This blog is dedicated to "The Children Left Behind." We will not rest until the safety of our children and those that are entrusted with their mental health care are held accountable for abusing the children's God given rights, those rights upheld by our constitution, and those that have been complicit in obfuscating the truth!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Ridge Creek School’s “Rebuttal” was sent to My FOX ATLANTA NEWS; it also appears on "Woodbury Reports" under Breaking News "Ridge Creek School Responds to FOX 5 Report." Curiously, Mr. Woodbury did not provide the link to the FOX NEWS I-TEAM REPORT.

In addition, other than the last sentence, this is clearly not a rebuttal; nothing has been addressed that aired in the FOX I-TEAM Report. This is a marketing pitch, which surely indicates that Ridge Creek School is desperately in need of a marketing firm.



The mission of Ridge Creek School is to provide a successful learning experience for students who have struggled academically or socially in other settings. We provide an opportunity for teens to turn their lives around after other interventions have failed. We do this through the cooperative effort of our academic department, counseling department, recreation department, and the parents of the students placed in our care.

Ridge Creek School admits students on a case-by-case basis and evaluates every potential admission in an effort to screen out inappropriate placements. We rely on the openness of parents to inform us of their child's psychosocial history, including history of violence and legal charges, current, past, or pending. Sometimes parents do not completely reveal to us their children's problems in their desperation to save their child. Despite this, and the challenges it brings to the integration of the child into the student body, once admitted we are focused on helping that teen be as successful as possible in completing both their therapeutic and academic goals.
Jilliestake Rebuttal :

Untrue: Ridge Creek School's own admission policy and that of the ORCC regulations clearly defines and stipulates the following:

Ridge Creek Therapeutic Boarding School Admissions

Ridge Creek Therapeutic Boarding School's Admissions Staff can assist you in determining the appropriateness of your child for enrollment. They are familiar and acutely aware of the concerns of families taking this very difficult first step. They will help you by addressing concerns and answering questions.
Financial Aid and Scholarships are available. Please click here.
RCS Admissions must have the following material in order to consider and accept a student. Student acceptance can be confirmed within several days.
• Full Psychological Profile and/or referral from an Educational Consultant
• High School Transcripts for last three years
• Court Order/Divorce Decree pertaining to custody and visitation rights (if sole custody)
• Physical Examination
• Application for Admission
Once accepted, the following materials must be completed, signed and returned to RCS prior to a student’s enrollment. They may be faxed or mailed to the Admissions Department.
• Emergency/Information Sharing Card
• Childhood Immunization Record
• Copy of Insurance Card
• Birth Certificate
• Ridge Creek School Releases
Also, please see Forms and Documents which will list the necessary enrollment forms to be completed prior to admission.
2010 © Ridge Creek School
ORCC Regulations:

0911 Referral and Admission:

Page 17 – CCI RULES 290-2-05-.09(2)(d)1.

“1. An intake referral form that includes a social, health, educational, family, behavioral
and personal developmental history, shall be done to determine the placement and room,
board and watchful oversight needs (services, supports, setting, etc.) of each child and
whether that placement is appropriate.”

According to the ORCC, this is in no fashion indicative or meant to be interpreted that any facility, including Ridge Creek School, is to “rely on the openness of parents to inform us of their child's psychosocial history.” Ridge Creek School presents this as a lame excuse, placing the blame for the unethical practices of this facility on the parents.

In all fairness, there are other culpable parties, including Georgia DFCS.
It is not only the fault of Ridge Creek School in admission of behaviorally inappropriate, violent, adjudicated in-state youth, but Georgia DFCS as well. After all, according to state records, DFCS is responsible for placement of behaviorally inappropriate, violent, adjudicated youths from a myriad of Georgia counties. DFCS uses waivers, in lieu of a contract in placing youths at Ridge Creek School. Then, the ORCC charges violations against Ridge Creek School for violating Ridge Creek School’s own admissions policies. Go Figure.

DJJ contracts were hidden from Educational Consultants and Parents for years by not only HLA/Ridge Creek Wilderness, Ridge Creek, Inc., Creekside Wilderness, Ridge Creek-Mountain Brook, but the ORS now ORCC, and the DJJ itself. DFCS remained quiet, after all, they are the least touchable, accountable, and hide behind that glory – to which the state is responsible for that glorious achievement.

