Family Foundation School / Allynwood Academy
CLOSED (August 2014)




Deceptive and Fraudulent Marketing

“After I left, I asked [my parents] why they [had] chose[n] FFS, and my mother
explained that the information provided by the school was grossly inaccurate
and that during my stay the FFS staff did not report my problems.”
- Brianna Bernstein

“The main issue that I have with programs, The Family School in particular, is
their false marketing strategies. They claim to be a ‘college-preparatory boarding
school.’ I don’t think that I could have been worse prepared for college than I
was by FFS. […] I remember two weeks after I graduated they put a picture of
me up on their website with quotes from my graduation speech, which was
heavily edited by the administration. They told me what to say and how to say it
so that the visiting parents could see the joys and successes of their program. I
remember crying during my graduation speech, not because I believed a word of
the ‘touching’ speech I was giving, but rather because this horrendous experience
was finally over. I was finally free.” - Chris Noroski

“I saw kids get punched and lifted 6 feet in the air and dropped on the ground
while in these restraints. The one thing, though, that never seemed right, was the
newsletter they sent our parents. It never mentioned any of this. It always talked
about the great things we were doing: grades, sports, choir.” - Brendan McMahon

“The school is a giant sales pitch, the worst thing that I hated and that I had to be
a part of was giving tours to incoming parents who were interested in sending
their kids there. God, I think about how many parents I lied to and said how ”if I
wasn’t at the school id be dead“ and “this place saved my life,” when in reality
the school was killing me. We were used to sell the parents the school, we were
EMPLOYEES, not STUDENTS. We knew we couldn’t tell them the truth about
how we really felt because of fear we would be punished, or at that point lose
our graduations (the biggest punishment of them all).” - Jacob Lysick

“When the Middle States Association came, I had been moved to Family 1 with
Robin and Mike Ducey. The Middle States ate lunch with us. Robin told us to
keep the table topics ”light“ that day. She brought up a senior member about to
graduate and just talked nicely about her leaving and there were no abusive
topics that day which was not typical of a table topic. Table topics are when a
student is called up in front of their family of 30 students and staff and issues are
discussed. Most of these topics consisted of yelling a verbal abuse. Sometimes the
yelling was so loud I could hear it from the other room.” - Sarah Forman

“I know it’s hard to tell sometimes, but it was not bad parenting that led to this
decision. It was good parenting and deceptive tours and marketing. While I may
have received a more focused education, every other part of my teenage life, and
early adult life, was stunted as a result of my time at The Family.” - Jon Martin-