IntrepidNet, November 12, 1998
Americans arrested for child abuse in Czech Republic--Morava Academy under investigation for child abuse By Donna Headrick
Got a Bad little kid? Recalcitrant Teen? Child a chronic runaway? Psychologists and Psychiatrists have failed? Son or daughter underachieving?
A growing phenomenon in the United States has been to send such children to private "behavior modification schools." And the explosive growth in these programs has included programs in Western Samoa, Jamaica, Mexico and the Czech Republic.
Parent contact with their children is closely regulated and parents and children are required to attend a series of "encounter group" type seminars and follow rules established by the programs. In addition, they utilize a "level" system where teens on higher levels act as enforcers with the younger or lower-level teens.
Morava Academy in the Czech Republic opened under the aegis of what is known as the "WorldWide Association of Speciality Programs" in March of 1998. Czech authorities have arrested four staff members including Americans Glenn and Stephen Roach. Mrs. Roach (Glenn) is the director and her husband, Stephen, is the Director of Security. The charges are for violating Czech child protective laws and include having the children lie on the floor with their hands and sometimes feet tied, for extended periods of times. Access to toilet facilities is closely controlled as a means of enforcing discipline and the students may be subject to physical restraint including Handcuffs, pepper spray, mace and cattle prods at the sole discretion of the staff.
Several children were removed by American diplomats making a surprise visit to the school and others are being moved by their families to other Teen Help and WWASP programs.
For further information, contact: Donna Headrick at (207)761-7068 or B.K. Delong at (617) 247-3753