Transition Services for Students with Disabilities
October is Virginia Disability History and Awareness Month (DHAM). Nationally, employment of persons with disabilities is also highlighted in October. View the DHAM poster (PDF) and other helpful resources: Center on Transition Innovations, Office of Disability Employment Policy, Center for Disability Leadership, Virginia Board for People with Disabilities, I'm Determined, I’m Determined Youth Summit video
Transition Assessment: Establishing a Foundation for a Successful Transition to Adulthood (PDF) – Age-appropriate transition assessment provides the basis for planning life after graduation from high school. This brochure contains information and resources to get started planning for postsecondary employment, education, training, and independent living.
VDOE's Transition Services website provides support, information and resources designed to improve the outcomes of students with disabilities in transition from middle / secondary education to postsecondary education and employment.
The key to successful transition is careful planning. Students must be actively involved in the planning process.
- Fast Facts: Secondary Transition: Why it is important to plan early (PDF)
What is Transition?
Transition is the process students and their families use to think about life after high school, to identify their desired outcomes, and to plan their community and school experiences to assure that the students acquire the knowledge and skills to achieve their goals.
Why is Transition Important?
Steven Covey says to "begin with the end in mind." That idea is the heart of transition planning. If the "end" we have in mind is "educated employees," then the transition planning is the "beginning." It sets the education course for middle and secondary students with disabilities that leads to access to adult services, postsecondary education and the world of work. The idea of transition is simple, but actually carrying out the process can be daunting as we try to weave together the appropriate combination of educational and social services. The legislators who developed the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA PL 101-476) included transition components in the legislation with the goal of preparing students with disabilities to access the supports and services they need to become as independent as possible.
How Do We Do Transition?
The transition planning process should enable the student to move successfully from school to postsecondary education and training, employment, independent living, and community participation based on the student's preferences, interests, and abilities.
- To secondary education
- To postsecondary education, school to work and community life
- NICHCY – offers a wealth of information on disabilities. They serve as a central source of information on disabilities in infants, toddlers, children, and youth. The site contains easy-to-read information on IDEA, the law authorizing early intervention services and special education.
- Virtual Learning
- From special education to adult services
- School To Work Transition Services (PDF) – Virginia Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services
- Virginia Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired
- OLMSTEAD Act
- Money Follows the Person – Virginia launches community-living choice website for individuals with disabilities. Virginia is one of 31 states participating in a five-year, $1.75 billion Money Follows the Person (MFP) Demonstration project designed to create a system of long-term services and supports that assist individuals to transition from certain long-term care institutions into the community. This project supports Virginia's Olmstead initiative and complements the efforts of the recently awarded Systems Transformation Grant that aims to improve the infrastructure for community-based long-term supports. Virginia's MFP project, administered by the Department of Medical Assistance Services, will make more than $28 million in federal Medicaid funds available to support Virginia's individuals with disabilities. For more details and the most current information on the MFP project, please visit http://www.olmsteadva.com/mfp.
- One Community
- Work World
- From special education to post secondary
How Do We Know We Are Doing It Right?
- Helping Students Become Self Determined
- Virginia Intercommunity Transition Council (VITC) Fact Sheets
- Regulations & Legal Requirements
- Virginia's Transition Requirements Checklist – School Division Self-Assessment and Technical Assistance Document (Word)
- Guidance for the Development of Postsecondary Goals (Word)