Tranquility Bay

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U.S. Department of State - warning against such facilities abroad

Tranquility Bay is a behavior modification facility connected to World Wide Association of Specialty Programs and Schools (WWASP).

It is located on the island nation of Jamaica [1]. It opened in 1997. The director is Jay Kay, son of WWASP president Ken Kay. The cost for one child ranges from $25,000 to $40,000 a year. Tranquility Bay is generally acknowledged as the toughest of the WWASP schools; in fact, many other WWASP schools who are not able to handle their most rebellious detainees will expel them from their respective schools and enroll them in Tranquility Bay.

Tranquility Bay states that it is dedicated to helping parents who are having difficulty with their children, whether they are doing drugs, breaking the law, disobeying them, or are disrespectful. Jay Kay told a reporter: "If I have kids, and they start giving me a problem, well they are going straight in the program. If I had to, I'd pull the trigger without hesitation." ) [2]. Children as young as 12 have been admitted to Tranquility Bay, for reasons ranging from drug use to conflicts with a new stepmother.


The facility used the WWASP 6 levels behavior modification program. Since the closure of High Impact in Tecate, Tranquility Bay is regarded as the toughest facility in the WWASP system.

A typical day is described as following by a survivor [3].


Some critics and former enrollees accuse the facility of torture or other grave mistreatment and say that the facility employs staff who are not appropriately qualified for work with troubled teenagers.

In the news

In 2001 a detained girl - Valerie Ann Heron - jumped to her death and fractured her skull in two places [4]. The facility saw it as an accident but in fact there was a suicide note [5] [6].

In 2007 groups of citizens secured the release of a jewish boy sent by his father to Tranquily Bay. A rescue mission established by influenced people in New York saw too that this boy saved his life [7] [8]. Support groups on the internet were also created [9]

In 2009 it was reported that the program was closing down and the funiture was about to be sold. [10][11][12]

External links

Info pages

Survivor groups

Message boards


  1. The facility on Google Maps
  2. The Last Resort, Observer Magazine, June 29, 2003, Decca Aitkenhead
  3. Exposing WWASPS camp abuse, by Michal Zapendowski, Columms in The Brown Daily Herald, april 28 - 2005
  4. Cops rule out foul play in death of Tranquility Bay student, Jamaica Observer, August 16, 2001
  5. Want Your Kid to Disappear?, Legal Affairs, July/august 2004, Nadya Labi
  6. No More Nightmares at Tranquility Bay?, Alternet, January 23, 2006, John Gorenfeld
  7. Isaac Hersh, Teen Advocates USA
  8. Case of Michael Hersh, Father - Miriam Hersh, Mother - Rabbi Aharon Schechter, Family's Rabbi - Worldwide Association of Specialty Programs and Schools (WWASPS), The Awareness Center
  9. Save Isaac's Life!, facebook group
  10. Looking for a job, a thread on a local community board
  11. Tranquility Bay CLOSED!, a thread on Fornits webforum
  12. Tranquility Bay is OFFICIALLY Closed, a thread on the Antiwwwasp message board