9375 Church Street
Des Plaines, IL 60016
"It's like having a second family. We sometimes visit on a day off to see their former teachers. The older kids love it. It's part of where they grew up. One teacher has been with us for all three children. It's like bringing them back to Grandma. It feels like the whole center knows our family, our history. Lutheran General Children's Day Care has been there for us, through crisis and through everyday situations. We have this shared life together. It's the most important years of our family."
As the original Lutheran General Children's Day Care established in 1979, the Des Plaines facility is also the largest. It has 28,000 sq. ft in a renovated school building with eleven classrooms and a full size gymnasium. A very large playground affords the opportunity to be outdoors year round. Playground areas and equipment are age level appropriate, with a separate area best suited for infants and toddlers.
Unique to this site is an Intergenerational Program. This program brings together visiting Grandmas and Grandpas from the Older Adults Services Program housed in the same building. They visit the same classroom for forty minutes twice a week, interacting with the children, building positive relationships throughout the year. The conversation and the relationships nurtured through the year are invaluable.
Educaring staff at Des Plaines has a proud history of working and staying at the center. As employees of Advocate Lutheran General Hospital, staff consistently scores at 99th percentile in work satisfaction. The institutional culture of excellence, compassion, partnership, stewardship, and equality pervades the educaring in the classrooms. The stability of the staff at the center allows for consistency of caring relationships with the same primary caregiver over the important years of early childhood. Early childhood college students from various community colleges acquire internship classroom training at Des Plaines.
Healthy Steps - a national demonstration model of developmental care for infants and toddlers participated in by Advocate Lutheran General Hospital - is practiced at the site. Healthy Steps promotes the health and well-being of children age 0 to 3 by bringing health care professionals into closer relationships with parents using today's advanced knowledge of child development. Age-appropriate developmental screenings, use of anticipatory guidance, a host of informational materials, FAQ to ask pediatricians, developmentally timed parent/teacher conferences and parent support groups constitute the varied ways Healthy Steps empowers parents to support their child's optimal development. The Des Plaines center is also a training site for pediatric residents from Advocate Lutheran General Hospital who observe in group care settings.
Parents participate in a Parent Advisory Council, family events like the Winter Festival, and a summer picnic.
Licensed capacity for the site is 239 children.