Education, Advocacy & Parent Training

  • Central Institute for the Deaf (CID)
    Patricia Hoffman – 314-977-0151 or 314-977-0209
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    825 S. Taylor Avenue
    Saint Louis MO 63110

    Central Institute for the Deaf (CID) is one of the nation’s largest and oldest listening and spoken language schools. CID has a history of more than 100 years of developing and providing specialized education services for children who are deaf and hard of hearing.

    CID teaches children with hearing loss to listen, talk, and read. We prepare children to participate and succeed in their neighborhood schools. CID does not teach sign language. Families who send their children to CID have chosen a listening and spoken language option as a method of communication. All children wear devices such as hearing aids or cochlear implants to assist them in hearing. Generous private support makes us affordable for all.

    CID offers age-appropriate educational opportunities for children and families. Through the Joanne Parrish Knight Family Center, parent educators offer in-home parent coaching and therapy for families of children with hearing loss birth to age 3 years old. We also offer an on-site toddler class for 2 year olds. Our Anabeth and John Weil Early Childhood Centers provides education and services for children ages 3 to 6. Our Viriginia J. Browning Primary School provides education for children aged 6 through age 12.

    All CID programs are designed to prepare students for general educational settings. In a highly individualized, assessment-based program, we weave speech, language, and auditory instruction throughout academics subjects as appropriate to the age served. Additionally, students attending CID participate in music, art, physical education, and other special activities.

    Family Support
    CID offers many opportunities for family connection and support. Families in the Joanne Parrish Knight Family Center have opportunities to meet together for support and education. Families with CID school children may participate in a family connection program called Hearing from the Heart. This free program offers families scheduled time to share a meal and talk about issues relevant to parenting a child with hearing loss. Additional, CID offers a family resource specialist to assist families in finding community resources to meet their family’s specific need.

    Audiology, Speech-Language Therapy, Occupational Therapy
    CID offers on-site pediatric audiology services for both students at CID and for children in the community at large. Students enrolled at CID are offered classes with small student-teacher ratios. Students also participate in individually targeted speech-language therapy. An occupational therapist is on-site to consult with teachers and provide direct therapy to hearing impaired children as needed.


  • City of St. Louis Office on the Disabled 314-622-3686   TTY 314-622-3693
    1200 Market St., Rm. 30, St. Louis, MO  63103
    Services: Americans w/ Disability Act (ADA) Coordinator, awareness training, information and direct referral service, directory of services, reserved residential disabled parking spaces, parking meter exemption permits, interpreting services for the deaf, and deaf community overview workshop.


  • Delta Gamma Center for Children with Visual Impairments 314-776-1300
    1750 S. Big Bend Blvd., Richmond Heights, MO 63117

    Education, Advocacy & Parent Training
    The Center offers a comprehensive array of highly specialized educational and therapy services for eligible children and their families from diagnosis until 36 months of age. Parents and other caregivers receive guidance on how to meet the child’s needs throughout their daily routines through assessment, demonstration of activities and recommendations for adaptations in the child’s environment. All services are offered at home and other community sites, such as day care centers. Families are provided assistance with transition into preschool services in their local school district when their child turns three years.

    Early Intervention
    Comprehensive family-centered early intervention for families of children, birth to 3, with visual impairments, including individuals with additional disabilities.  Must reside within a 50 mile radius. Center-based services: parent-child classes and educational workshops for parents. Home-based services: educational services from a teacher of the visually impaired, orientation and mobility training, family support, and occupational, physical and speech therapy services as needed. Consultation to other facilities is also available.

    Family & Sibling Support
    In an effort to provide families with opportunities for connections, information and support, a wide array of individual and group family support services are offered.  Individual services include short-term consultation about family concerns including information about visual impairments or community resources and a parent-to-parent program.   A variety of activities and specialized groups are offered throughout the year for families, parents, grandparents, siblings, and youth, ages three through high school, who are visually impaired or blind.

    for information about
    St. Louis Family Support and Respite Coalition please contact members:

    Allison LaMont – 314-776-1300
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  • Easter Seals Midwest 314-432-6200
    10176 Corporate Square Drive, Suite 150 St. Louis, MO 63132

    Behavior Therapy
    Services in 30, 45, or 60-minute intervals. Efforts made to coordinate mutually convenient time between therapist and family. Each session focuses on the individual’s behavioral issues, as determined from their TouchPoint Assessment and goals set by the family. TouchPoint therapists incorporate methodologies specifically designed to assist and support the individual in learning how to make appropriate choices from a selection of options. BT services may also focus on social skills, such as how to conduct themselves in a social setting or how to react in a stressful situation.

    Two-week Parent Training Program offered each month year-round. It is intensive, M-F, approximately 8:30 a.m.—4:30 p.m. Parents are presented with workshops, videos, handouts, and each day an opportunity to observe a trainer work with their child. During the Training, parents begin to implement what they are learning in their classroom sessions with their child during exchange sessions. To ensure content understanding, parents have homework each evening to complete. This course may be taken for college credit, if desired.