In reference to admissions of out-of-state youth that are behaviorally inappropriate, adjudicated, violent, or not, crossing state lines requires compliance with the Interstate Compact Placement of Children (ICPC). In addition, if the facility, the involved States, educational consultants, and courts adhered to the ICPC, parents could not circumvent these requirements, which involve a complete dossier on the youth/child in question. Records indicate that the student roster at Ridge Creek School has touched several states in bringing youths that are behaviorally inappropriate, adjudicated/probationary/ into a program that is not commensurate for their care and rehabilitations. Key – ICPC violations.

Blaming the parents as to not being forthcoming with their child’s background is unequivocally inexcusable. CCI RULES 290-05-.09(2)(c).

RidgeCreek School requires :

On Page 3 of Ridge Creek School’s Admissions Contract, it clearly states Admission requirements. If a child does not have Full Psychological testing,  it was provided by a contracted psychologist ( Mr. Loren James.) Of the approximately $3,300.00 Ridge Creek School charges parents for a Full Psychological Profile,  Mr. James states he was paid significantly less; the rest goes to the school. Two staff members surmised (names withheld) that one of the reasons the ORCC noticed missing psychosocial test data in youth folders was that there was no financial gain to be made for financial aid students. Staff  allege that documents were manufactured by a counselor(name withheld), including ISP’s per the request of an Administrator (name withheld)now gone, after the ORCC and DFCS investigator visits found they were missing.  All have been turned over to authorities for investigation. Who is fabricating and why?

CCI Regulations provide an exclusion for emergencies/DFCS placements.

0923 - Emergency Admissions. 290-2-05-.09(2)(f)

“Emergency Admissions. In situations that require emergency admission to an institution and when completion of the intake referral form, as described in Rule .09(1)(a)1., and intake evaluation and placement agreements, as described in Rules .09(2)(a)1. and 2. are not possible, the institution shall obtain as much information as possible about the child to be admitted, and as much
information as possible about the circumstances requiring admission. Such information shall be obtained from the referring person(s) or entity(ies) within 72 hours. When all the information to complete the intake referral form is not available, a health assessment shall be scheduled within 24 hours of emergency admission.”

Note: “A health assessment shall be scheduled within 24 hours of emergency admission.”

Blame the parents:

Aside from stating on Page 58 of the Orientation Handbook, Page 63 of the Parent Handbook: “Our students are not court-ordered to RCS and do not include violent or severely disturbed children who are more appropriate for a Residential Treatment Center or locked facility.”
KEY: The children that are placed at Ridge Creek School are not appropriate to the program’s actual capabilities.



“RCS Admissions must have the following material in order to consider and accept a student. Student acceptance can be confirmed within several days.
• Full Psychological Profile and/or referral from an Educational Consultant
• High School Transcripts for last three years
• Court Order/Divorce Decree pertaining to custody and visitation rights (if sole custody)
• Physical Examination
• Application for Admission”
Page 2 of 5 of Ridge Creek School Enrollment form:
5. Psychological Testing:

The State of Georgia requires a psychological evaluation by a psychologist or psychiatrist within one year of enrollment to ensure that Ridge Creek is an appropriate placement for your student. If you do not have any existing psychological evaluation results, Ridge Creek must contract with a psychologist to conduct a diagnostic interview with your student prior to admission. If you fail to provide the existing evaluation then within thirty days or your student's arrival at Ridge Creek they will complete a independent psychological evaluation at a cost to the family as detailed on expenses outside of tuition. If the psychologist determines that your student is not appropriate for Ridge Creek, you are responsible for your student's transportation back home or to other placement. Ridge Creek cannot hold your student for more than two hours after the psychological evaluation.

I hereby give my consent for Ridge Creek to contract with a psychologist for the purpose of evaluating my student's appropriateness for the Ridge Creek program. I also understand that I am responsible for my student's transportation if he is deemed inappropriate for Ridge Creek.

__________________________ "
Parent/Guardian Signature

A SNIPPET OF ORCC SURVEY REPORTS: 09-01-2010; 02-03-2011; 03-07-2011; 05-03-2011

Admission of youths that are court-ordered, violent, adjudicated, diagnosed with conduct disorder, and a myriad of other behavioral and psycho-social issues are in violation of CCI regulations and RCS admissions policy. No background checks were done. No assessments done – May through December of 2010. No Director.

If the ICPC youths arrived from states without documentation, those states are culpable along with the referring courts, educational consultants, and the host state.

