Better Business Bureau Report for
The Hadley School For The Blind

Better Business Bureau Report issued July 2015
Better Business Bureau Report expires July 2017

Does not meet one or more standards
This charity does not meet one or more of the 20 standards for Charity Accountability. Find out more...

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Charity Contact Information

Name: The Hadley School For The Blind
Address: 700 Elm Street
  Winnetka, IL 60093
Phone: 847-446-8111
Web Address:
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Better Business Bureau Comments

Year, State Incorporated: 1920, Illinois
Affiliates: None
Stated Purpose: The mission of The Hadley School for the Blind is to promote independent living through lifelong, distance education programs for people who are blind or visually impaired, their families and blindness service providers.

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Evaluation Conclusions


The Hadley School For The Blind does not meet the following Standard for Charity Accountability.

Standard 10: Ending Net Assets - Avoid accumulating funds that could be used for current program activities. To meet this standard, the charity's unrestricted net assets available for use should not be more than three times the size of the past year's expenses or three times the size of the current year's budget, whichever is higher.

The Hadley School For The Blind does not meet this Standard because:

  • According to its audited financial statements for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2014, the organization's total unrestricted net assets were $77,346,777, or 11 times the charity's total budgeted expenses of $6,918,000.

For nearly 100 years, the Hadley School for the Blind has offered tuition-free distance education to blind students. 100% of contributions support program costs, and prudent management of our endowment fund allows us to pay for administrative and other overhead costs. Each year, additional funding is needed to develop and teach our programs, so we solicit contributions from individuals, foundations and corporations.

The Hadley School For The Blind meets the remaining 19 Standards for Charity Accountability.
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The Hadley School for the Blind offers about 100 distance education courses in a wide range of subjects and serves nearly 10,000 students each year from around the world. Hadley’s courses serve those who are blind or severely visually impaired, age 14 or older, who are able to study using the English language. Sighted blindness professionals, such as teachers and rehabilitation counselors, as well as family members of blind children or adults, also take Hadley courses. Courses are offered online (accessible with screen reader software), and in large print, braille and audio. Students have personal, one-on-one contact with their instructors via toll free phone calls and email. Hadley courses are tuition-free for students who are blind or visually impaired and their families. Particular areas of focus include braille literacy, accessible technology, and careers and entrepreneurship. Major initiatives include an employment and entrepreneurship training program and a program for older adults with low vision. The school is accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission.

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2014, The Hadley School For The Blind's program expenses were:

education and public awareness 5,487,158
Total Program Expenses: $5,487,158
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Chief Executive : Charles E. Young, President

Chair of the Board: William T. McClain
Chair's Profession / Business Affiliation: Finance

Board Size: 43

Paid Staff Size: 69

*Compensation includes annual salary and, if applicable, benefit plans, expense accounts, and other allowances.
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Fund Raising


Method(s) Used:

direct mail, invitations to fund raising events, print advertisements, grant proposals, internet, planned giving arrangements
Fund raising costs were 12% of related contributions. (Related contributions, which totaled $3,736,829, are donations received as a result of fund raising activities.)
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Tax Status


This organization is tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. It is eligible to receive contributions deductible as charitable donations for federal income tax purposes.
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The following information is based on The Hadley School For The Blind's audited financial statements for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2014.

Source of Funds  
net change in unrealized gain/loss on investments 7,903,328
contributions 3,736,829
net realized gains on sales of investments 2,419,255
investment income 2,073,035
other 321,530
tuition 19,259
Total Income $16,473,236


Uses of Funds as a % of Total Expenses

Programs: 80%  Fund Raising: 6%  Administrative: 14% 

Total income $16,473,236
Program expenses $5,487,158
Fund raising expenses 449,392
Administrative expenses 970,442
Total expenses $6,906,992
Income in Excess of Expenses 9,566,244
Beginning net assets 76,439,613
Ending net assets 86,005,857
Total liabilities 1,016,025
Total assets $87,021,882

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An organization may change its practices at any time without notice. A copy of this report has been shared with the organization prior to publication. It is not intended to recommend or deprecate, and is furnished solely to assist you in exercising your own judgment. If the report is about a charity and states the charity meets or does not meet the BBB Standards for Charity Accountability, it reflects the results of an evaluation of information and materials provided voluntarily by the charity. The name Better Business Bureau is a registered service mark of the Council of Better Business Bureaus, Inc.

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