All students make multiple transitions throughout their educational career. However, for students with disabilities, transitioning from one building to another can be more challenging. BPS101 strives to provide parents with information to support some of the major changes that students will make as they transition from Early Childhood to kindergarten, from 5th grade to 6th grade, and from 8th grade to high school. Lastly, one of the most significant transitions students with disabilities make is the transition from high-school to adulthood. The District will host meetings each year for parents to learn more about the transition processes.
Early Childhood to Kindergarten
Staff from the Early Childhood program work closely with staff in all six elementary buildings to support a child’s transition to kindergarten. Beginning in January, the year prior to kindergarten, Early Childhood teachers and kindergarten-level special education teachers meet to discuss all students who will transition the following year. Staff from the elementary buildings are able to observe students in the EC classrooms as needed, and EC staff are able to observe different programs across the District. In the late spring, parents are invited to attend transition IEP meetings to discuss and plan for their child’s transition to kindergarten. Parents of students transitioning to instructional programs or programs outside of the District will also have the opportunity to observe programs prior to the transition meeting.
Each year, the Early Childhood program coordinator hosts a meeting for parents to provide information about the transition process and the different levels of support available across the District. The meeting is typically held in mid-February. Information from this meeting will be available on our website and sent out via messenger.
5th to 6th Grade
Staff from the elementary buildings work closely with staff from the middle school to transition students from 5th to 6th grade. Beginning in February/March, elementary and middle school staff will begin to meet to discuss specific students and placement options. Parents are invited to attend transition IEP meetings in the early to mid-spring to plan for 6th grade. Parents of students with IEPs are encouraged to attend all transition events hosted by the middle schools. Students will visit the middle schools in late spring to tour. Families can also set up an additional, more personalized tour during late summer to help with the transition.
Each year, the Department of Student Services hosts an informational meeting for parents about transitioning to middle school. Held in January each year, this presentation is meant to be interactive, with representatives from the middle school special education programs, as well as middle school administrators, available to answer questions.
Secondary Transition (including 8th to high school)
The elementary school teams works closely with staff from Batavia High School to ensure a smooth transition from 8th grade to high school. The teams begin communication with the high school in the winter of 8th grade. Parents are invited to attend transition meetings in the spring with staff from BHS. The high school staff review each student’s current levels of performance and educational needs. The high school and middle school teams will work collaboratively with parents to choose the best options for each student.
A small number of students will turn 14.5 years of age during middle school. The Illinois State Board of Education requires districts to begin transition planning with these students. Students will participate in an interest inventory designed to assist in planning for post-secondary education and/or training, independent living skills development, and future employment. Students are required to attend these transition meetings and participate in the development of the transition plan.
Transition to a Placement Outside of BPS101
If a child’s IEP team determines that the services available within the District are not appropriate or adequate for the child, the team may change placement to a setting outside of BPS101. Most commonly, these placements include public or private therapeutic schools, but may also include residential placements. As a part of the IEP team, parents are always an integral part of these decisions and will be invited to tour a variety of potential programs with BPS101 staff during the transition process. Should a child’s team determine an outside placement will best meet the child’s needs, the District’s Student Services Coordinators and Assistant Superintendent will provide support during the transition process. BPS101 representatives will continue to attend all IEP meetings held at the new placement to ensure that the child’s needs are being met. Despite attending an outside program, the child will continue to be considered a BPS101 student and parents will continue to have access to information and support from the District.
Transition from High School to Adulthood
Many students with disabilities continue to needs special education and related services beyond high school. Throughout the high school years, parents, students and other IEP team members will begin to plan for the years beyond high school. Many of our students will successfully graduate with their same-age peers and head off to college or career experiences. However, some of our students require additional supports before they are ready to be successful on their own. Your high school team will keep you informed of some wonderful options available to your child beyond high school. These options include, but are not limited to our Transition Programs through the MidValley Special Education Cooperative. Please speak to a member of your child’s IEP team for specific questions related to your child.