Lori Y. Peterson
Quality transition-focused planning begins with conducting comprehensive age-appropriate transition assessments (AATAs). In addition to policy, federal guidance, and best practice recommendations for AATAs, practitioners must consider the findings of litigation surrounding AATAs to provide justification and increase the meaningfulness and accuracy of the transition plan. This presentation will discuss best practices, legislation, and litigation around the process of conducting AATAs. A tool will be provided for conducting AATAs that mitigates the substantive and procedural violations identified in litigation around the IEP and guides the identification of relevant, appropriate transition plans.
1. Discuss legislation, federal guidance, best practice, and litigation regarding age-appropriate transition assessments.
2. Discuss a process for conducting age-appropriate transition assessments that identify compliant and justifiable transition-focused IEPsGoals:
1. Rationale for Transition Assessment Checklist
2. Introduction of Transition Assessment Checklist
3. Planning for Transition Assessment (Including Associated
Legislative, Federal, Best Practice, and Litigation Guidance)
a. Assessments conducted and included in the IEP in the school year in which the student turns 16 or earlier if transition planning is deemed appropriate prior to age 16.
b. Assessments conducted for all students regardless of student’s ability level. They may require adaptions to obtain meaningful data.
c. Assessments must be “age appropriate” for the student’s chronological age rather than developmental age.
d. Assessment data must include more than one measure.
e. Assessment data must be comprehensive and address students’ needs, strengths, preferences, and interests.
f. Assessments must include more than observational data or a student interview.
g. Assessments must include at least one formal in addition to informal measures.
h. Assessments need to be conducted on an ongoing basis. Data is collected throughout the year.
4. Transition Assessment in the IEP (Including Associated Legislative, Federal, Best Practice, and Litigation Guidance)
a. Assessment data collected over time is documented in the IEP.
b. Assessment data must drive the plan beginning with postsecondary goals.
c. A statement is included indicating the postsecondary goals were updated using current assessment data and provides a description of skill, knowledge, and behavior gaps.
d. A clear link is present between assessment data, annual goals, course of study, and transition services.
5. Implementing the Transition Assessment Checklist
a. Example Transition IEP Components