Cedu Documentary Clip 1

Preview clip 1 of the Cedu Documentary. Welcome to Cedu…

Read about it at the Cedu Documentary page.


About Liam Scheff

"Author, Artist, Film, Permaculture." Liam Scheff is a writer, artist and stand-up lecturer on issues that people usually don't make comic books about. (Visit liamscheff.com). Liam's highly-praised book "Official Stories" reveals the complex details behind the myths of our times.

Posted on October 8, 2008, in Surviving Cedu. Bookmark the permalink. 21 Comments.

  1. Dear Liam,

    This is such important work and the clips are very powerful. I’m in shock, and I’ve heard this story before. But not told this way; the camera doesn’t lie. Very well done.

    My deepest thanks to Liam and all those who have been interviewed. This shouldn’t happen to anyone, and certainly not to vulnerable youth.

    I will distribute the link.

    Thank you and good work,

    Auntie Em

  2. Hi,

    Good! Thanks! Pass it on, of course. Yes, the bad ol’ days – I suppose what is valuable is to shed a little light on it for kids who’d maybe like a different option now. I think that’s a good place to start. Anyway – more to come.


  3. Dear Liam,

    this reminds me of Jeffrey Moussaief Masson. Have you heard of his work? He wrote a book called “Against Therapy” in which he describes abuses that have been made by the psychiatric body against patients. Another very interesting opus is “The History of Madness” by Michel Foucault.

    It seems that the fear of independent minds has been largely at play in the history of psychiatry and that a number of facilities seek not to heal but to subdue. I have several friends who have spent time in mental hospitals and have seen some of what goes on in these places.

    Of course, “mental illness” is a very complex issue I cannot tackle with elaborately in a comment. One hundred years ago, I might have been considered “morally insane” and sent away, if my parents had been too stiff to let me be.

    Now, I know the CEDU school is not a mental institution but it seems related in its approach, on how to approach dissidence, or simply strength of will, the way they force obedience.

    I see a similarity with the ICC investigation. Facilities that force treatment on powerless patients.

    Keep your investigations up!

    Anyway, as mentioned in my other comment, I would like to be in touch directly as I have many questions for you so you have my e-mail…

  4. Hi Melissa,

    I’ll send you an email this week – you can also contact me via my contact page (at http://liamscheff.com – contact )

  5. great, looking forward to a more direct conversation. Thank you for your work!

  6. I went to Cedu in January 1984 through my graduation in June of 1986–I’ll be very interested in viewing the finished product.

  7. sounds like an awesome place!

  8. Im interested in seeing the result of this film……contact me for some imput!! Ha! Face it! Better than the joint right? Maby no one had to ever find out.

  9. Liam,

    I went to CEDU from April of 1981 to 1983 when I graduated. The school was very different then. I want to say that it was more abusive but after listening to the people willing to do your film it sounds like things became more thwarted. I was told up front that I was going to CEDU and would be there for about 2 years. I was told that if I didn’t go to CEDU (as I was 18) that they would commit me to a state mental facility. So I went. These videos brought back a lot of memories. The friendships made there are priceless but the hell that people were put through was not. I am looking forward to seeing the rest of your movies. It happened so many years ago but it never really goes away does it? I lost many memories after a car accident when I was 24, but there are many memories that I retained and of course some that have been jolted by the stories of the people you have filmed. Good luck with the rest of it and am willing to talk with you anytime.

    Marcy Rizzo

  10. The staff there during my stay was John and Marci Padgett, Danielle and Michael Allgood, Dan and Carmen Earle, Eric Melzer, Tim Brace, Art and Gail Tilles, Michael and Heather Cruciano.

  11. Been a while since I have been on here. Hope everyone is doing well. Liam, just now watched the 1st clip “Welcome To Cedu”. Awesome, about to watch the rest. I was at Cedu from 92-94. Just watching that 1st Documentary clip brought back so many unpleasant memories. It is extremely comforting to know that all of us who did go there share a bond that basically no else in the world does. Keep up the brilliant work Liam! I.

  12. eric ryan (kowalski)

    Whoa…… whoa….. I am finally so happy to hear that other people are starting to talk about what happened there. I graduated in 1988 and I could tell you alot about how they operated.
    To be honest, I miss my peer group. We went through alot of the weirdness together. Thank god some of you are still alive. Contact me if you wish. I would love to reconnect. You know who you are….lol

  13. eric ryan (kowalski)
  14. I also went to Cedu.
    Im no t sure the exact dates but it was my 6th and 7th grade year. Im in college now.

