Agape Boarding School announces it will close Jan. 20

This December, 2020, shows Agape Boarding School in Stockton, Mo. Cedar County Circuit Judge...
This December, 2020, shows Agape Boarding School in Stockton, Mo. Cedar County Circuit Judge David Munton signed an order Wednesday night, Sept. 7, 2022, to close the boarding school after the Missouri attorney general's office and the state Department of Social Services filed petitions citing evidence that someone on the state registry for child abuse and neglect was actively working there. (Jill Toyoshiba/The Kansas City Star via AP)(Jill Toyoshiba | AP)
Published: Jan. 11, 2023 at 1:34 PM CST
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - The boys school near Stockton, Missouri, that has been the subject of investigation over physical and sexual abuse will close next week.

Agape Boarding School released a statement that it will close Jan. 20.

Missouri’s new Attorney General Andrew Bailey told reporters Jan. 3 he had plans to continue efforts in shutting the school down where several staffers have been charged with felony and misdemeanor abuse.

In a recent court filing, a student referred to as R.B. says he attempted suicide 15-20 times during his nearly six years at Agape due to constant abuse. The filing calls suicide attempts a “pandemic among students.”

The motion quotes the testimony of 11 students who describe horrific abuse. Several cases include allegations of rape and sodomy. Students’ claims describe broken noses and injuries from being placed in handcuffs or restraints for days.

Allegations of physical and sexual abuse at Agape and nearby Christian boarding school Circle of Hope Girls’ Ranch prompted a state law in 2021 requiring stricter oversight of such facilities. Among other things, the new law allows state or local authorities to petition the court for the closure of a facility if there is believed to be an immediate health or safety threat to the children.