Washington School Transition Program Provides Employment Experience

Ranier High School is providing a program for high school students with disabilities which offers paid employment experience to help  develop the necessary skills for moving beyond the school setting (The Daily News Online, March 21, 2014).

Jordan’s chances [for employment] have improved since entering the Rainier School District’s Youth Transition Program a year ago. The grant-funded effort that teaches special-needs students skills such as car detailing, landscaping, kitchen and custodial work in hopes of becoming employable and entering post secondary education.

Because of the program, Jordan, a senior, is getting paid 10 hours a week earning $9.10 an hour to do janitorial work on campus after school with two other Youth Transition students.

“This is my first job on the books that is not under the table, and it feels good to do honest work,” Jordan said while eating lunch Wednesday with fellow transition program students Arthur Middleton and Stanley Stimson.

….The program has been funded through a group of state grants since 2011. Harrison said four students in the program recently obtained their food handlers card, qualifying them to work in restaurants. At least three others have gone on to post secondary education, she said. Students 16 to 21 are eligible, and 23 are enrolled this year.

“Anyone who can work should work,” Dr. Laurie Kash, the district’s special education and student services director.

Read more here.

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