Teacher / Counselor Helpful Tools

Quick Tidbits and Tips 

Transition goals and services must be in place no later than when the student reaches age 16, as mandated by the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA 2004). In Arkansas, these are the postsecondary pilot transition IEP forms.

Post-secondary goals in the transition plan MUST be measurable and based on transition assessments that are provided at least annually!

IDEA mandates that students are invited to IEP meetings where transition is discussed…make sure you send a separate Notice of Conference addressed to the student! Why not take it a step further and work with the student to participate in the meeting as well?! Find out how in the tools below!

Not sure what all the agencies in your area can do for your students? Give them a call and ask them questions! Invite them to speak to your class and share these tips for topics with them or hold a Transition Fair!

DID YOU KNOW...Rock Region Metro offers a 50% discount to students under 18 and a 50% discount to anyone on Medicare or Social Security Disability? That means a student could get a 31 day pass for $18 or a 10 ride pass for just $5.75! Call CAT for more information: 501-375-6717.

The National Technical Assistance Center on Transition (NTACT) is a Technical Assistance and Dissemination project, funded by the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) and the Rehabilitation Services Adminstration (RSA), Cooperative Agreement Number H326E140004. Their site www.transitionta.org provides resources and guidance on transition planning, graduation, post-school success, data analysis and use, and effective practices and predictors of post-school success. We encourage you to visit their site for lots of valuable information whether you are a teacher, counselor, parent, student, or an agency employee.

Transition Class Information

Transition Training Resources: Test Prep Review 
Your source for FREE online practice tests.

Transition Assessments 
A list of assessments that you can access for free, acquire online or purchase to help you and your student develop the most meaningful transition plan.

Transition Activities, Strategies and Curriculum 
This list of activities might be relevant to use with your student in helping them work toward their post-secondary goals!

Teacher Tips
This tool provides some great tips that teachers around the country have used with great success! There is bound to be one that you can use to help your students succeed!” 

Transition Checklist Brochure

The Teaching Channel 
Stuff Teaching Channel is a thriving online community where teachers can watch, share, and learn diverse techniques to help every student grow. 

Disability Info
This is a comprehensive website for all disability-related federal resources.

Transition Related Indicators 

Indicators are calculated measures used to assess the performance of special education programs. Basically, it’s a way to measure how well we are educating students in special education. There are four that relate to transition more than the other indicators.

Indicator 1
Graduation rate: Percent of youth with IEPs graduating from high school with a regular diploma. 
Indicator 2
Dropout rates: Percent of youth with IEPs dropping out of high school. 
Indicator 13
Post School Transition Goals in IEP: 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. 

If you would like a helpful tool that can help you meet compliance with this indicator check out the Indicator 13 Checklist. Review the questions and if you can answer yes to all parts of the eight questions, you will have a compliant plan!

Indicator 14
Post-School Outcomes: Percent of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were:

A. Enrolled in higher education within one year of leaving high school.
B. Enrolled in higher education or competitively employed within one year of leaving high school.
C. Enrolled in higher education or in some other postsecondary education or training program; or competitively employed or in some other employment within one year of leaving high school.

Post school outcome surveys are conducted in different districts each year, one year after a student has graduated high school. Go to our Post-School Outcomes Flyer for information you can give to parents and students about the importance of completing that survey!

Due Process Forms Related to Transition

Notice of Conference
Remember, to show you invited the student in Arkansas, you must address a separate notice of conference to the student!
The Transition Plan
Summary of Performance 
Sample Letter to Accompany SOP
Permission for Consent to Invite Agencies
You must have this signed by the appropriate party before inviting an agency to the IEP meeting!

Collecting Post-School Outcomes Data

An important part of improving outcomes for students with disabilities is collecting information after they have left high school to see  what services have been used and how programs in high school may have helped them be successful. If you have a student who has recently left high school or will soon, please read more on Post School Outcomes Data Collection. We need your participation when it’s time to collect the data.

General Transition Information

Assistive Technology Assessments and Tools

IDEA requires the consideration for technology needs for students with disabilities. These could be services or devices that are defined in IDEA. When students are planning to transition into the adult world it is critical that they are aware of available technology that they can use to support them in the post-secondary environment. IEP teams (including students and families) can greatly benefit from the tools provided below:

Student Self Evaluation Matrix - The self-evaluation matrix is intended to measure and improve assistive technology transfer to higher education settings. 

