Dyslexia center to open Palatine campus
Children's Dyslexia Center of Metropolitan Chicago will launch a satellite campus early next year in classrooms at a Palatine church.
Village council members Monday night approved a special-use permit allowing the nonprofit to use the six classrooms for individual tutoring at First United Methodist Church of Palatine, 123 N. Plum Grove Road. The children affected by dyslexia will be in the space used by the church's Sunday school program.
Plans call for the center to open in January as a pilot program serving 10 to 12 students in fourth grade through high school, twice a week in four classrooms. Enough tutors are projected to be trained and certified by September 2019 for expansion to all six classrooms with up to 20 pupils receiving tutoring twice a week.
Children's Dyslexia Center is a nonprofit that was founded in Massachusetts. The Chicago-area branch has been providing multisensory reading and written language tutorial services for children in LaGrange.
Vytautas Paukstys, chairman of the dyslexia center's board of governors, said there is a waiting list of at least 56 children for the LaGrange facility and that many clients come from the Northwest suburbs. Palatine was chosen for its is central location and is expected to draw from Arlington Heights, Barrington, Schaumburg and other towns, he said.
First United Methodist Church board member Greg Burnett of Inverness said Children's Dyslexia Center will be good for the region. He's led the effort for the church to become partners with the organization.
"Community service and outreach is a really, really big part of our church," Burnett said. "And when the dyslexia center approached us about possibly partnering with us to be able to utilize our facilities, we took a good look at the dyslexia center and found it's just an excellent organization."
Palatine will be the sixth Illinois location for the Children's Dyslexia Center and the second in the Chicago area.
About 700 clients have gone through the Children's Dyslexia Center's two-year program in LaGrange since starting there in 1999, according to documents the organization submitted to Palatine. The nonprofit has 41 centers across the northern United States.
Schools are required by a state law updated in 2016 to screen students they suspect of having dyslexia.
Dyslexia does not mean flipping numbers, reading backward or accidentally transposing letters, experts who counsel people with the condition say. By definition, it means "trouble with reading" or "trouble with words."
It signifies genetically predisposed neurological struggles with piecing together the root components of words, decoding them and sounding them out into cohesive units.
• Daily Herald staff writer Marie Wilson contributed to this report.