Degree Date


Document Type

Dissertation - Public Access

Degree Name

Ed.D. Doctor of Education

Academic Discipline

Disability and Equity in Education

First Advisor

Valerie Owen, PhD

Second Advisor

Terry Smith, PhD

Third Advisor

Tammy Berberi, PhD


What is the historical connection between deinstitutionalization and the Olmstead decision? The purpose of this study was to examine and analyze policy within a historical perspective the connections between institutional care, deinstitutionalization, the Olmstead decision, and the effect on persons with intellectual disabilities lived experience, in the state of Illinois.

The data collected include, the transcripts of interviews with four participants, artifacts from policy documents and historical papers accessed from the Disability Museum online journals. The creation of a table for use in coding themes as associated with 5 (out of 18) core concepts for disability policy.

The Olmstead decision and the Ligas Decree provide a framework to identify barriers and gaps in state policy. The findings indicate establishing a formal Olmstead Plan, which could prevent further litigations. Limitations to this study consist of small sample size. Recommendations include, to reconvene a committee of stakeholders and self-advocates, to investigate using the Blueprint as a guide in development of an established Olmstead Plan, in effort to prevent future litigations and provide sustainability, in Illinois.