Postsecondary Transitions: The Preparation Project for High School Education Specialists

Research has shown that many education specialists do not receive adequate training in transition preparedness for students with mild to moderate disabilities, and therefore, these students lack the supports they need to transition from high school to adult life. In some settings, rich and varied transition curriculum is in place for students, and informational materials for parents and families are provided. However, several factors and limited availability of transition training for these educators, not all students have access to appropriate transition services and supports they need. This results in many Individualized Transition Program plans not adhering to or demonstrating legal fidelity. It can be overwhelming for education specialists to maintain an up to date understanding of the law while simultaneously ensuring students receive the guidance and instruction they need to reach their postsecondary goals, particularly since special education law and access to transition services are often in flux. The purpose of this project was to organize the many postsecondary transition resources available to education specialists and to students in a suburban high school in San Diego County, and to provide a useful overview of the components of IDEA which govern transition planning in a guidebook format. This guidebook was designed to equip education specialists to produce legally compliant transition plans and to improve transition planning practices in order to facilitate positive postsecondary outcomes for high school students with disabilities.