Creating High-Quality Transition Plans for High School Students with Disabilities:
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Creating High-Quality Transition Plans for High School Students with Disabilities: Writing Measurable Postsecondary Goals. Today’s Goals:. Understand the components of a Transition Plan

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Creating high quality transition plans for high school students with disabilities

Creating High-Quality Transition Plans for High School Students with Disabilities:

Writing Measurable Postsecondary Goals

Today s goals

Today’s Goals:

  • Understand the components of a Transition Plan

  • Demonstrate the skills to develop a legally defensible Student Centered IEP containing Transition Services Language in Exceed forms



  • Introduction and purpose

  • How to write measurable postsecondary goals in the areas of education training, employment, and independent living

  • Practice: writing postsecondary goals based on a case study

  • Next steps: case study – course project

What does the law say about transition

What does the law say about Transition?

What does the law say about transition1

What does the law say about Transition?

When a student has a disability, it’s especially helpful to plan ahead for his/her transition. In fact, IDEA requires it.

The data collected under Indicator 13 targets this turning point in life and the extent to which students with disabilities have IEPs that establish postsecondary goals and include transition services designed to prepare them to meet those goals.

Idea transition

IDEA: Transition

  • Focus: Improve academic and functional achievement to facilitate movement from school to post-school activities

  • Based on youth’s strengths and interests

  • Includes instruction, related services, community experience, development of employmentand other post-school living objectives

  • Mandates the development of a plan that summarizes skills, strengths, transition readiness, needs

Middle schools

Middle Schools

  • How can we prepare students at the middle school level?

High schools

High Schools

  • Start IEPs with the Transition Plan

  • Ask the question, “what does the student want to do?”

  • Put the focus of the IEP on the student

Transition Plan

Indicator 13

Indicator 13

"Percent of youth with IEPs aged 16 and above with an IEP that includes appropriate measurable postsecondary goals that are annually updated and based upon an age appropriate transition assessment, transition services, including courses of study, that will reasonably enable the student to meet those postsecondary goals, and annual IEP goals related to the student's transition services needs.

There also must be evidence that the student was invited to the IEP Team meeting where transition services are to be discussed and evidence that, if appropriate, a representative of any participating agency was invited to the IEP Team meeting with the prior consent of the parent or student who has reached the age of majority."

(20 U.S.C. 1416(a)(3)(B))

State performance plan

State Performance Plan

Indicator 13 requires IEPs to:

  • List measurable postsecondary goals in employment, education/training, and independent living, if needed

  • Be updated annually

  • Be based on age appropriate assessments

  • List transition services

  • Define the course of study

  • State annual IEP goals related to postsecondary goals

  • Invite students to the meeting

  • Invite representatives of agencies that are approved by parents/students

Creating high quality transition plans for high school students with disabilities

Step 1 – Conduct Assessments

New assessments done annually in Education, Training, Employment and Independent Living and any other areas of need. Examples: career cruising, PCP

Step 5 Identify Services

Personnel/programs that will support Post Secondary and Annual Goals

Step 2 – Develop Post Secondary Goals

Based on Assessment. Must have minimum 2 post secondary goals: 1 in Training or Education &

1 in Employment

Step 3 – Develop Annual Goals

Annual goals developed to support Post Secondary Goals

Step 4 –List Activities

Activities that will support Post Secondary Goals and Annual Goals

Transition planning begins with student choices

Transition Planning Begins with Student Choices

Assessment person centered planning

AssessmentPerson Centered Planning

Assessment should be:

  • student/person centered

  • ongoing

  • include a variety of tools

  • updated annually to verify/change postsecondary goals and develop annual goals

  • in all four post secondary goal areas (education, training, employment and independent living skills)

  • based on input from any one involved in students life

Measurable postsecondary goals

Measurable Postsecondary Goals

  • How do you write a measurable goal that will never be measured?

  • Measurable as defined by the Federal law is an outcome you can actually see(IDEA 2004, Part B, 614, [d][1][A][VIII] §300.43[a][1]).

  • It must be stated as: “student will” NOT “student plans to”

  • A measurable post secondary goal is not written in the same format as an Annual Goal

  • How do you write a goal that predicts the future without creating a tunnel that leads to nowhere?

Measurable postsecondary goals1

Measurable Postsecondary Goals

  • IDEA and the National Post-school Outcomes Center specify what areas postsecondary goals need to address.

  • The language must be outcome focused. A best practice is to state the goal in the “I” voice.