Transition Skills Checklist - use this assessment to determine what skills your students demonstrate and what skills they need to acquire.

Assistive Technology Assessment Process Planner - use this process planner when classroom strategies and tools do not meet the student’s needs.

Assistive Technology Implementation Plan - use this template to develop a plan to implement assistive technology with your students.

Family Information Guide to Assistive Technology and Transition Planning - this guide will provide you with information on transition, how to ensure your students' assistive technology needs are supported in the transition from high school to adult life, and information on laws related to transition and accommodations. There are many tools and valuable resources within this guide to help include consideration of assistive technology in the transition process.

Employment Tools 

Soft Skills - Soft skills cannot be taught in a vacuum, nor can they be acquired simply because the goal of a lesson plan indicates it shall be so. This tool has been designed with youth service professionals in mind - specifically those working with in-school and out-of-school youth, ages 14-21, on career and workforce readiness skills. The basic foundation for the structure of these activities includes convenience, cost-effectiveness, and creativity. They were designed in such a way as to be easily incorporated into current programming and/or already established curricula. 

Job Shadowing Guide - Shadowing can provide experiences that are as unique as every person who participates. For the student who has never understood the point of school, a shadowing experience can show how education can be translated into rewarding and financially secure future. For the teacher looking for new ways to motivate students, it can provide a fun and unusually hands-on experience that demonstrates the link between schoolwork and real life, answering the question, “Why do I have to learn this?” For those in the work place, being a host site can help forge personally satisfying connections with young people that could ultimately contribute to building a more prepared and focused workforce of tomorrow.

JAN Multimedia Training Microsite - The JAN Multimedia Training Microsite provides training resources for JAN's users. These materials may be used in group training or by individuals. They may easily be incorporated into larger training events. Some resources are for general audiences, some are quite specific. Also incorporate archived JAN webcasts and podcasts to your training curriculum. 

Arkansas Career Fields, Clusters and Pathways Chart

Arkansas Career Clusters Descriptions

Real Life Arkansas - Do your students need help determining how much money they will need to earn in the future? Do they need help deciding which occupation to choose? No problem! This site has see three options to help them select the right career for their spending needs.

CAREER ONE STOP'S VIDEO COLLECTION - Visit this website to learn about careers, industries, skills and abilities, or work options and education levels.

Arkansas Driver's License Study Tools

Printable version of the most current Arkansas Driver's License Study Guide

Auditory version of Arkansas Driver's License Study Guide Vol Ed 7

Online quizzes and flash cards 

Online practice tests

Printable flash cards for driver's test prep

Transition Fair Tools

Transition Fairs are an important part of teachers, parents and students learning about agencies and programs within agencies that can help them reach their goals after high school. The tools below can help you plan a Transition Fair and prepare your students for ACTIVE participation in the Fair. This is a great project for a transition team to work on. Involve your students as much as possible in the planning and preparation activities! Always contact your Transition Consultant for other ideas and help!

Strategies to Increase Attendance at your Transition Fair
Transition Fair Toolkit
Tools for Teachers before and during the Transition Fair
(these are sample tools you can modify and use for your Transition Fair)
Sample Invitations and Flyers for Transition Fairs
Preparing Students
Student Responsibilities
Student Script
Teacher Instructions
Student Instructions
Transition Fair Worksheet
Speaker Notes for Transition Fair
Goal Setting Activity
Student Survey

Self-Determination 

Self-determination can be defined as "acting as the primary causal agent in one's life and making choices and decisions regarding one's quality of life free from undue external influence or interference." (Michael Wehmeyer, 2001) Self-determination skills include being able to make choices and decisions and to set goals, but we have to give these opportunities for our students to work on  these skills. Encourage your students to set goals and to attend their IEP meetings--make sure they have a role at the IEP meeting. Check out the resources below to learn more about self-determination and how to implement it in your classroom today!

