• Special Education Transition Programming

    DSE  

    Transition Coordinator: 

    Carolyn Harris
    charris@atlanta.k12.ga.us
    404-802-1691

    Other Transition Contacts:  

    • Sheena Varghese (sheena.varghese@apsk12.org)
      • Transition support for South Atlanta, Douglass, Mays, Washington, Jackson, C.S.K. and B.E.S.T clusters
    • Dionne McCormick (dionne.mccormick@apsk12.org)
      • Transition support for North Atlanta, Grady, Therrell and Carver clusters

    Transition Program Vision: Every special education student will graduate prepared to enter a viable postsecondary option. 

    Transition Program Mission Statement: Our transition program will provide quality programming in the areas of employment, independent living and community skills to prepare students for adulthood and postsecondary success.

     

    APS Transition Programs for Students 18-22  

    • APS has several options for students who are over 18 years old and have completed the academic and testing requirements for graduation, but are still eligible for services.
    • Students must apply to participate in all Transition Services programs.
    • Transition Services Programs include the MERITS Transition Academies and GROW Transition-to-Work Programs. 

    MERITS (Meaningful Experiences Related to Increasing Transition Success) Transition Academies: 

    • The Transition Academy provides qualifying students a functional program designed to support and facilitate the move from school to post-school life.

    • The curriculum focuses on daily living, community, socialization, self-determination, self-advocacy, and employment skills.

    • Offers more intensive Community Based Vocational Training (CBVT), 3 days a week, and community based instructional experiences.

    • The program accepts students that have the goal of customized employment but require additional daily living support, behavioral supports, or have physical/medical limitations that currently impact the potential for competitive employment.

    GROW (Getting Ready through Opportunities to Work) Transition-to-Work Program: 

    • The Transition-to-Work internship program is designed to increase students’ success at obtaining and retaining post-secondary employment by developing life and career skills. This is accomplished through workplace immersion which enables students to become familiar with the workplace, simulate work, and apply their competencies in an authentic work environment.

    Restaurant/Hotel Transition-to-Work Internship (1st Tier):

    • Potential sites include: Georgia Aquarium - Café Aquaria, Zoo Atlanta, and Hyatt Place Centennial Park
    • A 1-2 year non-paid restaurant or hotel internship that targets students whose main goal is supported competitive employment after graduation or aging out of public school. 
    • The program is designed for students ages 18-22 with varying disabilities (MOID, MID, AUT).

    Healthcare Transition-to-Work Internship (2nd Tier):

    • A 1 year non-paid transition program with the ultimate goal of preparing students for competitive employment in the community.
    • This program is designed for students with disabilities ages 20-22, eligible for Medicaid Waiver services, who will benefit from an intensive vocational internship.

    Entry Requirements for the MERITS and GROW Programs:

    • Have a developmental disability and have been served in a regional MOID or AUT program in 9th-12th grade
    • Have completed all graduation requirements by the end of the school year of the referral and participated in commencement exercises.
    • Must be 18 years old by the end of the summer of the school year of the referral.
    • Must NOT have displayed aggressive, destructive, and/or dangerous behaviors within one year of the referral date.
    • Must be able to perform basic self-care skills.
    • Must be able to initiate moving from task-to-task without constant prompting.
    • Have the goal of obtaining integrated competitive employment or customized employment after exiting APS.
    • Have documented evidence of strong work behaviors through data collection at CBVI or School based enterprise sites.
    • Complete the application process and interview

     

    Other Transition Programming: 

    • Each high school has a Career Technical Instructor (CTI) who supports students with the following programs: 
      • Georgia Vocational Rehabilitation Agency referrals
      • Marriott Bridges from School to Work program
      • Support completing CTAE pathway courses
      • Work-Based Learning 
      • Dual-enrollment with technical schools/community colleges

     

    Transition Resources:

    Atlanta Public Schools Key Transition Resources

    Medicaid Waiver through DBHDD

    Transition Talks - Parent Training 2019-20

    Transition Talks

Last Modified on July 20, 2021