Welcome to resources to support children and youth with special needs!
Resources to Support Children and Youth with Special Needs

Transition out of School

 
Title (Source) Brief Summary Link Resource
1. Leaving School (Easter Seals) The Leaving School section has tips and strategies to prepare for your child’s transition out of high school, which may include some form of post-secondary education, volunteering, and/or getting a job. The section includes topics such as what’s required to graduate from high school, self-advocacy at college or university, scholarships, and employment opportunities. Myths about Employing People with Disabilities

New Employment Strategy for People with Disabilities

Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) – Income and Employment Support

Getting Ready for Employment

Student Tips – Successful Volunteering for Students with Disabilities

SickKids Good 2 Go Transition Resources

Student Tips for Transition to Post Secondary Education

Student Tips – Transition Checklist

Ontario Government Student Summer Employment Opportunities

Youth Advocacy – A Personal Perspective

Self-Advocacy at College or University

Planning for Post-Secondary Education – Frequently Asked Questions

Ontario’s Student Assistance Calculator Tool

Student Tips for Obtaining Scholarships

Scholarships
Website (Multiple web pages)
2. Differences Between Elementary, Secondary, and Post-Secondary Levels of Education (Easter Seals) This chart highlights the differences at each level of school when it comes to identifying students, addressing needs, and accommodating students. Differences Between Elementary, Secondary, and Post-Secondary Levels of Education PDF
3. Point by Point Contrast of High School and College (Easter Seals) This chart compares what students should expect in high school and in college, including personal freedom and responsibility, structure, disability support services, and more. Point by Point Contrast of High School and College PDF
4. What do you need to graduate from high school? (Easter Seals) A list of requirements for students to graduate from an Ontario high school (2013). What do you need to graduate from high school? PDF
5. Planning Your Future (SickKids) A package of resources for youth with chronic health conditions and disabilities, along with their parents and health-care providers, that offers strategies and supports for transitioning to adult life. The package includes PDFs on academic supports, employment programs, finances and financial planning, and supports for adults with developmental and physical disabilities. Planning Your Future PDF
6. Connections: A Guide to Transition Planning for Parents of Children with a Developmental Disability (Toronto and York Regions) This guide offers information how to plan for your child’s transition from high school to adulthood. It provides tips, tools and resources that may come in handy as you plan these next steps with your child. Connections: A Guide to Transition Planning for Parents of Children with a Developmental Disability PDF
7. Planning for the Future / Post-Secondary Education (Autism Ontario) The Planning for the Future section in the Autism Ontario knowledge base discusses how families of young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) can plan for the future, including legal concerns, creating supportive documents, and cultivating supportive relationships.

The Post-Secondary Education section offers a series of questions for youth with ASD who are considering education after high school.
Planning… Just in Case

Planning… Preparing and Organizing Important Documents

Planning… Roles of Friends, Family and Siblings

Celebrating Another Housing Option for Adults with Disabilities

Thinking of Post-Secondary Education?

Challenges of Post-Secondary Education
PDF
8. Transition to Adulthood Planning Toolkit (Port Colbourne Community Living) This toolkit provides tips, strategies and advice for families who are helping a child transition from school to adult life. The planning process starts before high school and continues to the many options for young adults with special needs. Transition to Adulthood Planning Toolkit PDF
9. Getting You There – A Transition Planning Toolkit (Hydrocephalus Canada) This is a resource for teens and young adults who have spina bifida and/or hydrocephalus that helps them make plans to achieve their goals. Topics include self-discovery, confidence, being assertive, transitioning to adult health care, and more. Getting You There – A Transition Planning Toolkit
 
Website
10. Life Beyond High School for Students with Developmental Disabilities (Resource Center for Independent Living) A brief list of tips on how to help your child prepare for life after high school and become more independent. Life Beyond High School for Students with Developmental Disabilities PDF
11. Making Transition Stick (Resource Center for Independent Living) A tip sheet on how to help your child make the move to adulthood. Making Transition Stick PDF
12. Preparing Your Child/Young Adult for Work (Resource Center for Independent Living) This tip sheet covers how to support your child in disclosing his or her disability to an employer, and explains the advantages and disadvantages of disclosure. Preparing Your Child/Young Adult for Work PDF
13. Transition Timeline (Resource Center for Independent Living) This tip sheet provides a possible timeline to help your child prepare for the transitions to middle school, high school, and life beyond school. Transition Timeline PDF
14. A Guide to Preparing Your Child with a Disability for Life Beyond High School (Pacer Center, Minnesota) This guide helps parents and their children with special needs plan for their transition from high school and how to achieve their independent living goals. A Guide to Preparing Your Child with a Disability for Life Beyond High School PDF
15. Transition Resource Guide for Students with Disabilities (Transition Resource Guide) This website provides guidance for young adults with special needs who are planning to attend college or university after they finish high school. Transition Resource Guide for Students with Disabilities Website
16. Your Future Now: A Transition Planning and Resource Guide for Youth with Special Needs and their Families (BC Government) A guide that’s written for young adults with special needs, as well as their families, on how to plan for their transition to adulthood after school. Your Future Now: A Transition Planning and Resource Guide for Youth with Special Needs and their Families PDF
17. Developmental Services Ontario South West Region (DSOntario) This is a link to the South West Region Developmental Services Ontario website. It provides information about how to complete the application for adult services through the Ministry of Community and Social Services. Developmental Services Ontario Website
18. Money Matters: Information for Adults with Developmental Disabilities (Connectability.ca) This link offers an overview of money concepts for adults with developmental disabilities. It includes a money game that engages individuals in learning about money, and provides information about how to set up accounts, use ATMs and save money. Money Matters Website
19. Financial and Legal Issues: Information for Adults with Developmental Disabilities (Connectability.ca)
 
This link provides information for families to consider when financially planning for themselves and their adult children with special needs. It discusses the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP), power of attorney, and other related financial and legal concerns. Financial and Legal Issues Website
20. Transition Planning Milestones for Youth with Autism (Connectability.ca) This link provides a guide for families of youth with autism who are starting transition planning for their child. The guide begins at Grade 8 and ends with tips for employment skills and resources for young adults. Transition Planning Milestones for Youth with Autism Website
21. Friendships and Relationships: Information for Adults with Developmental Disabilities (Connectability.ca) This link is targeted for adults with special needs, offering tips and advice for forming friendships and maintaining relationships. Friendships and Relationships: Information for Adults with Developmental Disabilities Website
22. Housing: Information for Adults with Developmental Disabilities (Connectability.ca) This link provides information for families for adults with special needs on the housing options available within the province of Ontario. Housing: Information for Adults with Developmental Disabilities Website