State DHS revokes licenses for Glen Mills; school intends to appeal

Jim Melwert
April 08, 2019 - 5:10 pm
Glen Mills Schools

Jim Melwert/KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — A couple days after the last student left the campus of what was once called “the Harvard of reform schools,” Pennsylvania Department of Human Services is revoking all 14 licenses issued to the Glen Mills Schools. 

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In an emailed statement, DHS Secretary Teresa Miller said her department is taking the step so no more children will be subjected to what she calls a culture of "abuse, coercion and silence."

“Institutions charged with caring for children have a responsibility to keep them safe. The Glen Mills Schools failed in this duty,” said Miller.  “We now know that children living at Glen Mills were subjected to abuse and intimidation. My department is taking this action so no more children will be subjected to the culture of abuse, coercion, and silence that ran deep at the school, and so staff responsible may be held accountable.”

In response, a spokeswoman for Glen Mills said the school will appeal, and the revocation does not mean the school is closing.

No supposed hidden culture of violence was found on the campus, she noted, despite more than 150 inspections by different agencies over the past one-and-a-half years.

In a statement, the school said: “We are stunned that PA DHS is taking this action based on media reports as opposed to looking at the results of their own inspections.”

DHS issued an emergency removal order on March 25, which is also being appealed.