September 10, 2020 | Stella Beard; Michaela Evans
Stella: Well, thank you so much for joining us today for Kentucky SPIN’s Transition in Kentucky, Resources for the Journey To and Through Adulthood. My name is Stella Beard, I’m the Assistant Director for Kentucky SPIN. And I also have with me Michaela Evans on and she is one of our educational specialists and she’ll be keeping us straight and helping me with questions and anything like th...
Stella: Well, thank you so much for joining us today for Kentucky SPIN’s Transition in Kentucky, Resources for the Journey To and Through Adulthood. My name is Stella Beard, I’m the Assistant Director for Kentucky SPIN. And I also have with me Michaela Evans on and she is one of our educational specialists and she’ll be keeping us straight and helping me with questions and anything like that, that she can assist us with today.
[00:00:29] So we’re real happy you’ve joined us. Just a little bit of housekeeping before we get started. You will see a dashboard on the right hand side. And for those of you all that have been on our webinars before you know this, you know how to do this, but I’m just going to refresh everyone in case we’ve got some new folks on here.
[00:00:47] You can type questions in the question box, it’s a drop down any questions that you have, please type them in there Michaela is going to be monitoring those for us. And you can also, put something in the chat box too, she will be watching that also. So if you have a question, please be sure and do that.
[00:01:07] Also, you will see a dropdown box for handouts. You can, the PowerPoint is in there. And then we have some amazing resources that we have compiled and put together for you. Some are, what they are, it looks like it’s only one, but that’s a PDF of many, many resources. We have included LifeCourse handouts. They are amazing if you’ve never, utilized the LifeCourse skills. We do have some upcoming webinars in October where we will be doing a five part series on the LifeCourse tools. So we’re real excited about that.
[00:01:45] You can visit our website for more information, and we will have a handout that hopefully we will have on our website also that has all the links of how to join and register for those presentations. You will also have the PowerPoint, like I said, but you also have transition resources and handouts of everything that we’re going to be talking about today with links included. So you can download those now if you want, or if you prefer there will be an email sent later this afternoon with all of those links included in it. So if you just want to focus on what we’re talking about today, you will get that all of that in a follow-up email.
[00:02:24] I have a little poll I would like for you all to take, if you don’t mind. It is, just to kind of let me know who my audience is today, and I’m going to launch it now and you should see it up on your screen.
[00:02:41] And it just lets me know who we’ve got out there. So if you don’t mind just taking that poll real quick and letting me know who we’ve got in our audience today. So I’ll keep that open for just a few minutes. And I’m sitting here looking at the responses. It looks like most everyone is both a parent and a professional. And so that’s wonderful.
[00:03:04] We want to address this, that will meet all of your all’s needs. So I think that will be very important. And I hope that you walk away with some really great transition resources, not only for you, if you’re a parent that you can work with your child with and prepare them for transition. Or if you’re professional that works with people with intellectual developmental disabilities, you will be able to hopefully find some really good tools, that will help them.
[00:03:34] Thank you so much. I’m going to close that poll now. And I appreciate that. It looks like we’re about 50 50, so that’s great.
[00:03:43] I want to talk to you a little bit about before we get started about what Kentucky SPIN is. Kentucky SPIN is Kentucky Special Parent Involvement Network. We are a 501c3 nonprofit organization. And our mission is to link families and individuals with disabilities to valuable resources that will enable them to live productive, fulfilling lives.
[00:04:03] We are the statewide parent training and information center, and we’re funded through the U.S Department of Education. And actually it’s a mandate through the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act that every State has a parent training and information center. And we have been the PTI in Kentucky since 1988. So I’m very excited and proud of that. And it’s a wonderful agency to work for and we provide so many wonderful resources and tools for families.
[00:04:32] What we do not do is we do not act as attorneys. So we are not here to give families or professionals or anyone legal advice. We are here to empower families to effectively advocate for their children, and also to provide that peer support to help families access needed information and resources.