ORCC records clearly indicate Ridge Creek School’s blatant disregard for following through with state policies and regulations. Time and again, the ORCC cites Ridge Creek for Admissions and Records violations, along with a laundry list of other violations. (ORCC website list is not up to date. It does not include fines/adverse actions/open investigations.) Several incident and complaint reports from 2009 to the present are not posted, along with incident reports that the ORCC has contained). More reports may be obtained at:

Ridge Creek, Inc. CCI

Ridge Creek-Mountain Brook Academy CCI

"Overall, prior outcome studies have clearly demonstrated our effectiveness in helping teens move away from their self-destructive life course toward futures bright with promise. We have found that the best outcomes came with students who competed the therapeutic curriculum and graduated from our program. Students who were withdrawn early, prior to completing the program, did not do as well."

Wonderful, please produce ‘independent’ outcome studies that are not ‘manufactured.'  Please do ... Unfortunately, the youths that did not complete the program were pulled due to allegations of fraudulent misrepresentations,(the contract conveniently absolves the facility), they were battered, arrested, 1013’d (sent to a mental health facility for suicide attempts or ideations)or rehab center, or are back in jail, or in another Foster Care facility as the ORCC, DFCS, and DJJ records attest to more egregious incidents. What about Sydney Vaughn, Lucrezia Albegiani, "Youth A" from Lee County, Florida; "Youth B" from Broward County, Florida;  "Youth C" from New York; "Youth D"  from Micklenburg NC; "Youth F " from Collier County, Florida; "Youth G" from Henrico County, Maryland, to name a few. Please include these youths, along with the entire sad list to which the ORCC and DFCS records attest. Finish the program? From 2009 forward RCS has had more ESI’s, 1013’s, attempted suicides by hanging, cutting, 2 riots, arrests for battery on staff and children, and the list horridly appears to have no end. Between 2009 and July of 2011-  More than 60 dispatch calls were logged by the LCSO, which more recently included the arrest for  Director of Counseling Anne Eden’s beating/battery.   For the record, she was repeatedly bitten on her face and arms according to the ORCC Intake report 97336 date of incident 05-29-2011, reported 05-31-2011.

The LCSO logs do not lie and this pertains only to that which has been reported. Lumpkin County Sheriff Jarrard stated that the suicide attempts were not reported. Well, it is the law folks, minor children here, and many times the attempted suicides were not even reported to the ORCC (ORCC WEBSITE). You do not 1013 a minor child and whisk them off to one of your buddies at Peachford or any other hospital for that matter, or place them on “clean-air,” and not report it!

0862 – STAFFING – CCI RULE 290-2-05-.08(7)(a-g)

“This [detailed written summary] report shall be made regarding serious occurrences involving
children in care, including but not limited to:
(a) Accidents or injuries requiring medical treatment and/or hospitalization;
(b) Death;
(c) Suicide attempts;
(d) Closure of the living unit due to disaster or emergency situations such as fires or severe
(e) Emergency safety interventions resulting in any injury; or
(f) Any incident which results in any federal, state or private legal action by or against the institution
which affects any child or the conduct of the institution. However, legal action involving the juvenile
justice system is not required to be reported.
(g) A detailed investigative report which includes steps taken by the facility to prevent further
incidents of a similar nature from occurring shall follow in five work days if not provided initially.

In addition, per Georgia O.C.G.A 19-7-5 Mandated Reporting: Includes protocols to follow, mandated reporting of suicidal ideations, suicide attempts, child abuse, etc.
Ridge Creek School is an accredited college preparatory high school. Our review on February 8 and 9, 2011, by AdvancED (formerly known as SACS, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools) resulted in a 5 year reaccreditation. The Quality Assurance Review Team commended the school for the following strengths: "In light of the fact that Ridge Creek School is in large part a "last chance" opportunity for the students, the commitment of all staff to the success of students is remarkable." "All stakeholders repeatedly provided dialogue referencing incredible passion for student success required daily by each staff member. The interviewees shared numerous success stories about students who have made successful transitions extending beyond RCS. Although the students stated that they would certainly rather be someplace else, when they were asked this question, "Three to five years from now, will you look back on this as a positive experience?" a resounding and unified voice of "yes" echoed throughout the room." 'The staff has electronic access to student data to effectively address the academic needs of students and guide instruction."
Jilliestake Rebuttal: Ridge Creek School is a “school” in name only. It is not recognized by the Georgia Department of Education as a school. Nor is it recognized by the following as a school:

RCS is not considered a "Private" school:

RCS is not considered a "Private" school by GAPSAC:

RCS is not considered a "Public" school:

RCS is not considered a "Charter" school:

RCS is not considered a "State" school:

Find " State Certified" teachers:

Ridge Creek School is a “Child Caring Institution”, a CCI, recognized by the Georgia Department of Human Services and licensed by the Office of Residential Child Care as a CCI with an educational program.
The only entities that deem Ridge Creek School as a “Private” “School” are Advanc-Ed, formerly SACS(Southern Association of Colleges and Schools) and Advanc-Ed is a private corporation, not public; GISA apparently does not get it either.  This facility is in no way, shape, or form a "college preparatory 'high school'."
No "school" has been afforded the privileges of not reporting suicide attempts without consequences.  What was it on the ORCC Matrix scale A-L, a C?  How noble of you.  If it was your child Ms. Winstead, Ms. Ivory, Mr. Bostick, Mr. Clyde Reese, and the lot of you, it is highly doubtful there would be no consequences.  Randy Travis stated that the ORCC officially maintains their hands are tied by regulations.  Another untruth, the ORCC has the Commissioner of the ORCC, the Georgia Attorney General, the Federal Attorney General, and the GBI.  Those "hands" of yours could have stopped this years ago and for whatever reason, you all chose to sit on your hands, while children were using theirs to place a noose around their necks!  "Limited by statutes indeed ."You all owe each and every child and parent an apology for covering up for this facility for years.  The question is, "why?"  It would behoove you all to get on your knees and pray the answer is favorable when uncovered, because just maybe, we then can kiss your --- goodbye.

During our conference call with the ORCC and DFCS on May 12th, 2011 which  former Director Mr. Dave Statton chaired, the day before he cleaned out his desk, one parent whose son had microwaved urine thrown on him while he slept asked repeatedly who in the state is ultimately responsible if a child dies?"  After the fourth or fifth interjection, Mr. Statton replied, "I, I am not in a position ..."  Well, who is?

According to Advanc-Ed on February 8 and 9, 2011 the Accreditation Team visited Ridge Creek School - Revisted:

Jilliestake Truth

There is no possible way that the Advanc-Ed (SACS) Accreditation Team paid a thorough visit on February 8th and 9th of 2011. If indeed they did tour the entire facility, checked records, check the educational programs (including Special Education for the IEP and 504 students that the school markets to and admits, ICPC students with IEP’s and 504’s), checked teacher certifications and rosters, and the fiscal viability of this facility, the accreditation would not have happened. Did they ever find Quirk and Quirk's infamous "lab" blunder?  Or did the "manufactured mobile lab" drive off by itself.

First, the Advanc-Ed team would have noticed that there were broken windows everywhere and boarded up as the windows were not replaced at that time from the second riot in January of 2011. According to Advanc-Ed, the "team" was not aware of the January event/riot. Obviously, if the "team" toured the school, it could not have been missed. So which is it? Horseblinders?

Second, if the accreditation "team" bothered to check, they would have found that there was no Director of Academics, which is a requirement for accreditation. Did they meet up with a sockpuppet? Advanc-Ed still has Mr. Donald Mull's summary on their web site and he quit last year. There was no Assistant Director of Academics, and there certainly was no certified Special Education teacher. The "Visual Arts" certified teacher quit, holding a "consultative" Special Education certification. According to the GAPSC, one of the teachers has a lapsed certification since 2009 and another touts a "Life Certificate" that the GAPSC has no record of, and stopped issuing after 1974. So which is it? More importantly, how was this missed? Too much wining and dining again? Advanc-Ed (SACS) has stated that since our last hurrah with SACS in 2005 over this same garbage, the facilities can no longer request their own reviewers. Duh, ya think. What a welcome monumental leap.

Third - Out-of-state IEP and 504' students come under the ICPC - Was adherence to ICPC checked before allowing accreditation? It is certainly unusual to transport Special Needs children across state lines to a Special Needs Educational Program that does not exist...
Advanc-Ed can argue that these inadequacies are out of their scope, but if one is being sold a package, is it not advisable to open it up, before promoting it?