Informational Brochures for Parents, Students and Teachers on Self-Determination
What is Self-Determination?
What are my rights as a student with a disability? 
Suggestions for your participation in the IEP process
AIR Self-Determination Rating Scale
User Guide
Educator
Parent
Student
Goal Setting Worksheet for Students
IEP Meeting Sample Agenda

Links to FREE Self-Determination Curriculum 

411 on Disability Disclosure Workbook for Youth with Disabilities

411 on Disability Disclosure Workbook for Families, Educators, Youth Service Professionals and Adult Allies who care about Youth with Disabilities 

ME! Lessons in Self-Advocacy (training from ATS available)

SDTP (training from ATS available)

Helping Students Develop their IEP

Transition Toolkit: Enhancing Self Determination for Young Adults Who Are Deaf-Blind 
This Transition Toolkit is a free repository of information, tools, resources, and information about a suggested model for hosting a workshop for deaf-blind teens ages 14-22 and their families. This model was devised after eight years of hosting Transition Institutes for this traditionally underserved population. The main purposes of the Institute are to support young adults who are deaf-blind to: Plan for the future and clarify future goals and build networks of friends, mentors, resources while becoming strong self-advocates who interact with and learn from others who are deaf-blind the possibilities for leadership and involvement. It also serves to support families of young adults who are deaf-blind to promote self-determination through exposure to successful deaf-blind role models and expand their expectations for their future while learning tools, strategies and contacts that can help navigate the transition process and develop action plans for the future. 

ChoiceMaker Self-Determination Curriculum 
This curriculum consists of three strands: (1) Choosing Goals,  (2) Expressing Goals, and (3) Taking Action. each strand addresses teaching objectives in three transition areas: Education, Employment, and Personal. ChoiceMaker lessons are designed to be infused into existing school coursework programs. Because the "Choosing Goals" and "Taking Action" modules can be used with a variety of content, they can be used in either general education or special education classrooms.  The "Self-Directed IEP" module is designed for use with students receiving special education services. Each of the lesson modules includes the teacher's manual and student workbook. "Choosing Employment Goals" and "Choosing Education Goals" also include reproducibles that align with the lessons. There are also videos depicting students utilizing methods taught in the ChoiceMaker Curriculum modules. 

2BSD: To Be Self-Determined
2BSD is about creating more self-determined lives. On this website, you’ll find information about all things self-determined: what it is, why it’s important, and how to promote it.

Self-Determination for Elementary / Middle School Students

Preparing for Post Secondary Education

Getting Help for the Transition to College
Some students with disabilities may not be totally aware of the support services available at the college level. To provide more information of how to go about getting more information when considering post-secondary education options, the Disability Services Office at NC State University created a video DVD to help ease students’ minds and to give them helpful tips and advice. The video shows a current college student receiving supports and offering help to a current high school student who isn’t so sure he can make it at college. Educators, share this video with your students and parents! It can be a great conversation starter that leads to getting the supports students need at the post-secondary level! 

Going to College 
This site has lots of information about going to college and being successful with a disability. A section of the site is for students interested in going to college. It has videos and other tools that can get students on the right track in planning for college. There are three modules that students, parents and educators can participate in. The site also has a "Teacher Toolbox" that provides activities for teachers to use as they help guide students in the planning process. And finally, it has a Portfolio section to help students really get the important pieces organized so they are ready to be successful in college! 

College Navigator 
This is the Department of Education's website for information about colleges and universities. 

Testing Accommodations for Individuals with Disabilities from the U.S. Department of Justice 
This provides information on the obligation of testing entities, both private and public, to ensure that the test scores of individuals with disabilities accurately reflect the individual's aptitude, achievement, or the skill that the exam purports to measure, rather than his or her disability. The document discusses who is entitled to testing accommodations, what types of testing accommodations must be provided, and what documentation may be required of the person requesting testing accommodations. 

Arkansas Next
Find out more about how you can make life after high school more exciting for you. This is a publication distributed to schools, but you can find the information right here at this site! Learn more about apprenticeships, colleges in Arkansas, financial aid, dorm life and the hottest jobs in Arkansas! You can also read stories from actual students in Arkansas and how they are making the right decisions for the life they want to have after high school. 

Arkansas Apprenticeship 
Visit this website to view a list of Arkansas' apprenticeship schools and find out how to become an apprentice.

Arkansas Disability Resource Professionals Contact List
View this list of Arkansas colleges' disability support services contacts.

ACT Test Preparation 
Students' coursework already prepares them to take the ACT—but additional practice can help them be ready to do their best. ACT Online Prep provides additional practice wherever and whenever they want it. 

