Kidology: Helping to Navigate Developmental Delays
A local company provides much needed child development services in and around Philadelphia.
Perhaps you once caught a glimpse of their billboard. Maybe you saw their local commercial on TV. Chances are you heard about them through word-of-mouth. The signs are everywhere that Kidology, a Special Education School for early child development, is growing much like its clients do–in giant strides.
From Speech Therapy to Behavior Services; Physical Therapy to Occupational Therapy, Kidology offers a wide range of interventions for children who require extra support in their early years. With two locations (Huntingdon Valley and NE Philadelphia) and a third, larger center due to open in Southampton, Kidology looks to reach deeper into the Philadelphia area, and beyond.
Birth of a Business
A love of linguistics led Kidology founder, Luba Patlakh Kaplun, to a career in Speech-Language Pathology and Special Instruction. “I started to do outreach in the community,” she says of her early days as a Speech Therapist. “I went to my local Jewish Community Center…I worked for other companies and I would visit different daycares, and I learned everything about this business.”
Starting with herself and just one other staff member, Luba launched and then steered Kidology through expansive growth over its seven-year lifespan. “I kind of was thrown into entrepreneurship,” she says. “I’m a Speech Therapist who just has a love for people and…helping people get ahead.” Today, Kidology employs a salaried staff and some 50 contractors who provide the therapeutic services and special instruction offered by the company.
In 2020, Kidology received a license which allows them to accept 15 major insurances, thereby expanding the breadth and length of services Kidology can offer. “We went from just being an early intervention provider to being a private practice clinic,” Luba explains. Notably, Kidology is licensed to provide Intensive Behavioral Health Services via state and commercial insurance, which opens up even more ways to treat clients in need.
For a parent who suspects developmental delays in their child, it can be difficult to know where to turn. Kidology is a great first step. Whether or not your child already has a diagnosis, Kidology can design goals and assign therapies to achieve those goals, relative to the child’s specific issues. Plus, they have differentiated teams available to guide families through the State waiver program, if that is warranted. “We contract with the State to help them get into these waiver funds,” Luba explains. “Those programs are completely free and covered by the State.”
If the child ages out of the State-funded programs, or families feel they need more services, Kidology will coordinate with the client’s insurance companies. Either way, the services provided by Kidology come at no cost to families, and red-tape is kept to a minimum. “We literally hold your hand,” Luba says.
And if English isn’t your first language, Kidology will help you find a good fit. Luba herself is bilingual in English and Russian. Several of her staff are fluent in other languages, as well. “We are a multicultural company and we take pride in that,” she says.
Luba has big plans for the future of Kidology. First up is the opening of the new facility in Southampton, Bucks County on November 1st. Decked out with an administrative space, a training center, a second sensory play gym, and a large clinic space, it is bound to be a hub of learning and developmental progress. Fun is also a factor. “The sensory gym will have open play, birthday parties, and play-based curriculum classes for children,” Luba adds. In fact, the sensory gym is a state-of-the-art facility. “We work with a manufacturer that, based on our room size, helps to incorporate the best tools for children on a global spectrum of needs…such as gripped stairs, rock climbing with harness, tunnels, zip line, and foam ball pits. With the use of proper tools we are able to put together a custom system/layout that is unique to our setting.”
Where the business itself is concerned, growth is the objective. Luba hopes to open five Kidology branches in five years. “I want to expand in terms of the size of the company, and I want to be able to open more offices, not just in Pennsylvania. I’m actually a licensed Speech-Language Pathologist in Florida as well.” So telehealth is a possible avenue.
As Kidology begins to work with schools in the area, Luba stays on the lookout for new ways to reach out. “We love collaborating with other therapists, we love collaborating with people in the community, and we’re always looking for opportunities to do that.”
If you have concerns about your child’s early development, or have a diagnosis in-hand, Kidology is there to provide the comprehensive and compassionate services your child needs. All you need to do is contact them. As Luba says, “Don’t be afraid to call. We don’t bite, and it doesn’t cost money to ask questions. We’re here to help you…We do free tours of our sensory play gym. We’ll be happy to show you around our clinic. And literally guide you, step-by-step. “
This Sponsored Story for the Philadelphia Family Community was written by Kristin Walker.
Photography was supplied by Luba Patlakh Kaplun