The Massachusetts Senate has passed H. 3270, An Act to promote the successful transition of students with disabilities to post-secondary education, employment, and independent living. The Bill now goes back to the House for enactment, and will also need to be signed by the Governor before becoming law. The Bill directs the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to develop regulations that will allow special education teachers and rehabilitation counselors “to develop the competence necessary to serve as transition coordinators to facilitate provision of a coordinated set of activities to adequately prepare students with disabilities to achieve successful transition to post-school activities including further education, competitive employment, and independent living.”
What does all of this mean? Basically, Massachusetts is trying to put in place a framework and supports to allow special education teachers to obtain additional expertise in the area of transition planning. Through additional coursework and field experience, special educators will be able to earn an “endorsement” in transition planning from the state. The transition section of the IEP is the area where a student’s post-secondary goals are listed, as are the services and supports that will be utilized to help the student achieve post-secondary goals and independence. Unfortunately, transition planning is often an afterthought in IEP’s. Hopefully, this new law will help to fix that situation.
The Law Office of James M. Baron represents students and parents in special education and other school-related legal matters. Please visit http://www.lawbaron.com, or call 781-209-1166 for more information.