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Tacitus' Realm / SOPA: The bill that could kill the Internet
« on: November 16, 2011, 02:49:23 PM »
SOPA: The bill that could kill the Internet

Suw Charman-Anderson · Nov 16, 2011

As the US government's House Judiciary Committee begins hearings on the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act, (SOPA), both supporters and opponents are ramping up their campaigning, with big names getting involved. And so they should. SOPA's stakes are no less than the future of the Internet itself.

The key problem with SOPA is that it seeks to allow any copyright holder to sever any website's relationship with online advertising networks or credit card processing services, simply by pointing the finger. As Ars Technica explains:

    Calling its plan a "market-based system to protect US customers and prevent US funding of sites dedicated to theft of US property," the new bill gives broad powers to private actors. Any holder of intellectual property rights could simply send a letter to ad network operators like Google and to payment processors like MasterCard, Visa, and PayPal, demanding these companies cut off access to any site the IP holder names as an infringer.

    [...] So long as the intellectual property holders include some "specific facts" supporting their infringement claim, ad networks and payment processors will have five days to cut off contact with the website in question.
    The bill also gives the government the power to get an injunction against foreign sites which would force ISPs to, within five days, "prevent access by its subscribers located within the United States to the foreign infringing site." Essentially, it obliges ISPs to break their own DNS servers by filtering or redirecting users who try to access an accused site. It would also ban any tools which allow circumvention of such blocks.

    It doesn't take a genius to see how this could be abused: An aggrieved party accuses a site of infringement, with or without reliable evidence, and suddenly that site can no longer accept credit cards or PayPal payments and its advertising revenue dries up completely. And we know that the IP industry isn't above false accusations of copyright infringement. It's not just business websites that could be affected, but open source projects too.

    Opponents currently include businesses such as Google, Facebook, Zynga, eBay, Twitter, Yahoo!, AOL, and LinkedIn who, together, sent a letter; advocates such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Reporters Without Borders, and Human Rights Watch; as well as eleven members of the House of Representatives who have also written a letter to the House Judiciary Committee. Another letter from human rights groups includes India's Centre for Internet and Society as well as the Church of Sweden.

    There are also complaints that the House Judiciary Committee is trying to push the legislation through with undue haste. Says PCWorld:

      Critics of the legislation also complained that the US House of Representatives Judiciary Committee appears to be fast-tracking the bill before opposition can build. At a 10 am hearing Wednesday, five of six witnesses are likely to speak in favor of SOPA, with only Google opposed. Witnesses the Motion Picture Association of America, trade union the AFL-CIO and pharmaceutical company Pfizer have all voiced support for the bill.

      No public interest groups, Internet engineers or human rights groups have been invited to the hearing, said Gigi Sohn, president of Public Knowledge, a digital rights group. "This is really being railroaded, without a full public debate," she said.
      Indeed, the tone of the Committee's so-called fact sheet, which lays out a series of 'myths' and 'acts', gives cause for concern, implying as it does that they have already decided which side of the fence they will land on. What is also disturbing is that the US Copyright Office — which as a part of the Library of Congress, one would expect to be impartial and evidence-led — will be offering an "unqualified endorsement":

        "It is my view that if Congress does not continue to provide serious responses to online piracy, the US copyright system will ultimately fail," [Copyright Office director Maria] Pallante's testimony says.

        Pallante and representatives from Pfizer, the Motion Picture Association of America, the AFL-CIO, and Mastercard, all of whom support the bill, will be testifying tomorrow before the House Judiciary committee.
        For Americans who are unimpressed by this latest move from the content industries to control the Internet, there is a letter writing campaign encouraging people to contact their congressperson. For non-Americans, Avaaz has set up a Save the Internet petition which currently has 70,000 signatures and is racking up hundreds of new signatures every minute.

        There's no doubt that tech journalists, free software advocates and digital rights campaigners and internet businesses worldwide will be glued to coverage of today's Judiciary hearing. But, given the power of the copyright industry's lobbying arms, it is hard to expect discussions to conclude satisfactorily. It may just be that the entire Internet will have to rely on the strength of the US Constitution, which SOPA may contravene, to save it.

        Copyright © 2011 Firstpost

        News Items / Judge Rotenberg Center lobbies D.C. against bill
        « on: November 16, 2011, 12:54:29 PM »
        The Patriot Ledger
        Judge Rotenberg Center lobbies D.C. against bill

        Canton school fights limits on aversive therapy on two fronts

        By Taylor Bigler
        Patriot Ledger Washington bureau

        Posted Oct 20, 2011 @ 11:20 PM
        Last update Oct 20, 2011 @ 11:22 PM

        WASHINGTON — As the Judge Rotenberg Center in Canton gears up to oppose new state regulations that limit the use of controversial shock treatment, the school is also covering its bases in Washington.

        So far this year, the Judge Rotenberg Center has paid $16,500 to Malkin & Ross, a New York-based lobbying firm, according to recent lobbying reports filed with the secretary of the Senate.

        According to the reports, the school paid the firm to lobby on its behalf on matters regarding matters in the House and the Senate. The center has paid the firm $5,500 in each quarter of this year.

        The Judge Rotenberg Center paid a combined $111,000 to Malkin & Ross and the international law firm of Bracewell & Giuliani, LLC, the law firm of former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, last year.

        A bill filed by Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., now the senior Democrat on the House Education and the Workforce Committee, would ban the use of physical restraint and seclusion in schools. The bill is co-sponsored by 27 Democrats, including Rep. John Tierney, D-Salem, and one Republican.

