When Louise Whitbeck Fraser’s daughter Jean contracted spinal meningitis at 6-weeks-old, she was left mostly deaf.
At the time, people with disabilities were often institutionalized and little, if any, effort was made to educate them.
But Louise wanted more for her daughter.
Louise had her teaching certificate and started teaching Jean at home. Jean was able to feel the rhythm of music, and Louise used the beats to teach Jean how to communicate.
Word spread, and soon parents began asking Louise to tutor their children with disabilities.
As enrollment grew, Louise raised money to purchase a former machine shop on 63rd and Penn in Richfield, which opened in 1949 as a 3-room school and adjacent playground.
Today, Fraser School® operates at 2400 West 64th Street in Richfield, just steps from its founding location. The school welcomes children with both typical and diverse needs to learn, play, and grow together.
By teaching children that everyone deserves respect, community, and care, we are building a culture of inclusion, one generation at a time.