Sunday, November 18, 2012

Mike Burnette at Agape Boarding School

This testimony was made by Mike Burnette on a marketing page for boarding schools. All rights to the story belongs to the author

My name is mike burnette.

I arrived at agape in july of 2006 and spent 6 months there. I left the program without graduating due to my horrible experience there(and i did return home to finish high school and am about to begin my third year of pharmacy school in San Antonio, TX).

When i first arrived, i was stripped searched, and all of my personal belongings (from my shoes to my boxers) were confiscated from me. Then i was moved into another room (now only in boxers) and they shaved my head.

Then orientation began. Orientation lasted 3 weeks and consisted of non stop workouts in triple digit heat from the time i woke up until the time i went to sleep. Not to mention i was allowed absolutely no contact with my family for the first 30 days i was there. We were also not allowed to speak to one another. Do you know what it’s like for a teenager to not be able to carry on a conversation with his peers? It’s absolutely horrible.

Then there was “restraint.” This is a form of punishment when 4-6 of the staff members take you into a small room and manipulate your pressure points, and throw you around a little bit. During my time at Agape, i was restrained numerous times, and evertime i was restrained, i walked out of the restraint room bleeding, or bruised. I remember one specific time Brother Brian (the son of the founder and owner Mr. Clemens) elbowed me in the back of the head, causing my face to slam against the concrete-reinforced wall in the restraint room(Agape is located in tornado alley so therefore has concrete reinforced walls). This left a giant bruise and cut on the left side of my face that i still have a scar from.

Brother Brian routinely bragged about his “jurassic-elbow” and the effect it had on us. And thats coming from the son of the owner? And they clame to be a Christian school?? Thats hard to believe when the men that preach to you also physically beat you.

My experiences at Agape were horrible, and because of that, i returned home a worse son then when i first arrived there. I came back with the bitter resentment that my mother had sent me to that wretched place. I had all this pent up anger towards the staff at Agape, and i took it out on my family. And it stayed that way until i began seeing a psycologist. I would not suggest Agape Boarding School to any family out there. I am so cionfident that you can find a better boarding school for your son that will use much better tactics for reform.

Oh and as for the school, it is non-acreditted. Meaning that all school work done there cannot be transferred to another school. Having a diploma from a non-acreditted school also means youre son is less likely to get into college. Due to the fact that some colleges do not reconize diplomas from non-acreditted schools.



  1. However, when the days advance, they learn to be by themselves and away from parents. This makes them to be independent.

    Boarding School

  2. I am glad to hear you are in pharmacy school. I can pretty much guess you landed there because of your behavior. Sounds like it worked for you. People complain about tough situations in life and they usually define us. The question is where would you be without that intervention?

    1. Except our behavior change has nothing to do with agape and we have to live with the extremely negitve issues for the rest of our lives PTST, anxiety, constant fear, and many others.

  3. Todd here if I ever see Brian Wayne clemensen in Florida I'm going to sock him in the jaw straight up. Agape is a cult a very weird cult any school that takes students and makes staff members out of them is a cult.

  4. I was at the school when it was in Othello was. It just shut down cause they didn't even have a license to be there. They basically too over a old air Force Base and called it a school. It was a cult and messed my head up considerably. I am a Christian and live a healthy Christian Life style now, but went down a hard road after leaving that school. I seen kids severally beaten, broken bones ect. I was beaten, I was forced to eat cereal with bugs in it. I was scared for my life every day there. I have many stories about that place that I won't go into. I think it was 94 I was there. I remember the fire department coming and first shutting it down cause we were locked in a barracks with no way to get it in case of fire. There was a laser in the hall way that went off if you went off if you went to the bathroom. Every one would have to get up and wait for you till they can go back to bed. That meant that the kids would beat you the next day. One kid peed in the post of his bunk bed that was hollow cause he was scared to wake everyone at night. One day we had to clean it area and his bunk was lifted and pee flowed out. He was beaten badly, I felt so bad for that kid.

  5. Still have nightmares of this place 1997-1998

  6. I do see that i am the most recent "survivor" as they call it, of Agape. I was enrolled from 01/15/2014 - 06/26/2015 (18 months) in the current location in stockton MO. Although my experience was not a rugged and rough or "more hardcore" to say the least, than those from many previous years before me, even in such recent day in age, it was a very Life changing experience, and not for the better. To name off some facts; yes, kids are beaten and manipulated and even discriminated by staff. yes, 90% of the time, your parents are lied to about your children and their progress in the program and about the true things that happen while they are there. Yes, children are neglected according to their rank, (usually being grey shirt or lower) physically, psychologically, and very much emotionally. i do know its 2018 and "gangs" are nothing like they used to be, but being in agape, you are mentally forced to join a "gang" or "clique". On a personal account, i felt the necessity to join one of these in order to "survive". With personally witnessing physical, mental, and emotional abuse, from staff to student, i of course did not want this to happen to me. But nevertheless, it did anyways. I then went into a "survival of the fittest" mode. I even recall very clearly, a staff member demanding a student to beat the sh*t out of another student for snitching on him. My worst memory is when I was in the dorm floor in a bunk in the side wall where you cant really see anything when the lights are off, and the guys surrounding me would beat me with socks filled with miscellaneous items. I didnt even say names or when it happened,but when brought forward to a staff member, he told me "Looks like you slipped in the shower or something". I got that same a** whoopin for 12 months and not a single staff member did a d*mn thing about it. I still have the same scars on my sides and back and all from things breaking my skin so bad that i needed stitches. i even recall a chiseled toothbrush end being penetrated into my calf while sleeping. So Being at agape taught me 2 major life lessons. 1. if i have the worlds worst kids, ill have better results in improved behavior and lifestyles by leaving them stranded in the bay area in cali, then sending them to agape, and 2, how not to be a b*tch and take an *ss whoopin.


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