Individualized Transition Plan (ITP)
Transition Planning for College
Leaving high school is an eventuality that all students face. Under the IDEA preparing for this transition has been formalized by requiring that the IEP for each student receiving special education services include a statement of the transition services needed. In many locations the IEP becomes an Individualized Transition Plan, or ITP. It documents the student's disabilities, describes specific courses for the student to take, accommodative services for the school to provide, notes post-high school plans, and identifies linkages with relevant community agencies, such as Vocational Rehabilitation Services. Students with learning disabilities planning to go to college are encouraged to take an active part in the transition planning process.
Course Selection and Accommodative Services
Students with learning disabilities should consider various college options as well as their academic strengths and weaknesses in planning their high school program. Students seeking admission to selective institutions MUST meet the criteria set by the college. Students planning to attend a non-selective college should check to see if the high school diploma or certificate of attendance meets the entrance criteria.
Successful college students with learning disabilities report that high school courses teaching keyboard skills and word processing are especially important. A high school transcript displaying successful completion of wide array of courses (science, math, history, literature, foreign language, art, music) are attractive to selective college admissions staff. Involvement in school or community sponsored clubs, teams or performances also enhance a college admission candidate's application.
Accommodative services are essential to the success of many students with learning disabilities. Prior to the ITP meeting at which the services will be listed, students should try out various accommodations which have proven successful to others. These may include:
In addition, students with learning disabilities may benefit from mini-courses in study skills, assertiveness training, and time management. The importance of listing the accommodative services for each student in the ITP cannot be emphasized strongly enough. The types of accommodations students may receive when taking standardized college admissions tests or licensing examinations may depend on the evidence of having received them in high school.