        In the last session of Congress, Miller, who was then chairman of the committee, sponsored the same legislation. The bill passed the House but died in the Senate.

        With the House now in Republican hands and few Republicans backing the bill, it is unlikely to make it to the House floor this time.

        “Chairman Kline has long-standing concerns with imposing a federal solution that fails to take into account the proactive initiatives being undertaken at the state and local level,” said Jennifer Allen, a spokeswoman for the current committee chairman, Rep. John Kline, R-Minn.

        Miller’s office cited a U.S. Government Accountability Office report as reason for filing the legislation. The report found that hundreds of students had been injured, or in some cases died, due to misuse of restraint or seclusion in schools.

        Melissa Salamanowitz, a spokeswoman for Democrats on the committee, said in a statement: “This bill both protects students from abuse and provides training for teachers on effective and appropriate discipline practices. … It's disgraceful but not surprising that the Judge Rotenberg Center would rather that no regulations exist to protect students in schools.”

        In a telephone interview, Michael Flammia, a Boston-based attorney for the Judge Rotenberg Center, said, “The Judge Rotenberg Center and a number of other schools lobbied against this bill (last session), and in fact, the bill was not passed.

        “It would have put children at risk and at harm,” he said. “It would not allow for restraint when a student is engaging in self-aggressive behavior.”

        New regulations from the state Department of Developmental Services will go into effect Oct. 30. The Patriot Ledger reported that the school is planning to file a complaint claiming that the regulations violate a 1987 court order allowing the school to use so-called aversion therapy, which includes shock treatments.

        The center uses behavioral modification techniques to curb severely aggressive behavior among developmentally disabled students who are in danger of injuring themselves or others. It is the only school in the country to regularly administer electric-shock treatment to modify the behavior of students.

        Gov. Deval Patrick issued an executive order last summer that would ban the use of aversion therapy on new students, after years of stalemate in the Legislature.

        Under the new regulations, about 75 students who previously received the therapy would still be allowed to receive the treatment, but the practice would be banned for incoming students.

        Copyright 2011 The Patriot Ledger.

        Canton Patch
        Letter to the Editor:

        A Former Judge Rotenberg Center Worker Speaks Out
        Greg Miller worked for the Rotenberg Center in Canton for three years and speaks about his experience.

        September 13, 2011
        By Greg Miller

          Warning: Some of the content in this letter may be disturbing. Reader discretion is advised.[/list]

          There is so much for me to share about my three years of experience as a staff in Judge Rotenberg Center that I wanted to share them in writing.

          Please note that other former JRC teachers and staff and even psychologists have contacted me in the past to tell me that they appreciate my speaking on behalf of the students, and to tell me of legal threats that keep them from speaking out vocally against JRC's practices. I can share only my own experiences and opinions.  No doubt JRC has attempted to discredit me and what I have to share.

          My Background

          I worked for the Judge Rotenberg Center for over three years, between 2003 – 2006. I worked as a Teacher's Assistant, and I turned down offers to work at JRC as a classroom teacher because I was too busy with my studies.

          I have a Master's Degree in Elementary Education from Lesley University. I previously taught as a classroom teacher in Watertown Public Schools, Lincoln Public Schools, and Winchester Public Schools. I worked too many hours as a classroom teacher to be able to also study alternative medical approaches for the treatment of children with learning difficulties and autism, and JRC offered me an opportunity to continue to work with children and youth while putting myself through school with ideal work hours.

          The reason why I remained at JRC for three years instead of leaving on my first day of training was that I liked JRC's commitment to getting students off of psychiatric drugs. Students were arriving at JRC looking very drugged up and in very rough conditions. I was a very dedicated worker and supporter of JRC at the start of my employment. JRC always treated me fairly as an employee.

          Then my opinion of JRC started to change significantly to where I felt I needed to leave JRC and to speak out against its practices. I started to get signs of traumatic stress while working at JRC, and my doctor advised me repeatedly that I should leave JRC for my own health reasons. I became more aware of what was actually happening to individual students at JRC that parents were not permitted to see, and I wondered how many parents would actually be supportive of JRC if they saw what was happening to their children as I did.

          My Opinion on the Use of JRC Shock Therapy

          I believe that electric shocks are harmful not only to the student receiving a shock, but to all other students in the room witnessing the traumatic shock incidences. Electric shocks are not necessary to help JRC's population of students. I saw much use of electric shocks that I felt were unwarranted to appear in student plans, and it seemed to me that individualized student plans were designed without proper oversight or adequate safeguards to prevent misuse of the shock devices.

          I was having signs of traumatic stress including nightmares, night sweats, and elevated blood pressure, so that my doctor advised me that I needed to leave JRC. So imagine what it is like and what harm is being done to students who are actually on electric shock devices, who are committing no "wrong" behaviors, but who must witness their classmates getting shocked all day long!

          I have witnessed the traumatic effects of electric shocks not only on the students receiving shocks, but also on other students in the room witnessing the shock "treatments" even though they have exhibited no behaviors. It was not uncommon to have incidences where I would reach for my pencil in my JRC apron pocket, on which hung the remote controls, to have students crying out and or jumping up, or throwing their task up in the air, and even grabbing me, because they thought I was going to shock them.

          These were all behaviors that would cause students to be shocked depending on the individual student's plan, so groups of students would all get shocked together, all out of their reaction of fear due to myself or another staff reaching for a pencil in our pockets. If any staff chose not to shock students at such times, we would immediately lose our jobs for "refusing to follow student plans."

