“The most valuable lesson I learned at Lad Lake was to make friends before you make foes. And always try to be friendly.”

When Kyle enrolled in Lad Lake’s Day Education program at age 11, he struggled with disciplinary issues and had a difficult time controlling his anger. Four short years later, he’s begun transitioning to Menomonee Falls High School and has already set his sights on receiving a higher education – with a very specific college in mind.

“I want to go to Harvard,” Kyle says earnestly, speaking with enthusiasm about his eagerness to study law and learn Japanese – an interest he’s had since discovering an affinity for the culture’s heritage and honor. And thanks to Lad Lake, Kyle understands the responsibility required of him if he’s going to achieve his goals.

“Ever since I’ve been at Lad Lake, I’ve had to take on a lot of responsibility,” Kyle says. His mother – who commutes 150 miles to and from work each day – feels comfortable leaving it up to Kyle to get up and ready for school every morning, taking care of the family dogs, and watching over the house while she’s away. “I guess by testing me with responsibilities, the staff at Lad Lake really helped prepare me for the real life responsibilities I deal with now.”

Having come so far, Kyle is still able to look back on his time at Lad Lake and pinpoint that watershed moment in his improvement. “It was when the teachers started trusting me and the students started respecting me. All because I started controlling my anger. Right at that moment, I felt the best I have in 15 years.”

“The most valuable lesson I learned at Lad Lake was to make friends before you make foes. And always try to be friendly.”

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