The transition for individuals on the autism spectrum, from federally mandated services through the school system to adult services can be a challenge. While entitlement to public education ends at age 18, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) requires that transition planning begin at age 16 and become a formal part of the student's Individualized Education Plan (IEP). This transition planning should include the student, parents, and members of the IEP team who work together to help the individual make decisions about his/her next steps. An Individualized Transition Plan (ITP) should be developed that outlines transition services that may include education or vocational training, employment, living arrangements and community participation, to name a few.
The first step in transition planning should be to take a look at the individual's interests, abilities, and needs. For example, what type of educational needs must be met? College, vocational training, adult education? Where can the young adult find employment and training services? What types of living arrangements are best?
Last updated: 31 January 2008
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