All Tuesday Tips

More Career Videos

We discovered another website for your students who are exploring careers. This one, on a site called Dr. Kit, contains more than 300 video interviews with employees working in a wide variety of fields, from animal care specialists to wine educators.

In each interview, employees discuss a typical day on the job, the types of environments they work in, what they like most and least about their jobs, and the type of education and preparation someone new to the career should have. K9 police officer Bruce explains how he cares for his dog, sleep technician Mia talks about the challenges of working a night shift, and pro football player Terrell explains the need to sacrifice body, family, and time in order to be a professional athlete. Preview the many videos here:  

Our INSTRC website resources now include several different websites that feature career videos. As a result, we’ve added a Career Videos page to our Resource Collections on INSTRC.  Click the link here, or use the Resource Collections tab at the top of the INSTRC site and select Career Videos from the dropdown menu.

Under Construction

It has come to our attention that there are a few Indiana Secondary Transition Resource Center (INSTRC) resources floating out there that do not reflect changes or current practices. As things have changed, we continue to work to review, revise, and/or revisit our materials to make sure that information is accurate and current.

SO…if you are using older copies of the following resources, please discontinue using them as primary guiding documents for your work. We are in the process of updating each of the listed resources and will let you know as soon as we have them revised and they're ready to go. THANK YOU!

  • IEP Rubric (goal statements do not meet current state guidance)
  • Transition Services: Definitions and Examples (many parts still relevant; revision coming soon)
  • Indiana Diploma Decisions (being updated to reflect new Certificate of Completion guidance)

An Opportunity for Transition Expansion and Funding

Indiana special education directors and superintendents recently received a Request for Information from the Division of Disability and Rehabilitative Services (DDRS) regarding Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS)) for students with disabilities who are between 14 and 22 years old and who are eligible or potentially eligible for vocational rehabilitation services.

Through this request, the state is hoping to learn more about the provision of existing transition activities and services that “could be enhanced or aligned with Pre-ETS,” as well as new transition strategies that could be put in place for students with disabilities. Core Pre-ETS services are:

  • job exploration counseling;
  • work-based learning experiences;
  • counseling on postsecondary education or comprehensive transition opportunities;
  • workplace readiness training to develop social skills and independent living; and
  • instruction in self-advocacy.

The deadline for submitting an application is November 21, 2017. For more information, see RFI-18-28   
DDRS is specifically looking for collaborative services that may already in place or that could be implemented within the 33 counties where Pre-ETS are not currently available. For a list of those counties, use the link above and scroll to Attachment B Priority Counties.
Need more information about Pre-ETS? Watch the new podcast from Michelle Fisher at the Arc of Indiana: 

More Certificate of Completion and Diploma Resources

The Indiana Department of Education recently distributed a memo to clarify some of the questions surrounding diplomas and the Certificate of Completion. The memo contains links to sections of the Indiana Code that pertain to diploma requirements and the certificate.

Here’s the link to the memo: 

Regarding diplomas, the memo specifies, “Currently, students have the option of earning one of four diploma types: General, Core 40, Core 40 with Academic Honors, or Core 40 with Technical Honors.” For quick reference, here’s the link to the IDOE webpage on diploma and certificate requirements:  In addition, the memo cites Indiana Code regarding “opt out” procedures and requirements for students graduating with a General Diploma and alternatives for students who did not pass the graduation examination, but who still may be able to earn a diploma.

Regarding certificates, the memo also clarifies the differences between a certificate of completion and a diploma. New Certificate of Completion guidelines, now in development, “would require students to complete some combination of credits and applied units, equaling a total of 40, with an emphasis on academics and job readiness.”

Engaging Students in Their Mental Health Plans

Researchers at Portland State University recently tested a new intervention, known as Achieve My Plan! for students with serious mental health conditions. The intervention uses “brief self-advocacy coaching” techniques to involve young people in their wraparound planning meetings.
As a part of their work, the Portland State team developed several resources to help young people and their team members collaborate more meaningfully. Publications and tip sheets, which may be helpful to students as they learn to participate in their IEP meetings, include:

• “During Meetings, I Can’t Stand It When…,” a guide for facilitators and team members;
• “Tips for Your Team Meetings,” a guide for youth;
• “Youth Participation in Planning: Why It Matters,” a video of interviews with youth describing what it feels like not to have a say in their own treatment.

