What is transition?
What will your child’s life be like once he or she has left high school? Thinking about any child’s future is often difficult – especially if the child has special needs.
Transition services are defined as a coordinated set of activities that are designed to be within a results-oriented process that is focused on improving academic and functional achievement to facilitate movement from school to postsecondary activities. Transition should be thought of as a bridge from the security and structure of school to the challenges and risks of adult life.
Transition planning has been a good idea for a long time. In 1990, both the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the PA Standards and Regulations for Special Education mandated Transition planning for every special education student at age 16 or earlier if recommended by the child’s IEP team. NOTE: Currently PA regulations require planning to begin at age 14.
In 1997, the Individuals with Disabilities Educating Act was amended and age 14 become the age which eligible students are required to begin Transition planning. In 2004, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act established the transition age at 16 once again.
NOTE: Currently PA regulations require planning to begin at age 14.