By Theresa Kraft, Esq.
Transition services, like most services provided under an IEP, are individualized to a particular student and are based on the student’s strengths, weaknesses, and personal vision for post-secondary opportunities. Transition services for a student with significant cognitive disabilities will be very different for the student with ADHD. And when the transition services start should be based on the student’s needs.
The IDEA requires that beginning not later than the first IEP to be in effect when the student turns 16 or younger if determined appropriate by the IEP Team, and updated annually, thereafter, the IEP must include–
(1) Appropriate measurable postsecondary goals based upon age appropriate transition assessments related to training, education, employment, and, where appropriate, independent living skills; and
(2) The transition services (including courses of study) needed to assist the child in reaching those goals.
NH rules require that an IEP include a statement of transition services that meets the requirements of 34 CFR 300.43 and 34 CFR 300.320(b), with the exception that a plan for each student with a disability beginning at age 14 or younger, if determined appropriate by the IEP team, shall include a statement of the transition service needs of the student under the applicable components of the student’s IEP that focuses on the student’s courses of study such as participation in advanced-placement courses or a vocational education.
Transition services are designed to be within a results-oriented process, that is focused on improving the academic and functional achievement of the child with a disability to facilitate the child’s movement from school to post-school activities, including postsecondary education, vocational education, integrated employment (including supported employment); continuing and adult education, adult services, independent living, or community participation.
Although NH IEPs have a section entitled Transition Plan, the IEP is viewed as a whole document and services which fulfill the requirements of Transition services can appear anywhere in the IEP.
For more information regarding Transition Planning visit NHEdLaw and Parent Information Center.
Attorney Theresa Kraft guides parents of children with disabilities through the special education process. This article also appears on Attorney Kraft’s website.