The Kentucky Office for the Blind Transition Services support high school students and their families in planning for activities beyond high school such as post secondary training, employment, and independent living. A seamless transition from school to work will contribute significantly to your vocational future, whatever vocational goal you choose.
Your public school is mandated to provide transition services to all students with disabilities up to the completion of their secondary educational program or high school graduation. Although your school is ultimately responsible for the provision of transition services, additional agencies such as the Kentucky Office for the Blind can provide specialized assistance and work with you during your transition period.
The Kentucky Office for the Blind feels strongly that knowledge and understanding is an essential goal of your transition program. A well planned transition from school to work will contribute significantly to your vocational future, whatever occupation you choose. To support those goals, an Office for the Blind Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor is available to participate as a vocational consultant in your transition planning.
The Kentucky Office for the Blind will be there to advise you, your parents, and your teachers about various career and educational opportunities and what you will need to accomplish them. We help individuals with visual disabilities go to work. There are many different paths an individual can follow to reach a career goal. The paths you consider will depend on your individual uniqueness. Your counselor will help you understand your personal strengths, needs, and abilities to help you make an “informed choice” concerning your future.
The Kentucky Office for the Blind also participates in many transition programs along with other partner agencies to help prepare for and meet the needs of students going through transition from high school.
The INSIGHT Program
This is a college preparatory program held annually at Morehead State University. It is a ten day program that includes a variety of activities and courses for college bound high school students. It is a collaboration between the Kentucky Office for the Blind, Kentucky School for the Blind, Big East Educational Cooperative, Morehead State University, Kentucky School for the Blind Charitable Foundation, and the University of Louisville. The program is offered to students who have completed the 10th, 11th, or 12th grade and is designed to give them a real world college experience and help them be more successful when they do attend college.
The Community Based Work Transition Program
If your student has a visual impairment, complicated by other significant disabilities, and plans to transition directly to work, the Community Based Work Transition Program (CBWTP) may be available. CBWTP is available in some school districts in Kentucky, for students who require the assistance of a special job trainer or job coach to make a successful transition directly from school to the world of work. The goal of CBWTP is for each student to obtain a job in the most integrated setting prior to graduation, with the necessary supports in place to maintain that employment beyond high school.
Supported Employment Services
Supported Employment may be available in your area if your child needs long-term support to maintain work in a community setting. The support can be intensive depending upon his or her needs. Like any other employment service the goal of Supported Employment is to lead your child to employment independence. Working closely with you and your child, Office for the Blind will refer your child to the supported employment provider, develop a plan, and assist with achieving your vocational goal.
Kentucky School for the Blind World of Work Program
This is a program offered to students at the Kentucky School for the Blind. It is designed for students who plan on going directly to work after graduation from high school. Students develop work and social skills through a variety of activities. Students will develop resumes, interview with actual employers in the Louisville area, and work at job locations throughout the city. The skills, knowledge, and experience they gain will be used to help them reach their vocational goals.
A Kentucky Office for the Blind Counselor will usually meet with the student and their family during their ARC or IEP meeting scheduled annually by the high school Special Education Coordinator. The counselor will have to be invited by the school and the student’s family to the meeting. Generally counselors first meet the student during their sophomore or junior year.
At this time the counselor may take an application for services. The counselor will act in an advisory role for the student until graduation from high school.
Every day across Kentucky high school students with visual impairments are in transition. Every year many young people complete this transition and start productive jobs in their chosen career field. They live independently and make important contributions to their community, feeling the satisfaction that comes from knowing they are in control of their own destinies.
The Kentucky Office for the Blind’s mission is to provide opportunities to individuals with visual disabilities for employment and independence. We offer services to assist their effort to become more independent and productive in the workplace, community, school, and home.