Transition Services Overview


Transition services as defined by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Bureau of Special Education, and July 1, 2008 Chapter 14 State Regulations:

“a coordinated set of activities for a student with a disability that is designed to be within a results oriented process, that is focused on improving the academic and functional achievement of the student with a disability to facilitate the student’s movement from school to post school activities, including postsecondary education, vocational education, integrated employment (including supported employment), continuing and adult education, adult services, independent living, or community participation that is based on the individual student’s needs taking into account the student’s strengths, preferences, and interests.”

Transition is required to be addressed for students age 14 and older, or younger if determined appropriate by the Individualized Education Plan (IEP) team. 

**Note: Students who will turn 14 within the year of the current IEP must have transition addressed. It is NOT acceptable to wait until AFTER the student has past the 14th birthday.

Transition information will include student input and voluntary input by parent/guardian which will be gained by the special educator including any and all parties who hold legal guardianship of a student under the age of 21, if possible and appropriate.


Appropriate staff members, including the members of the IEP team, shall be accountable to assure each youth with a disability receives:

1. Necessary assessments

2. Transition planning and development with appropriate implementation

3. Monitoring of transition services and goals

4. Advocacy services, if requested

5. Coordinated adult services


Types of assessments include formal and informal measures.


1. Formal- the use of standardized instruments to obtain necessary information.

2. Informal- information gathered from a wide variety of sources including situational assessment and interviews with the student, parents/guardians/surrogates, related service providers, vocational educators, and other individuals working with the student.


  • On the cover or signature page, the student needs to sign, if he/she attends

  • Present Levels of Academic Achievement and Functional Performance must contain the name of the instrument/survey, date, and a summary of the transition information explaining interests, preferences, and plans. This is also the place to record information gained from the parents’ survey regarding their input. 

  • If the student is 17-18 years old, the OVR or other agency connections should be address including the date of the sent invitation to the representative.


    The Transition Grid has three main sections:

  • Postsecondary Education

  • Postsecondary Employment 

  • Independent Living Skills

    The sections are to be completed stating a future goal. If the student is not sure, the goal should state that, but the rest of the grid still needs completed.

    “Courses of Study” box must be completed with the students current course work.

    “Service/Activity” box will contain bulleted programs, events or activities that will be scheduled and helpful for that student to reach his future goal (College fair, OVR presentation, work experience, senior project, and extracurricular related activities).

    The Independent Living goal should be addressed for each student, as well as either the Postsecondary Goal or Employment Goal, at minimum. It is possible to address all three areas for certain students who may be planning to work and attend college at the same time.

One measurable annual goal is needed for the IEP relating to Transition. There is a Yes/No category for Measurable Annual Goal at the end (extreme right) of each of the three main sections on the grid. Only one yes is required per IEP. Place that measurable annual transition goal in Section V of the IEP. Progress monitoring is completed on that goal.

The SDI section may contain transition information if the IEP team has determined a need for supplemental aids and services regarding transition

 The ESY section may contain transition information if special circumstances establish that there is a need (summer job arrangement)



  • If the student is 14 years old, or going to turn 14 within the life of the document, it must contain transition information (information is to be included at age 11 or 12 if the student will turn 14 before the next evaluation report is due including at least interests and preferences)

  • Summarize Information Reviewed: (number 2) is the appropriate place for the information gained from surveys and interviews with the parent in paragraph form under as it requests any information by the parent.

  • Determination of Need for Additional Data: (section ii) is the correct place to insert the student information gained from survey, interviews, or assessment tools or it can be placed under Section 1 #4 Current Classroom Based Assessments.

  • If transition is not in the current report due to young age and you want to do a waiver for the next cycle and if student will turn 14 in that next cycle, you CANNOT waive the report. The correct procedure for this situation is to:

    1. Issue a permission to re-evaluate

    2. Collect transition information from the parent and student

    3. Correctly place transition information in the report

    4. Invite parents and review information

5. Conduct IEP within appropriate timeline if due

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