We’ve Reached Our Goal

Chris-OGJohn Paul II Center for Special Learning provides a unique educational and social program for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Two programs exist under one roof: Our school is for children ages 3-21, while our Adult Program provides a person-centered program for adults.

When we started our Capital Campaign, we had outgrown our facility and had very limited capacity to provide auxiliary programs for various specialized therapies. Additional space for the Adult Program was required not only to be in compliance with state mandates, but to accommodate adults on our waiting list and those who were seeking our services in the Adult Program. With our school-age children reaching the end of their formal educational program, we needed a extra space to accommodate those ready to transition, thus also a key driver for our expansion effort.



AdriannaExpanding our building to accommodate MORE

Since building our facility in 2002, JPII has experienced enrollment growth of more than 50% in the School Program and over 200% in the Adult Program. Based on statistics from the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Berks County’s population of children and adults with intellectual disabilities was far exceeding our ability to serve. With the additional space added, we are now able to accommodate more individuals in both our School Age and Adult Programs. When our students graduate at age 21, all students may have the option to transition into our Adult Program.

Re-configuring and adding new spaces is allowing us to facilitate the delivery of comprehensive services and programs for both children and adults.

With the changes shown, we are now able to continue to provide a balanced program that is consistent with our mission to meet the changing needs of the children and adults who depend upon the individualized, caring, and very special services that are the hallmark of John Paul II Center for Special Learning.

Architect’s rendering of addition:


Interior blueprints:


School Program: 

Pre-Existing Services:

– Music Therapy – provided weekly for all students – Occupational Therapy – available to students on a part-time basis – Speech Therapy – provided on a limited basis by an outside agency – Art Therapy – available once weekly contracted through the Yocum Institute for Arts Education – Drama Therapy – available once weekly contracted through the Yocum Institute for Arts Education – Life Skills – integrated into the daily classroom curriculum – Work for Independence – integrated into the Secondary Classroom activities for students ages 16 – 21 – Liturgical Music – provided for all students on a weekly basis

MORE Services Recently Added:

– Speech & Occupational Therapies provided on a full-time basis for all students – Physical Therapy available to any student needing the services – Behavior Specialists – full-time to assist teachers and families with behavior issues – All therapists will be available to consult with teachers as needed

Adult Program:

Pre-Existing Services:

– Music & Occupational Therapies – small and large group therapy provided weekly for all – Art Therapy – provided weekly for all – Pet Therapy – provided monthly for all – Consultations with our program specialist

MORE services that will be added:

– Physical Therapy for those needing it – Behavioral Specialists – full-time to assist program specialists and families with behavior issues

Our NEW adult component added to our pre-existing program:

– MORE space is allowing additional programming to support the skill-sets of individuals who are capable of volunteering and working part-time within the community.

You’ve helped us reach our goal!