Therapeutic Day Schools for Adults with Autism (18-21)

Acacia Academy

La Grange Campus: 6425 Willow Springs Rd
Burr Ridge Campus: 6880 N. Frontage Rd Suite 100

Acacia Academy is an accredited, private special education / therapeutic school for elementary (grades 1-8), high school (grades 9-12) and Transition Program for ages 18-22. We offer a variety of school year and summer programs designed to meet each student’s learning objectives in terms of his/her learning capabilities. Acacia Academy is AdvancED accredited and has been approved for out-of-district placement by the Illinois State Board of Education for special education. Students from all over northern Illinois attend Acacia Academy

Alexander Leigh Center for Autism

4100 Veterans Pkwy, McHenry, IL 60050
(815) 344-2522
Contact form

The day school serves children from the ages of 3-22 with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), OHI, multiple disabilities, developmental delay, and/or intellectual disabilities. The students who come to ALCA typically require one-to-one support and intensive therapies to make measurable gains. Our student population comes from local public school districts when the student requires a more intensive placement to meet their educational and behavioral needs. ALCA, based in McHenry, IL currently serves students residing in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, and McHenry counties.

Bridge High School & Transition Program (Little Friends)

2318 Wisconsin Ave. Downers Grove, IL 60515

Therapeutic day school for children ages 14-22 with autism or other emotional, cognitive disabilities and emotions disorders that have experienced difficulty in traditional academic programs and require an alternative functional curriculum.

The Camelot Schools

(512) 858-9900

Children participating in the autism program at Camelot’s day schools take part in a specialized curriculum that focuses on maximizing independent functioning in home, school, vocational and community settings by utilizing music therapy, occupational therapy, speech/language therapy, social skills training, prevocational and vocational instruction, and a functional academic curriculum; locations in Illinois include Garden Prairie, Bourbonnais, Hoffman Estates, Mt. Prospect, Naperville, Moline, and Dekalb.

Canopy Program at Giant Steps

Lillian Peterson, Director
Rich Harvest Farms Sugar Grove, IL
(630) 864-3801

Canopy works to incorporate a combination of activities, opportunities, and supports throughout each participant’s programming. This may include participation in community engagement outings, life skills opportunities, vocational readiness activities, leisure or recreational skill development including music therapy, media integration, and movement based sessions. Ages 22 and up.

The Chicago Autism Academy  

21133 S. 80th Ave. Frankfort, IL 60423 
(815) 806-2900

ISBE approved facility is a fully accredited program for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Cognitive Disability (CD), and other Developmental Disabilities (DD). Provides services which accommodate the individual needs of each student to promote maximum learning.  A variety of empirically based procedures are used including, Behavior Analysis, Precision Teaching, Direct Instruction, and many other interventions. The Chicago Autism Academy accepts students from many school districts across Northeastern Illinois.  

Easterseals Central Illinois

507 East Armstrong Avenue, Peoria, IL 61603-3201 
(309) 686-1177

Provides interdisciplinary pediatric therapy and support for the whole child, and your whole family. Services include: Early Intervention, Feeding therapy, Speech Therapy, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy and Counseling. Additional autism services include ABA, DIR/Floortime, assistive technology clinics, adaptive swim lessons, care management, diagnostic evaluations, social skills groups, residential day camp and parent training. Therapeutic day school programming available for children ages 5-21.  

Easterseals Chicagoland & Greater Rockford 
School locations in Chicago, Rockford and Tinley Park

Autism services include screening and diagnostics (ages 3-12), parent training, individual therapy, parent support groups, and resource support. Therapeutic day school programming available for children ages 5-21. 

Excel Academies: Specialized Education Services, INC. in Illinois

Englewood: 7141 S. Morgan St. Chicago, IL 60621 
Roseland: 1257 W. 111th St., Chicago IL, 60643
South Shore: 7530 S. South Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60649
Southwest: 7050 S. Washtenaw St., Chicago, IL 60629

Accepting students from school districts at our standalone schools across the state. offers an accelerated high school experience for students looking for a smaller, more personal setting, intensely focused on elevating social skills, emotional wellness, and academic success. school of choice for students ages 15 to 21 who are behind in their studies. *Not specific programming for students with ASD; suited for those with no significant cognitive differences who may benefit from smaller learning environments.

