Reading List: A Bizarre Institution

Emily Perper is a freelance editor and reporter, currently completing a service year in Baltimore with the Episcopal Service Corps.

What do Scientology, child abuse, financial exploitation, and millionaire parents have in common? They’ve all got a niche in the education system.

1. “Surviving a For-Profit School.” (Stephen S. Mills, The Rumpus, July 2013)

A strip-mall “college” that exploits the underprivileged, veterans, and abused housewives for hundreds of thousands of dollars: Who wouldn’t want to work there?

2. “For Their Own Good.” (Ben Montgomery and Waveney Ann Moore, Tampa Bay Times, April 2009)

Reports of child abuse and other atrocities spurred two talented reporters to investigate the Florida School for Boys.

3. “Inside Scientology High.” (Benjamin F. Carlson, October 2011)

A two-part profile of the practices of the Delphian School, a boarding school in the hills of Oregon that integrates aspects of Scientology into teaching its students.

4. “Is Avenues The Best Education Money Can Buy?” (Jenny Anderson, The New York Times, May 2013)

Parents are partners in the everyday operations of the $85 million start-up school Avenues: The World School.

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