Transition Resources During COVID-19 Outbreak

Guidance on Services During Restricted Access to Schools and Community Services

NTACT is aware that state and local education and service providers are challenged by the current health concerns, closings, and restrictions associated with COVID19. Guidance documents from the U.S. Department of Education and other relevant federal agencies are posted below.  The U.S. Department of Education's mailbox for COVID-19 related questions is COVID-19@ed.gov. If questions are related to students with disabilties, please indicate "IDEA" in the subject line when submitting the email. Be sure to reference the federal guidance and your own state's guidance regarding the provision of services. 

Please see general guidance from the US Department of Education and its Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, as well as specific State guidance through the website of the National Center on Systemic Improvement 

The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) Acting Assistant Secretary Mark Schultz held a stakeholder teleconference with vocational rehabilitation agencies and other grantees to share their questions and concerns about the unprecedented outbreak of COVID-19 across the United States and the challenges it poses for vocational rehabilitation agencies and the delivery of services. Please access the OSERS website to obtain the recording and transcript of this teleconference from the March 30 event.

Webinar: COVID 19: Public Benefits and the CARES Act  hosted by WINTAC and developed and presented by Cornell University's Yang Tan Institute on Employment and Disability DATE: Wednesday, April 15th, TIME: 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. (EST) This live webinar will focus on helping stakeholders better understand how social benefit programs (i.e. SSI/SSDI/Medicaid etc.) may be impacted by the Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Register 

CEC Recommended Temporary (only during COVID-19 restrictions) Flexibilities - shared with OSERS - 4-1-2020

Additional resources, specific to transition-age students and youth are linked to or posted below.

Webinar for Direct Support Professionals during COVID-19 - National Alliance of Direct Support Professionals 

Transition Assessment and Planning Resources

NTACT has identified and gathered resources to assist educators, counselors, service providers, and families in providing instruction and other transition services during this restricted period of access to schools and community. A full list of reources is available, as well as resources specific to assessment and instructional planning. 

Transition Focused Instructional Resources

NTACT will be hosting webinars on April 7, 14, and 21, focused on the provision of transition focused education during this time while many students are at home, with limited access to school and their communities. Please register for these webinars at our Events tab

The Division of Career Development and Transition (DCDT) through the Council for Exceptional Children is hosting 2 webinars "A Town Hall Discussion on aking Transition Online" on April 20, 3 PM (Eastern). Find out more at DCDT's Facebook page and you may share resources with the group here or send an email to DCDT. Resources that have already been collected are posted at this link on DCDT's website, www.dcdt.org. 

Recorded webinar of Transition Activities at Home_3-24-2020 (external link)

Continue to participate in a discussion of at home ideas and share resources following the webinar! 

Employment Preparation Focused Instructional Resources

NTACT's April 7 webinar - co-presented by Michael Stoehr (NTACT) and Brenda Simmons (WINTAC) will focus on the provision of one of the Pre-Employment Transition Services - Work Based Learning - during a time when students have limited access to their communities. Collaboration and new strategies are necessary. The resources below are intended to provide guidance for families, local practitioners, and the administrators who support them to provide meaningful work-based learning experiences for students and youth during the unusual period of the COVID-19 crisis and beyond. 

In addition to Guidance above, the Workforce Innovation National Technical Assistance Center (WINTAC) is monitoring the COVID-19 situation and hosting an FAQ on its site, focused on employment services for individuals with disabilities. 

Watch the recorded webinar and participate in an ongoing discussion and resource sharing at the Transition Coalition site

Online Instruction Resources and Tips

Many K-12 schools, universities, and professional development providers of transition-focused personnel are moving to online instruction now and in the next few weeks. Below are a few resources to guide this process. NTACT is aware of the increased security/ privacy concerns through online learning and meeting platforms. While NTACT cannot provide legal guidance to your agency, below are some updated resources which may be useful. 

Office of Civil Rights Short Video on Accessibility

Supporting Accessibility in Online Instruction - Resources from CAST

How to Keep Zoom Chats Private and Secure - Wired.com

Comparison of Online Meeting Platform Features - Captera

Tips for Setting Up Temporary Online Learning - NAIS 

Wide Open School - Common Sense Media

Distance Learning Resources for Educators and Families (all grades - can select age/ grade/ subject of interest)

From NTACT's Webinars Q&A Document:

  • One of my schools states that they aren't allowed to do group video chats with students due to privacy and seeing in the homes, etc. Perhaps exposing who has an IEP and 504 to other students?
  • I love some of the tools for students to use remotely.  What are your suggestions regarding getting information to students while being mindful of confidentiality of students with disabilities?  Is information being emailed?
  • Does facilitating online learning via group "hangouts" (similar to a webinar) violate student confidentiality?

Response: While NTACT cannot provide you with policy guidance, there is some guidance available. These articles in Education Week (Article 1 (Article 1,  Article 2) examine the issues noted. (Viewing these articles may require a free login and pop-up ads from Education Week.) Additionally, the U.S. Department of Education’s Student Privacy Policy Office published a Frequently Asked Questions document in March, 2020. Finally, CEC has developed some guidance for educators moving to online instruction, including insuring privacy and compliance with privacy regulations.