What is Secondary Transition?

For Massachusetts students receiving special education services, Secondary Transition is a time that begins when they turn 14 (or earlier, if the IEP team agrees). From age 14 until they graduate or turn 22, students on IEPs receive transition services from their public school districts. Transition services are defined by federal law (the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, or IDEA) as a "coordinated set of activities…designed to be within a results oriented process,…to facilitate the student's movement from school to post-school activities." Transition services are based on the individual student's needs, taking into account his/her strengths, preferences, and interests. These services help young adults to live, work, participate in the community, and go on to further education or training as independently as possible when they leave high school.

According to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE):

Below is the model that Massachusetts DESE utilizes as "as a reference to inform the planning and delivery of secondary transition programs and services, on an individual and system-wide basis." To explore more about this model, please click here.


According to DESE:

  • Transition assessments are for students with an IEP who are aged 14-22 (or earlier if decided by the IEP Team).

  • Transition assessments are any assessment that takes place after a student turns 14.

  • Transition assessments help the IEP Team understand what a student needs, what they are good at, what they like, and what they want to do related to work, education, living, and participation in the community.

  • Transition assessment is required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

  • Transition assessments inform decisions for an IEP team around the need for transition supports and services.


For more information regarding transition assessments, please click here.

What are Transition Assessments?

What do you need to know about the Transition Planning Process?

The following are some tips by DESE on what you need to know about the transition planning process:

  • Make sure you start planning early.

  • Transition starts with a student's vision.

  • Transition assessments are needed for planning.

  • Transition planning is a process.


For more information about the transition planning process, please click here.

DESE states that self-determination is a set of "skills, knowledge, and beliefs that allow a person to:

  • Believe in themselves,

  • Know their own strengths and weaknesses,

  • Manage their own feelings and behavior,

  • Work with other people,

  • Make choices and solve problems,

  • Set goals and achieve them, and

  • Be a leader in their own lives."


For more information regarding self-determination, please click here.

What is Self-Determination?

© 2018 by Raymond Fox

Web Design by Joie Mara

This site was designed with the
website builder. Create your website today.
Start Now