          I have participated as required in following student plans to shock multiple students, including when they reacted to watching a fellow classmate tied up in a restraint chair getting attacked by a staffer with a plastic knife (being held) to the student's throat. This was a judge-approved Clockwork-Orange-type "treatment" for a student who swallowed a small X-Acto knife blade. A staffer, according to the plan, would run up to the student who had all four limbs tied all day long to a restraint chair, and pretend to force a plastic knife down the student's mouth while another staff pressed the remote control to give a shock to the student. The staff would repeatedly yell in a gruff voice, "Do you want to swallow a knife?"

          Sometimes a number of students watching this would act out in fear and receive shocks for jumping out of their seat, crying out, or dumping their task in reaction to the violence. I highly doubt that the judge ordered all 40 plus other students in the same classroom to have to watch this violent "treatment" of their classmate with his arms and legs tied to a chair. This took place day after day for weeks, with their classmate unable to defend himself in any kind of way. I felt nauseated just being in the room during those treatments, and I was not one of the humans with electric shock devices strapped to my body, so I could only imagine what the students were going through.

          I have witnessed terrible injuries including bloody scabs all over the torso, arms, and legs caused by the electrodes. While I have heard of Dr. Israel previously claiming that the injuries were due to staff not properly rotating electrodes after shocking a student, the reality was that some students exhibited behaviors resulting in up to 30 shocks in a day. Some students stopped their behaviors after receiving their maximum 30 shocks for the day. Most of the shock devices used two electrodes to pass current through a specific distance of human flesh to maximize the amount of pain from the same amount of current. Two red skin marks from electrodes per shock, times 30 shocks in a day, quickly adds up so that very soon electrodes will be placed over previous marks resulting in bloody scabs. In these cases, the multiple patches of bloody scabs have nothing to do with staff failing to rotate electrodes after shocking students. Rather it exemplifies that the electric shocks approach were not appropriate for the student, and that other approaches should have been found.

          Dr. Israel has previously compared the electric shock devices to bee stings. I vividly remember nearly getting the wind knocked out of me during training at JRC back in 2003 when (I was) permitted to test out the weakest of JRC's electric shock devices on my own arm. That was no bee sting!

          I have worked with a young lady who was so underweight while on electric shock devices that she had a feeding tube sewn into her stomach to feed her when she would not eat enough. Upstairs there was a photo of her on the wall near Dr. Matthew Israel's office from when she first entered JRC, looking comparatively plump.

          I have witnessed a student with autism getting shocked for sitting at his desk with his eyes closed for more than 15 seconds because his mother didn't like the fact that he closed his eyes. I wondered what it might feel like for me to try to shut my eyes at night to go to sleep after I had been shocked several times during the day for closing my eyes! Initially in his behavioral plan, the student was shocked for closing his eyes while walking down the hallway with the reason that it was "health dangerous" to close one's eyes while walking down a short carpeted hallway.

          Later, JRC added more and more places where this student would get shocked for closing his eyes. Students with autism characteristically see the world as over-stimulating and overwhelming. I saw a photograph of the student at a young age with his eyes closed while holding up a large fish on a fishing trip. I don't believe students should be shocked for having autism.

          Besides shocking a student for the behavior of "closing eyes" while sitting at one's desk for more than 15 seconds, or while walking down the hallway, shocking students for reacting to their classmates getting shocked, or shocking a student with all four limbs tied to a restraint chair while a staff violently attacked the student with a plastic knife to teach him a lesson, there were many other behaviors for which students were shocked that felt absolutely wrong to me. Students during my time at JRC were shocked for tearing a paper cup or Kleenex while sitting and watching television during their break, shocked for standing up and raising a hand and asking to go to the bathroom, shocked for pulling apart a loose thread, shocked for going to the bathroom in one's clothes after signing that they need to use the bathroom for over two hours, shocking a blind, nonverbal girl with cerebral palsy for making a soft moaning sound in an effort to communicate and also shocking her for holding a staff's hand, to name a few examples of many.

          I am still unaware of even one study done that demonstrates that student behaviors remain "changed" after leaving JRC, once off the shock devices.

          I was told repeatedly as a staff member at JRC that not only were these student behavior plans permitted by the judge, but some of the plans were ordered by the judge. Looking back, I question what the judge knew. Certainly JRC had a huge lack of oversight and it seemed that there was inadequate protection for the students.

          On more than one occasion, I remember arriving to work and being surprised by drastic changes to individual student plans, where many behaviors for which a student would be shocked were eliminated from the student's plan or else moved to a "minor" category for which the student would not be shocked. I remember being told by a student's case manager that the behavior plans were changed because the student had an upcoming court date to prepare for. I do not believe that the judges were given the full picture of what they were approving when approving electric shocks on students.

          After looking back, and to summarize some of the atrocities I witnessed and participated in while working at JRC, it is difficult for me to understand how I could have done something so cruel to other human beings. No doubt I was operating on misinformation, and misled to believe many of the same arguments that I hear parents arguing today. I truly believed that JRC was the only school that could help this population of students without the use of psychiatric drugs that turned children into zombies and ruined their livers.

          Some children, not all, do respond to the threat of pain as long as they are strapped up to electric shock devices. But it is my strong opinion that JRC used electric shocks for many behaviors when other alternatives were available, and to the exclusion of more effective treatments. Psychologists leaving JRC told me that they had other treatments based on real research in established psychological journals that they wanted to use, but they were not allowed to use those other methods because Dr. Israel favored exclusively the use of electric shocks.

