PA Transition Tidbits

Updates and Events - November 2022


New on PaTTANpod: The Benefits of Career and Technical Education for Students with Disabilities

There is not a one-size fits all postsecondary path for every students, so it is critical for them to be prepared for success on whatever path they take after graduating.

Career and Technical Education in Pennsylvania offers students the opportunity to develop critical skills through a combination of classes and hands-on learning experiences, which allow them to apply academics to real-world problems.

Joining PaTTANpod is the Director of the Bureau of Special Education, Carole Clancy and Lee Burket, Director of Career and Technical Education at the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

The Benefits of Career and Technical Education for Students with Disabilities | [S5E4]
To learn more about Career and Technical Education (CTE) in PA, visit the the CTE section of the PDE website.

ACT 158 Office Hours

The Pennsylvania Department of Education continues to hold office hours to support the field with implementation of Act 158: Pathways to Graduation. Information about future office hours, as well as archived recordings can be accessed in the Act 158 Toolkit under Professional Development tab, which is housed in the Standards Aligned System portal.

New resources have also been added to support the field including updated graphics and a frequently asked questions guide. Check these resources out under New and Noteworthy.


Invitation to the IEP to Discuss Transition

Invitation to Participate in the IEP Team Meeting or Other Meeting

The number one issue found during the cycle monitoring, item FSA 21A - Transition Services, is failure to provide evidence that the student was invited to the IEP. Remember 1 no on 1 file in FSA 21A makes the district out of compliance for Transition Services.

Students must be invited to attend any IEP team meetings where transition planning will be discussed. Federal law requires this once the student turns 16, and younger if determined appropriate by the IEP team. In Pennsylvania, Chapter 14 sets the required age to 14.

You must provide evidence that student was invited to the IEP meeting. The student’s signature on the IEP will not suffice. ​ Therefore, the student must be listed on the IEP meeting invitation. Further, because the purpose of this meeting is to begin or continue Transition Planning, this box must be checked on the invitation. ​

In addition, for a transition-aged student, we must also clearly document agency involvement on the invitation. We need to invite an agency: (a) if the agency is likely to provide or pay for transition services and (b) only with parent permission. For compliance purposes, any agency representative must be listed on the invitation, which is sent home to the parents/family. This will suffice regarding the requirement to inform parents of agency involvement. HOWEVER, it is highly recommended and encouraged that you converse with and address agency attendance and participation in the meeting with the parent/family above and beyond listing the representative on the invitation prior to the meeting date. If an agency will not be invited or participating in this IEP, you must clearly document why agency involvement is not pursued at this time. Compliance officers will look for this information if Transition Services is not checked or if the Community Agency Representative name box is left blank.

Some things to consider:

  • This invitation must include a student if the student is 13, turning 14 during the year in which the IEP will be implemented.
  • Make parents aware of this requirement and the importance of including all students in the process of their own transition planning.
  • Student involvement should not be limited to attendance, and hopefully, active participation during the IEP meeting. Time needs to be set aside to help prepare the student before the meeting and debrief after the meeting.
  • Include documentation of the invitation in the student’s file.


Connecting for Employment

By law, Pennsylvania is an “Employment First” State (Act 36 of 2018). Employment First means that Competitive, integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly funded education, employment, and related services, and long-term-supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability. The goal of PA Secondary Transition: Connecting for Employment is to ensure a seamless human services delivery system that can be effortlessly entered end navigated by individuals with disabilities and their families, should they choose to seek formal supports and maintain competitive integrated employment.

A group of cross-agency staff from education, the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation, and the Office of Developmental programs collaborated to create resources to help improve the understanding of how systems can work together to ensure the best outcomes for students. These tools, including a roadmap and video series, introduce OVR and ODP services and indicate when to invite them into the employment journey.

Visit the PA Secondary Transition website to access these tools and learn more!

Tips for Effective Work-Based Learning

Work-based learning in high school helps prepare students with special needs for future careers, asserts Rachel Jorgensen, a special-education teacher and coordinator of work-based learning at a Minnesota school district. In this article, Jorgensen shares several tips for effective work-based learning, including avoiding over-helping and integrating a classroom component. Check out the article in Edutopia.

National Technical Assistance Center on Transition: The Collaborative (NTACT:C)

The National Technical Assistance Center on Transition: The Collaborative (NTACT:C) provides information, tools, and supports to assist multiple stakeholders to provide effective services and instruction for students and out-of-school youth with disabilities.

Check out their Training Resource Library.

If you're new to transition, be sure to check out Transition 101!


Transition Assessment and Goal Generator (TAGG) CERTIFICATION TRAINING

There are two sessions left in a free webinar series to become TAGG Certified. These sessions are designed to provide in-depth information on our transition assessments, goal implementation, and resources to teach transition skills. Click below to register:

Click on the dates below to register:

Session 3: November 19

Session 4: December 3

ODEP Employment First Community of Practice Webinar - Featuring PA


3:00-4:00 p.m.

Work Learning Activities as a Pathway to Competitive Integrated Employment: Webinar attendees will hear from panelists and leaders from across the country who model successful work learning programs as a second key component of Community Engagement. Learn about how state leaders successfully blend Vocational Rehabilitation and Developmental Disability Agency Supports to create effective work-learning opportunities for those looking to build skills while looking for work, and for students currently engaged in Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS).

Register Here!

2022 Pennsylvania Autism Training Conference

Registration is Open!

2022 Pennsylvania Autism Training Conference


November 1 – November 3, 2022


Full admission is $10.00 for professionals and allows access to all conference sessions over all three days. Admission is cost-free for individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.

To register, go to this link and fill out the registration form:

Payment can be made by credit card or check. Payment instructions can be found at the bottom of the registration form.

For additional information about the conference, and access to resources, personal stories, and other features during the conference, please visit this page on MyODP:

Please see the attached flyer for additional information.

General questions can be sent to

Questions about registration?


Telephone: 610.494.8044


Don't forget to check the events calendar to stay up to date on all of the great events happening in PA and nationally related to secondary transition!

This newsletter is brought to you by: The Pennsylvania Community on Transition

The Pennsylvania Community on Transition is a group of various stakeholders from across Pennsylvania who work collaboratively to ensure appropriate transition outcomes for Pennsylvania youth and young adults.

The Pennsylvania Community on Transition is a state leadership team consisting of representative from: the State Departments of Education, Health, Labor and Industry, and Human Services; Various Serving Agencies, Young Adults, Parent Organizations, Advocates, Higher Education, and Employers.

The shared vision and common goals of the Pennsylvania Community on Transition is achieved when all PA youth and young adults with disabilities:

  • Successfully transition to the role of productive and participating adult citizens
  • Are empowered to recognize their talents, strengths, and voice
  • Have equal access to resources that will promote their full participation in the communities of their choice.