Planning for transition from school to adult life begins at least by the time students are age 14. Transition Services includes two major concepts:
• Discovery – a continuing process to determine the preferences, strengths, interests and needs of each student. Data is collected through observation of students in school and community activities, by interviews with parents and family members, as well as others who have significance in each student’s life. This data results in a Discovery Profile for each individual. The Discovery Profile is used to guide both school instruction and transition planning based on the strengths and interests of each individual;
• Multi Agency Planning (MAP) for Transition: – many students will need the participation and coordination of several community resources to fully support their plans in adulthood. These resources may include: a local school district where students live; a Medicaid waiver service provider; employer; transportation and residential providers; recreation, Special Olympics, and social organizations. During MAP planning, each organization makes commitments to implement part(s) of the plan, and coordinate how they will share responsibilities to sustain the supports needed for successful transition in adult life.
Guidance about Transition Resources is available for families. These services include parent education, support in understanding Medicaid Waiver services, support in understanding provider agencies that may be available, and helping families understand the procedures of social service agencies.