Krejci Academy/The Mansion (Little Friends)

619 E Franklin Ave Naperville, IL 60540
(630) 355-6870

Therapeutic day school for children ages 5-21 with autism or other emotional, behavioral or developmental disabilities.

Genesee Lake School

Amanda Buerger, senior admissions coordinator
36100 Genesee Lake Road Oconomowoc, WI 53066
(262) 569-5510, ext. 3005

Genesee Lake School is a nationally recognized provider offering programs for students with developmental disabilities, mental health disorders, neurological disorders, and emotional disturbances. Additionally, we offer specialized programs for students with autism spectrum disorders, mood and anxiety disorders, and complex trauma. Our 160 acre campus is a nurturing setting where students from around the country gain the skills and experiences necessary to successfully return to their families, school districts, and communities. Our goal at Genesee Lake School is to provide an innovative and enriching environment for the students in our care to learn and experience all that life can offer. ISBE Approved and COA Certified. Ages: 6-21 years; Accepts private pay, school, ICG, DHS, sliding scale.

Giant Steps Inc.

2500 Cabot Dr., Lisle, IL 60532
(630) 864-3801

Giant Steps Illinois day school offers a one-on-one integrated holistic approach of services for students with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Programming for ages 5-22 through districts. Adult day programming (private pay) available. 


Kristina Baker, director of admissions and outreach 
8700 East 29th Street Wichita, KS 67226
(316) 214-1132
(316) 634-8874

The Heartspring School is a private, not-for-profit, residential and day school, serving students impacted by autism and other developmental disabilities from across the country and around the world. Most Heartspring students also display challenging behaviors that often interfere with their educational progress, as well as their home life and community integration. Ages: 5-21 yrs.

Heartspring is a school with a residential program and, therefore, charges tuition and fees. The majority of the students who attend Heartspring are placed through the students’ IEP teams and funded by their local school district. Very few students qualify for funding through insurance providers. However, on a case-by-case basis, this may be possible. Some students have multiple agencies involved in the placement and in the funding (such as a school district, a child welfare agency, adoption subsidy, etc.). For some families, paying privately and/or outside financing may be an option. 

Helping Hand School for Autism

Sally Wilson-Gamble
9649 W. 55th St. Countryside, IL 60525
(708) 352-3580, ext. 437

Use research-based intervention modalities and teaching methods to assure best practice to design each child's own individualized program and curriculum through age 22.

High Road Schools - Specialized Education Services, INC.

High Road School of Belvidere - Garden Prairie, IL
High Road School of Bloomington
High Road School of Hoffman Estates
High Road School of Mount Prospect*
High Road School of Naperville
High Road School of Peoria
High Road School of the South Suburbs – Custer Park*
High Road School of the Quad Cities: Moline

Provides academic and therapeutic services for children, adolescents, and young adults, ages 5 through 21, with extraordinary needs. specialize in a normative culture approach to school therapeutic programming that emphasizes individual growth. Accepting students from school districts at our standalone schools across the state. (*pre-K offered starting at age 3)

Hughes Center for Exceptional Children

Michael S. Triggs, CEO
1601 Franklin Turnpike Danville, VA 24540
(434) 836-8500

ISBE approved. Population served: male/female students with autism, pervasive developmental disorder and mental retardation. Program's primary focus: self, family, and, community to prepare for an independent future through educational and vocational instruction and positive guidance. Ages: 13-22 years; Accepts Illinois Medicaid; Waitlist depends on the number of open beds available. For more information, contact Christina Hawkins at (804) 928-8863.

Jewish Child & Family Services

Joy Faith Knapp Children's Center
3145 W. Pratt Blvd, Chicago, IL 60645
(773) 467-3900

Provides the best educational, emotional and therapeutic services for students of all backgrounds in grades K-12 who have not thrived in a traditional school setting, to encourage their academic, interpersonal and vocational success.

Krejci Academy/The Mansion (Little Friends)

619 E Franklin Ave, Naperville, IL 60540
(630) 355-6870

Therapeutic day school for children ages 5-21 with autism or other emotional, behavioral or developmental disabilities.

