Your Child is Starting School

Steps to a Successful Transition for You and Your Child

Transition means change and we know as educators that change can be stressful for your child and for you, as parents. and as a family

We believe that starting school is a community experience. Our belief is that your child and family are at the centre of our work. So to help you, we have developed this newsletter as a guide to address any concerns that you might have and to answer some common questions about your upcoming transition meeting
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What is the Objective of the Transition Meeting?

The preschool agency collaborates with you or will initiate and arrange the transition meeting, involving community agency staff such as the occupational therapist, speech-language therapist and physiotherapist, the school principal, special education staff, classroom teacher, and you, the parents. Assessment results and pertinent pre-school information about your child will be will shared (with your consent) and your child's strengths and needs will be identified. You will plan the next steps and general goals for your child; identify any additional support your child may need; clarify roles and responsibilities for yourselves, the school staff, and any others involved. You will receive a copy of a summary of the meeting and will will be given the name of your contact/lead person at the school.
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Roles and Responsibilities

Your Role as a Parent:


  • Enrol in early registration clinics & activities
  • Visit local schools
  • Pre-register your child ( you can change you mind later)
  • Meet with school principal and describe your child's special needs
  • Provide written consent to share information about your child
  • Share all assessments, health records, & required records
  • Prepare your child for transition by: participating in orientation
  • Helping your child become familiar with new routines and skills


Staff involved for the Early Intervention Program and the therapists (OT, PT, and SLP) can support your child's entry to school by sharing information about your child's abilities , needs, strategies, and equipment needs.


A lead person may be designated to help you and your child during this transition.

If not, your principal will be your main contact. He will:


  • Gather relevant documents and assessments
  • Distribute this information to school-based team members
  • Initiate referrals to community agencies for services and support
  • Organize the orientation for you and your child


Special Education teacher
and /or classroom teacher will:


  • Participate in planning meetings,
  • Arrange visits to your child's pre-school so that she can observe your child
  • Collaborate with the preschool agency to identify skills that your child will need for a successful transition to school


School Board


  • Supports transition planning process
  • Provided training and in-services for staff
  • Maintain linkages to community agencies
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Who and What is available to assist with transitions?

An online resource that you might find helpful:

The Ontario Ministry of Education (2005) Planning Entry to School: A Resource Guidehttps://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/parents/planningentry.pdf


Many School Boards have developed specific tools and resources that can assist you to become more familiar and knowledgeable.

Process and Timelines

Planning takes time.

We recommend that our parents start planning at least one year prior to school entry


The Transition Process

Families explore options (December)

School Board gets enrolment numbers (January)

Exchange of Information Consents are signed (February)

General information meeting for parents (February/March)

School person may visit pre-school program (April to June)

Transition Planning Meeting(s) may take place (Spring or Fall)

Your child starts school (September to December)

More specific goals are identified through follow-up


You will become involved with the development of your child's Individual Education Plan (IEP)

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How will Effective Transition Planning prepare for the future?

Planning for entry to school can support your child's long-term success. How?

Research supports:

  • Reduces anxiety and stress associated with change for both child and parents, especially for parents with children with special needs
  • Positive influence on child's life-long attitudes about school
  • Builds child's confidence
  • Provides a strong foundation for intellectual, physical, and social development
  • Positive development on literacy and numeracy skills
  • Information about your child's strengths and needs are used to develop her IEP
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Transition Plan for Kim

Monday, Dec. 7th, 1pm

Terry Fox Elementary School

We look forward to meeting with you.

If you are unable to attend, please contact Vicki Crawford 613-672-8522 ext. 4523

References

Kenora and Rainy River District Best Start Network (2011). Guidelines for Early Childhood Transition to School for Children with Special Needs. Retrieved December 1, 2015 from: http://beststart4kids.ca/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Best-Start-Final-Transition-to-School-Document-2011-12.pdf


Ontario Ministry of Education (2002). Transition Planning: A Resource Guide. Retrieved December 1, 2015 from: https://learn.etfo-aq.ca/content/enforced/45096-A3221EA/docs/transition.pdf_&d2lSessionVal=z6K5xNHAnTguevsbBEXbQokg8&ou=45096


Ontario Ministry of Education (2005). Planning Entry to School: A Resource Guide. Retrieved December 1, 2015 from: https://learn.etfo-aq.ca/content/enforced/45096-A3221EA/docs/planningentry.pdf_&d2lSessionVal=z6K5xNHAnTguevsbBEXbQokg8&ou=45096


Ontario Ministry of Education; (2001) Special Education: A Guide for Educators. Retrieved December 1, 2015 from: http://www.peopleforeducation.ca/wpcontent/uploads/2011/09/Special-Education-Guide-for-Educators.pdf


Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board (2011) Transition Planning: Parent Guide for Students with Special Needs. Retrieved December 1, 2105 from: http://www.smcdsb.on.ca/UserFiles/Servers/Server_6/File/Special%20Education/SMCDSB%20Transition%20Document.pdf


PPM-Integrated Transition Planning for Young People with Developmental Disabilities. Retrieved : December 1, 2105 from: https://learn.etfo-aq.ca/content/enforced/45096-A3221EA/docs/TransitionPlanDevelop.pdf?_&d2lSessionVal=z6K5xNHAnTguevsbBEXbQokg8&ou=45096