          Dr. Israel was out to prove the power of his electric shock devices, and in doing so, somewhere along the line the shock devices must have become more important to him than individual students. It is my opinion, as a former JRC teacher who later worked at another school serving a very similar student population as the JRC students with autism, that NO shocks are necessary to control student behaviors at JRC.

          If I was given the opportunity, I would sincerely apologize to each and every student I shocked at JRC. I certainly applaud Senator Brian A. Joyce and many others who have worked so diligently to end what I consider to be torture. Torture that is allowed and exists only in Canton, Massachusetts.

          Copyright © 2011 Patch.

          CALO - Change Academy at Lake of the Ozarks / CALO has been sold!!?
          « on: November 15, 2011, 12:24:48 PM »
          Originally posted in another thread:

          Quote from: "uncle bob"
          CALO has been sold!!!!  And I bet Ken Huey just loves that his new owner has an office right next to him!!!!  Why did proficio sell a thriving business... you gotta ask???  So Ken how does it feel that the people under you are constatnly reporting your moves to the outside???  Are you still sending false bills to the local school district and stealing money from students???  I heard your quasi acad director put an end to that!  Do you still pretend CALO is broke so local business give you discounts??? My source says you are bringing in $500,000 gross a month... what a waste.  God has a "special hell" waiting for people like you- you better enjoy your riches now- you will always have money ken, but never wealth.
          Wow. Does anyone have any more details 'bout this?

          News Items / Julian Youth Academy employee arrested in death of baby
          « on: November 13, 2011, 05:50:55 PM »
          San Jose Mercury News
          Calif. mother arrested in death of 4-day-old girl

          The Associated Press
          Posted: 11/08/2011 04:58:45 PM PST
          Updated: 11/08/2011 04:58:47 PM PST

          REDDING, Calif. — A 23-year-old Northern California woman is under arrest for killing her infant girl and then hiding the baby's body.

          The Shasta County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday that Jessica Bradford was arrested on suspicion of murder and willful harm to a child. She is being held in Shasta County Jail on $1 million bail.

          Investigators say Bradford gave birth to the girl in September but hid the pregnancy from everyone, including her boyfriend. She allegedly kept the baby in a vacant residence at the private Christian boarding school where she worked in Whitmore, about 30 miles east of Redding.

          The baby died four days later.

          Bradford is accused of hiding the baby's body in a staff dormitory and then moving it when she suspected someone had discovered it.

          Copyright © 2011 - San Jose Mercury News

          News Items / Fighting Fat in the name of the Lord
          « on: November 11, 2011, 12:15:02 PM »
          From the below article:

            Pastor Charles Flowers who heads a the Faith Outreach Center International in San Antonio, Texas, used this advantage to begin a 100-day weight-loss challenge between several church's throughout San Antonio and Austin; stating that religion is not just about the spirit.

            "The gospel is a gospel of spirit, soul and body," he said. "We pay a lot of attention to the spirit side and very little attention to the body side."
            Anybody here recognize this guy?  :twofinger:   :twofinger:

            -------------- • -------------- • --------------

            The Christian Post
            Wed, Aug. 10 2011 10:36 AM EDT

            Southern Churches Lead Campaign to Fight Obesity

            By Fionna Agomuoh | Christian Post Contributor

            Several Baptist churches throughout the south are beginning campaigns in order to help their congregations be healthier.

            Obesity has become increasingly common within the faith-based communities and many feel the church is the prime location to start urging people to begin taking care of their bodies.

            Pastor Michael Minor, head of a Mississippi church is one such person. He began a health movement at his church by banning fried chicken from congregation events. Church chefs now prepare baked and grilled chicken and soda has also been banned, replaced with water and Crystal Light.

            Minor who has been an advocate of health in churches for over 10 years has also had a walking track set up in his church's parking lot.

            "Our bodies are not our own. They're a gift from God," he said. "We should do a better job with our bodies."

            A Northwestern University study published in March linked church involvement with higher instances of obesity in young people. It detailed that people between the ages of 20 and 32 who attended a church event at least once a week were more likely to have a BMI of 30 or more by the time they reached middle age.

            With obesity being a rampant and continuing problem in the United States even without the church connection, health officials are looking at the initiatives being lead by church leaders as a positive step in combating the nation-wide epidemic.

            Director of the Office of Preventive Health for the Mississippi state health department, Victor Sutton notes that pastors have a significant influence on their congregation.

            "Sometimes you can have a doctor tell someone something, and they'll blow it off," he said. "A pastor can tell someone what to do, and they'll take it as a scientific fact."

            Pastor Charles Flowers who heads a the Faith Outreach Center International in San Antonio, Texas, used this advantage to begin a 100-day weight-loss challenge between several church's throughout San Antonio and Austin; stating that religion is not just about the spirit.

            "The gospel is a gospel of spirit, soul and body," he said. "We pay a lot of attention to the spirit side and very little attention to the body side."

            In continuing efforts to spread the message of health beyond his own congregation, Minor plans to set up an alliance of health advocates to assist congregations within the National Baptist Convention in starting health initiatives in their own churches.

            ©2011 The Christian Post.

            Public Sector Gulags / Jerry Sandusky and The Second Mile
            « on: November 09, 2011, 06:46:57 PM »
            So... Jerry Sandusky apparently loved kids so much, that he founded The Second Mile group home in 1977... to help those less fortunate.

