A Brief History of Developmental Disability in South Dakota

The history of developmental disabilities goes as far back as ancient times and has encountered numerous challenges from fighting for basic needs and battling misconceptions, to fighting for inclusion, opportunity, and equality. The history is rich and global in its nature and far too abundant to capture in this small web page. Below are some historical highlights of the history of developmental disability in South Dakota. Click here to learn more about the history of developmental disability in South Dakota.

Click on the Learn More button below to link to the "Parallels in Time: A History of Developmental Disabilities" website that provides a detailed history of developmental disability. 


South dakota developmental center

Beginning in the era of institutions and formed by the South Dakota Legislature in 1899, the institution opened in 1902 under the name Northern Hospital for the Insane. This name changed to the State School and Home for the Feeble Minded in 1913 and later became known as the Redfield State Hospital and School in 1951. In 1989 the name changed once again to the South Dakota Developmental Center. At its peak, the institution served 1,199 people on its campus. 


south dakota community developmental disabilities services and facilities act (sb18)

In 1973, the first specific funds designated by the South Dakota State Legislature was passed and titled the South Dakota Community Developmental Disabilities Services and Facilities Act. The funds were limited, but the passage of the act was a hallmark of services in South Dakota (Scheinost, 2008). Many of South Dakota's Community Support Providers began operations during this time frame.


home and community based waiver approval 1982

In 1982 South Dakota became the 4th state in the nation to receive approval of its Home and Community Based Waiver which expanded use of Title XIX funds for services (Scheinost, 2008).