Between the ages of 13 and 25 a young person has to think about their future and what will happen after they leave school. This is a stressful time for any young person and their family, but for somebody with a disability it can be especially hard. To help young people with Special Educational Needs make the change from childhood to adulthood, there is a formal process of transition planning.

The transition process is one of the areas parents highlight as being very stressful and the Special Educational Needs and Disability Reforms aim to address this by having one plan – an Education, Health and Care plan. The new legislation is contained in the Children and Families Bill, which became law in September 2014.

You should first start the process of planning for transition at your child’s Annual Review in Year 9 and your school should help you with this. Where possible, your child should have a say in what they want for their futures and this is known as ‘Person Centred Planning.’ There are some useful publications and websites that will help you and your child understand the transition process, you can find links to them below.

When your child leaves school, the statement of special educational needs ceases and an S139A or Learning Difficulties Assessment is prepared. The new legislation means that Education Health and Care plans will continue while a young person is in education.

The Transition Information Network (TIN) is a website that has been set up for parents, carers and people who work with and for disabled young people in transition to adulthood. TIN provides information and advice through their website, magazine, e-newsletter and seminars.

Preparing for Adulthood is a partner in the Special Educational Needs and Disability Reforms. Their website contains information about planning for adulthood and the opportunities which might be available.

Mencap has written a useful guide to transition that helps explain the process clearly. You can request a copy of the document from Mencap by phoning 0808 808 1111.

Last reviewed: March 22, 2023 by Paul

Next review due: September 22, 2023

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