Transition from school to adult life requires collaboration and planning by many stakeholders. Students, families, teachers, school administrators, and community agencies work together to support student success. To assist students in preparing for life after high school, researchers have identified several predictors that have been shown to support post-school outcomes for students, including the areas of postsecondary education/training, employment, and independent living. The course progression within our Soar and WING programs is designed around these predictors. Graduates from our program must meet the following requirements:
COURSE OF STUDY
A course of study is an individualized set of courses, experiences, and curriculum designed to develop the student’s academic and functional achievement to support the fulfillment of desired post-school goals. Students will complete course work based on their individual abilities.
Spiritual development is the establishment and deeper pursuit of a relationship with Jesus Christ. Students will:
Attend chapel weekly.
Read the Bible and pray daily.
Openly discuss their faith in a loving, accepting environment.
SELF-CARE / INDEPENDENT LIVING SKILLS
Self-care/independent living skills are skills needed to manage one’s daily personal needs. Self-care and independent living skills include being able to care for our own health needs, interacting with others, managing money and other financial matters, such as paying bills, and being able to live independently. Students will take courses, or participate in activities that teach the following skills:
- Financial planning
- Home maintenance
- Using transportation
- Clothing care
- Accessing community services
- Time/organizational management
- Social roles/citizenship
- Community/peer relationships, and
- Critical thinking / problem solving
Social skills are behaviors and attitudes that help support the development of positive relationships with others through communication and cooperation. Social skills include problem-solving when engaged in a social interaction, body language, speaking, listening and responding to verbal, written or other forms of communication. The student will:
- Be given opportunities to practice communication in a variety of settings and situations including one-on-one and group conversations, negotiations, and conflict resolutions.
- Be given assistance in using problem-solving skills when difficult situations arise.
SELF-DETERMINATION / SELF-ADVOCACY
Self-determination is the ability to make choices, solve problems, set goals, evaluate options, take initiative to reach one’s goals and accept the consequences of one’s actions. Students will:
- Be provided with a classroom environment that allow them to show self-awareness, set goals, problem solve, and self-advocate.
- Be given support in making many routine choices for themselves throughout the day.
- Be taught to monitor their use of self-determination skills and discuss their progress regularly.
- Have support in development of leadership skills.
Students who take part in goal-setting are more likely to be found employed after high school. Students who want to attend college are more likely to be accepted. Students will:
- Identify a goal (starting with simple goals and slowly building up to goals that take more time and determination to achieve).
- Break the goal into smaller steps needed to reach the goal.
- Follow the steps towards reaching the goal.
Student support is a network of people, such as family, friends, teachers, and support organizations that provide services and resources in multiple settings to help students to help students transition from school life to adult life. Students will:
- Establish one school or community mentor.
- Research support to assist with transportation, adult services, accessing the health care system and financial planning.
Inclusion requires students to participate in classes and/or activities with neuro-typical peers. Students will:
- Have lunch daily with their neuro-typical peers.
- Be encouraged to attempt electives or extracurricular activities with neuro-typical peers (based on their individual capabilities).
Community experiences are activities that occur outside of the school, supported with in-class teaching, where students apply academic, social and/or general work behaviors and skills. The student will:
- Engage in at least one community activity per semester.
- Discuss how the student will travel in the community independently as an adult and then work towards that goal (i.e. learn to ride a bike, catch a bus, or obtain a Driver’s License).
Career awareness is learning about opportunities, education and skills needed to choose a career that matches ones’ strengths and interests. Occupational Courses are individual courses that support career awareness, allow students to explore different career pathways and develop job skills through experience and teaching focused on their selected employment goals. The student will:
- Research skills and qualifications needed for careers in which the student is interested.
- Make connections between academic skills the student is learning with careers that require those skills.
Work experience is any activity that places the students in a genuine workplace, and may include work sampling, job shadowing, internships, apprenticeships, and paid employment. Students will:
- Establish a relationship with a local vocational rehabilitation agency
- Participate in at least one work sampling, job shadowing, internships, apprenticeships, or paid employment opportunity.