What a Transition Plan is
A Transition Plan is a document that outlines what you want to achieve in the next few years and what support you will need to live as independently as possible. It covers every aspect of your life, including education, employment, housing, health, transport and leisure activities.
Most plans are first drawn up in Year 10. You will receive a letter from the head teacher of your school, inviting you and your parents or carers to go to a review meeting. This must include creating a Transition Plan.
The Transition Plan review meeting is usually held at your school and the people who are involved in supporting you as you move into adulthood should also be there.
These may include:
- someone from social services, to make sure you get a health and social care assessment if you have health and social care needs
- your local doctor or community nurse
- your teacher(s)
- an educational psychologist, to make sure you get the support you need to carry on learning
- a careers adviser from the Department for the Economy Careers Service
- your parents or carers
- anyone else who you would like to support you at the meeting
Preparing for the review meeting
Your Transition Plan is all about what you want for your future. Your input into the review meeting is important and everyone else must listen to what you have to say and keep a record of what you want for your future.
Because you will be asked about your plans for your future, it's a good idea to think about what you want to say before the meeting.
Some things to think about include:
- what subjects you want to study and what other activities you'd like to be involved in for your remaining time at school
- what you want to do when you leave school
- what information you need to help you make decisions about your future
- what opportunities there are in your area to do what you want to do
- what support you might need to achieve your goals
You might like to make a record of what you want for your future, including as much detail as you like. Remember that things like what activities you'd like to do in your spare time and how much independence you want in making decisions about your social life, are as important as decisions about school and work.
You should use the meeting to find out what services and support you're entitled to and what choices are available to you. If you have any questions for the professional people who will be attending your review meeting, write them down so you don't forget.
How the careers adviser can help you
Your careers advisers can help you plan your future by:
- outlining the options for education, training or employment
- giving professional and impartial careers information, advice and guidance to help you decide the way forward
- explaining what websites and career matching tools are available
- reviewing progress regularly
- Contact the Careers Service
If you need someone to speak for you
If you are not confident about speaking at the meeting, or your disability makes it difficult for you to get your views across, you may want an advocate to support you at the review meeting. An advocate is someone who speaks on your behalf.
This could be a friend or parent, or you could contact your local disability group, Advice NI or social services for details of advocates in your area.
After the review meeting
After the meeting, you and your parents or carers will normally be sent a copy of the Transition Plan. The special education section of the Education Authority (EA) in your region must also give a copy to your headteacher, social services and any other relevant professionals and carers.
The special education section of the EA in your region is responsible for making sure that you receive all the support and services that are listed as necessary for you in your Transition Plan.
You should have another review meeting each school year to update your Transition Plan.