            That might not have been the only reason.

            Here's a portal page from which much of the material I'll be subsequently posting from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette can be accessed:

            -------------- • -------------- • --------------

            Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
            PG coverage: The Sandusky Case

            Former Penn State football defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky, center, is taken into custody. He's accused of sexually abusing eight young men. Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General via AP

            Pdf download: Sandusky grand jury presentment
            (Contains graphic content)

            Copyright ©1997 - 2011 PG Publishing Co., Inc.

            News Items / PSU's Sandusky 'found his victims' at Second Mile group home
            « on: November 09, 2011, 02:32:36 PM »
            Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
            PSU's Jerry Sandusky 'found his victims' at Second Mile group home

            Sunday, November 06, 2011
            By Timothy McNulty and Janice Crompton, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

            Jerry Sandusky grew up as an only child living in an apartment over the Brownson House in Washington, Pa., a youth athletic center that also served as a second home for many local children. Two decades later while a linebacker coach at Penn State University he founded his own home for wayward boys, calling it The Second Mile.

            The charity's name came from the collection of moral lessons from Jesus' Sermon on the Mount, specifically from Matthew 5:41: "And whosoever shall compel thee to go one mile, go with him two."

            The state Attorney General's office on Saturday charged Mr. Sandusky, 67, with 40 sex charges against boys from 1994 to 2005, all of whom he met through the Second Mile Foundation he founded in 1977. Started as a small home for six troubled boys outside State College, it has grown to a statewide organization whose mission is to help "young people to achieve their potential as individuals and community members by providing opportunities for them to develop positive life skills and self-esteem."

            Mr. Sandusky and his wife Dottie have six adopted children and had cared for foster children, which led them to start the nonprofit. Mr. Sandusky was inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in 1999 and received awards for Second Mile including the 1993 NAACP Human Rights Award, the 1995 YMCA Service-To-Youth Award and the 1996 SGMA Heroes Award. President George Bush nationally recognized it as a philanthropic "Point Of Light" in November 1990.

            "After we had taken in some foster children," Mrs. Sandusky told Sports Illustrated in 1982, "we saw the opportunities that some kids just hadn't had. But we'd gotten to the point where we couldn't take in any more, so Jerry started thinking about starting a group home."

            It was also within the charity that Mr. Sandusky "found his victims," a grand jury presentment stated. "Through The Second Mile, Sandusky had access to hundreds of boys, many of whom were vulnerable due to their social situations."

            Mr. Sandusky retired from Penn State in 1999 to devote his time to Second Mile, where he would stay on until 2010. Efforts to reach the foundation's CEO Jack Raykovitz were not successful, but he released a statement to the Patriot-News Friday.

            "We have many policies and procedures designed to protect the children involved in our programs, including employee and volunteer background checks, training and supervision," he said. "As a result, other than occasional bumps and bruises, we have never had an incident impact the safety, health or well-being of children during our programs, and we will continue to do everything in our power to maintain the trust placed in us by the families and professionals with whom we partner to keep that record intact."

            Second Mile does work with at-risk children statewide, though most of it is in central and south-central Pennsylvania. It issues motivational and educational training cards called "Nittany Lion Tips," sponsors four-day conferences for high school sophomores on community leadership and week-long camps for children with behavioral and academic problems, and has a mentor program that matches collegiate volunteers with at-risk elementary students.

            Mr. Sandusky usually met his victims, the grand jury report said, in their second year at Second Mile camps at the Penn State campus, when they were 7 to 12 years old. They would often stay over at the Sandusky home, sleeping in the basement, and attend Penn State football games with him. He would then provoke sexual encounters with the boys in the basement room, Penn State showers and other athletic facilities, it said.

            There are multiple links between the charity and Penn State. Mr. Sandusky was given full access to university facilities in his 1999 retirement agreement, and the presentment says a 1998 investigation of an alleged encounter between Mr. Sandusky and a boy in a football shower was reviewed with the knowledge of then-university counsel Wendell Courtney, who remains counsel for Second Mile.

            After a graduate assistant reported seeing Mr. Sandusky anally rape a boy in the football building showers in 2002, Penn State athletic director Tim Curley told the assistant the incident had been reported to Second Mile. Mr. Curley told the grand jury that he informed the Second Mile CEO, Mr. Raykovitz, about the report and told Mr. Sandusky he was prohibited from bringing youths onto campus.

            Mr. Sandusky has long been the foundations's lead fundraiser. In 2010 it suffered a $228,000 loss in cash flow, which the foundation warned was hurting its youth programs.

            "The children we serve have often experienced many broken promises in their young lives; that's why our mantra has always been 'No broken promises, ever.' We need to continue to be the family they can count on," Second Mile's 2010 annual report said.

            It had $2.2 million in revenue versus $2.4 in expenses according to a January 2011 report to the Internal Revenue Service. Though it has little presence in the Pittsburgh area -- other than an annual Pitt vs. Penn State golf fundraiser -- one of its goals for his year is to "expand our professional partnerships and service, particularly in the Southwest Region," according to the charity tracker GuideStar.

            The roots for Second Mile come from the state's southwest too.

            Mr. Sandusky's father, Art Sandusky, served as live-in director of the Brownson House athletic center in Washington for many years. The facility's athletic field was named in honor of the elder Mr. Sandusky.

            The Sandusky family moved into the center in 1953, when Jerry was 9. It was the kind of place where children could keep out of trouble at a time when there were few after-school programs available.