[00:04:52] And I think that that is very, very true to everything that we do. We don’t represent the families, but we like to give them those resources and tools that they need so they feel like they’re prepared for those IEP meetings, and also with reading sources, like we’re going to be talking about today.
[00:05:09] So guess what? Transition is in your future. Whether we want to know about it and want to talk about it, it’s going to happen. And pretty much it just means moving from one place to another. We transition all-day long, doing different things. If I get up from my desk and I go to the kitchen, I am in transition mode.
[00:05:29] So think about that. It’s going to occur so I really believe that it’s better to be prepared for it then not be prepared. So what is it anyway? It’s the time after your child leaves high school and enters into the adult world. But as we know, transition also occurs pretty much anytime. When they move from kindergarten to elementary and from elementary to middle and the middle from high. There are a lot of milestones that need to occur during that time. And so it’s really important that we prepare for all of those ahead of time.
[00:06:05] So transition planning is doing what you can do now to prepare for your child when they leave high school. Just to tell you a little bit about me, I have a 24 year old son with an intellectual disability. His name is Clayton, he has William syndrome. And so we try to plan early on what his life was going to look like after high school. What it was going to be, where he was going to live, where he was going to, you know, if he was going to work, what all he was going to do.
[00:06:36] And so we immediately, you know, he started working when he was 16. He still lives at home, but we’re in that transition phase again. Now we’re going to be building him a house, on our farm. And so hopefully by this time, next year, he will have his own home on our farm. And that was part of our transition plan for him. And I think that is very, very important that you do that.
[00:06:59] So, what does transition have to do with my child’s IEP or 504 plan? Well, it has a lot to do with it. The IEP, I want you to think of it as like a roadmap to where they’re going to go and how they’re going to get there. So those goals and objectives need to match up with that transition goal of what they want to do when they get out of high school.
[00:07:20] So if they want, let’s just do an example. If your child wanted to be a musician, part of their IEP needed to include or needs to include something to do with music, of course. Because that is going to be their roadmap that’s going to lead them into a successful transition.
[00:07:39] So paying attention to what is put into the IEP is how you can make sure that your child is going to learn the skills they need to have to do, and what they want to do after they graduate. So I think that’s real important. So I advise families, you know, especially if your child is 14, that’s when transition starts in Kentucky and we’re not going to go into all of the legal part of it with the IEP and the rules and regulations. But just know that at age 14, students can start being involved in their own IEP. And that’s how you can get a better input of what they want to do with their life. And I think that’s real, real important.
[00:08:16] So here’s a great question. What if my child doesn’t know what they want to do after high school? Well, I’m sure a lot of kids don’t. I have a senior right now who does not have a disability and we are talking to him about what, you know, what do you want to do? What’s going on? What are you thinking about it? Do you want to get a job? Do you want to go to college? So it’s okay. It’s something that evolves and it changes all the time.
[00:08:39] I promise you, I am not doing what our thoughts are. I was going to do when I got out of high school. When I got out of high school, I was going to be a cosmetologist. That didn’t happen. I ended up going to college for a couple of years and then, you know, moving on, getting married. And then when Clayton was born with a disability, my whole job. Career mode changed. And I began to work in the field of special education. So things will evolve and things will change.
[00:09:07] So maybe they don’t know, but it’s okay. But we need to know now how to begin to help them decide whether or not they want to go to a technical college, a four year college or get a job. And depending on their choice, there are a lot of resources that will help them prepare for that major decision in their life.
[00:09:28] So resources and support. So what kinds of resources and support does your child currently use in school? So you need to read their IEP to see what kinds of supports they use at school, and then talk to them about what they may continue to need following high school.
[00:09:45] So some of those supports could possibly be a wheelchair, a calculator, or a computer, and sometimes they may need a note taker or communication device. Or maybe even special transportation. So these are just some of the things and resources and supports that they may need to utilize while they’re in school.
