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IDEA 2004:
Transition Services for Education, Work, Independent Living

When you look at the Definitions in Section 1401, you'll see that several new definitions were added to IDEA 2004. These new definitions include core academic subjects, highly qualified teacher, homeless children, Limited English proficient, universal design and ward of the state. Other definitions were revised.

The definition of "Transition services" is now:

(34) TRANSITION SERVICES - The term `transition services' means a coordinated set of activities for a child with a disability that--

(A) is designed to be 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 post-secondary education, vocational education, integrated employment (including supported employment), continuing and adult education, adult services, independent living, or community participation;

(B) is based on the individual child’s needs, taking into account the child's strengths, preferences, and interests . . . "

(Note: the underlined words are new in IDEA 2004)

Useful Articles & Publications

The IEP for Transition Age Students. Excellent article about IEPs for "transition-aged students." Learn about transition requirements, members of the IEP transition team (including student and parents), special factors for the IEP team to consider (published by the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition and The Pacer Center).

IEPs for Success by Dr. Barbara Bateman. This article includes extensive discussion of transition and transition plans.

IEP & Transition Planning: Frequently Asked Questions

Legal Requirements for Transition Components of the IEP - Barbara D. Bateman, Ph.D., J.D.

Making the Transition from School to Work
by Sue Heath

Moving On to High School: A Tip Sheet for Parents of Children on Individualized Education Plans - Institute for Community Inclusion, University of Massachusetts Boston

Person-Centered Planning: A Tool for Transition. Under IDEA 2004, IEPs must include transition services for the child by age 16. The transition plan should reflect the student’s interests, preferences, accomplishments and skills, what they need to learn, and what they want to do. Person-centered planning is a way to identify goals and develop plans to accomplish goals (published by the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition and The Pacer Center).

Self-Advocacy: Know Yourself, Know What You Need, Know How to Get It by Nancy Johnson. "Self-advocacy is the ability to understand and effectively communicate one's needs to other individuals. Learning to become an effective self-advocate is all about educating the people around you. There are three steps to becoming an effective self-advocate . . ."

Students with Disabilities Preparing for Postsecondary Education: Know Your Rights and Responsibilities (U. S. Department of Education). Booklet for students who plan to continue their education after high school; includes questions and answers about admissions, accommodations & academic adjustments, documentation, evaluations, and discrimination under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. In html

Transition Planning: A Team Effort - National Information Center for Children and Youth with Disabilities

Transition Requirements: A Guide for States, Districts, Schools, Universities, and Families - Western Regional Resource Center

Vocational Assessment: A Guide for Parents and Professionals - National Information Center for Children and Youth with Disabilities

You will find more resources, including help for college students and information about scholarships, on the Transition page.


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