Ch 5_Opportunity 2_Info box

For decades, federal law has acknowledged the importance of helping students with disabilities plan for the transition to life after high school. Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), an Individualized Education Program^ (IEP) must include postsecondary transition plans by the time students turn 16. Some states require earlier start dates. For example, Wisconsin requires IEPs to include transition plans by the time students turn 14.28

As with IEPs in general, the formal transition plans that are developed by IEP teams can be powerful tools that help students with learning and attention issues develop the skills they need to thrive in school and in life.

A 2016 analysis of NLTS2 participants found that receipt of transition-planning education in high school and having postsecondary accommodations specified on high school transition plans significantly increased the odds of students with disabilities at two-year colleges seeking and using disability services and other postsecondary supports.29

Research has also found that taking a concentration of occupationally specific career and technical education courses (four or more credits) in high school increases the odds of students with learning disabilities being employed during the first two postsecondary years.30