[00:10:08] So this slide here, now I shared this at the beginning, but I want to share it again. You’re going to see links in this presentation. We’re not going to probably have time to go to them, but I’ve done a screenshot of what that page looks like. And remember, in a few hours you will be getting this PowerPoint with all the clickable links. So you’ll be able to do a little bit of research on your own also. And just when you get some time and you’re able to look through those links, take some time to do that.
[00:10:42] This page right here, that I want to show you is called the Kentucky Disability Resource Manual or Guide. It is through the Human Development Institute at the University of Kentucky. Now this is in printed form, you can actually download it and print it. Or you can do it online, which is wonderful. So all of these pictures here that you’re just seeing a screenshot of, when you actually get to the original website and hover over that, it’s a clickable link and it will take you to all of those resources on all of those different topics.
[00:11:18] So for example, if you’re looking for advocacy organizations in the State of Kentucky, you’re going to click on that link there, that clickable link, and it will give you all of the advocacy organizations in Kentucky. Which I think is wonderful. If you’re looking for assistive technology, the same thing there. Community living, education, lots of wonderful educational resources there, employment.
[00:11:45] Let’s say, you know, when your child exits school, like my son did, he was not going to go to college, but we knew, working was in his future. So employment is a wonderful place to be able to look, and I’m going to share another wonderful resource with you about employment as we go on through the presentation.
[00:12:02] If you need financial help, there’s some information about that. Health, mental health. Transportation, let’s say you want to teach them how to ride special transport. I’m sorry. Community transportation or, you know, public transportation if you live in a big city that would have it. We’re very rural, so we do not have that option available where we live. And there’s a tab for other information or additional information.
[00:12:30] But as I said, you can print this guide out or you can look at it virtually, which I think is an amazing resource for families to have.
[00:12:42] So you may be sitting there thinking what Stella all that’s wonderful and great, but what can I do right now? Well, one of the things that we think is very important is that you communicate with your child and that IEP team about your child’s wants needs and dreams. I think that is so valuable. We have a wonderful presentation that you can find a recorded version of on our website. Cause we just presented it a couple of weeks ago called Letting Go. And it’s talking about creating that successful transition for your child. And it talks about it in a parent friendly language of things that we need to do as parents in order to allow our child to have wings and roots and wings and begin to fly and soar.
[00:13:23] And even though their dreams and goals might not be ours, that’s okay. We don’t want them to become so dependent on us that they look to us for everything. We want them to do, have their own dreams and desires. And understand and have your child take an active role in their IEP process. Another wonderful webinar that we just did at Kentucky SPIN, it’s also on our website, on our YouTube channel, is how to get your child involved in their IEP. How they can take a big role in it. And so I would encourage you to watch that even if you’re a professional that works with young adults with disabilities, it’s a wonderful webinar to see some tips of how to get students involved in their IEP. And how did to be able to get their wants and needs are shared at those meetings.
[00:14:09] And then begin to teach them those self-advocacy skills. I think that is so important that they begin to see themselves in the role of an adult. And what all that entails. Now that doesn’t mean they’re not, you know, you’re going to throw them out there to the wolves or anything. But it just means that they’re going to have to begin to do that critical thinking on their own sometimes. And having a good team around them to help them is so very important.
[00:14:39] One of the things I always ask my son if he comes to me with the question that I think he knows the answer, but he’s leaning on me to give it to him. I always refer back to him and say, I don’t know, Clayton, what do you think? And that really helps him begin to get those self-advocacy skills going, to do that critical thinking. To, you know, get that, you know, executive functioning flowing that he struggles so much with. But it allows him, even if he doesn’t have the right answer, it’s still allowing him to create that self-advocacy skill that I know he is going to need when I’m not standing there in front of him. I think that’s real, real important.
[00:15:16] One of the tools that we’ve given you in your handouts, as I mentioned earlier, are called LifeCourse tools and we’re not going to be able to go over them on this webinar. But I want you to take time when you do get those handouts and begin to look through them and see if there is anything that will be productive for you to have to work with the student with, or your child. There are so many wonderful resources there. So do that. It can definitely be used as part of the IEP and also used for you to make some goals. [inaudible] And to create those dreams with your young adult.
