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About ADI

Small Town Roots, Nationwide Impact
Located in Lincoln, IL, The Academic Development Institute (ADI) is a non-profit corporation founded in 1984 with the mission of assisting families, schools, and communities with children’s academic and personal development. ADI focuses on three areas of research and practice:

The dynamics of change (improvement, innovation, transformation) and the science of indicators
Personal Competencies that propel student learning
The school as a community, including family engagement

Where We've Been


ADI was founded in 1984 as a non-profit organization.

First Programs

ADI's family engagement and site-based management programs were first established in Chicago.

First Partners

ADI's programs were adopted by the Laboratory for Student Success (LSS) at Temple University in Philadelphia in 1995.


ADI took the lead with LSS to implement a comprehensive school reform model in 13 states.

Leading Illinois

ADI served as the Parent Information and Resource Center (PIRC) in IL for 11 years.

National Content

ADI administered the national Center on Innovation & Improvement for 2005 to 2012. 

National Growth

In 2012, ADI became a partner in three national content centers. 


ADI works nationwide, providing services varying in intensity and duration, from building the awareness and understanding of people to transforming and changing organizations.

What Drives Our Work

ADI's vision is of an American landscape filled with distinct school communities reflecting the hopes and dreams of the people intimately attached to them so that all children become self-directed learners, avid readers, and responsible citizens, respecting themselves and those around them.

Child in School

How We Partner With You

ADI's relationship with a client begins with a conversation to identify the problem.

We synthesize the relevant research to generate ideas that get results. However, these concepts are not enough.  Our team, with diverse experience in schools, districts, state and federal education departments, pass the good ideas through the sieve of common sense, converting them into practical applications to place in the hands of clients. These services include documents and tools, online systems, coaching, consulting, and problem-solving supports until the client crosses the finish line.  View our services and resources in the menu bar for examples of these supports. 

Lifelong Learners

 We desire to create lifelong learners, empowering students' supports in and out of the classroom with research on education and personal competencies. Below is a sampling of ADI's scope of work throughout a learner's lifespan.

Birth-3 years

Lincoln Parents' Center

Working with parents in Logan County to form a foundation for success in early learning and development.

1st Day of School - Adulthood

School Community Network

Applying research to practice by connecting parents, communities, and schools in their work to create learning environments where students thrive.

1st Day of School- High School


Working with schools, districts, and states on getting better at their professions to provide quality education for students through high school.

8th Grade- College

Liftoff Youth Development Program

Boosting the prospects of students in Logan County, Illinois, so that they aspire to attend college, prepare for college success, and persist to complete college.

ADI Gives Back to the Community


For questions about any services or to request additional information, fill out the email form. You may also contact ADI toll free at 1-800-759-1495.