The Developmental Center for Exceptional Children (DCEC) was founded in 1974 by Kristina Radcliff. Kristina saw a desperate need in her community and created DCEC to provide services to children often overlooked or ignored. In the days before children with special needs and disabilities received services in the public school system, DCEC provided care and instruction to children from birth to age thirteen. DCEC began in a small facility at First Baptist Church, Anderson and had several locations around the county, before settling in Anderson again in 1991.

As the school systems took on more services for children with special needs or disabilities, DCEC narrowed its scope of care to children from birth to five years old.

In 2009, DCEC lost its full funding from the state government through a series of state-wide budget cuts. Later that year, a partial amount of funding was reinstated, but it was not enough to maintain operations. DCEC then looked to its community and its supportive Circle of Friends and decided to register as a private non-profit organization August 1, 2010.

We now receive valuable support from a wide range of sources, including United Way, the Anderson County Council, state support, several grants, ABC Childcare, Special Needs Vouchers, Weekly Fees, and generous donations from the community.

Connor has been at DCEC for over a year now and has made leaps and bounds in his progress. DCEC is such a blessing in our lives!
—  Sarah Benjamin, parent


Since relocating to the Westside Community Center in 2014, enrollment has more than tripled.  DCEC has grown to become a vital part of the greater Anderson County community.  Our outreach efforts have helped us create strong partnerships and engagement from the community.  These partnerships have helped us continue to grow and be holistic in the services we provide to these exceptional children.  With onsite critical therapies, exceptional early education and strong supportive services, we believe that these children can thrive.  In 2019, we embarked on a facility renovations plan and are actively working on expanding in the very near future.

The best days are ahead for these exceptional children!