[00:16:00] So we’re going to talk just a minute about self-advocacy. So what is it? Simply put, it’s learning how to speak up for yourself. That is so very, very important. Kids, nowadays a lot of times they are so used to texting and YouTube-ing and Facebooking and Instagramming and Tic Toking and all these different things, that when it comes to real life situations, they’re really not sure what to do.
[00:16:28] So self-advocacy means learning how to speak up for themselves and, you know, saying this is my life. This is what I want to do with my life. Instead of what their parents want them to do. And I think that’s real, real important. We have some wonderful resources on our website too. And when you go on there, you will see, I’ve talked about a couple of them, a lot of our webinars that we’ve been doing since the pandemic started in March, we have been doing usually two webinars a week since March. And all of those webinars are archived on our website. So you can go on there and watch them and you know at your own private time and get some wonderful resources and information. And especially we have some on there about self-advocacy.
[00:17:13] Now we’re going to look at some questions that I think are valuable when it comes to preparing your young adult for transition planning. And at the top of this slide, you will see two visuals. And they’re called paths and it’s almost like, you know, where you are now and where you want to be. And it’s charting that out. And that’s really a lot what the LifeCourse tools do. They chart out that transition plan. Where are you right now? Where do you want to be in five years? You know, I don’t want to be where I am right now in five years, I hope I’ve grown and I’ve done some different things in that time period.
[00:17:59] Well, when we’re working with our young folks, we have to help them prepare for that. So this path is a great way to put things visually on a piece of paper. And literally it can be on a big piece of that white paper that you can put on a wall where it’s visual and see it. And some of the questions that you can do and ask that transition planning time, and you can invite other people to it, have it is like a little meeting. Or do it, you know, do it at that IEP, where you are really digging down deep and finding out what their goals and dreams are.
[00:18:33] So what is the young person wanting to do with his or her life? I mean, I promise you, you know, if you didn’t encourage them, you know, a lot of times they’re going to say, well, I’m just gonna stay at home. Well, you know, of course my son would have done that too, but we never made that an option. When he turned 16, he was going to work and he’s worked at the same job now for seven years. So that’s really important that you instill those, you know, good things within them. So they know that, Hey, work is not an option. Everyone has to work.
[00:19:02] And so what are their dreams, aspirations or goals. And how can you, I’m going to warn you right now, my dog may bark. [dog barking] There they go. Working from home, here we go. So what are the young person’s needs, abilities and skills? [dog barking] Hold on just a minute let me see if I can get someone to get him.
[00:19:31] Okay. I think we might be cam now for a minute. So sorry about that. You know, I’ve got my older son who’s across our pond, working on his NTI because we can’t be on the webinar, I can’t be on a webinar and he can’t be on NTI on the same WIFI. I’ve got my other son here trying to help me with the dog. So, ooh, it’s challenging at times and I’m sure all of you all, I can get a big amen for that.
[00:20:00] But what are their dreams, aspirations, and goals, and how can you formulate that, and put that into an IEP for transition? And what are their needs, abilities and skills? What are they really good at? My son is amazing at music. So we wanted to, and he’s great with people skills and we wanted to make sure that, that was incorporated in that IEP and into that transition plan.
[00:20:25] So what are the outcomes that the youth and parents’ want? What do you want to see? And what do they want to see? And you might find out that they’re not the same thing, but that’s okay.
[00:20:36] And when will they graduate? What kind of diploma option is the best choice? And in Kentucky, we only have two. We have the regular track diploma or the general diploma, or we have an alternate diploma. Those are the only two that we have in Kentucky. And are work experience classes appropriate to reach those employment goals?
[00:20:55] How could the educational and transition program be more integrated into the regular program? I think this is real, real important. What can we do with transition that your child can be involved with their typical peers in a general ed setting? How could that look? Who will attend the IEP meeting? Is it time to invite Vocational rehabilitation? Is it time to invite those outside agencies to that meeting?
