Hawthorne Cedar Knolls School halts student intake

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The decision by the office of child and family services comes after years of trouble purportedly caused by the residents once they leave campus. The decision by the office of child and family services comes after years of trouble purportedly caused by the residents once they leave campus.
MOUNT PLEASANT -

The Hawthorne Cedar Knolls School for emotionally troubled teenagers in Mount Pleasant has halted its intake of new students.

The decision by the office of child and family services comes after years of trouble purportedly caused by the residents once they leave campus.

Last month, four residents of Hawthorne Cedar Knolls were accused of beating a restaurant owner after refusing to pay their tab. This past weekend, other residents were accused of attacking a woman at the Valhalla train station and stealing her money and cellphone.

Ken Bartone, who lives across the street from the school, believes the admissions halt will help.

"Sure it will make a difference," he says. "They can't take care of who they got there now."

Sen. Terrence Murphy has been working with Hawthorne Cedar Knolls to increase security policies that protect nearby residents and is applauding the decision to halt intake. 

"It is my sincere hope that the necessary policies will be properly implemented to provide the services to the kids at the facility while ensuring the safety of its neighbors," Murphy says.

The Jewish Board of Family and Children's Services, which runs the Hawthorne Cedar Knolls School, says it is working closely with the state to provide services to its students and to be a "good neighbor to the community."

No timeframe has been given as to when the intake halt will be lifted.

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