Find these resources and more on the Achieve My Plan website.

Certificate of Completion Resources

In a continuing effort to provide updates and answer questions regarding the Certificate of Completion, the Indiana Department of Education has released new information and resources. They include:

  • Changes to the course of study for earning a Certificate of Completion in 2017-18;
  • A presentation to counselors, which outlines the changes, explains the connection to the federal Every Student Succeeds Act, and discusses next steps;
  • A sample plan for a student.

Use this link to review and download the DOE’s Certificate of Completion resources: 

Quick Links to Requested Resources

At our Regional IEP Transition Trainings this month, we’ve been asking what you need most. The top three resources transition teachers have said they want at their fingertips are:

The Transition Assessment Matrix –a link to the search tool that helps you find the right assessment for your student, based on domain (employment, independent living, or education/training), grade level, and/or disability.

Is College for You? and ¿Es la universidad para ti? –updated versions of the popular book from the Center on Community Living and Careers at the Indiana Institute on Disability and Community. (Available online or in hard copy within Indiana.)

Transition IEP Checklist: Compliant & Quality Components –a complete list of the recent mini-series presentations from the Indiana Secondary Transition Resource Center.

And in case you misplace this email or forget the links to any of the above, just remember That’s our website, which has easy search tools and if you scroll down to the bottom of the homepage, you'll find a list of quick links to many of our most popular resources.

Want more? Like us on Facebook! Just search for “Center on Community Living and Careers.” (ICYMI: Two weeks ago, we shared a post from Pathways2Success and a middle school teacher who wrote about “10 Ways to Involve Young Adults in their IEP Meetings.”)

Involving Hispanic Families in Transition

A new video points out the importance of reaching out to Hispanic families to involve them in transition planning. The video, based on research done at the Beach Center on Disability at the University of Kansas between 2013 and 2016, offers transition educators and professionals some great suggestions on what to do and not to do when talking with Hispanic families about their transitioning students.

A little side note: The researcher working with the Beach Center was Judith Gross, Ph.D., who is now the new director of the Center on Community Living and Careers and our own Indiana Secondary Transition Resource Center!
Watch Dr. Gross’ and the Beach Center’s “Transition to Employment.” (The video is listed here on the INSTRC website as a Resource too, so you can always find it using our Resource Search tools!)

Aligning Standards with Transition Skills

You now have a guide to help you align academic and career standards with transition skills! Examples featured in this 38-page document pair activities and transition goals with a variety of standards, and they’re appropriate for a wide range of students.

Armed with College and Career Readiness Standards and Research-Identified Transition Skills, published by the Council of Chief State School Officers, you’ll have a resource with multiple ideas for teaching academic goals and transition skills at the same time.

Click on the link to get started!

Review Your Components

Getting ready to start transition conferences? Need a quick brush up on the components of the Transition IEP? New to transition? If any of these apply to you (or even if they don’t), please check out the: 2017 Transition IEP Checklist: Compliant and Quality Components Series.

Staff of the Indiana Secondary Transition Resource Center developed this multi-part series for last spring’s Tuesday’s Transition Tips for Teachers. Each week we featured one question from the Indiana Transition Requirements Checklist and provided an explanation and example of what you need to do to meet compliance for that particular transition component.

1. Student Invite
2. Transition Assessment
3. Authentic Transition Assessment
4. Postsecondary Goals (#2 on checklist)
5. Postsecondary Goals Updated Annually
6. Measurable Annual Goals
7. Transition Services
8. Outside Agency Providing Transition Services
9. Course of Study

The complete series is now on the INSTRC website. Search for it by “Transition IEP Checklist” or click here:


Transition IEP Regional Trainings begin this week. For those of you not able to attend any of the seven trainings offered around the state, you can connect with us via webinar on October 4th, from 9-10:30 a.m., Eastern Time. (And, yes, we will record this one!) The webinar will contain information from the general sessions of the regional trainings, but will not include the breakout session presentations or discussions from the face-to-face trainings. The October 4 webinar is free, and registration is not required. For the link and more information, see the 2017 Transition IEP Regional Trainings flyer, here.