Going to college is a very common goal for students, including those with disabilities. Now, as can be the case in many areas related to education, there can be some special challenges for students with special needs when it comes to this goal. This includes challenges related to:
- Taking the standardized tests connected to the college admissions process (like the ACT or SAT).
- Preparing academically for college.
- The practical aspects of getting ready for college.
- Making the actual transition from high school to college.
Now, there are various preparations parents of special needs students can make aimed at helping their child with these challenges. One is doing advanced research on what options could be available to their child. This can include looking into standardized test accommodations and looking into what sorts of disability transition programs and support systems for special needs students the colleges their child may be interested in attending have.
Another important preparation can be ensuring a good and well-tailored transition plan is in place. One of the things that can impact this is what is in their child’s Individualized Education Program. Among the things IEPs address for high school students with special needs are transition issues. Along with helping a student with transition issues when they are in high school, the transition plans in an IEP can also serve as a helpful source of guidance for the college a special needs student ends up attending (assuming steps are taking to ensure the college receives the IEP).
So, how transition issues are dealt with in an IEP can matter quite a bit. Education lawyers can assist parents in working with their child’s school on transition planning within their child’s IEP and with other aspect of the IEP process that could have major implications for their child’s post-high-school future.
Source: Mansfield News Journal, “College planning for students with disabilities,” John Bensen, Oct. 29, 2016