[00:21:22] And person centered planning is an ongoing problem solving process. It’s used to help people with disabilities plan as we see those visuals up there for their future. Groups of people focus on an individual and that person’s vision of what they would like to do in the future. I think that is real important and that team can meet, you can do it virtually. You can, I mean Zoom is so big right now. You can meet virtually, invite some people to that Zoom meeting and say, Hey, we just want to invite some other people in to our circle. And we want to talk about, for example, Clayton and what he wants to do, you know, with his future. Can you help us do some input and help us come up with that wonderful plan? And that’s, people are a lot of times wanting to do that. I think that’s real, real important that we make sure that, that is an option that we bring to the table.
[00:22:16] So here are some possibilities and look for and create opportunities to practice skills at school, alright. Encourage students to participate in and lead their IEP meetings. And as I said earlier, there are, we have some wonderful webinars that we’ve recently done, that is on our website talking just about this topic. That one of our training, well, our Training Coordinator, Kellie Smith presented on it. It’s a wonderful informant, a wonderful training with great information.
[00:22:50] So at the IEP meetings, here’s just a few little tips that they could do. Introduce themselves and others they know. So if they’re sitting in their IEP meeting, they could do introductions. Clayton was great at that. He’s loved to go around and introduce everyone. Share information about their disability at their comfort level. Make sure they understand, you know, if like my son, he has Williams syndrome, we talk about Williams syndrome. He knows about it. He understands it to his degree. But he’s able to share that. And come prepared to discuss their strengths, needs, interests, and goals.
[00:23:25] Use pictures, drawings, storybooks, portfolios, technology, and a video to portray their school day, activities and preferences. And we talk about this in more detail in that webinar about participating in their own IEP meetings.
[00:23:42] Help to develop sections of the IEP. Ask teachers about classroom progress and performance. And allow them to give feedback on their accommodations and modifications. If something isn’t working right [inaudible] allow them to fix it. So they don’t have to do that anymore. If an accommodation isn’t working, then let them do something different.
[00:24:02] So who can help my child find a job and gain skills they need during and after graduation? Well, there’s a lot of people and this slide represents a few people that we see as like help people, in the community. So we’re going to talk a little bit about different resources now that are available, for you or your child or the family that you work with.
[00:24:27] This is one of my favorite organizations it’s called Kentucky Works. Again, this is a screenshot of their website and you will see at the top where it says, or right below my bars there, you will see, I think you might be able to see my mouse, let’s see, this. This just says, Kentucky Works is the home screen right here. The home. Then you’ve got these different tabs up here about, events, reports, resources, contact, and blog. I did a guest blog on there about Clayton and guardianship, and working after high school. There’s a lot of wonderful blog posts on there. The resources are amazing. There are even modules that you can take specifically geared toward employment.
[00:25:18] So if you’re not familiar with Kentucky Works, when you get the PowerPoint, you’ll be able to click that link and go right to it. And then one of your handouts also has the links for that website too. But this is a wonderful website for you to get great employment tools. It also has amazing one-pagers that you can download. And I think that will be very, very beneficial.
[00:25:49] I’m going to try something. I’m just going to see, real quick, if I can get to the website and if you all can actually see it. Just because I kind of want to show you. I’m gonna let it pop up. I think it actually is going to come up for us. I love it when it does work. What [inaudible] all are because when you click on this resource tab here, it is going to pull up some wonderful tools and resources. I believe this is where we can get the one-pager documents. And if so, it’s a little slow, I know. I’ll only show you this one and then we won’t probably show anymore. I tried it beforehand and it was a lot faster than this. But that’s okay. You know, we might not be able to show that right now. I think it’s, I think it’s going now. We’ll give it just a second.
[00:26:53] Michaela while this is loading, are there any questions that anyone has?
[00:26:58] Michaela: No, we don’t have any questions at this time.
[00:27:02] Stella: Okay.
