About Us - Our History
New Horizon Center was incorporated under the laws of the State of Illinois on March 6, 1967. The agency was started by a group of pioneer parents of children with severe disabilities. These children did not participate in any type of educational or instructional program. Their lack of communication skills and their inability to walk prohibited them from entry into the limited "special classes" sporadically offered at some local public schools. At that time the law did not require that a child with disabilities had the right to a free and appropriate education. These parents led the fight for better services for their children. In 1975 Public Law 94-142, the Education for All Handicapped Children Act that is now called the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) was landmark legislation. IDEA opened the doors for children with disabilities by giving parents and their children rights and responsibilities they had previously never experienced.
New Horizon Center for the Developmentally Disabled is a not-for-profit agency that provides education and training for children and adults with severe developmental disabilities and autism. The agency serves students and adults from the Chicago and suburban areas. New Horizon Center is a day facility. Students are placed at New Horizon Center through their public school districts.
New Horizon Center’s children’s program is approved by the Illinois State Board of Education in the areas of Cognitive Disability, Physical Impairment, Emotional Disability, Other Health Impairments, Multiple Disabilities, Developmental Delay, Traumatic Brain Injury and Autism. All teachers are certified (by ISBE) and well-trained professionals. All teacher assistants are also state approved and well-trained paraprofessionals.
The Adult Developmental Training Program is accredited by the Department of Human Services. The program offers Home-Based Facilitation Services for families.
In September of 2006, New Horizon Center built a 31,000 sq. ft. state of the art facility that was designed to meet the needs and challenge the abilities of students and adults with severe developmental disabilities and autism. Our existing programs were strengthened and new programs were developed. New Horizon Center is a leader in developing proven and effective approaches that give each student and adult purpose and fulfillment in their complex lives.
New Horizon Center’s organizational structure includes a governing Board of Directors and an administrative staff. Board Members are elected for a two year term. The Board establishes policy, oversees financial plans, budgets, and formulates strategic planning goals. The administration implements approved policies, recommends new programs and modification to the program that will meet the needs of children and adults who are served. The administration will ensure that the agency is in compliance with
all state and federal policies and guidelines.
New Horizon Center's goal has always been to provide children with disabilities the opportunity to reach their full potential. Their satisfaction can be observed on the expression of a child's face when they speak their first word or take their first step toward independence.
The fundamental concept on which New Horizon Center for the Developmentally Disabled was founded and remains to this day is that all children, regardless of their needs, have a right to an appropriate education and that every individual must be given the opportunity to achieve maximum independence.
New Horizon Center for the Developmentally Disabled
6737 W. Forest Preserve Avenue
Chicago, IL 60634-1470
Phone (773) 286-6226
Fax (773) 286-7674