LaGrange Area Department of Special Education

Colleen Brown
1301 W. Cossitt Ave., LaGrange, IL 60525
(708) 482-1152

Provides services to residents to seventeen school districts in DuPage and Cook Counties.

Little Friends Center for Autism, Inc.

140 N. Wright St. Naperville, IL 60540
Phone: (630) 305-4196

Services include evaluation and treatment for autism spectrum disorder, including psychological, speech, occupational therapy, and social skills. Additionally, residential services are available to both children and adults needing more supported care.

(630) 593 5500
Bloomingdale: 64 S. Prairie Ave., Bloomingdale, IL 60108
Elgin: 1435 Summit Street, Elgin, Illinois 60120
Geneva: 1S450 Wyatt Drive, Geneva, IL 60134

Programs include Early Intervention services (Ages 0-3; 630-529-2871, ext. 2238), day school programming (Ages 3-21), day program services (Ages 18+) and residential services (all ages), and employment services for individuals with developmental disabilities. 

Maryville Academy

Maryville Residential Treatment Center - Maryville St. George Program
1150 N. River Road Des Plaines, IL 60016
(630) 736-7451 (intake)

Specialty: psychiatric, behavioral, intellectual disabilities, self-harm, sexually acting out, autism, trauma. Multiple levels of care: moderate & severe; parenting & pregnancy teen DCFS ward section for those with children. Maryville also has inpatient psychiatric child, adolescent, young adult (18-22 years) & a deaf and hard of hearing program.

Menta Academy North

195 Poplar Pl North Aurora, IL 60542
(630) 907-2400
Contact form

Menta Academy North is approved by the Illinois State Board of Education as a nonpublic educational facility (14-7.02) for special education students in kindergarten through age 22. Menta Academy North offers elementary, middle and high school programming to children with diverse learning needs.

National Deaf Academy

Deana Goldstein, CEO
19650 U.S. Highway 441 Mount Dora, FL 32757
(352) 735-9500

ISBE approved. Population served: male/female students with autism. Specialized program using the ABA and SCERTS model along with skill acquisition training. While the program serves individuals diagnosed with deafness and autism, they also serve those with normal hearing that are diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. Ages: 5-22 years; Accepts Illinois Medicaid. Waitlist depends on the number of open beds available. For more information, contact Christina Hawkins at (804) 928-8863.

New Connections Academy

865 E. Wilmette Road, Palatine, IL 60074

New Connections Academy serves boys and girls ages 6 to 21 with ASD placed by local school districts. New Connections Academy provides school, family and community partnerships leading to successful learning. New Connections Academy offers a primary program (grades 1 to 3), intermediate (grades 4-6), junior high (grades 7 & 8) and several high school classes (grades 9-12).  The classes are self-contained, offering a standard elementary curriculum of Reading, Spelling, Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, and Physical Education.  Each student has an Individual Educational Plan developed by the placing district.

New Hope Academy

Brandy Larrance, executive director
6289 W. Howard St. Niles IL 60714
(847) 588-0463

Illinois State Board of Education approved. Serves students in special education diagnosed with emotional disabilities, other health impairments, learning disabilities, and autism. Students are average to above-average intelligence, withdraw socially and emotionally, experience difficulty “fitting in” a mainstream environment, have difficulty reading social cues, “slip through the cracks” until their problems are severe, procrastinate (specifically with homework assignments and long-term projects), have difficulty with executive functioning, have talents in art and music, have the potential for academic achievement, struggle with gross and fine motor skills, have difficulty with social skills, use frequent illness as a means to avoid school and may become “school phobic,” appear sad, lonely, hopeless, or depressed, harbor anger and hostility but does not act out violently in school or in the community. Ages: 11-21 years.

New Horizon Center

6737 W. Forest Preserve Ave, Chicago, IL 60634-1470
(773) 286-6226

Therapeutic day school for those with severe and profound learning disabilities, autism, and intellectually challenged students who benefit from a personalized program with services such as speech therapy, physical therapy, occupational therapy, music therapy, art therapy, nursing services, social services, vision services, sensory room, Rainbow Dog Therapy, Greenhouse Gardening and much more.