    I have just now found all of my friends via Facebook. However, it was so long ago, we arent close anymore.

    I dont really agree with the abuse accusations…however I was never really a trouble maker. I think a big point is to stop and look at the type of people being sent there….cutters, sexually active teens, liars…all of it. So the counselors and school did the best…well sometimes…with what they had.

    After two years there and then turning around and moving back home to texas…well lets just say The culture shock was intense. Leaving Cedu was hard…I wasnt accepted at my old school with my new way of life or morals.

    I sometimes still feel like Im still stuck in that cedu mindset..that no one knows why I act sheltered or scared.

    Its a really emotional subject. but no one can take away what bonded us all together…good or bad.

    Im not real sure how everyone else is doing in life..but I do know that I am a much better person then I was back then…and the morals that I have now took root at Cedu.

  15. Kelsey, I don’t want to knock on your experience and I genuinely am glad that you’re doing well. If you got some benefits out of your experience, well then, all the power to you. You seem to be expressing some doubts and fears, though.
    I would just like to maybe plant some seeds for you to think about… Does the end justify the means? is my biggest question.
    If you have improved because of some tools you learned, are the others who were your peers that suffered and learned nothing just collateral damage?
    Would your betterment as a person maybe have occurred with less harsh methods and still been effective?
    Many of my friends who didn’t attend Cedu or a cedu-like school had some pretty bad behavior as adolescents, they just GREW UP, and got past it. Might we have just grown up and moved on without a behavior modification school? Millions of adults surviving varying degrees of horrible adolescence and experimentation suggest, yes, maybe we would’ve.
    If things were that bad for you before Cedu, then I apologize, but if you weren’t a big troublemaker, as you admit, then I can’t imagine why you would ever see that as an acceptable place for you to be. You’re scared and not very confident or well adjusted in life. That’s not how Cedu should’ve left you if it was for the best. Or maybe I’ve just got it all wrong, but think about it at least.

  16. dario depiante

    Distressing. I was at DeSisto School in Stockbridge, MA from 1983-1986. It was of a similar variety, but due to geography and some other quirks, not as isolated, but damaging, nonetheless. Some of the kids (less than 5% by my reckoning) could have benefitted from the place, the rest got taken for a very nasty ride.

    Who were the evil sons-of-bitches who perpetrated this torture on the kids and their (in some cases) unsuspecting parents? Was there a colossal, phony prick named Michael Allgood involved, and an even fatter one named Neil….. something… Westin, Weston?

    In any even, you’ve done a nice job, here. It makes me quake as I remember that feeling… of being dropped off, and having it dawn on me what kind of “school” I was really at. How did they get away with ZERO academics?



  17. Benjamin Sturgess

    Hey I went to a CEDU clone that’s relatively new, it’s called Carlbrook. I’d love to get my hands on the entire doco- is there any place I can? There are some people I’d like to be able to share it with.

  18. Liam I am glad you have made these videos… I don’t know how I found them… But this is very valuable.

    I worked at Cedu in Running Springs for a little over a year… and there was a lot that I didn’t like then. I was always hopeful that the program was somehow effective, and that these people I worked with knew what they were doing… but obviously that was never the case.

    About nine years ago some of the staff spoke to some investigators… I know one was from the sheriff’s office. I don’t know that anything came of that.

    I remember that Justin was the first kid I met when I interviewed and he gave me the grand tour.

  19. This main woman with the reddish hair has manipulated what the goal was of the Cedu/Brown schools. This documentary of of the caliber of a Michael Moore film, One sided, and misconstrued. Maybe when I went too North West Academy in 2002 things were changed to a more nuturing program, but what she perceives the school as was manipulated into a flabbergasting display of illogical reality. A view intoo a bitter person and their personal perception. I personally came out a changed person, and owe my current great life too this program and the staff of the Polaris team.
    I appreciate and vastly value what I was forced to address in myself that I would have never ever done. I’d found that there was another way to live life than what I’d let myself believe I deserved. A better person and a honest man.

  20. I attended cedu when it closed down. I remember how scared i was when i got there and still think about it till this day. I was so happy the day they had us all go to the main room and told us they were shutting down. I remember everyone crying and breaking down into tears….

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