    In-Home Parent Training
    A trainer comes to the family’s home for two hours a week over a 12 weeks period.  During visits, workshops are presented.  In addition, trainer observes family’s home environment and offers suggestions for restructure to present a more “workable” arrangement.  Trainers may also offer ideas on using existing materials within the home to teach and communicate more effectively with their child.  The child need not be present for these sessions, but coaching and modeling can occur if they are at home.

    Staff can also educate parents on how to advocate for their child within their specific school system, and may, upon request and authorization, offer consultation services as desired.


    Family & Sibling Support
    Each group takes on an educational component to teach family members about specific methodology to teach their children skills for independence.  As well, they allow family members to share their experiences with others. Connections Groups are in North County, North City, South City, and West County.

    Also available: Parents of a Child w/ an Autism Spectrum Disorder, Sibling Support Groups, Natural Support Workshops, and Social Support Group for Young Adults w/ Asperger’s Syndrome.

    Temporary Residential Support
    Support to families affected by autism and/or other behavioral challenges in or out of family’s home.  Services may be available days, evenings, and overnights in varying lengths of time, based on provider availability.  Currently offered to residents in St. Louis City and St. Charles & St. Louis Counties.

    Therapy—Occupational, Physical, & Speech
    Clinical Services offers speech/language, pragmatic language, occupational/sensory integration and music therapies in 30, 45 or 60-minute intervals. Efforts made to coordinate mutually convenient time between therapist and family.  Session focus is on the individual’s particular issues as determined from one of  TouchPoint’s Assessments, as well as goals set by the family.

    Therapists incorporate methodologies specifically designed to assist and support the individual in learning how to express themselves and/or their emotions appropriately, both one-on-one and in peer/social situations, and/or make appropriate choices from a selection of options within their environment.

    Music Therapy offers at least four ways music can benefit an individual with autism (communication, cognition, sensory integration, and behavior/social integration).

    for information about
    St. Louis Family Support and Respite Coalition please contact members:

    Kait Calys-Strohm – 314-432-6200 ext. 1375
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    Hayley Menges – 314-567-8190
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    Theresa Deiters
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  • Family Advocacy & Community Training (FACT) 636-949-2425

    Educational advocacy in St. Charles County and St. Louis County. Free monthly workshops/ training open to everyone on various topics.

    for information about
    St. Louis Family Support and Respite Coalition please contact members:

    Heather Lytle – 636-949-2425, ext 256
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    Christine Kennett, CPSP
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    Rachel Svejkosky
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  • Family Support Network Program 314-918-3301
    110 N. Elm, St. Louis, MO 63119

    In-home, weekly family/individual counseling, parent education, resource acquisition, and follow-up to families with children ages birth—13 years for all developmental disabilities in St. Louis City and St. Louis Counties.


  • Missouri Families for Effective Autism Treatment MO-FEAT 636-527-3328

    An organization of parents and professionals throughout Missouri with a mission to provide advocacy, education and support for families with children with autism and to support early diagnosis and effective autism treatments such as applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). Resources include autism information, directory or resources and parent mentor program.

    For information about
    St. Louis Family Support and Respite Coalition please contact:

    Marla Taggart 636-527-3328
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  • Missouri Parents Act (MPACT) 800-995-3160

    Parent Training and Information Center for families of children with disabilities. Services free of charge. Provides individual assistance IEP support volunteers and training for communication and legal rights in special education.


  • Missouri Planning Council  800-500-7878 ( link goes to blank page)
    1706 E. Elm Street, Jefferson City, MO 65102
    Partners in Policymaking (Partners) is an innovative national model of leadership training designed for adults with developmental disabilities and parents of young children with developmental disabilities.  The program teaches leadership skills and the process of developing positive partnerships with elected officials, school personnel and other individuals who make policy decisions about services that you and/or your family use.


  • Missouri Protection & Advocacy Services (MOPAS or MO P&A)
    Intake / Jefferson City 800-392-8667
    St. Louis Offic 314-961-0679
    925 South Country Club Dr. Jefferson City MO 65109
    Advocacy assistance when either human or legal rights are violated for all ages and all developmental disabilities in all Missouri counties.


  • National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) 314-962-4670


  • NextStep For Life 636-282-1414 or 636-933-3764
    636-282-4400 or 636-933-0244
    P.O. Box 97, Mapaville, MO 63065

    Employment Services Office: 636-282-4477 or 636-933-4900

    Family Support/Leisure Office: 636-282-1414 or 636-933-3764

    NextStep for Life provides a variety of services to individuals in Jefferson County who have a developmental disability. They provide residential services; adult day services in both individual and group settings; a MyCare respite voucher program;
    Support Broker services; and Leisure Services.

    KidStart (NextStep for Life) lending library program for young children who have or who are at risk of having a disability in Jefferson County. Parents, therapists, service coordinators, or special instructors can apply to be a member.

