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National Center on Secondary Education and Transition

Cultural and Linguistic Diversity:
Implications for Transition Personnel

Other Resources Available on the Internet

Assistive Technology

DO-IT (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology)
DO-IT has a strong assistive technology component that contributes to its overall mission of increasing the successful participation of individuals with disabilities in challenging academic programs and careers such as those in science, engineering, mathematics, and technology.

Career Development and Employment

Job Accommodation Network (JAN)
The JAN provides free consultation and information about job accommodations, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the employability of people with disabilities, and options for self-employment. The network is operated by the International Center for Disability Information at West Virginia University with funding from the Office of Disability Employment Policy, U.S. Department of Labor.

Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP)
At ODEP’s Web site you can download fact sheets, checklists, and other tools supporting people with disabilities to achieve their employment goals. You can also subscribe to three different e-mail newsletters providing the latest information on the U.S. Department of Labor’s disability-related policies and programs.

Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Workplace Supports and Job Retention
The purpose of this center is to identify factors that encourage or inhibit businesses from tapping into the pool of potential employees consisting of people with disabilities. The center’s Web site provides a gateway to information, resources, and services regarding the employment of people with disabilities.

Cultural Competence

Cultural Competency Web Site
This Web site of the Center for Effective Collaboration and Practice (CECP) addresses a number of cultural competence topics and provides a comprehensive list of organizations and other resources (most with links to Web sites) that support enhanced cultural competence.

Division for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Exceptional Learners,
Council for Exceptional Children

Transition personnel can keep abreast of the latest developments and news related to improving educational opportunities for CLD exceptional learners by joining this division of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC).

National Center for Cultural Competence (NCCC)
The NCCC supports the design, implementation, and evaluation of culturally and linguistically competent service-delivery systems. The focus is on health care and mental health systems, but the principles are applicable to education systems as well. The NCCC is an initiative of the Center for Child and Human Development at Georgetown University.

National Center for Culturally Responsive Educational Systems (NCCRESt)
NCCRESt provides technical assistance and professional development to close the achievement gap between students from CLD backgrounds and their peers and reduce inappropriate referrals to special education. Its Web site includes an online library with numerous downloadable publications.

Dropout Prevention

National Dropout Prevention Center for Students with Disabilities
The two main tasks of the NDPC-SD are to synthesize dropout prevention research and practice into usable information and to conduct effective technical assistance and dissemination activities. The center’s Web site provides a range of resources and news as well as links to other relevant Web sites.


American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD)
With more than 100,000 members, the AAPD is the largest cross-disability member organization in the United States. It advocates for the economic self-sufficiency and political empowerment of all Americans with disabilities. The AAPD Web site provides online access to a range of news sources and links to other relevant Web sites.


Financial Supports

American Indian College Fund
This organization provides privately funded scholarships for students at tribal colleges.

Disability Starter Kits from the Social Security Administration
The SSA manages cash benefit programs for people with disabilities (Social Security Disability Insurance—SSDI, and Supplemental Security Income—SSI), and also funds services to assist people with disabilities to find and maintain employment. This Web site provides links to download SSA Disability Starter Kits for both adult and child beneficiaries, in both English and Spanish formats. The starter kits contain: 1) a fact sheet that answers questions most people ask about applying for disability benefits, 2) a checklist of documents and information that SSA requests, and 3) a worksheet to help gather and organize the information.

Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF)
Since its founding in 1975, HSF has awarded more than 68,000 scholarships worth more than $144 million to Hispanic students. Scholarship opportunities are available for high school seniors, college undergraduates, community-college transfer students, Gates Millennium scholars, and graduate students.

U.S. Department of Education, Federal Student Aid (FSA)
The U.S. Department of Education’s Federal Student Aid (FSA) programs are the largest source of student aid in America, providing nearly 70% of all student financial aid. Help is available to make education beyond high school financially possible for high school students. The information provided on this Web site is designed to assist school counselors to help students plan their education beyond high school. It provides access to and information about the products and services needed throughout the financial aid process.

