Top of main content


Dr. Michael Novak created the Expanding Children’s Hearing Opportunities (ECHO) program in 1987 to offer comprehensive services to children who are deaf or hard of hearing (DHH). The program includes the Carle Pediatric Hearing Center and the Carle Auditory Oral School (CAOS). Both provide nurturing, family-centered environments to help children who are DHH reach their learning and communication potential. 

Charitable gifts to the ECHO program not only make the school accessible to families in need but also fund community outreach, classroom needs and student experiences. Because team members are encouraged to perform research on the provision of listening and spoken language based education and high quality care for children who are DHH and high-quality care for these children, donations also offset the cost of conferences where staff share their research findings.