As a producer, sometimes a story gets under your skin, leaving you wanting to know more. Recently, I got the itch to find out what’s available for troubled teens. “Troubled” in this context can mean many different things: dropping out of school, using drugs or alcohol, running away from home, verbally abusing parents, stealing from friends or family — maybe even some combination of these. Whatever it is, parents often get to a point where they need help.
Little did I know that there’s an entire industry out there to help them: transport companies, outdoor wilderness schools, therapeutic boarding schools, consultants, and more.
We first peeked into the industry when an attorney representing nine former students of Mount Bachelor Academy (MBA) filed a lawsuit in Multnomah County Circuit Court. He says the students suffered emotional distress, battery and negligence while at the school. The attorney representing the school denied the allegations. The show about Mount Bachelor brought up so many unanswered questions that we followed up with another one that looked into the so-called troubled teen industry more broadly. That’s what we’re bringing back for you today.
We had a lot of blog comments when our show aired the first time. Check them out if you like, but let’s start a new thread below. Do you have a teen who needs help? What did you do? Have you considered a wilderness training program or a therapeutic boarding school? What is your experience? How do you know who to trust?
- Christine Meade: social worker for Providence. Her daughter was an at-risk teen
- Deode Castro: owner of Crossroads Youth Transport Services
- Patricia Phelan: co-owner of Educational Connections
- Ann Davidson: co-owner of Educational Connections
- Maia Szalavitz: author of Help at Any Cost and health writer at Time.com