            David Johnson, Mr. Sandusky's high school football coach, said Mr. Sandusky occasionally came home to Washington, including in recent years when his father and mother passed away.

            He said he has "all the respect in the world" for Mr. Sandusky and doesn't know what to make of the charges now leveled against him.

            "As far as I'm concerned, it's not true until I see more evidence," Mr. Johnson said.

            Ken Bonnell, a high school friend of Mr. Sandusky's, agreed. "I don't want to believe it," he said. "But it sure doesn't look good for Jerry."

            Tim McNulty: [email protected] or 412-851-1867.

            First published on November 6, 2011 at 12:00 am

            Copyright ©1997 -  PG Publishing Co., Inc.

            News Items / Three arrested after alleged assault at Rotenberg home
            « on: November 09, 2011, 12:13:25 AM »
            The Stoughton Journal
            SNYDER'S STOUGHTON: Three arrested after alleged assault at Rotenberg home

            By Mark Snyder
            Wicked Local Stoughton

            Posted Nov 07, 2011 @ 07:29 PM
            Last update Nov 08, 2011 @ 01:27 PM

            Stoughton — An incident was reported to the Stoughton Police Department Saturday at 8:25 p.m. at the Judge Rotenberg Center's "group home" at 1115 Park St., Stoughton.

            Stoughton Police Executive Director Robert Devine told Snyder's Stoughton, "We had to call in mutual aid. We'd like to thank the Canton Police for their effort."

            Devine said that when police arrived, three residents of the house - a 20-year-old and two 16-year-olds - had barricaded themselves in a room.

            "They had assaulted staff and were throwing things at them," Devine said. "The staff called police. Officer McNamara was charged with trying to talk them out of the room. They were uncooperative and threatened to attack police if they came in after them. When Canton Canine Officer Scott Brown and his dog Bosco arrived on scene, the three heard the dog and surrendered."

            Eyheen Fountain, 20, and two juveniles who were not named by police were charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (dishes and frying pans), vandalizing property, and assault and battery.

            Fountain was arraigned Nov. 7 and released back to the Park Street home. The juveniles are due later in the week at juvenile court.

            Devine said the quick call to police Saturday night was "a marked departure from the JRC's past policies and procedures."

            He estimated there are at least seven JRC homes in Stoughton.

            "By the time we're notified, they are already set up and running," he said. "It's been awhile since we've heard from them - maybe nine months to a year. Previous to that, we had a stretch two years ago when we got called every week, with a large volume of calls. We voiced our displeasure and met with their management. We made our recommendations, and they instituted many of them. We've had a lull until Saturday night."

            There were staff members with injuries like cuts, bruises and busted lips, Devine said.

            This JRC group home is located adjacent to the Cedar Hill Golf Course, and almost diagonally across the street from Selectman Cynthia Walsh's home. 

            "I wasn't aware of any problems at the Rotenberg house," Walsh said. "No one called me or came to my door. But, I've never had a problem there. You'd never know they were there. I've never witnessed or heard anything unusual. I see the white van when it goes back and forth."

            Walsh said she is more concerned about an arson fire in her backyard that is still unsolved.

            "I know that the JRC kids didn't do it. So, I think I have more to fear from others in the town rather than the residents there."

            Walsh said that the Rotenberg organization bought the house more than four years ago, and moved in recently.

            "I'd rather have an occupied property than one that is vacant," she said. "But it would be nice if they made people aware of where they were. They used to have neighborhood meetings."

            JRC Attorney Mike Flammia responded to a call for more information about security precautions in the homes, as well as how the safety of staff and neighbors are protected. He told me, "All the houses are fully equipped with security. They are fully secure. None of the students got out Saturday night."

            He said if a student does get out, the staff lets neighbors know.

            "The students receive excellent treatment there," Flammia said. "They have behavioral problems and the staff is trained on how to handle students. They go through weeks and months of training on how to respond. They have equipment to prepare them for situations. They are trained in how to react to crisis situations. They are trained on how to restrain the student or to call 911 - which is what they did here."

            When I asked how many JRC homes were in Stoughton, Flammia said he didn't know. When I asked why neighbors are no longer notified of these homes, he said, "You can't discriminate against group homes. You cant prevent them. Its illegal.  These children are entitled to their education and to live wherever JRC purchases homes. There's no need for neighbors to be concerned in terms of safety or anything else."

            The Judge Rotenberg Educational Center (JRC, formerly known as the Behavior Research Institute), a school for special needs students, operates in Canton, providing applied behavior analysis and educational services to children and adults with severe developmental disabilities and emotional or behavior disorders. It also provides respite care to their primary caregivers.

            Psychologist Matthew L. Israel, who trained with B.F. Skinner, found it as the Behavior Research Institute in 1971. In 1994, the center changed its name to the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center to honor the memory of the judge who helped to preserve the program from extinction at the hands of state licensing officials in the 1980s. The center serves 225 clients with a staff of moer than 850 full-time employees.

            The Judge Rotenberg Center treatment goals include a near-zero rejection/expulsion policy, active treatment with a behavioral approach directed exclusively towards normalization, frequent use of behavioral rewards and punishment, video monitoring of staff and the option to use aversives, the most controversial of which is the use of electric shocks. The final item has provoked considerable controversy and has led to calls from several disability rights groups to call for human protection from behavior modification, behavior therapy, and applied behavior analysis approaches.

            In May, Israel was charged with misleading a grand jury over the school's destruction of the tapes, as well as being an accessory after the fact. After Israel resigned his position at the JREC, the organization is administered by a court-appointed monitor.

