They Said What?! What Students REALLY Need to Know

Nearly half of Indiana students, parents, and teachers completing a recent survey said they didn’t know the difference between a high school diploma, a GED, and a Certificate of Completion. You’re probably thinking, “Wait, that can’t be true! How is that possible?” Less than half said they did not know what a Medicaid waiver is. Again, “Wait, how can that be?” Over 90 percent, though, said they have identified or are working on a career path for after high school, whether that’s going into a field of work or pursuing college. “Hip, hip, hurray! Now you’re talking! That feels more like we’re making progress and moving the needle in the right direction!”

Where's this data coming from? The transition committee of Indiana’s chapter of the Association of People Supporting Employment First (INAPSE) asked for a survey earlier this year. The Pre-Employment Transition Service (Pre-ETS) program staff at Stone Belt, a service provider in Bloomington, Indiana, completed that effort earlier this year.

Respondents included students receiving Pre-ETS, educators in local school districts, and parents. The survey results were both surprising and not-so-surprising. The 109 respondents answered questions on topics that included career pathways, long-term services, employment supports, and transition resources. Caution: Please have your cup of coffee before looking at the results from questions 5 and 8!

Now it’s our time to say, check it out! We invite you to spend time reviewing the survey. The content may assist you in planning lesson material throughout the year. You may be surprised by the knowledge gaps that apparently exist. You may also be surprised at what students say they want to learn more about! Hint, hint: Think jobs!