United Negro College Fund (UNCF)
Since its founding in 1944, the UNCF has raised more than $2 billion to help a total of more than 300,000 students attend college. It has distributed more funds to help minorities attend school than any entity outside of the government.

Vocational Rehabilitation State Offices
This Web site provides links to state offices of vocational rehabilitation, which assist individuals with disabilities to pursue meaningful careers. VR helps those individuals obtain employment compatible with their abilities through local job searches and awareness of self-employment and telecommuting opportunities.

Limited English Proficiency

National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition & Language Instruction Educational Programs
Formerly known as the National Clearinghouse for Bilingual Education, NCELA (based at George Washington University) collects, analyzes, and disseminates information on effective education of learners with limited English proficiency. This Web site provides access to a large proportion of NCELA’s special collection of more than 22,000 items addressing the education of English-language learners.


CareerConnect, American Foundation for the Blind
The foundation operates CareerConnect, a targeted mentoring program for people who are blind or have vision impairments, with a focus on career development and job-seeking.

Partners for Youth with Disabilities, Inc.
This organization provides one-to-one and group mentoring programs where adult mentors with disabilities act as positive role models and provide support, understanding, and guidance for youth as they strive to reach their personal, educational, and career goals. The organization is based in Boston but serves a national audience through its Partners Online program.

Youth Mentoring Web Topic, NCSET
This Web page at the NCSET Web site explores how mentoring provided to youth by caring adults can help youth and adults to grow and develop, and how mentoring can benefit the overall community. Included are an introduction, frequently asked questions, related research, emerging practices, Web sites, and additional resources.

Person-Centered Planning

Parent Advocacy Coalition for Educational Rights (PACER) Center
This page of the PACER Center Web site provides a concise summary of person-centered planning and numerous links to other online resources.

Person Centered Planning, PACER Center
The PEATC Web site provides online and downloadable versions of The Guide to Future Planning: Planning the Next Steps to Adult Life for Students with Disabilities.

Person-Centered Planning: A Tool for Transition
At this Web site you can download the NCSET Parent Brief, Person-Centered Planning: A Tool for Transition.

The Person-Centered Planning Education Site: Courses
This Web site offers online courses to introduce the basic concepts and tools of person-centered planning. Each course consists of an introduction and overview, activity, quiz, in-depth reading, and a links and resources page. The Web site is operated by the New York State School of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University.

Positive Behavioral Supports

National Technical Assistance Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports
This Web site provides numerous resources on effective school-wide disciplinary practices. The center is funded by the Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education.

Postsecondary Education

Association on Higher Education And Disability (AHEAD)
This professional association works towards the full participation of persons with disabilities in postsecondary education. Numerous resources can be ordered through this Web site, including the book, Expanding Postsecondary Options for Minority Students with Disabilities.

CLD Transition Success Research Project
This project of the Center on Disability Studies at the University of Hawaii at Manoa is working with four partner sites at other U.S. universities. Its Resource Links page has links to more than 200 relevant Web sites plus more than 100 documents that can be downloaded/viewed for free. Its CLD Bibliography page has an annotated bibliography of more than 400 print resources, and its Products page has articles and briefs produced by the project that can be viewed or downloaded.

The George Washington University HEATH Resource Center
HEATH, the national clearinghouse on postsecondary education for individuals with disabilities, is authorized by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). HEATH provides specialized educational information on postsecondary education options and services to people with disabilities, their families, and the professionals who work with them.

Self-Determination and Self-Advocacy

National Research and Training Center on Psychiatric Disability
Although the five-year funding period has ended for this project at the University of Illinois at Chicago, this Web page is still accessible and provides more than a dozen self-determination tools that are particularly valuable for those who face major challenges in managing their own behavior. They include Express Yourself! Assessing Self-Determination in Your Life (11 page booklet), This is Your Life! Creating Your Self-Directed Life Plan (58 page person-centered planning workbook), and Webcast: Using the Internet to Promote Self-Determination & Emotional Well-Being (three sessions that can be viewed after free registration).


