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National Center on Secondary Education and Transition

ESSENTIAL TOOLS —
Interagency
Transition Team Development and Facilitation


Examples of Evidence-Based Models of Interagency Transition Teams


Connecticut

Background

Connecticut’s interagency transition team has been chaired by Karen Halliday of the state Department of Education, Bureau of Special Education for 12 years. This position is collaboratively funded by the Department of Education, Bureau of Special Education; and the Department of Social Services, Bureau of Rehabilitation Services.

What is the team purpose?

The transition team develops its agenda from outcomes which the Bureau of Special Education submits to the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) at the U.S. Department of Education, as well as committee goals. These objectives are highlighted below in a description of committee activities.

Who’s on the team?

There are 34 members of the state interagency transition task force. Typically 25-27 people attend every meeting. This is a large committee and the team recognizes this challenge. No new members are added unless someone representing a key discipline (e.g., higher education or labor) resigns. Acceptance of new members is a decision of the full task force.

The team includes transition coordinators from seven school districts, three adult service providers, a representative from one of six Regional Education Service Centers, representatives from four parent organizations (PTI, two statewide parent groups on learning disabilities, and one parent group on autism), and representatives from the following organizations:

  • Department of Education, Bureau of Special Education;
  • Department of Education, Bureau of Adult Education;
  • Bureau of Rehabilitation Services;
  • Department of Mental Retardation;
  • Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services;
  • Department of Children and Families;
  • Department of Labor;
  • Department of Corrections;
  • Board of Education and Services for the Blind;
  • Higher Education – University of Connecticut – Director of LD Program;
  • American School for the Deaf;
  • Center for Excellence (UCE);
  • Center for Children with Special Health Care Needs;
  • Special Education Resource Center;

How does the team accomplish its tasks?

The task force is responsible for developing a transition Continuous Improvement Plan (CIP) on an annual or bi-annual basis that is included in the state’s plan for serving students with disabilities.

The transition team developed five working subcommittees charged with carrying out the tasks of the team, described below. The transition CIP aligns with the outcomes the Bureau of Special Education submitted to OSEP at the U.S. Department of Education in addition to others generated by the committee.

Subcommittee

Goal

Strategies include:

Training and Technical Assistance

To have students with disabilities, two years after exiting school, employed and/or enrolled in postsecondary education

- Increasing the number of transition coordinators who are sufficiently trained at the postsecondary level
- Utilizing the state-level Transition Coordinator Competencies developed by the Transition Task Force

Employment and Postsecondary Education

Interagency Collaboration

- Coordinating the services of schools and adult service providers by developing and implementing clear referral procedures
- Increasing student and family awareness of and access to adult/community service providers by informing them of what is available

Self-Advocacy

To have students demonstrate the age-appropriate skills for self-advocacy, including identifying personal strengths, challenges, and interests, and making informed life choices

- Developing a self-advocacy curriculum which teaches students the skills to actively participate in their PPTs; teaches students to identify learning strengths, challenges, and interests; and provides students with opportunities for making informed life choices

Parent Dissemination and Training

To have parents of students with disabilities ages 3-21 participate as full partners in the planning and implementation of their child’s educational program

- The Bureau of Special Education will cause to be developed culturally sensitive training for staff/families/students in: best practices, self-advocacy skills, opportunities which allow students to be the center of decision-making, inclusion practices, strategies to encourage involvement of families in the PPT process, use of Futures Planning as a tool to developing IEPs, and transition requirements under IDEA 1997

The full committee meets every other month, with working subcommittees meeting in the off months.

How does the team evaluate its work?

The completion of activities provides quantitative data. Other activities within the bureau (e.g., a statewide follow-up study of those exiting special education, data collected from other state agencies, and information obtained from program review in LEAs) also provides information on the status of overall transition planning, self-advocacy, transition program development, student input, and parent input. The Connecticut team recognizes it has much work yet to be done to comprehensively evaluate student outcomes.

Information about Connecticut’s state interagency transition team was developed from personal correspondence with Karen Halliday. The authors thank her for her time and expertise.

For more information, contact:

Karen Halliday
Bureau of Special Education, Department of Education
P.O. Box 2219
Hartford, CT 06145
860-713-6923
Karen.halliday@po.state.ct.us


This section provides examples of some outstanding state interagency transition teams. These states were selected through a Web search for information, personal correspondence with individuals familiar with interagency state transition teams, and in some cases, correspondence with state representatives. While the authors tried to be consistent with information from one state to the next, the unique nature of each state and its interagency transition team sometimes did not lend itself to this objective. Further contact information is included if more indepth information is desired.

The authors express thanks to each of these states for sharing information or giving permission to use their data in this Essential Tool.


Table of Contents

Cover Page

Introduction

Background on Interagency Transition Teams

Four Tools for Interagency Transition Teams
Overview/Introductory Tool: Using Teaming Principles to Guide Your Work
Tool 1: How to Build an Effective Interagency Transition Team
Tool 2: How to Determine Initial Roles, Responsibilities, and the Team Vision
Tool 3: How to Conduct Interagency Transition Team Meetings
Tool 4: Knowing if Your Interagency Transition Team is On-Track and Meeting its Goals

Examples of Evidence-Based Models of Interagency Transition Teams
Arizona
Colorado
Connecticut
Pennsylvania

References

Additional Resources



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Citation: Stodden, R. A., Brown, S. E., Galloway, L. M., Mrazek, S., & Noy, L. (2004). Essential tools: Interagency transition team development and facilitation. 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 alternative formats. For additional copies of this publication, or to request an alternate format, please contact: Institute on Community Integration Publications Office, 109 Pattee Hall, 150 Pillsbury Drive SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455, (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.