Measurable postsecondary goals2

Measurable Postsecondary Goals

Must include at least two

one in Education or Training

one in Employment

If needed, one in Independent Living

After graduation,

After high school,

Upon completion of high school,

Student (name)




Idea defines postsecondary education training outcomes

IDEA defines postsecondary Education/Training outcomes:

  • Enroll in college or university

  • Earn occupational certificate

  • Enroll in vocational training (ROP, beauty school, pet grooming, trucking school, ……. )

  • Enter military for training in….

  • Enter an apprenticeship

  • Complete on the job training

  • Enter Community based training …

  • May list major, industry, or job of interest as goals mature



  • Competitive work - full time / part time

  • Supported employment

  • Integrated work activity


  • Entrepreneurship

  • Volunteer

Annual goal s

Annual Goal(s)

Prepare annually for postsecondary goals

Directly relate to education, employment and independent living goal statements

How do we know the goals are reasonable and relevant?

One way is to utilize state standards, common core standards, and identify the expectations of the “next environment”

Annual goal example

Annual Goal Example

Postsecondary Goal – Employment

After finishing high school, Student (name) will

obtain a part-time position in a community retail


Social/Emotional Goal:

Date/Time frame, Student will demonstrate the

planning and communication skills needed so

that he is provided with accommodations for

his disability and supports necessary for

completion of assigned tasks at school and on

the job.

Example of transition activities

Example of Transition Activities

  • Instruction related to word processing/ keyboarding skills

  • Tutoring (peer or teacher) in reading comprehension strategies

  • Self-monitoring instruction related to on-task behavior

  • Self-advocacy training


    • Filling out an application

    • Touring a community college campus

    • Adapted physical education course

    • Paid work

    • Field trips to the grocery store

    • Volunteer experiences at the local elementary school

Transition activities in the iep

Transition Activities in the IEP

Education and Training Instruction

  • Self-advocacy skills instruction

  • Personal banking instruction

  • Work related social skills instruction

  • Computer skills

    This goal meets 1-13 standards for the following reasons:

  • Instruction is related to postsecondary goals

  • Services can be provided by the school

  • Transition services (activities) is related to a course of study that will reasonably enable the student to meet his postsecondary goal(s)

Transition activities

Transition Activities

Transition services

Transition Services

Transition services may be:

  • Services the student needs to be successful in the general curriculum

  • Services the student needs to accomplish the annual IEP goals that support the post secondary goals

Transition services1

Transition Services


  • College awareness

  • Career awareness

  • Job coaching

  • Agency linkage

  • Other transition services

  • vocational assessment, counseling, guidance, and career assessment

  • Work experience education

  • Mentoring

  • Travel training

  • Recreational services

Agency linkages


  • These are agencies and services that the student is likely to access after exiting school.

    (Agencies are not mandated to provide services while students are still in school but it is recommended that there is a coordination between student and agencies prior to exiting school)

Summary of performance sop

Summary of Performance (SOP)

IDEA 2004 mandates that all students with disabilities who are leaving secondary school due to graduation with a high school diploma or have reached the maximum age for special education services must be given a summary of their academic achievement and functional performance including recommendations on how to assist them in meeting their post-secondary goals.

Roles and responsibilities

Roles and Responsibilities

Tag your it!

Nope…I’m not it!!

Yes you are!!!

No I am NOT!!!!

…OK I am it.

Roles and responsibilities1

Roles and Responsibilities

  • The case manager is responsible for dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s.

  • The student and EVERYONE at the IEP and anyone who touches the student’s life are contributors.

It is important to remember

It is important to remember…

  • Transition is a process, not a document

  • The spirit of transition focuses on the youth

  • The transition IEP can help the student understand the reason to complete classes, engage in their community and envision a future

Let s think about allison

Let’s think about Allison…

Creating high quality transition plans for high school students with disabilities

Analyze: Which skills will have the greatest academic impact on future growth, success and transition to post secondary life?

Allison is a very social 16-year-old junior. She is eligible for

special education under specific learning disability. She

maintains a “B” average, taking courses this semester in Art,

Collaboration in Algebra 2 and US History, and co-taught English

with a lot of special education support. She would like to

become a Early childhood teacher. Her interests are in sports,

school extracurricular activities, and church.

Assessments: Interest Surveys, Interviews,

She wants to work part-time her last year in high school.

Case study group exercise

Case Study: Group Exercise


  • Please take an index card and pass it on

  • Get into your groups (groups by index card color)

  • Obtain the manila folder with your index card ---folder will have your student profile and graphic organizer

  • Once you’ve completed your discussion on the student, be ready to share out

Next step is to let you practice

Next step is to let you practice …


Measurable Postsecondary Goal


Measurable Postsecondary Goal

Annual IEP Goal:

Transition Activities:

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