The Government Accounting Office (GAO) published a report, Better Federal Coordination Could Lessen Challenges in the Transition from High School, which highlights the transition process from school to employment and postsecondary education for students with Down syndrome and other disabilities. NDSS experts were asked to provide input and interviewed by GAO.
Congress requested the study to determine “what challenges students with disabilities confront when seeking to access federally funded transition services and the extent that federal agencies are able to coordinate their services”.
The GAO reported that students with disabilities must establish eligibility for programs and services across multiple federal agencies, navigate these systems which is difficult because parents and individuals with disabilities often have insufficient information about services options, and often end up on waiting lists for services The report also indicated that some students receive inadequate skill training or work experience in high school and may therefore be unprepared to make a successful transition to life after high school.
Key recommendations contained in the report are that the Departments of Education, Health and Human Services, Labor and the Social Security Administration develop an interagency transition strategy, increase awareness of available transition services and assess the effectiveness of its coordination plan.