Youth in Transition Toolkit:
Many people play a role in supporting youth with disabilities on their transition journey.
Below you'll find an overview of people and the roles they commonly play throughout the youth planning process.
In our unique roles, we share the core belief that the right supports can help everyone succeed in independent living, competitive employment, and postsecondary education or training. We also share a commitment to using person-centered practices to help people make informed choices. And finally, we have shared practices and common tools to support youth in the planning process.
In each of our roles, it's important to partner across the system to get results.
Learn more about partnering across schools and VRS by watching this video (03:49) or reading Career supports for students with disabilities: A partnership guide for VRS and education.
Note: A release of information is required for team members to directly share the youth's information with each other. Best practice is to have the youth share their own information, when possible.
Note: If the youth chooses not to create a My Vault account, transition support team members must help the youth get and share their information in another way.
The youth drives transition planning and supports. They may rely on other team members to explain services, processes and options — but the youth is the decision maker. If the youth is a minor or under guardianship, the family or guardian must also be involved in these decisions.
Family members, guardians and other people who help are critical for the youth's transition success. The youth is the decision maker. They may rely on close contacts - like family members, guardians or friends - to help them make decisions. These people help the youth make their own decisions, rather than making decisions for them.
Family members, guardians and other people who help can:
School staff help youth plan and prepare for future success. A main school staff person is identified for each student. This person coordinates services a student needs and ensures other school staff are included on the planning team. For students in special education, the main school staff would be their IEP case manager. For students with a 504 plan, this would be their 504 coordinator. For other students with disabilities that do not have an IEP or 504 plan, it could be their school counselor, school social worker, school nurse, etc.
Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VRS) and State Services for the Blind (SSB) staff help youth prepare for and find competitive integrated employment. Services are provided using a person-centered approach and vary depending on the youth's specific needs. VRS/SSB staff are assigned to every high school and age 18-22 transition program in the state.
Waiver case managers help youth who are on a waiver identify their independent living needs and access and navigate supports and services to meet those needs. Waiver case managers are responsible for providing the information a youth needs to make informed choices about the supports and services they want. This includes social, health, educational, vocational, housing, and financial services.
The waiver case manager:
VRS/SSB and the Minnesota Department of Human Services contract with service providers across the state. VRS/SSB staff and waiver case managers work with the youth (and parents or guardians as applicable) to make informed decisions about which provider(s) will deliver services.
VRS/SSB contracts with service providers across the state. VRS/SSB staff work with the youth (and parents or guardians as applicable) to make informed decisions about which provider will deliver services. If a youth will need long-term employment supports provided by a waiver, then youth should be encouraged to consider service providers that are dually enrolled as a VRS/SSB and waiver service provider so that seamless supports can be delivered.
For youth on waivers, home and community-based services needed outside of school hours (evenings, weekends, school breaks, etc.) are provided by waiver service providers.
Youth who are on waivers and need employment services should be encouraged to consider service providers that are enrolled with both VRS/SSB and waiver so seamless supports can be delivered.