This is an interesting article on the coordinated services in transition planning. Beyond the article, read the comments. There are varying positions on points made in the article.
Thirty-six hours after Marlyn Wells gave birth to Anna, she learned her daughter had Down syndrome. Just a few years later, the family started talking about Anna’s career. In pre-school, Anna had said she wanted to be a “fire truck” when she grew up.
But 20 years later, the family hit roadblocks trying to help find paid work for Anna. One program responsible for helping Anna find a job only kicks in six months before students like her graduate from high school. A different vocational agency was required to contact her once a month, “which is not adequate,” Wells said. “We were not told how the funding part of that particular service works, so it left us out of being able to make an informed choice as to which service provider might be the most appropriate one for Anna’s needs.”
According to a new Government Accountability Office report released late Tuesday, Anna’s struggles are far from the exception. Students with disabilities, like Anna, face massive challenges using federal services that are supposed to help them transition from high school and into college or the workforce, the report found. Parents in five states told GAO researchers about struggles faced by their families trying to find services that help their children move on with their lives after school.