Northwest Center for Autism (NWCA) at High Road School

Specialized Education Services, INC.
123 W. 1st Street Genoa, IL 60135

Provides academic and therapeutic services for children, adolescents, and young adults, ages 3 through 21, with extraordinary needs including emotional disability, Autism Spectrum Disorder, multiple disabilities and other health impairments. Programming includes structured environments that afford them a strong sense of security, a positive attitude toward learning, and incentives for appropriate behavior. Key areas of focus include academics, behavior modifications, support services, and transition/life-planning services.

O-School (The Sonia Shankman Orthogenic School at the University of Chicago)
Therapeutic Day School Program

Kristin Friesen, LCSW (Director of Admissions)
6245 S. Ingleside Ave., Chicago, IL 60637
(773) 420-2891

The O-School is a therapeutic day school for individuals with high functioning autism and/or other mental health issues. The O-School is Illinois State Board of Education approved. The day school is committed to fostering inquiry into the clinical and treatment needs of students. The O-School relies upon the therapeutic relationships that develop between a student and their teachers and therapists as a major component of the treatment. Milieu staff members are actively involved with the students throughout the day, not simply monitoring or supervising them but developing bonds and relationships with students that create a structure in which each child or adolescent can receive emotional support, develop new skills and sustain healthy relationships. The school and family work together to create a consistent experience for each student. Serves ages: 5-21; Funded through private pay or child's school district.

PACTT Learning Center

Paula Jablonski, principal
7101 N. Greenview Ave., Chicago, IL 60626
(773) 338-9102

Illinois State Board of Education approved. PACTT is an agency that provides educational, residential and vocational services to individuals with autism.

School of Expressive Arts and Learning (S.E.A.L.)

1200 Claussen Drive Woodstock, IL 60098
(815) 337-2005 
Jessica Anello -

SEAL provides a K-12 therapeutic day school placement, and services as indicated until the age of 22. Programming includes academic curriculum that meets all state standards, including individual credits as indicated by the school districts.  A variety of classes are available to meet individual student needs including vocational services, transition services and graduation requirements.  All students have the opportunity to participate in enrichment classes such as Art and Music. These domains coupled with SEAL’s therapy approach, Expressive Therapy, provide additional opportunities for student personal, emotional, and social growth while meeting specific areas of need as outlined by the student’s IEP.  

Soaring Eagle Academy

Linda Cervenka
8330 S. Madison St., Burr Ridge, IL 60527
(630) 323-2900

First school in the Midwest to provide a social and academic learning environment utilizing a developmental individual-difference relationship-based (DIR) approach for students diagnosed with autism and related disorders.

Stuart G. Ferst School 

6050 N. California Ave., Chicago, IL 60659
(773) 761-4651, ext. 235

Illinois State Board of Education approved. Provides co-ed functional academic instruction, vocational experience and/or therapeutic education to students with behavioral/emotional disorders, traumatic brain injuries, or developmental disabilities such as autism, cognitive impairment or physical/medical impairment.

Turning Pointe CN Day School

1500 W. Ogden Ave. Naperville, IL 60540
(630) 615-6037

Turning Pointe's therapeutic day school program serves middle and high school students impacted by autism. Our trademark COPES (Communication, Organization, Positive Behavior Supports, Emotional Regulation, Sensory and Social) method is utilized to help students progress.  Programming is highly individualized as outlined in students' Individual Education Plans (IEP) and includes a collaborative therapeutic team approach. Additional services may include: Speech and Language, Occupational Therapy, Behavior Analysis, Dog Therapy, and Recreational Leisure. Students practice life and vocational skills to increase their independence. These skills are generalized into the community setting. Ages: Middle School, High School, and Transition

Trinity School 

301 Veterans Parkway New Lenox, IL 60451

Trinity School was founded in 1950, and has evolved to Trinity Services, Inc. to provide a broad range of supports and services for people with disabilities. The school remains a vital support for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities between the ages of 3 and 21. Issues may include developmental delays, autism, behavioral challenges and attention deficit disorder.