Fourth - Although Advanc-Ed (Sacs) is a private company, and fought being held to GORA(Georgia Open Records Act), they state the last few years they are opening up to more transparency. Perfect timing to err big time. If Advanc-Ed does this, they will have much explaining to do to make SACS accreditation a worthy score. Either way, after Ridge Creek Schools "rebuttal," er, marketing gesture to the FOX NEWS I-TEAM REPORT blaming parents for Ridge Creek's admission of inappropriate plebes, it shall be interesting to see if Advanc-Ed steps up to the plate, or they attempt to blame Mr. Rogers.

When the GAO investigation is finalized, Advanc-Ed states that the report will be made public. At the time of this writing, Advanc-Ed has not produced Ridge Creek School’s Accreditation Report, it is not available on their web site, and apparently can be furnished by Ridge Creek School according to the Assistant Director of Advanc-Ed. Why not? Ridge Creek School received “accolades.”

Mr. Mull’s summary may be downloaded at:

"Teachers and counselors work collaboratively to address the therapeutic and academic needs of each student by means of the Individual Service Plan (ISP). The school uses the BestNotes program to identify a student's academic and therapeutic needs based on past history. Teachers use the ISP as a resource to implement interventions and differentiate instruction to ensure the academic success of students. Students are given multiple opportunities to pass required courses by means of academic support sessions and course extensions."
"Best Notes” program has been down quite a bit, when investigators from DFCS and the ORCC have requested records. (ORCC survey report 01-26-2011, etc.).

"RCS effectively uses data obtained from pre-tests to ensure that students are properly placed and given opportunities to achieve educational goals." "The beautiful, pristine, and remote wilderness setting of RCS provides a unique environment for the therapeutic, academic, and recreational services available for students, while providing opportunities for students to participate in athletic, cultural, and service sports/projects." "The school uses multiple modes of communication to keep all stakeholders involved in thecontinuousimprovementprocess."

The suggestions for improvement made by AdvancED included scheduling interdepartmental meetings, the creation of a curriculum map to assist with guiding instruction, engage in a comprehensive process to monitor the effectiveness of the educational program provided using a system of ongoing data analysis of both formative and summative student assessment results, and develop a Continuous Quality Improvement Committee to address issues of staff/student retention, outcome measurements for therapeutic and academic components, and alignment of the school's future direction/goals. We have implemented some of the suggestions made and are in the process of developing better quality assurance processes.

We are very proud of our students at Ridge Creek. Many come to us with academic failure after academic failure, but they learn to be successful here. All of the students who received their high school diploma from Ridge Creek in May were accepted into college. A young man who is slated to graduate at the conclusion of our summer semester not only was accepted to the school of his choice, but he was also awarded a $40,000.00 scholarship."

This does not negate the fact that this facility gives the appearance of fraudulently marketing what it cannot possibly deliver and has done so for years.  The contract is a clear indication that this facility has attempted to not only cover all behavioral and psychosocial anomalies as marketed to unsuspecting, blinded, distraught parents, but  the Ridge Creek, Inc. contract clearly is indicates that the owner does not wish to back up their marketing claims.  Anyone that signs a deplorable contract like this, is clearly under duress and terrified by the possiblity of losing their child.  To use parental love and parental instinct to protect one's cub from harm or death for one's monetary gain is disgusting and despicable. Parents from HLA 2005 through 2011 have still not received a full pre-paid tuition refund. Two families filed liens against the school.


