In an effort to improve post-school outcomes for students with disabilities in Arkansas, the Arkansas Department of Education (ADE), Special Education Unit, provides funding to support the employment of a cadre of Special Education Transition Specialists to serve local education agencies throughout the State. These individuals are working to develop local transition teams for children with disabilities. Around the nation, there is continued emphasis on the importance of interagency collaboration to improve outcomes for youth with disabilities. Research shows that the better the collaboration at the local and state levels, the better the outcomes for youth with disabilities.
The key to effective collaboration is building and maintaining relationships. On the local level, schools need to build relationships with public and private agencies, local service providers, business and industry, and other community members. The development and use of local transition teams by school districts is a major building block in establishing the relationships. Local transition teams can improve post-school outcomes for students by providing the following:
- More opportunities for work experience within the community
- More effective transition from school to adult life (fewer students fall through the cracks)
- More services for students
- Less duplication of services, therefore, monies can be spent more efficiently and a wider array of services can be provided
On February 21-22, 2007, the “2007 Arkansas Transition Summit: Real Options for Positive Outcomes” will be held at the Embassy Suites, Little Rock, Arkansas.
The Goals are:
- to build or enhance local level, cross-disciplinary Transition Teams for improving post school results for students with disabilities;
- to develop goals and action steps for local Transition Teams; and
- to identify technical assistance needs of Transition Teams.
The Arkansas Transition Summit will assist school districts in building or enhancing local transition teams. School districts or community members must assemble a team of people within the community or county to participate in the Arkansas Transition Summit. This team will serve as the local transition team for the community or county. The team registration form for the Arkansas Transition Summit, as well as, information regarding the required team composition, is contained in the attachments. Time is allotted during the Transition Summit for teams to engage in team planning. Teams will leave the Transition Summit with a plan to improve outcomes for students with disabilities within the local community or county. For assistance in assembling a team, contact the area transition consultant or Brook Knapp, at 501-329-7400.
Paperwork associated with transition processes will not be covered at the Transition Summit. If assistance is needed in this area, contact the area transition consultant or Brook Knapp at 501-329-7400.