    The Family Support office offers family workshops on a variety of topics during the year. Topics can include guardianship, estate planning, LifeCourse tools, and other options during March for Developmental Disability Awareness Month, April for Autism Awareness Month, and November for Family Caregivers Awareness Month.

    NextStep Employment Services assist adults with disabilities in obtaining and maintaining meaningful employment as well as the transition from school to work.

    For information about
    St. Louis Family Support and Respite Coalition please contact:

    Linda Wolf
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    Jenny Zweigart
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  • Options for Justice 314-721-6161
    200 S. Hanley Rd., Ste. 207, St. Louis, MO 63105

    Options for Justice is a nonprofit organization serving individuals with developmental disabilities in St. Louis City who are at risk to become or who are involved with the criminal justice system.

    The agency is dedicated to educating the community, members of the justice system, service providers, and individuals with developmental disabilities by advocating on behalf of this type of offender. This organization also develops appropriate and effective alternatives for an offender with developmental disabilities within the justice system, from the initial point of system entry through sentencing, probation, parole, and release.

  • Paraquad 314-289-4200  TTY 314-289-4252
    5240 Oakland Avenue, St. Louis, MO 63110
    Works to ensure equal access to services, education, employment, transportation, housing, and health care for people with disabilities.

    Paraquad’s guiding principle is to advance the independent living philosophy.

    Community Education Program
    Paraquad strives to educate individual citizens, community-based organizations, and policy makers through disability awareness workshops to businesses, service providers, rehabilitation centers, religious organizations, colleges, and universities.  Self-advocacy skills are taught to participants.

    Systems advocacy is provided through Public Policy Dept. whose issues include, but are not limited to:  equal opportunities for housing, transportation, employment, access to community activities, and public services. Through individual and family consultation, young people with disabilities and their families are introduced to the independent living concept.

    Youth Group  TTY (314) 289-4201
    Youth group consists of youth with and without disabilities. This integrated group develops social skills they cannot acquire in segregated settings, while non–disabled youth learn to see their disabled peers as people.

    Independent Living Centers 
    Private, not-for-profit, community-based Center for Independent Living.

    Programs include, but are not limited to:
    information & referral, housing assistance & referral, independent living adult, individual & family consultation, Personal Assistance Services (PAS), peer consultation, career options & employment services, deaf & hard of hearing, Deaf Education Fund, Deaf Way Interpreting Services, community education, youth group, Thelma P. Zalk Educational Endowment Fund, advocacy, community outreach, volunteer, internship, continuing education, People First Self-Advocacy Group, and community links volunteer.

  • Parent Education & Diversity Awareness / Special School District
    Family and Community Resource Center
    314-989-8108 or 314-989-8438 or 314-989-8194
    12110 Clayton Rd., St. Louis, MO 63131

    Special School District’s parent program provides approximately 80 parent education workshops each school year. Its resource center serves as a clearinghouse of information and referral with a comprehensive lending library of more than 3,000 books and 300 videos and DVDs.


  • ParentLink1-800-552-8522    in Español 1-800-460-0008
    4800 Santana Circle, Columbia, MO 65211
    Serves all ages and disabilities. Call for: access to resources and services for families in  your area; free information on any parenting question; specific situation, developmental stages, or services you are looking for; or someone who will listen if you just need to talk. Hours: Monday– Friday, 8:00am– 5:00pm


  • Parents Learning Together St. Louis Arc 314-569-2211
    1177 N. Warson Road., St. Louis, MO 63132

    Parents Learning Together is a program that helps parents with developmental disabilities, who live in St. Louis City, learn to care for their children and to find the extra support they need to be effective parents. Through individual mentoring and group education, PLT parents develop their parenting skills so their children have a safe, nurturing environment in which to grow.

    Caregiver/Parent Workshops are offered year round on various topics and designed to provide in-depth information on topics related to supporting family members with developmental disabilities.


  • People First of St. Louis 314-289-4319     314-289-4263
    Participants learn what their rights are, how to access services and information in the government and community, and how to be strong self–advocates.


  • St. Louis Learning Disabilities Association, Inc. 314-966-3088
    13537 Barrett Parkway Dr., Ste. 110, Ballwin, MO 63021
    Not-for-profit organization helps children reach their true potential through education, support and dedication to each child. Services include: one– on– one tutoring; cognitive educational evaluations; educational seminars; workshops for parent groups, schools and organizations; individual consultation; clearing-house information; referral service; resource library; and study skills groups for middle and high school students. LDA is also available to work with early childhood programs to help identify children at risk for learning disabilities.


  • St. Louis Office for DD Resources  314-421-0090
    2334 Olive St., St. Louis, MO 63103
    Educational Coaches
    Individuals work with families that are having difficulty with the implementation of services in the St. Louis City Public Schools.  These coaches are familiar with IDEA, will attend IEP meetings, and work to resolve issues.  If there appear to be legal issues, they will refer families to P&A for resolution.
    Project CaseFind
    Identifies individuals in the St. Louis City community with developmental disabilities that are not receiving services, identifies the needed services, and makes referrals.