Strengths-Based Assessment

Using Strength-Based Assessment in Transition Planning
This Web page has a downloadable version of the article Using Strength-Based Assessment in Transition Planning by Michael H. Epstein and Susan Rudolph. The article describes one of the few available strengths-based assessment instruments, the Behavioral and Emotional Rating Scale, which assesses five areas of childhood strength: interpersonal strengths, family involvement, intrapersonal strengths, school functioning, and affective strengths.


Division on Career Development & Transition (DCDT), Council for Exceptional Children
Many transition personnel join this division of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). It is a membership organization for persons and families interested in career and vocational issues for students with disabilities. Members receive the organization’s journal and newsletter. A number of transition resources are available through the DCDT Web site.

Reference Points: Transition Updates from the TATRA (Technical Assistance on Transition and the Rehabilitation Act) Project
Sign up to receive this informative e-mail newsletter featuring announcements and resources to help parent organizations, advocates, and professionals better serve adolescents and young adults with disabilities and their families.

Transition Coalition
The Web site of the Transition Coalition, based at University of Kansas, provides information on the transition from school to adult life of youth with disabilities as well as links to other relevant Web sites. This site includes a searchable database of postsecondary programs for youth with disabilities as well as professional development modules for transition specialists.

Transition Research Institute
The Web site of this institute, which is based at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, provides access to publications of the institute and links to other relevant Web sites.

NCSET’s Youthhood is a free, interactive Web site that young adults and their teachers, parents, and mentors can use to plan for life after high school. Grounded in the principals of universal design, the site addresses the future planning needs of all youth. Youthhood puts research into practice through a unique and extensive blend of content, interactive activities, links to related Web sites, and planning tools that tie youths’ future goals to their current academic work.

Table of Contents

Part I – Essential Tool Overview
Key Questions
Intended Audience
How This Essential Tool Is Organized
Ensuring Practices Presented Are Evidence-Based

Part II – CLD Youth with Disabilities in Transition
Statistical Comparisons of Ethnic/Racial Groups
Strengths to Build On for Transition Success
Challenges Commonly Faced by CLD Youth with Disabilities in Transition

Part III – Continuum of “Individualistic” and “Collectivistic” Values
Alternative Views of People as Independent or Interdependent
Contrasts Between Individualistic and Collectivistic Values
Implications for Transition Personnel: The Example of Self-Determination
Youth and Family Involvement in the Transition Planning Process

Part IV – The Culturally Sensitive Individualization of Services and Supports
Cultural Reciprocity
Person-Centered Planning


Other Resources Available on the Internet
Assistive Technology
Career Development and Employment
Cultural Competence
Dropout Prevention
Financial Supports
Limited English Proficiency
Person-Centered Planning
Positive Behavioral Supports
Postsecondary Education
Self-Determination and Self-Advocacy
Social Inclusion
Strengths-Based Assessment

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Citation: Leake, D., & Black, R. (2005). Essential tools: Cultural and linguistic diversity: Implications for transition personnel. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota, Institute on Community Integration, National Center on Secondary Education and Transition.

Permission is granted to duplicate this publication in its entirety or portions thereof. Upon request, this publication will be made available in alternate formats. To request an alternate format, please contact: Institute on Community Integration Publications Office, 2025 East River Parkway, Minneapolis, MN 55414, (612) 624-4512, icipub@umn.edu.

This document was published by the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition (NCSET). NCSET is supported through a cooperative agreement #H326J000005 with the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs. Opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of the U.S. Department of Education Programs, and no official endorsement should be inferred. The University of Minnesota, the U.S. Department of Education, and the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition are equal opportunity employers and educators.