Life is full of transitions, and one of the more remarkable ones occurs when students get ready to leave high school and go out in the world as young adults. When the student has a disability, it’s especially helpful to plan ahead for that transition. In fact, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requires it.

Many different individuals come together to help the student plan for transition. Typically, transition planning is handled by members of the IEP team, with other individuals becoming involved as needed. It’s important to involve a variety of people who will bring their unique perspectives to the planning table. The team draws upon the expertise of the different members and pools their information to make decisions or recommendations for the student.

Transition goals should be written into your student’s IEP in the year of their 14th birthday. IDEA also requires that the student participate or if unable, the student’s input be included.  This is an important time of life where IEP goals and services should be geared to preparing youth for adult life.

(Adapted from information from Center for Parent Information & Resources and NICHY legacy resources and USBE Special Education Rules)

Below you will find a variety of information on transition relevant topics.

Transition To Adult Life Handbook:

De ‘NO’ Saber a ‘SABER’ Dónde – Una Guía Paternal Para La Transición a la Vida Adulta  (Más información por venir)

Transition from School to Adult Life: A Parent Resource Book

Transition To Adult Life Information:

The following series of topics will provide information to help parents and young adults understand the transition process from school to adult life and services. Click on each category for more information.

Adult Services

Information on self-advocacy, housing, recreation opportunities, service opportunities, supports for adults with disabilities, and transition from high school

Community Involvement

Ideas and resources to help facilitate involvement in the community


Information on preparing for, finding, and keeping a job

Family Resources

Ways the whole family can support the individual with a disability

General Transition Information

General Information on a wide range of topics


Rights transfer to your child as soon as he/she turns 18, unless you obtain guardianship. Learn about the different types of guardianship and the process of obtaining it.

Living Arrangements

Information on the different types of living accommodations for individuals with disabilities

Person Centered Planning

Information and handouts to assist parents and students in engaging in person centered planning.

Post-High Education

There are many options for higher education for individuals with disabilities. These information sheets give information to help you choose a school and be prepared to ask for accommodations to help your youth be successful.


Information on how to participate in recreation opportunities in the community


Learning how to speak up for yourself, ask for necessary accommodations, and be in control of your life is important for an individual with a disability. These information sheets will help you learn how to take charge and be part of the decision-making process.

Supported Decision Making

This guide will give you ideas on five different areas of Supported Decision Making.

“My Voice Counts” was designed and created by the Utah Advocates as Leaders, Self Advocacy Speaker’s Network.  The speakers of the network researched and wrote this guide to help self determined people think about ways in which their voices can be heard when making both simple and hard decisions.

Transition Preparation in Middle and High School

Learn what you can do while still in school to prepare for the transition to adult life.

Vocational Rehabilitation

Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) is a program that helps eligible Utah citizens living with disabilities to maintain, regain, or enter competitive employment.

Transition To Adult Life Video Modules:

The Transition to Adult Life video is available in both English and Spanish versions.

Transition Action Guide From The Utah State Board Of Education:

Life is full of changes. Many changes will happen smoothly, and they are hardly noticed. Other changes aren’t so smooth, and require planning and preparation. high school students have dreams for their futures and what they will do. This is the beginning of adulthood and it is an exciting time, full of opportunity, decisions, and choices. The student is not alone in this process. Key supporters and resources are available, and should be utilized, to maximize the student’s opportunities.

This Transition Action Guide has been prepared to provide information to these key participants in the process of planning by teams for the transition from school to adult life for students with disabilities. In this guide you will find the requirements under the special education law for transition and principles of transition plan development. Additional sections of the guide are designed to address the unique roles, responsibilities, and expectations for each of the potential transition team members. Finally, you will find a glossary, resource information, and planning forms.


Youth in Transition