Your Top Special Needs Resources

Every parent needs trusted resources, and parents of kids with special needs even more so. From specialty services and therapies, to educational resources and even a special needs-focused garden center, check out these Chicago Parent advertising partners and add them to your own list of who to call.

Midwestern University

A leader in graduate healthcare education, Midwestern University prepares students for careers in the health sciences, including osteopathic medicine, optometry, pharmacy, dentistry, psychology, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech-language pathology and much more. On campuses in Downers Grove and Arizona, students learn the art of patient care in a team-oriented, interdisciplinary, hands-on environment. Midwestern University students thrive with all the support and guidance they need to be highly skilled, compassionate, community-oriented healthcare professionals.

The Discovery Clinic

Children grow and develop at their own pace, but sometimes they experience developmental delays. Parents who worry because their children are not mastering language at a typical age need to know that there are therapies that can help with delayed speech development. The Discovery Clinic in Glenview provides an integrative model of various therapies for children, teens and adults, including Neurofeedback Therapy, Interactive Metronome Therapy and Educational Play Therapy. Each program begins with an in-depth assessment, followed by a recommendation for appropriate training sessions designed to provide consistent improvements.

Acacia Academy

At Acacia Academy, a private school for grades 1-12 with a transitional program for ages 18-22 in LaGrange, students who learn differently are nurtured through differentiated instruction and responsive teaching in very small class sizes with one teacher for every three students. Acacia offers accredited programs for students with dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia, autism, ADD/ADHD, executive functioning and auditory/visual processing disorders. Students with anxiety, school phobia and refusal, emotional and social needs, gifted students and those not performing at appropriate grade levels thrive through Acacia Academy’s specialized programs and tailored curricula. Outdoor classrooms at the two-acre Nature Center provide a unique setting that helps students focus and enjoy learning. Students from all over northern Illinois attend Acacia Academy and, in many cases, the home school district provides tuition and transportation. 

The Cove School

The Cove School, a private K-12 school for children with learning disabilities in Northbrook, started planning for its fall reopening on the March day it (and every other school in Chicago) closed in response to the coronavirus. Knowing the world would be a different place moving forward, The Cove School took the opportunity to modify and improve its physical environment. The Cove School replaced communal tables with individual adjustable-height desks on wheels, updated bathrooms with antibacterial countertops and touchless facilities and installed Plexiglas and sanitizing stations throughout. The Cove School enhanced its mental health support systems and also met with each student and family prior to reopening. More than ever, The Cove School fulfills its mission to provide individualized education with a focus on life strategies for students with complex learning disabilities.

Southwest Dental Group

For kids and young adults with special needs, routine dental care can be a challenge and finding a dentist who best knows how to care for their dental needs is not easy. Under the expert care of Dr. Robert Tentler and Dr. Matthew Pearce, special needs patients of Southwest Dental Group in Orland Park receive the most efficient, effective dental treatments provided with compassion, flexibility and understanding. Southwest Dental Group staff takes the time to get to know patients with cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, autism spectrum disorder and various other levels of ability to establish a foundation of respect, safety and trust. Southwest Dental Group also offers IV sedation, general dentistry and cosmetic dentistry for the whole family.

Total Spectrum

Total Spectrum offers programs developed to help children with autism learn to communicate, develop friendships and lead healthy, happy and productive lives. With more than 30 years of health care background, Total Spectrum provides diagnostic services, ABA therapy, and telehealth and evidence-based programming that evolves with current trends and research. Services are offered both in-home and in-center to fit a variety of schedules and needs and provide individualized attention from professionally trained, passionate, caring, dedicated therapists with limited caseloads. As an in-network provider with most major insurance companies, Total Spectrum has five convenient centers in Illinois.

We Grow Dreams Greenhouse & Garden Center

With a mission to provide people with disabilities the opportunity to lead fulfilling lives, We Grow Dreams Greenhouse & Garden Center in West Chicago grows gorgeous, healthy annuals, perennials, hanging baskets, fresh vegetables and herbs to sell to retail and wholesale customers. Open all year, We Grow Dreams provides training and employment opportunities in a supportive, safe and caring environment while producing and providing gardening and gifting products and services to the community of West Chicago and beyond.

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