            I have written extensively about this company (see "Something's Rotten at Rotenberg Center"). Dr. Israel dodged me for weeks to evade conversing about what went on behind closed doors in its facilities a half-dozen years ago. The staff  gave me a "tour" of the Canton school, which was carefully scripted. When a "student" tried to talk to me, they yanked him away.

            I know that I have spoken to parents of students in this program, and they have praised it. Many told me it was their "last straw" for their children, and their family. They just couldn't do anything more for them. One told me that the JRC was "a blessing" for their family.

            But Stoughton seems to have more of these homes than any other town.  It may be good for the students, but I don't see how it can be good for the neighborhood, no matter how you spin it.

            Mark Snyder, former Chairman of the Board of the Neponset Valley Chamber of Commerce, has written over 1460 articles in newspapers and magazines, and published three books. He is the CEO of, the internet's entertainment superstation, and, a community website, which has recorded over 25 million hits in the past two years. He can be reached by fax at 781-344-7207, by email at <!-- e --><a href="mailto:[email protected]">[email protected]</a><!-- e -->, on Facebook (Snyder’s Stoughton), and on Twitter (MediaMan2009). He has been writing "Snyder's Stoughton" in the Journal since November 1998.

            Copyright 2011 Stoughton Journal.
            Copyright © 2006-2011 GateHouse Media, Inc.

            The Times Record
            Hyde School in Bath plans to build new dorm

            By Beth Brogan, Times Record Staff
            Published: Wednesday, October 19, 2011 2:09 PM EDT

            BATH — Pending approval by the Bath Planning Board, Hyde School will build a new $3 million dormitory to replace a 1970s-era residence hall on the private school's High Street campus.

            The new, 17,000-square-foot dormitory, to be known as the "New Dorm II," will replace the existing "New Dorm," about 350 feet south of the historic Hyde Mansion.

            The existing building is the oldest dormitory on campus, head of school Don MacMillan said Monday.

            "It's lived its life," he said. "It's time to replace it."

            The older building "suffers from structural, mold and layout problems," according to the site plan application submitted to the Bath Planning Department, and school officials determined that renovations would be costly and would not completely correct the problems.

            Also, MacMillan said, Hyde lost dorm space as the school sold buildings across High Street from the campus.

            The new dorm would house 56 students, instead of the 32 housed in the existing building, and would include four faculty apartments.

            The older dorm "has no historic significance," according to a Sept. 22 email from architect John Whipple of Portland-based Whipple-Callender Architects, and "is far enough from the John Calvin and John Howard-Stevens-designed Hyde Mansion that it has no impact on it."

            The Maine Historic Preservation Commission signed off on the plan.

            Flooding issues

            MacMillan said school representatives met with residents of the Pine Hill neighborhood, near the campus, to discuss previous flooding issues in their homes. More meetings are scheduled.

            "Engineers tell me building the dorm would actually help resolve the current problem," he said.

            According to Whipple's memo, ledge behind the building would be blasted to direct drainage away from the new dormitory.

            A stormwater management report prepared by Pinkham and Greer Consulting Engineers of Falmouth concluded that the project "is not expected to generate any changes to the peak flows, due to large watershed areas and small increase in impervious areas, and should have no adverse effect on adjacent properties, downstream drainage or receiving waters."

            That report is undergoing peer review by Topsham engineering firm Wright-Pierce.

            The Bath Planning Board will consider a request for site plan approval at a meeting scheduled for 5 p.m. Nov. 1 at City Hall.

            [email protected]

            Copyright © 2011 Times Record

            Elan School / Deane Brown - prison activist
            « on: October 21, 2011, 12:15:19 PM »
            Some of y'all know this guy from Elan in the late 1970s/early 80s (I'm not exactly sure just when his time of attendance was). For some reason, I'm thinking he was in Elan 3; but again, I'm not exactly sure.

            I have a bunch of articles I'll be posting over the next coupla days or weeks, but please do feel free to interject with commentary and perspective...

            As some of you know, and some do not, the Aspen Ed program NorthStar Center is no longer ... as of sometime late this past summer.

            The former director of this program, along with several of its employees, have started a new program. That program is currently going by the name of Cascade Crest Traditions.

            First, here is announcement of NorthStar's closing:

            -------------- • -------------- • --------------

            Bend Bulletin
            NorthStar Center in Bend set to close

            Published: March 26. 2011 4:00AM PST

            The California-based parent company of Bend's NorthStar Center announced Friday that it will be shuttering the drug and alcohol addiction recovery program this summer.

            About 40 full- and part-time employees work at the NorthStar Center, which works to prevent relapses of young adults between 17 and 24 years of age.

            NorthStar Center's closure is one of five centers in three states set for closure by parent Carlsbad-based Aspen Education Group. The company cited "reduced demand for therapeutic schools and programs in today’s economy" for the closures.

            The NorthStar Center is scheduled to treat students through the first week of August, according to the company.

            # # #

            New Beginnings Youth Development Center

            Old address:
              3201 Oak Hill Drive
              Laurel, MD 20724
            This facility is run by the District of Columbia Department of Youth Services. It used to be called the Oak Hills Youth Center (founded in 1967), prior to an extensive "remodeling" in 2009.

            Some pics of the old place:


              Hyde Schools / Hyde's "independent" psych professionals
              « on: October 02, 2011, 09:48:52 PM »
              From time to time, a student and/or their parents see fit to opt for some "real" therapy for their child from an outside professional while their child is enrolled at Hyde.