(a) Parents will pay all initial tuition and other charges pursuant to Section 2 herein.
(b) Parents will pay all tuition on a monthly basis calculated using the daily rates identified
ill Section I herein.
(c) Parents will pay each monthly tuition amount in advance on the first calendar day of the
month immediately preceding the month for which the tuition is owed. By way of example, tuition for
the month of November is due on October I. If any monthly tuition payment is received by RCI after the
seventh (7lh) day of the month in which the payment is due, Parents will pay a late fee in the amount of
fifteen percent (15%) of the monthly tuition. If any monthly tuition payment is received by RCI thirty
(30) days or more after its due date, Parents will pay, in addition to the monthly tuition and Late Fee, a
finance charge in the amount of 3% per month or the maximum rate allowed by law, whichever is less, on
the unpaid tuition beginning thirty (30) days from its date due. In the event that RCI employs an attorney
to collect any tuition, fees or other charges, Parents will pay all collection costs and expenses including,
but not limited to, fifteen percent (15%) of the amount then due hereunder as attorneys' fees.
(d) If the Student is withdrawn or dismissed from RCI on or before thirty (30) days from the
date of enrollment, all tuition (excluding other charges for example clothing package, computer network,
achievement testing and screening inventory) paid by Parents pursuant to Section 2 herein will be
refunded less and except (i) tuition at one hundred sixty dollars ($160.00) per day for each and every day
beginning with the date of enrollment up (0 and including the last day of the withdrawal month; plus (ii) a
twenty-five hundred dollar $2,500.00 admission charge. If the Student is withdrawn or dismissed after
thirty (30) days from the date of enrollment, all tuition (excluding other charges for example clothing
package, computer network, achievement testing and screening inventory) paid by Parents will be
refunded less and except tuition, al the applicable per diem rate specified in Section I above, for each and
every day beginning with the date of enrollment up to and including the last day of the withdrawal month.
If the student is withdrawn or dismissed before ninety (90) days, the deposit will be fully refunded.
If the student is withdrawn or dismissed on or after ninety (90) days, the deposit shall not be
refunded. Once the deposit is non-refundable it can only be applied to the last two (2) months of the
contract term as listed on page one. All refunds will take six (6) weeks to process from the date of
withdrawal or dismissal. A verbal withdrawal shall not be effective for the purposes of tuition
refunds. The Parents must deliver a written notification of voluntary withdrawal to the business
office of RCI at the address first written above. The date that such written notice is received by RCI
will be the date of withdrawal for purposes of all refunds.
(e) Parents acknowledge and agree that no Student transcripts or other records will be
released to Parents, Student, or any third party if any tuition or other charges are owed to RCI at the time
such request is made. No such transcripts or records shall be released unless and until all amounts owed
are paid in full.
(I) Each Parent signing this Agreement shall be jointly and severally liable for all financial
obligations hereunder and such obligations shall be binding upon their respective heirs, personal
representative, successors and assigns.
00 - Contract Admissions
Rev :
Page - 2-


Parents, individually and on behalf of Student, and their respective heirs, executors, personal
representatives, and assigns, do hereby voluntarily release and discharge (i) RCI, its officers, directors,
shareholders, employees, attorneys and agents; and (ii) Ridge Creek, its officers, directors, shareholders,
employees, attorneys and agents, from:
(a) any and all claims, demands, actions, suits or proceedings, KNOWN OR
UNKNOWN, which such Parents, Student, or any other parent, legal guardian, relative or next-of-kin of
the Student may have for any and all injuries, damages, and expenses, including, but not limited to, all
personal injuries and illnesses and all damages to personal and real property caused by or arising out of
00 - Contract Admissions

Page - 4-
or otherwise related to the Student's enrollment at RCI or the Student's participation in any activity or
program conducted by or on behalf of RCI; and
(b) any and all claims, demands, actions, suits or proceedings, KNOWN OR
UNKNOWN, which such Parents, Student, or any other parent, legal guardian, relative or next of kin of
(the Student may have for any and all injuries, damages and expenses, including, but not limited to, all
personal injuries and illnesses and all damages to personal and real property caused by or arising out of,
or otherwise related to the Student's participation in any activity or program conducted or provided by
Ridge Creek.
(a) Parents. individually and on behalf of Student, and their respective heirs, executors,
personal representatives, and assigns (collectively "Indemnitor"), will at all times protect, indemnify and
hold harmless (i) RCI, its officers. directors, shareholders, employees, attorneys and agents (individually
or collectively, an "RCI Indemnitee"); and (ii) Ridge Creek, its officers, directors, shareholders,
employees, attorneys and agents (individually or collectively, a "Ridge Creek Indemnitee"), from any and
all costs, losses, liabilities, amounts paid in settlement, expenses (including reasonable attorneys" fees),
judgments, or tines actually and reasonably incurred (collectively, “Indemnified Expenses") because of:
(I) any and all claims. KNOWN OR UNKNOWN, made against an RCI Indemnitee
in connection with any threatened, pending or completed action, suit or proceeding, to which an
RCI Indemnitee is, was or at any time becomes a party, or is threatened to be made a party, by
reason of any act, omission, fault or negligence by or on behalf of an RCI Indemnitee resulting
from RCI's duties or obligations pursuant to this Agreement, Student's attendance at RCI, or
Student's participation in any activity or program conducted by or on behalf of RCI,
(2) any document, agent or employee of RCI being subpoenaed or otherwise being
required to be produced as evidence or to provide testimony in any legal proceeding pertaining in
any way to the Student or to the Student's attendance at RCI;
(3) any misrepresentation or omission in the Application Information; or
(4) any and all property damage caused by, or resulting from, Student's acts or
omissions including, but not limited to, Student's acts of vandalism.
(b) Parents hereby acknowledge and agree that Parents will pay to RCI all Indemnified
Expenses immediately upon receipt or invoice from RCI.
(c) Should Parents or any third party, including grandparents, not be able to agree on the
rights of one or both Parents, or one or more third parties, with regard to communications from RCI,
access to academic and counseling reports, and communication with, access to, and visitation with the
Student. then RCI will take legal action to determine these relative rights. Parents hereby acknowledge
and agree that Parents will pay to RCI, immediately upon receipt of invoice, all costs and attorneys' fees
incurred by RCI to determine such rights.
"Our students come to us as spiteful, oppositional, defiant teens. They learn through various service projects that they can make a difference in the lives of others. They volunteer regularly at the Humane Society, local food pantries, local homeless shelters, and take responsibility for keeping a stretch of highway clear of litter. Through giving back through service projects to the community at large or to the campus community, ourstudents learn to look beyond themselves.
Family involvement is critical in the success of our program. We offer parent workshops to help our parents develop more effective ways of interacting with their child. Our students and families report successful interactions within the family unit during our break weeks, something that many families didn't believe would be possible.
As our students move through the program, they take on a sense of ownership for their actions and stop blaming others for their problems. This sense of ownership results in the students holding one another accountable. Our students began and took ownership for an on campus NA meeting and this ownership is evidenced by the successful reduction of drug and alcohol use during our break weeks and the reduction in attempts to smuggle in contraband. There are many other small and large successes that lead our students toward a bright and promising future. "

