Transition Time

by Dale Pennell

For each student with a disability, beginning at age 16 (or younger, if determined appropriate by the IEP team), a statement of the needed transition services for the student, including, if appropriate, a statement of interagency responsibilities or any needed linkages are required. (8 VAC 20-80-62, p. 47)

Historically, secondary schools have sought the assistance of public agencies to provide transition services primarily for students with mental retardation. However, these agencies can play key roles in the successful transition of students from all disability categories during and beyond the high school years. Public agencies provide assistance in the areas of postsecondary education, technical/vocational training, postsecondary employment, independent living, and community participation. Listed below are several agencies whose representatives may be key participants in IEP meetings, or with whom students and/or their families may be linked during the high school years. Each agency publishes brochures and pamphlets that describe in detail its services, eligibility criteria, and the approximate age a student should be when the agency becomes involved in transition activities. Contact their local offices to request this literature and to secure additional information about the supports and services they provide.

Virginia Department of Rehabilitative Services (DRS)

The DRS provides employment services to persons whose physical or mental impairments constitute a substantial impediment to employment and who require DRS services to enter, obtain, or retain employment. Clients must be able to benefit from DRS services in terms of an employment outcome in order to be eligible for services, which include career guidance and counseling, diagnostic assessments and evaluation, job training, and referral and coordination of related services. A list of DRS offices that have school counselors who serve students and adults with disabilities in Superintendents' Regions 2 and 3 follows.

DRS Office
Location
School System(s)

Eastern Shore

Belle Haven

Accomack, Northampton

Franklin

Franklin

Franklin, Isle of Wight, Southamption, Suffolk

Fredericksburg

Fredericksburg

Caroline, Fredericksburg, King George, Spotsylvania, Stratford

Newport News

Newport News

Hampton, Poquoson, Newport News

Norfolk

Norfolk

Norfolk

Portsmouth

Portsmouth

Chesapeake, Portsmouth

Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach

Warsaw

Warsaw

Colonial Beach, Essex, Gloucester, King and Queen, King William, Lancaster, Mathews, Middlesex, Northumberland, Richmond County, West Point, Westmoreland

Williamsburg

Williamsburg

Williamsburg-James City County, York

Community Service Boards (CSBs)

CSBs provide a range of services designed to meet the needs of students and adults with mental retardation and/or mental illness. Services include supported and sheltered employment, competitive employment support, case management services to access and obtain local services, therapeutic recreation, and residential services, such as group homes and supervised apartments. The names of the CSBs that serve localities in Superintendents' Regions 2 and 3 follow.

Community Service Board Office
Locality(ies) Served

Chesapeake

Chesapeake

Colonial

James City Co., Poquoson, Williamsburg, York

Eastern Shore

Accomack, Northampton

Hampton-Newport News

Hampton, Newport News

Middle Peninsula-Northern Neck

Colonial Beach, Essex, Gloucester, King and Queen, King William, Lancaster, Mathews, Middlesex, Northumberland, Richmond Co., West Point, Westmoreland

Norfolk

Norfolk

Portsmouth

Portsmouth

Rappahannock Area

Caroline, King George, Spotsylvania, Stafford, Fredericksburg

Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach

Western Tidewater

Isle of Wight, Southampton, Franklin, Suffolk

Virginia Department of Social Services (VDSS)

The responsibilities of the VDSS include services to persons with disabilities age 18 and over who need help with care, transportation, nutrition services, and, in some cases, financial assistance, energy assistance, or food stamps. These services also include prescreening for community-based services and assessment for adult care residence placement. VDSS offices exist in each locality located in Superintendents' Regions 2 and 3, except for the localities listed below, which are served by a VDSS office in a neighboring region.

Locality
Served by VDSS Office in

Colonial Beach

Westmoreland

Poquoson

York County

West Point

King William


The next issue of TTAC Link Lines will include additional agencies that may facilitate the successful transition of students with disabilities through high school and into adult life.

Date: May/June 2002