Section 7: Follow Up and Plan Transition. Description, Rationale and Guidelines

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1 Section 7: Follow Up and Plan Transition Description, Rationale and Guidelines Like most aspects of technology integration, the formal and informal AT implementation plan follow up is linked to the student s IEP process. Several times during the year the school based team should conduct some type of AT follow up or review. This review should re-examine the technology supported IEP goals and outcomes and, by examining collected assessments and data, determine the effectiveness of the AT implementation. This is reported in the student s IEP and forms the basis of the plans for future use of the technology. Based on the results of the follow up review, the technology use could be continued, extended, or, in the case of ineffective implementation, abandoned in favour of a different AT solution. In the latter situation, teams should not abandon the technology until they have determined the reasons for non-implementation and taken steps to remedy the situation. The necessity of the technology follow up to guide the long term implementation process highlights the critical requirement for ongoing assessments and record keeping on how the student uses the technology throughout the school year. A different but related issue arises as students with assistive technology move through the school system. Most will be supported by many different teachers and support staff in many different environments. Continuity in the implementation of the technology during transition periods is imperative for the students ongoing academic success and future independence. There are several key points of student transition for which we can anticipate and prepare. Examples of these key transitional points include Transition from grade to grade Transition to middle or high school, and Transition to the post school environment and adulthood. In addition there may be unanticipated transitions to a new school when families move or schools reorganize. During these transitional periods, the assistive technology may need to be adjusted to accommodate the new environments, new teams may require training in the use of the technology, and new individuals may need to be identified as having responsibility for the AT implementation. Transition planning should also be part of the IEP process and should prepare the student and their support teams to move through the various stages of the education process. As the student enters the high school years transition planning should also include the plan for adult life and assist the student in developing the advocacy skills necessary for AT use when school support networks are no longer available. Successful transition planning for AT needs to be included in the student s IEP as a written transition plan be timely and systematic include self advocacy and other skills which the student requires. SET-BC February 2007

2 include a training plan for the new environment identify necessary support responsibilities for the AT in all stages. focus on continuity and building on skills already learned. Include re-evaluation of the student s AT needs based on new environments and curriculum goals. Include necessary resources and examples of successful technology use and integration from the original environment. QIAT (http://www.qiat.org) has identified areas of best practice for AT transition and, while their guidelines focus mainly on the late high school transition to post secondary and work placement, they serve as a reminder of the goals of the transition process and help identify key elements which need to be addressed in a transition plan. According to QIAT, effective transition plans address the assistive technology needs of the student, including roles and training needs of team members, subsequent steps in assistive technology use, and follow-up after transition takes place empower the student using assistive technology to participate in the transition planning at a level appropriate to age and ability. recognize advocacy, as related to assistive technology use, as critical to the plan s success identify the AT requirements in the receiving environment proceed according to an individualized timeline address specific equipment, training and funding issues such as transfer or acquisition of assistive technology, manuals and support documents. Tools for AT Follow Up and Planning Transition In addition to the QIAT best practice indicators there are a number of tools available for including transition planning in the IEP and for planning and documenting AT transitions. These models can be applied at various stages in the student s educational program. 1. Assistive technology protocol for Transition Planning Noll, Schwarz, & Canfield This tool provides a theoretical framework on which many of the other transition planning tools are built. 2. Assistive technology and transition package Canfield and Reed (WATI) This package contains the following forms: Assistive Technology Protocol for Transition Planning Student Information Guide for Self Determination and Assistive Technology Management AT Goal Setting Worksheet SET-BC February 2007

3 3. AT Transition planning Checklist / AT LOG for transition planning Minnesota Dept Children and Families These checklists look at transition from early school years to final school years and outline points to be considered at various stages in the transition process. The AT Log for Transition Planning is a very helpful form which could be used every time assistive technology is transitioned. 4. Assistive technology transition form Ingham Intermediate School district This tool is helpful for all stages of assistive technology transition and is designed to inform others about the students AT use and needs. 5. Sample Checklist for Annual Planning for Transition Alberta Education This sample checklist gives timelines and tasks for various aspects of the transition process. 6. Hey can I try that? Bowser and Reed This tool supports students taking an active part in the transition planning for their AT. It can be used by students in the technology selection stage but contains a helpful section on transition planning as well. 7. Changing Schools Checklist St. Mary s County School District Department of Inclusion This tool is useful for attaching to the student s IEP when changing schools. 8. Personal Communication Passports CALL Center A model which uses a type of digital portfolio or passport which includes important information on student communication systems for transition. (no document included) 9. Digital Portfolio SET-BC (PowerPoint) Tool to help create a digital portfolio which includes samples of work, video of student, and pictures of technology set up and use in the student s program. (no document included) 10. Clicker 5 Feature Sheet Clicker 5 (ACES Darlene Brodbeck) There are also tools available for planning very specific software or device transitions which include checklists of various settings and student preferences. SET-BC February 2007

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18 Case Study of Effectively Planning for Transition Brianna is an academic student with cerebral palsy and limited physical movement. She uses a Pathfinder (MinSpeak) (www.prentkeromich.com) communication system with a head mouse for communication, note taking in class and as an interface with her computer for written assignments. She is moving from middle to high school and is the first student the high school has had with this particular technology. Brianna is supported by an SEA who is very familiar with the Minspeak system and the way in which the technology is set up for Brianna s needs. However, she will not be moving on to high school with Brianna. A couple of months before Brianna s move from middle school, she and her current team met with her new teachers and SEA and demonstrated the set-up of the equipment and how it was used in all of her various environments. During the next few weeks there were a number of opportunities arranged for Brianna to visit the new school and for the receiving SEA to visit Brianna at her current school to see how her technology was used. A training plan for the new staff was arranged and carried out and additional supports like internet and printer access and equipment maintenance were identified. Both teams decided that Brianna would need to continue to develop her skills in Minspeak. By setting up Minspeak as an additional language course, Brianna would be able to receive credits towards graduation. A digital portfolio was put together by Brianna and her current team, with examples of Brianna s work, videos of her using the Pathfinder to communicate in a variety of environments, diagrams and pictures of positioning for the best access and so on. In middle school Brianna had been encouraged in areas of self advocacy and had access to the necessary vocabulary on her device to ensure that it was charged and maintained and to inform her support team when adjustments were required. After a successful transition into high school life Brianna and her team continued to build on the transition plan towards adult hood through her career and personal planning curriculum. SET-BC February 2007

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