Effective practices , resources and ideas for transition planning
Carol Huntley, M.Ed.
Transition SpecialistRound Rock Independent School District(512) firstname.lastname@example.org
The Focus for Todays Discussion1. Students with Emotional or Behavioral Disorders
2. Students in the Juvenile Justice System
3. Self-contained Students Over the Age of 18 (getting ready to exit the school system).
Students with Emotional/Behavioral DisordersData from 2 National Longitudinal Studies show:High drop out rateTake longer to be employed after graduation, underemployment and lower employment rates overallMore problems in social adjustmentMany become parents very early in lifeMany arrested in high school or in the first five years after high school
Factors Specific to E/BDDisability more often interferes with their education and ability to obtain and keep a job than students with other disabilitiesMental illness carries a stigmaGap in funding and service delivery between adult and youth mental health systems of care.Other disabilities (L.D.; I.D.) may be hidden under the E/BD.Those with behavior problems receive more support with transition than those with other mental health issues (depression, schizophrenia, bi-polar)
Build a Relationshipwith the FamilyGet to know them with more than contact only at Transition Planning/ARD timeMake sure meetings, materials and phone calls are in a language they can understandInvite them to the school for events and/or to visit classesMake time for informal talks and to answer questions outside of a formal meetingAsk questions about things that affect the students transition.medical issues; things that happen at home
Family Must Be Involved in Transition PlanningHold meeting when they can attendDo they have transportation to the meeting?Make sure they understand issues at handIf they absolutely cant attend, could they be on the phone?Make sure they understand and know where community supports are and how to access them
Supports Available Through the IEPDoes the student have a BIP and is it effective?What kind of accommodations are being offered? Are they helping?Does the student receive counseling, either in or out of school?
Are Basic Needs Being Met?If the student is using drugs and/or alcohol, what support and help is being offered or can be offered?Does the student come to school poorly dressed or without enough food? If so, what help can be accessed in your area?Is the student taking needed meds to enable her/him to attend school and be stable enough to learn?
Transition Planning to Empower the studentUse Person Centered PlanningTry Visual Transition Planning using PCP techniquesTransition plan must include action as part of the planning Process must be positive; stress strengths, dreams; not deficits and problems
Employment, Employment,EmploymentAssess to find out the students interests and skillsDiscuss Co-op or VAC class for creditStudents who are employed while in school are most likely to have a job when they leave schoolMake agency linkages (DARS)
Explore Alternative Pathways to GraduationIs a program available on campus for recoupment of credits lost (Atlas? Credit recovery?)
Does your district make available an alternative school for students needing shortened days or schooling at night?
Use Community Supports
Your local county authority (LA)
Non-profit organizations such as NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness)
Dont Overlook the Power of a MentorSome districts have mentoring programs in placeMentor should be willing to give at least 1 hour a week to be with the studentThose mentors that build a relationship with the students family can increase the impact of the mentorship
What About Incarcerated Students?Ongoing transition, beginning when the student arrives at the detention or correction facility, emphasizing the students vision for his/her future and an action plan for items to be addressed.
The transition team should be made up of the student, correctional facility staff, family and school personnel
Support services for alcohol and drug abuse counseling, anger management, vocational counseling, training for parenthood
Continuation of transition planning when student is returning to the school system
Overlap Planning for 18+ Students Needing Ongoing SupportPlanning should focus on what the students day will look like after exiting the school system.Use a chart with a weekly calendar to make a planStart by writing the times that the student works or volunteersWrite other activities and events on the calendar that the student would like to do on a daily or weekly basis.
Planning for Transition OverlapFor example:First six-weeks: the school will provide support on the job site and student will attend school during other hoursSecond six-weeks: the person who will provide support attends and learns from the school staff member what kind of support the student needs and what has been provided. The student will add some of his/her activities with whomever will provide the ongoing support.Third six-weeks: the person providing the support takes over and the school personnel steps back or removes to another room or outside, checking back for questions or possible problems. The student is attending all of his/her activities and has transitioned from school to adult life.
ResourcesCheney, Douglas, ed. Transition of Secondary Students with Emotional or Behavioral Disorders. Seattle: University of Washington, 2004.
Jolivette, K., Stichter, Janine P., Nelson, M., Scott, T., & Liaupsin, C. (2000) Improving Post-School Outcomes for Students with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders. Council for Exceptional Children Teaching and Learning Center.
Person Centered Planning: Pacer Center Online http://www.pacer.org/tatra/resources/personal.asp
Test, D., Mazotti, A., Mustian, A.L., Fowler, C.H., Kortering, L., & Kohler, P. (2009) Evidence-based secondary transition predictors for improving postschool outcomes for students with disabilities. Career Development for Exceptional Individuals, 32, 160-181.
United States. National Longitudinal Transition Study2, Transition Planning for Students with Disabilities. Prepared for Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education. SRI Project P11182, November, 2004.
Visual Transition Planning, developed by Renee Borders, Austin Independent School District. email@example.com
Wagner, Mary. (1995) Outcomes for Youths with Serious Emotional Disturbance in Secondary School and Early Adulthood. Critical Issues for Children and Youths, Vol.5, No. 2, 90-112.