Allegations by parents:

There was no transportation available to the off-site AA meeting at the church anymore. Mr. Clay Erickson, Addictions counselor, resigned/retired last year. According to parents, Ms. Kicklighter replaced Mr. Erickson, then resigned within two months. The facility has been advertising for an “Addictions Counselor” the last month on sites like “Simply Hired” and “Indeed.” It is not known if there is a licensed Addictions Counselor currently on staff. Parents and children report their child did not attend any AA or NA meeting, although placed at RCS for substance abuse. Perhaps this was a selective group.
"One of our recent graduates had this to say about Ridge Creek: "While this is a new chapter in my life, it's just the beginning and because of Ridge Creek it's not the end." Another stated, "what I will leave here saying is I never thought I would be standing here feeling this proud of myself, thank you mom and dad, I love you. And even though I hated this school to the end, it really worked."
"The recent report on Atlanta's Fox 5 television station was biased and reflected the opinions of two disgruntled individuals. We chose to not be interviewed because of our commitment to professional standards of confidentiality and privacy of our students and parents. We continue to be committed to the mission of the school, our students, and parents. We stand by the successes we see every day despite those who would undermine the future of the school and our students. Most importantly, we are here for the children."

Ridge Creek, Inc./School states the FOX I-TEAM report “was biased and reflected the opinions of “two disgruntled” individuals.”

• First, that ‘line’ is getting old and has been used in marketing, advertising, and rebuttals since the Class Action law suit of 2006.   FOX NEWS reporter, Randy Travis was “kind” compared to what he could have hit Ridge Creek School with and Ridge Creek School declined to comment;  Mr. Buccellato’s attorney, Thornton Morris ‘marketed ‘more dribble, thankfully, sans the “lab” statement. There is so much evidence here; it would take a mini-series to deal with it all.

• Secondly, the person who wrote the RCS rebuttal has no clue as to the shock and outrage of people that are privy to what has been allowed to continue at Ridge Creek School. This does not include just parents and children that were exposed to unethical practices,fraud, deceit, and neglect. It has included both in-state and out-of-state child advocates, both the Federal and State GAO agents/investigators, and yes, even Educational Consultants that happen to remember the IECA creed.

• Simply stated, the children that did well at RCS did not belong there in the first place. Parents of these students that promote the school were not privy to documents. They did not understand the use of “The Chalet” for isolation intervention or carrying boulders, or the truth behind the disappearance of “The Chapel Fund.” They did not even know there were “court-ordered, adjudicated DFCS and DJJ students comingled with their children. Heck, the handbook and orientation booklet flatly stated there were no court-ordered youth, along with staff emails. According to state agencies, they did not know in which facility on the compound these youths were residing.  However, off the record, a state agency staffer stated that was a “bold face lie.”  Records indicate extremely conflicting statements on the part of all state agencies involved. Creekside Wilderness (corporate Ridge Creek, Inc.) appears on the DJJ contract documents, was not separately licensed as a CCI in 2009, which was a placement requirement of DJJ youths. The contracts appear to piggy- back under the Ridge Creek, Inc. CCI. Yet, court documents submitted by Leonard Buccellato’s attorney’s during the bankruptcy case of Hidden Lake Academy, Inc. and HLA, Inc. reflect Creekside’s existence. Another “go figure.”