Arkansas Future Grant
Arkansas Future (ArFuture) is the newest state grant program. The purpose of this grant is to increase education and skills of Arkansas's workforce in an affordable manner. The grant applies to students enrolled in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) or regional high demand areas of study. The grant will cover tuition and fees for qualifying certificate and Associate degree programs at Arkansas's public institution for eligible students. The grant is available on a first come, first served basis. 

Healthcare Transition Tools

Health Care Transition Guide for Teens in Middle School
This is a handbook for younger teens, written for middle school students with medical and/or developmental needs.

Now That You're In High School
This is a handbook for older teens. It covers many transition topics important to teens.

Finding Adult Providers
It is important to find your adult doctors early - around age 18 to 21.

Being a Healthy Adult
This is a resource for the youth and their family. This adds role-playing activities and checklists to help families find their transition strengths.

Vital Records Guide
Arkansas Guide to services for children with disabilities 

Online Medical Notebook Template
Use this care organizer to store your child's information.

Got Transition Medical Summary and Emergency Care Plan
This is a printable summary including daily care information and information needed in an emergency.

Emergency Information Form for Children with Special Needs
A quick reference guide regarding emergency preparedness for individuals with special healthcare needs.

Long-term Service & Support

Health Passport
This booklet that can be carried with you when attending hospitals or other providers of health and disability services contains information about how you want people to communicate with you and support you.

My Med Schedule
Use MyMedSchedule to manage meds and labs on the go, set reminders, and make it easier to communicate with their healthcare providers.

My Medical App
My Medical is a comprehensive record-keeping app for your personal medical information.

The Wallet Card App
The Wallet Card is a free tool for teenagers and adults who have Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). It is designed to help them communicate clearly with law enforcement or first responders.

Medicaid Transportation Brokers

Smart 9-1-1
When you dial 9-1-1 from a mobile phone, the 9-1-1 call takers have very little information to help you. Users of this service provide vital information to call takers, including information regarding your household members, address and location, vehicle(s), emergency contacts and communication preferences. 

The Healthy Bodies Toolkit
A guide on puberty for students with disabilities

Counselor Tools 

Guidance and Career Counselor's Toolkit 
High school counselors are important allies and advocates of students with disabilities who are planning for these transitions. This handbook is a compilation of information and resources in response to counselors’ thoughts and concerns about the challenges of working with students with disabilities.

ADHE Financial Aid 
Search through the Arkansas Department of Higher Education's available scholarships.

Search College 4 U! 
Independent college counseling for high school students 

Tools for Youth Transitioning from Juvenile Justice Facilities

You Got This: Educational Pathways for Youth Transitioning from Juvenile Justice Facilities 
The “You Got This: Educational Pathways for Youth Transitioning from Juvenile Justice Facilities” packet for empowering justice-impacted youth with the information, tips and resources they need to plan for their future after leaving a facility.  The packet provides checklists, guidance, lists of resources, and templates of commonly required documents to help students prepare for a successful re-entry. 

Education in Juvenile Justice Facilities
This Guidance Package was developed by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and identifies promising practices for improving education programs in juvenile justice facilities. It also includes Dear Colleague letters regarding IDEA for students with disabilities in correctional facilities, Civil Rights for students in residential juvenile justice facilities and access to Pell Grants for students in juvenile justice facilities. 

Transition Toolkit: Meeting the Educational Needs of Youth Exposed to the Juvenile Justice System
The second edition of the Transition Toolkit is a compilation of existing practices, strategies, and available resources on transition that build on field experience and research. The Toolkit offers practical information that enables State and local administrators and service providers to provide high-quality transition services for youth moving into, through, and out of education programs within the juvenile justice system.  

Self-Study and Planning Tool 
The self-study tool is designed to help facilities and institutional schools reflect on their use of key strategies related to youth transitioning into, through and out of the juvenile justice system. The ultimate purpose of the self-study tool is to have juvenile justice facilities prioritize the strategies presented in this document, assess the current level of implementation of each strategy, and then make a plan for revising current processes to make better use of the presented strategies. 

The Guideposts for Success for Youth Involved in the Juvenile Corrections System
The Guideposts for Success are a framework to assist the multiple organizations that need to be involved to meet the needs and improve the transition outcomes of all youth including youth with disabilities and to create necessary community webs of support.