A Message From Our Director
Our students speak for themselves in describing their experiences and their lives at Stewart Home & School. You just have to see their faces as they speak – most with words, some without – but all with a very clear message.
For 128 years, Stewart Home & School has relied solely upon our students and their families to fulfill the school’s mission and guide its growth.
When you visit, you will see the fruition of their dreams and the new dreams that are dreamed every day.
We invite you to share in the joy of life at Stewart Home & School – our students are the source of it all – and they absolutely love to share!
Sandra Bell, Director
“This place belongs to them,
and its beauty is their reflection.”
– Sandra Bell, Director
Over the years, special students and their families have joined with five generations of the Stewart family to provide a nurturing community and an extension of home.
This is a place where people are supported and encouraged.
The Proud History of Stewart Home & School
Stewart Home & School occupies the historic campus of the old Kentucky Military Institute and its adjoining 850 acres of serene rural farmland in Frankfort, Kentucky. The campus provides a beautiful setting for its current and beautiful purpose. Now on the National Register of Historic Places, the school offers a one-of-a-kind community where those with intellectual disabilities are truly appreciated and respected.
When Dr. John Quincy Adams Stewart founded Stewart Home & School in 1893 on the campus of his own school, the Kentucky Military Institute, people with intellectual disabilities were often denied an educational opportunity in the public schools. He was a pioneer in the field of special education as he set about to institute a school for people of all ages to be given that opportunity. Over its one hundred and twenty-six year history, Stewart Home & School has been owned and directed by five successive generations of the Stewart family. Dr. John Poague Stewart, of the fourth generation, led the school for over 58 years with love, devotion, service, and the continuation of his families’ legacy. Today, Dr. John D. Stewart, Jean Ann Stewart Banker, Cathy Stewart Brown, and Charles W. Stewart, continue the tradition of the school’s remarkable past and extend its dynamic mission into the future. The school continues to provide a campus community for individuals who want to continue to learn and who need a very special educational environment in which to maximize their potential.
Stewart Home & School believes persons with intellectual disabilities deserve every opportunity for personal growth. Our philosophy embraces an understanding of each unique individual who desires meaningful activity, success, friendships and acceptance. Every student is encouraged to develop his or her skills and talents in all areas of life.
The mission of Stewart Home & School is the complete and total care of its students and the fulfillment of all their needs – physical, educational, social, vocational and spiritual.
Since 1893, Stewart Home & School has provided a community where people live in a nurturing environment, and participate in programs designed to specifically meet their individual needs. Students pursue skills in self-sufficiency, academics and vocational programs in settings that stimulate self-confidence and encourage personal happiness.
We believe the emotional problems that often occur as a result of frustration can create a handicapping effect – an effect that can produce fear of failure, loss of self-esteem and, potentially, behavioral issues.
We believe a special residential community that offers opportunities for continuing education, work, companionship, recreation and social interaction with friends present possibilities that might just make dreams come true.
We believe in an atmosphere of acceptance. The foundation of such an aim is to see each student as a person who can learn. Motivational programming for the expression of skills and talents infuses the planning for the goals set in each class – they change as the person changes. Evening and weekend activities include dances, concerts, hayrides, games, movies, local community events and much more!
We believe that a parent or guardian, in seeking an environment for a person with intellectual disabilities, knows the limitations of society when it comes to opportunity and acceptance. To many families, the Stewart Home & School community and its philosophy represent an exciting choice!
A bluegrass estate with residence halls, classrooms, gymnasium, the Pavilion, the Fitness Center, Student Health Services (our newest facility), library, ball field, riding ring and stables, fishing ponds and grounds combine to create a setting as lovely and complete as any college campus. Students at Stewart Home & School enjoy the commons areas as much as their own private rooms. The center of it all is the historic Main Building. It is here where Administration Offices can be found, along with a women’s residence hall, IT services and night watch staff.