The transition from school to life in the real world is challenging, and holds additional complexities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). In this section, you'll find resources on how people with IDD can make the transition from high school to postsecondary education and competitive work in the community.
The discussion of this CoP concentrated on actions that positively influence the path from high to school to employment using Wisconsin and Tennessee as examples. Debra Luecking facilitated the conversation with guest commentators Nancy Molfenter, Wisconsin Department of Education, Janet Shouse, Tennessee Works and Blake Shearer, Tennessee Department of Public Instruction. The conversation included raising the expectations of families, partnering with schools and the importance of early work experiences for youth with IDD.
This is the second in a series of briefs on the findings from a Delphi process conducted by the Employment Learning Community (ELC) in 2013–2014. More information on the ELC and the Delphi process can be found in Brief #1 (Introduction, Values, and Overall Themes). This brief focuses on the panel’s recommendations related to effective approaches to the mtransition from school to work for youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), which was the highest-ranked overarching priority among the Delphi panel.
Beginning in 2006, the Shoreline Public School District in King County, Washington partnered with Shoreline Community College to offer an off-campus transition program for young adults with intellectual disabilities and developmental disabilities (ID/DD) residing in the Shoreline School District.
The Early Start to Supported Employment (ESSE) pilot started in 2005 with the goal of providing a more seamless transition for students who would benefit from supported employment services when leaving school and entering the adult workforce. An interagency project team was established to guide the pilot work and ensure all required parties knew their role and shared information and equal responsibility within the project.
Wisconsin’s Developmental Disabilities Services agency and Vocational Rehabilitation agency, in conjunction with the Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities and Wisconsin’s University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, implemented a series of community conversations to build dialogue and create a coalition around employment for youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). Through this initiative, a range of community members came together in structured forums to discuss ways to improve integrated employment outcomes for youth.