Menta Facilities Closed by ISBE For Operating Without Approval

By Benjamin Cox on October 17, 2023 at 4:35am

The Illinois State Board of Education has ordered students to be moved out of three facilities owned by Menta, including one in Springfield, after they were found to be operating without state approval.

The Menta facilities were operating as therapeutic day schools for students with significant social-emotional disabilities. The Menta facilities had applied to ISBE for approval in the spring.

ISBE discovered the unauthorized facilities after receiving a complaint and began investigating immediately. ISBE made unannounced visits to the facilities last week to confirm the reports of them operating without state approval. ISBE also found troubling restraint and time out practices at the Springfield and Centralia locations.

ISBE also observed during its unannounced visits that the staff at the Menta Springfield and Menta LaSalle facilities did not match the information submitted in their applications.

In addition to operating without the required state approval, the facilities did not have the required contractual agreements with the students’ home school districts and did not at the time of enrollment have the required rates set by the Illinois Purchased Care Review Board.

Due to these violations and safety concerns, ISBE has denied the facilities’ applications for approval and has notified them to cease operations to students from Illinois public school districts as of Friday. Menta enrolled 125 students from 41 school districts in new facilities in Springfield, Centralia, and LaSalle without having received the required state approval.