It is not so much the kid being awakened and taken someplace in the middle of the night; parents can do that, or have that done I guess. I wouldn't if I were a parent, I'll admit; but I don't see it as some absolute travesty in and of itself.
My truck is with what happens to the kids when they get where they're going. The parents are spoonfed crap about natural, nurturing environments with horseback riding, guitar playing - some discipline too, but by all accounts basically just a summer-campish boarding school, which is why the parents don't feel too bad about sending their kids there.
The actual places are nothing like this. Everything is regulated and scheduled, and the slightest infractions are made example of. And while the punishments may not exactly be torture when taken by themselves, the rules are so unyielding that the inmates are being punished constantly. The older, more advanced inmates are placed in a position of meager authority over younger ones; and those older inmates, already hardened and bitter from their own treatment, don't hesitate to chomp at this bit as often as they can.
Then, this place operates and sends "students" to some other facilities located in foreign countries (namely Jamaica and Mexico), where there is less or even no fear of legal reprisal, where the treatment becomes downright brutal and physically abusive.
Adding insult to injury is a promise to the parents that inmates who are educated by these "schools", which are allegedly "accredited" (in reality by a front organization that is not recognized by the US Department of Education), will receive a high school diploma when they leave - they in fact receive a worthless piece of paper that nobody, anywhere, will accept; and with good reason, when you take a look at what "education" in these places actually entails.
It seems to me (after careful thought, mind you), that these places are in a sense even worse than those teen "boot camps", because inmates stay at WWASP/S schools for months - or even years if the staff doesn't like them and won't allow them to "graduate".
Edited by melliferal (07/02/07 11:51 PM)