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Oklahoma Life Skills Association: Special Kids

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Child Day Care, Children & Youth, Developmentally Disabled Centers, Disabilities, Education, Human Services, Special Education

Mission: Special Kids mission is to offer childcare to families who have a child with a  developmental, emotional, medical or physical challenge so that parents may work or attend school. Special Kids believes that access to safe and appropriate childcare will empower families and will create opportunities for families and children to participate fully within the community. At Special Kids we believe that children with and without special needs are better served by growing learning and playing together. The program maintains a ratio of approximately 1/3 typical to 2/3 special needs. Special Kids is the only non-profit, special needs childcare facility in Tulsa. Our waiting list averages approximately 50 children. Special Kids offers on site therapy,early learning, before & after school care, full and part time day care hours for special needs children who attend non-traditional school hours and summer enrichment. OLSA also offers evening respite, advocacy to school age children, support group meetings and referral to community resources.

Programs: Special Kids is a licensed two star center designed to provide exceptional child-care for special needs children, with a focus on inclusion and personal development. OLSA's Special Kids offers two programs: one for school age children and an early learning program for ages 0-4 years. Special Kids paticipates in the USDA food program and offers nutritional meals to our children. Special Kids accomodates children who require tube feeding and other special dietary or medical assistance. 98% of our children are from low income families. We offer sliding fee scales and scholarships and accept state subsidies and respite vouchers. Many of our children were unable to find appropriate care at typical child care facilities or have been asked to leave numerous facilities. At Special Kids we offer our children the opportunity to grow and play together and their parents the opportunity to work, go to school or access respite time. Special Kids strives to maintain a ratio of 1/3 typical to 2/3 special needs. There is one other facility like ours in the state of Oklahoma. Our unique approach includes staff trained in the developmental disabilities field and in child development. Special Kids is open M-F, 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. scales. Special Kids relies on the support of our community, the help of volunteers and on grant funding to maintain our unique services. SPECIAL KIDS admits children of any race, color, national and ethnic origin, ability or disability to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded to students at the facility. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color national and ethnic origin in facility administered programs, admissions or employment.

Community Stories

2 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters


Client Served

Rating: 5

My child has been going to Special Kids for several years now. The staff had been dedicated to helping him develope into a productive person. They redirect him at the time it is needed. They've helped him feel better about himself and I am truly grateful for them being there for me. There is no other place in Tulsa that will take these kids. Most of these kids are kicked out of typical child care centers because the centers don't know how to deal with the kids challanges. Special Kids is always sending staff for training in ways to cope and handle different types of special challanges so they can care for these children in a meaningful way that will not only help the child but also the parents. Special Kids are not only there for the child but also for the parents. They are family oriented. They helped me understand my childs needs when I had no clue. They helped me through some very difficult times. I am a single grandparent raising a special needs child and there is no way I could have made it this far without all their help. However they can't pay their staff what they are worth, the funding just isn't available. Staff is dedicated to this cause. They need more space and more funding in order to better serve their clientel. Check out their website to get a better idea of what they are all about, the children in the photos are the children they serve. www.specialkidscare.org


Client Served

Rating: 5

My son attended Special Kids Daycare at a time I needed them most. It would have been impossible for me to keep my employment and my insurance without this childcare facility. They were there for me and my backbone through some very difficult times. Learning your child has special needs can be devastating. Jo and the staff made me feel more comfortable and hopeful about our future. There is no other place like this in Tulsa and it's a shame that Special Kids does not get more assistance. In order to keep a trained staff they must be able to provide classes and training, they must be able to provide a big enough building to house everyone, they need healthy food for the children, just to name a few. To me, Jo is family. I love Special Kids!