POLAND, Maine (AP) _ The Elan School, a private boarding school in Maine for troubled youth where Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel went as a teenager, is shutting its doors because of financial difficulties brought on by declining enrollment.

The school in the central Maine town of Poland opened in 1970 and is now owned by Sharon Terry, the widow of co-founder Joe Ricci, who died in 2001.

The school drew national attention during Skakel’s 2002 murder trial. Skakel, a nephew of Ethel Kennedy, was convicted of killing neighbor Martha Moxley with a golf club in Greenwich, Conn., when he was 15. During the trial, former classmates at Elan testified that Skakel had confessed to them while at the school.

The Sun Journal of Lewiston says the school will close April 1.
Information from: Sun-Journal, http://www.sunjournal.com

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Comments (6)
  1. Felice Debra Eliscu says:

    This School should have been closed decades ago.
    Thanks to the internet the truth can no longer be hidden.
    I seriously hope the people who ran the Elan School are held responsible for their criminal behavior.
    This type of abuse should have never been allowed to continue for so long.
    Michael tried to have Elan exposed before he was “magically” charged with a 25yr old crime. Many have suffered for speaking the truth.

    1. Andrew Steven Breitel says:

      see my comment.

  2. Andrew Steven Breitel says:

    I went to the Elan School fairly recently, and I have nothing bad to say. Maybe so of the ways were harsh, but the school changed me for the better, and caused me to realize many things and set me on track. I am currently a college student, and without the elan school I would never had made it through high school. There was no abuse or violence, and I personally attest to that, so unless you actually went there, then I suggest you stop making false accusations. If you really had a problem with the program, you should file a complaint and have it heard, because I can guarantee that there is nothing solid in evidence.

  3. Mary O'Brien says:

    I went to the Elan School from 1973-1978. I went there as a twelve year old, who was legally blind with behavioral problems. They took away my dolls, stuffed animals, art supplies and proceeded to abuse me when I found it difficult to adjust to their ways of doing things. Along the way I saw many other students abused. Although I learned not to run away when things got tough, I wound up with a life time of emotional scars because of Elan.

  4. Dan says:

    This school should have been close down in the early 1980’s. But due to, in my opiniion, a cozy relationship that Elan and its owners and attorney’s had with federal, state and local entities, it made it impossible to get any real investigations.

    Investigative journalist and former employee of Joe Ricci, Maura Curley and I ,researched the background of Joe Ricci and Elan School for nearly 3 years. Elan School former residents were interviewed and their stories were published in 1991. The Book, DUCK IN A RAINCOAT: AN UNAUTHORIZED PORTRAIT OF JOE RICCI, was introduced as evidence in the Skakel trial. The judge ultimately ruled that since there was existing published testimony by former Elan residents, residents could testify at the Skakel trial over the objections of Joe Ricci and Elan.

    Elan Survivors waged this campaign to get Elan shut down, and they finally won.

  5. Dave says:

    I went to the Elan School in the early 1990’s and it was a horrible place of violence neglect and abuse. The ring leaders with no formal education should be hunted down and prosecuted in court. The abuse and neglect were off the charts. There was also a mafia like code when outsiders appeared all procedures changed until they were out of view. So glad it shut down now we need to take it further and shed light on what happened there.

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