Transition planning is fundamental to the development of a student's educational program. Transition focused education encompasses strategies that promote positive post-school outcomes for students with disabilities. The impact of transition-focused programming and education is greatly enhanced when community partners, educators, and families connect, collaborate, and support the implementation and application of such learning. Greater attention given to post-secondary development increases students’ ability to obtain post-secondary employment, education, training, and independent living opportunities.
A structured transition program is based on evidence-based practices and data-based decision making. It includes the program characteristics, evaluative methods, planning, policies, procedures, and development of resources (Kohler, et al., 2016). A solid instructional framework is the foundation upon which a student’s transition education, goals, and services are developed and delivered. Kohler et al. (2016) determined students experience greater success when a transition-focused approach is employed in the development of a student’s educational program.
A linkage between transition focused education, services, and systems support student’s post-secondary success (Kohler et al., 2016). Community stakeholders provide valuable input in transition planning. Participation by related services professionals, vocational rehabilitation counselors, post-secondary education representatives, and employers provide opportunities for more specific and individualized transition services. Family members are often in touch with a student’s post-secondary goals, careers of interest, and support needs, and can provide insight into student’s strengths, needs, interests and preferences.
Self-determination skills are also crucial to post-secondary success as these skills increase student’s ability to make decisions independently, enhance problem solving abilities, establish and attain personal goals, and promote self-awareness (Test et al., 2014). Additionally, student involvement in IEP development and transition planning is a fundamental element of student-focused planning (Kohler et al., 2016). Cavendish et al. (2017) reported increased student involvement produces positive outcomes and enhances individuals’ self-determination and self-advocacy skills.
Transition Leaders’ Community of Practice
The Transition Community of Practice provides Transition Coordinators and Specialists in region 4 the opportunity to come together as a group to: (a) engage in collaborative activities and discussion surrounding post-secondary transition; (b) develop a shared repertoire of shared resources, tools, and methods to further develop and enhance transition programs and practices; (c) assist each other by sharing of information pertaining to serving the life-long learning needs of students with disabilities.
In collaboration with VCU/CTI
Transition Leader's Community of Practice Kick-Off: August 30th at 3:30pm. You can register for this event using this registration link. This CoP will be held the third Wednesday of the month. The first Wednesday of October, November, February and May our CoP will be dedicated to collaborative sessions with our Community Stakeholders.
Educators receive technical assistance and support with navigating the career and college exploration platform and the many features and tools that are available, such as Career Central, Colleges, Jobs, assessments, Resume Builder, and Flex Lessons.
Transition Focused Professional Learning Series for Educators
A custom designed four-part series discussing Primary Topics of Secondary Transition. Sessions are designed based on your division's needs.
Transition Topics Classroom
Canvas based classroom that houses self-paced transition focused modules:
- Writing Effective Transition Plans
- Transition 101
- Developing Job Shadowing Experiences
- Student Led IEPs
Empowering Students to be Self-Determined
"Being self-determined is about making things happen in your life" (Shogren, n.d.). Self-Determined individuals set goals, make choices and decisions, develop plans to reach goals, and track progress toward goals.
The SDLMI is a teaching model designed to enable teachers to teach students to set goals, create action plans to achieve those goals, and revise goals or action plans based on self-evaluation. Students learn to use self-determination skills such as problem solving, goal setting, self-advocacy, and self-monitoring. Students who are instructed on the SDLMI achieve better outcomes upon exiting high school and moving into adult life.
I'm Determined Project
Provides instruction and opportunities to practice skills associated with self-determination. This project promotes youth to make impactful decisions regarding their life's course rather than allowing the adults in their lives to make all decisions on their behalf. I'm Determined hosts annual events including an Educator Symposium in the fall, a Youth Summit in the spring, and a MOVE Summit in the summer for African American men. The I'm Determined project also promotes Echo Events, regional mini-youth summits across the state. Check out the Events tab for upcoming events!
- 3/11/2024, 8:00am - 3:30pm: 2024 VA DCDT Annual Transition Conference: Raising the Standards (March 11 & 12, 2024)
- 3/20/2024, 3:30pm - 4:30pm: Region 4 Transition Leaders’ Community of Practice
- 4/9/2024, 4:00pm - 5:00pm: Transition Professional Learning Community (VDOE TTAC at GMU)
- 4/18/2024, 3:30pm - 4:30pm: Session 4: Transition Planning and Programming (VDOE TTAC at GMU)
- 5/1/2024, 3:30pm - 4:30pm: Region 4 Transition Leaders’ Community of Practice
- 5/15/2024, 3:30pm - 4:30pm: Region 4 Transition Leaders’ Community of Practice
Based on the work of the CEEDAR Center and Council for Exceptional Children, the GMU TTAC Team has created High Leverage Practice Crosswalks in the areas of Math, Literacy, and Transition to support stakeholders in developing personalized professional learning and targeted support, with the goal of bridging research into "practical" classroom practice to improve performance outcomes. The HLP Crosswalks are dynamic documents that will be periodically updated with the most current research and practical resources.
The SDLMI is a teaching model implemented by teachers to enable their students to self-direct and self-regulate. It is designed to guide teachers in providing students opportunities to develop and practice skills associated with self-determination.
The I’m Determined project, a state-directed project funded by the Virginia Department of Education, focuses on providing direct instruction, models, and opportunities to practice skills associated with self-determined behavior. This project facilitates youth, especially those with disabilities to undertake a measure of control in their lives, helping to set and steer the course rather than remaining the silent passenger.
The National Technical Assistance Center on Transition: The Collaborative (NTACT-C) provide information, tools, and supports to assist multiple stakeholders in delivering effective services and instruction for secondary students and out of school youth with disabilities.
Promotes evidence-based practices and practical application. The website includes curriculum and assessment resources, a variety of publications and handouts, and student-focused transition planning activities and materials.
Provides professional development opportunities for secondary transition and college and career readiness of youth with disabilities in various formats. Transition Coalition staff have provided numerous presentations on different topics related to transition and most include: PowerPoints, PDFs, Word Docs, and Webinars.
A centralized statewide portal for information, resources, demonstration, and research for educators and other stakeholders in the transition of youth with disabilities. VCU/CTI provides evidence-based resources and information along with emerging practices in the field.
Creates and provides professional development activities, including webinars, podcasts, workshops, and comprehensive training and technical assistance for educational professionals.
To improve the employment, quality of life, security, and independence of individuals with disabilities, and their families. DARS provides Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) services and Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) to youth with disabilities.