploration through our partnering with the Launch Program and the Decatur Career Center, and other vocational education and training programs, such as Job Corps. This program provides a comprehensive, developmental platform that basically assists individuals in making and implementing informed educational and occupational choices for their future career.  


Why Try

The WhyTry Program utilizes 10 visual analogies to teach life skills to help youth thrive. Using relevant multimedia resources (video, music and literature) as well as physical learning activities, teens can easily see how each analogy applies to their lives. The program is designed to give students hope and guidance in overcoming the challenges they face and to answer the question "Why try in life?" when they are frustrated, confused or angry with  life's pressures. Participants learn that trying hard and putting effort into challenges at home, school and with peers is worth it and can lead to more opportunity, freedom and self-respect. 

Community Service

Community Service Learning (CSL) links youth with an appropriate agency worksite to provide a meaningful work experience, positive interaction with role models, develop job and interpersonal skills, learn responsibility, structure and accountability while giving back to the community. Youth ordered by Morgan County Jevenile Court to perform community service hours will need to meet with the CSL Program Coordinator to be assigned a worksite, The coordinator will monitor the client's attendance and performance at the sites through the agency supervisor. Morgan County System of Services is partnered with a variety of agencies throughout Morgan County. Clients ordered to Community Service Learning may also be require to complete the ROPES program.

Intake Screening and Referral Services

In order to provide relevant and individual services, clients are referred to participate in an innovative process at the entry and re-entry into Juvenile Court. In conjunction with the Juvenile Probation Officer’s intake process, the client meets with the Screening and Resource Specialist. The screener utilizes tools such as the nationally recognized surveys the POSIT and MAYSI 2, client and collateral interviews, and drug screening to identify needs in areas such as mental health, substance abuse, education, vocation, and family/peer relations. If the screening process identifies any needs or deficits, the client receives immediate referral and placement assistance. The screening also streamlines the intake process for clients enrolling in SOS programs. The Screening and Resource Specialist can be reached at (256)350-8434, Ext. 216.

SEAT (SOS Evening Attendance Track)

The SEAT Program provides an opportunity for students that have been charged with truancy to make up missed academic days. Students who have failed a class can recover the credit using PLATO; the online credit recovery program used by surrounding schools systems. Students who have passed all of their classes can work on deficit math and language skills or prepare for the ACT. After students are charged with truancy they will have an appointment with the screening specialist and she will issue a SEAT start date. The SEAT Program is every Tuesday night beginning promptly at 6:00pm and ending at 8:30pm.