              Hyde addresses those needs on page 20 of their 2011-2012 Family Handbook. (This handbook, incidentally, is geared towards Bath, ME families; I'm sure there is a counterpart for Woodstock, CT but I don't have a link.)

              -------------- • -------------- • --------------


              When looking for therapy services for your child, please call several therapy service locations to see which would be the best match for your child to receive the type of care needed. Please keep in mind that these are all professionals and if a change needs to be made within a practice or between practices all you need to do is request it.

              Most of the following therapists, social workers, psychologists and psychiatrists work with varying insurance plans. Please check with each provider to see if they work within your insurance plan.

              When arranging appointments for Hyde students, please let the provider know to call the school health office (207-443-7186) with the date and time of first appointment. They will follow up with future appointments by giving your child a card which needs to be turned into the health office so that we may arrange transportation.

              Transportation is provided by Brunswick Taxi through the Health Center (cost is approximately $16 round trip). This will be deducted from the student's account following the appointment.

              # #

              Hyde Schools / Snow job on the eve of May Day
              « on: September 23, 2011, 12:42:39 PM »
              Gotta wonder... just how many more snow jobs the state of Maine can take, before they begin to realize that Joe Gauld's "educational philosophy" is a whole lotta hooey.

              Gauld's below opinion piece ... may well help that process along.

              -------------- • -------------- • --------------

              The Portland Press Herald
              April 30, 2011

              Maine Voices: Schools should instill dignity and confidence in students
              Giving two grades for each subject, one for skill and one for effort, rewards character as well as intelligence.

              BATH - There is a serious conflict between our deepest hopes for the kind of people our children will become, with what our educational system is expecting from them.

              I think we want our children to have strong character -- qualities like courage, integrity, concern for others, curiosity and leadership. These ensure them of a meaningful and highly respected life, which gives their parents and teachers a profound sense of fulfillment.

              This highlights the deeper problem within our educational system: It is committing our children to an education that doesn't reflect our deeper hopes and expectations. The frenzy to produce higher test scores increasingly ignores the basic development of character, and we end up disapproving of many student attitudes and behavior.

              This system is not earning American students the respect they deserve. Worse, it does not lead them to respect themselves or each other:

              • School shootings like Columbine. How can such prisonlike hostility exist in environments that should be fostering deep bonds of trust and respect?

              • Bullying. This bone in America's throat is highlighted by tragic suicides of targeted students. Bullying is accepted as something schools cannot change, only contain or control. Schools hire consultants, hold training sessions; become more vigilant, etc. Some states propose laws to make bullying a crime.

              • Cheating. Decades of yearly surveys reveal the vast majority of American youth cheat at school and now that a third steal from stores. Our society accepts cheating like a necessary evil; as one student remarks, "Cheating is necessary to give you the edge you need to succeed in life."

              • Purpose. Students once talked about "making a difference" or "leaving the world a better place." But last year, a survey indicated that of youths 18 to 25, only 20 percent could be classified as "purposeful."

              In addition, we see increasing incidents of poor sportsmanship, incivility and disrespect in American students.

              Consider the heavy toll all this takes on the dignity, confidence and self-respect of American students. These behaviors and attitudes may wound us, but they can rob students of becoming the people in life they could and should be.

              Students are both distracted and demeaned by these issues. We adults must effectively address them to gain student confidence, respect and trust. Doing so will both demonstrate our mentorship -- which they sometimes scorn -- and our dedication, not to this system, but to their full development as individuals.

              Our present educational system overwhelmingly values academic proficiency, often at the expense of student character, while producing mediocre academic achievement.

              I propose a simple transformation in American schools that will begin to emphasize character, while improving academic proficiency: Utilize two grades instead of one in evaluating student performance.

              The first grade would continue to solely evaluate academic achievement.

              However, a second grade would evaluate a student's effort, as reflecting attitude, perseverance, hard work, attentiveness, curiosity, decorum and other qualities of character. Research demonstrates that students who are praised for their effort clearly show superior progress over those praised for "being smart."

              So, while the effort grade would be a vital step in addressing student character and restoring student dignity, it will also significantly improve academic performance.

              Achievement grades are too dependent upon innate abilities, but an effort grade gives every student a chance to excel. And a true "blue ribbon" school would have most students on its "effort" honor roll.

              Students could be strongly motivated to improve their effort grade, not to compete, but simply to do their best. The more emphasis schools put on the effort grade, the more students would feel in control of their own success.

              This is the grading system used in our network of six public and private Hyde Schools. The effort grade is so embedded in our school culture, it reflects student confidence, pride and respect. Our top academic senior at our Bath school last June went to Stanford, but in her graduation speech (every senior speaks at graduation) she proudly focused on her struggles in running.

              The effort grade levels the playing field for students, giving each a real opportunity to achieve confidence, pride and respect. Issues like bullying and cheating become student concerns, because they threaten the dignity the students have earned.

              If adults do a good job in honoring the effort grade, they -- like Hyde -- will empower the students to help them successfully address these issues -- and improve academic performance in the process.

              The effort grade -- a vital first step in both respecting students and transforming schools -- should become an American institution.

              - Special to the Press Herald

              Send Question/Comment to the Publisher

              ABOUT THE AUTHOR
              Joseph E. Gauld (email: [email protected]) is the founder of Hyde Schools.

              Copyright ©2011 MaineToday Media, Inc.

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