Now the ORCC states that there are no regulations blocking the commingling of adjudicated students with the main stream. The DJJ, depending on who one speaks with, changes with the wind. The “main stream” children that are Special Needs and their parents were not made aware of this, after all, Ridge Creek School is not a licensed RTF or PRTF, yet ARRA funding under Fiscal Stabilization was used to pay per diems under RTF's.  Go figure.

• Hey, this is a saga, a Pulitzer Prize winner in the making, but it is some undertaking as Gerogia State Senator Schaefer uncovered.  Although, what is out there publically appears much to digest, it just skims the surface. Attorney Phil Elberg, referring to his former case, whom I have quoted before said it aptly,” it was so crazy, no one would believe it.”

• To those young staff  that are dedicated to helping the children at Ridge Creek School and “are walking in the dark” - you are to be commended, just as the DFCS investigators that tried to make a difference and were ignored. However, following through with ones dedication and vision is only as good as those that will let your vision fly. Several of the Administrative staff members that walked away are not commendable, and they should be held accountable. They had an ethical and fiduciary responsibility to report what was transpiring, continues to fester, and that which is contained at this facility. Not only has this facility contributed to the destruction of families, but staff lives as well.

• Every child, adjudicated or not, has God given rights, rights under our Constitution, rights continually ignored under the guise of help. Morally and ethically, we as are charged to protect those rights, giving voice to those that cannot speak. If we do not speak for our children, our future, for others, we are part of a 60 -100 billion dollar industry that appears to be one of the most unique types of Ponze schemes created.  We become part of the problem and not the solution. Our children, through our own fears, much implanted, become the bounty. Our children deserve better and we need to be better.

And that’s my take.

Note:  Spelling and grammatical errors have been left intact to preserve the authenticity of copied documents.


  1. Way to go, Jillie!!! Ridge Creek School is run by scum and they don't care one iota about the children they profess to care some much about. They only care about the $$$ - that's always been Len's passion. The ORCC and AdvanceEd are a bunch of incompetent fools. Thankfully there are people like you who continue to strive for the truth and won't rest until justice is served!

  2. Jill
    great rebuttal to the non rebuttal.
    backed up by facts and documentation unlike the non rebuttal.
    As you know this is just the tip of the iceberg what you have shown is just what is visible above the water. The full story would take weeks to write.
    But eventually it will be written and shared

  3. Thank you for your comments "For the children left behind." Jilliestake

  4. Distressed AmericanJuly 14, 2011 at 12:46 AM

    Good job, Jillie! Keep the spotlight on these roaches!

    Helping these children requires a strong dedication to the children. RCS/HLA seem to have a strong dedication for sure; unfortunately, like so much in our country, it is a dedication to profiting from the pain and anguish others suffer.

    Woodbury struck me as a cheerleader and apologist for the industry some years ago. In first reading of HLA on his site, it sounded like the answer to many prayers. The reality was so much different, it is shocking. The cozy relationship of the "schools", the agents who refer children to the schools ("salesmen"), and the regulatory apparatus, is absurd. When regulators say "who, me?" about who is in charge, you know you've got a problem.

    Good luck in your mission, and don't give up...I'm betting you won't.

  5. I worked at this school when it was called Hidden Lake Academy and watched its decline over several years until my conscience could stand it no more. I saw first hand the farce of the SACS accreditation team's "inspections", the staged "evaluation tours" conducted by educational consultants, which consisted of few hours at the facility participating in highly choreographed activities where the students were forced to perform like trained seals, followed by many hours of drinking and fine dining at various high-end restaurants and the home of Leonard Buccellato, Hidden Lake's owner. I also watched the donations of hundreds of thousands of dollars he solicited to construct the Hidden Lake Chapel disappear. The chapel, of course, was never built. Buccellato, who is a licensed psychologist, is one of the most venal and corrupt individuals I have ever known. He deserves to be in prison, and from what I hear regarding certain ongoing investigations, he may soon be.


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