[00:27:06] Well that is taking a lot longer than I thought up. There we go. Okay. So it’s going to pop up on yours in just a second. So I’m not going to click on any of them because they will take a while to download. But I wanted you to see all of these resources here, that you’re seeing like give employment a chance. These are all one-pagers, a lot of them are. This is employment services. This is the truth about SSI and receiving social security, supplementary security income while working, which is what a lot of people have some issues with. And so they’re just wonderful, wonderful resources that you can download and share. They’re available for you to print and share with others.
[00:27:55] Myths about working with disabilities, we hear that a lot. This is a great one on Kentucky employers are saying about hiring people with disabilities, there are some great stories in there from different agencies who are working with families of kids with disabilities and hiring them. So I just encourage you to check that out and go and just look at it and see what you see and see if there are there any resources that you see [inaudible] to utilize, or also maybe share with families that you work with. I think that’s real important for you to do.
[00:28:39] So let me get back to where I was and here we go. Okay.
[00:28:48] So now we’re going to talk just a minute about the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation. So what is the purpose? Well that office it offers so many different types of services and that are eligible to individuals with disabilities. And it helps them enter or even reenter into employment and productivity in the workplace and community. So what this, what VOC rehab does, is they can start coming to IEP meetings when they’re invited, they usually don’t like to start attending until the student is going to be exiting within the next couple of years. But they can come at any time, they’re invited after the age of 14.
[00:29:29] You will see here, this is also a link, the vocational rehabilitation consumer guide. And you will have a link to that in your handouts when you receive them. But some of the stuff that they do is they provide supported employment. They provide personal assistance services, they can even provide an interpreter or note taking services if they’re going on to college. Job placement. That’s a part of supported decision-making. Employment follow-up and post-employment services. Preemployment transition services, which is called Pre-ET, and that’s a really big thing right now that a lot of our special education cooperatives are providing for students while they are in school. So VOC rehab is a wonderful agency to have, and understand what they’re doing. And that guide that you’ll have the link to will answer so many of your questions.
[00:30:26] We’re not going to go into this very much, but I wanted to mention the Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act, which is called WIOA. And what this does is it provides students, while they’re in high school, some employability classes, training opportunities, and business services. And all of our career centers, we have. There’s trained professionals there to help individuals with identifying a variety of services and programs to address individuals and their employment needs.
[00:30:55] And that can include all of these things right here, business services, employability classes, and training opportunities. And again, as I mentioned, the special education cooperatives are really, you know, bringing this to the forefront and bringing this to our schools. The link here that you will see is where you can go and read more about WIOA and the opportunities that it can provide for your child and for students.
[00:31:20] Transition fairs are a big one that all of our juniors and seniors go to, through our co-ops. And they were even providing those virtually since, you know, students aren’t in school right now. And so those are some opportunities that you can also look into and get more information about.
[00:31:38] So who can help me get into college? These resources here are all clickable, too. And these are just a few resources that will assist in the college process. But you can also speak, you know, to your child’s school counselor. If you have it, if there’s an IEP coordinator or a case manager or special ed teacher, or you can also contact Kentucky SPIN and we will be able to help you find those resources that your child needs to get into college or your student.
[00:32:08] The resources that we have here that are all clickable are, which is the Kentucky Department of Education’s webpage on transition services. Which is a wonderful webpage with lots of resources. And like I said, this PowerPoint has these clickable links. I also want to mention the Carl D. Perkins vocational training center.
[00:32:29] You don’t have to have a standard diploma, remember we talked about, there are two diplomas that are offered in Kentucky. The standard diploma and the alternate diploma. You can have an alternate diploma and still be accepted into Carl Perkins. So that link, there will take you to the Carl Perkins vocational training center, which is in Kentucky. And we’ll give you some information about that. And that’s something that you can talk about at that transition IEP meeting too.
[00:32:56] And then there’s also a link for federal student aid, through the U.S. Department of Education, which is a wonderful way for, it’s even available for young adults with disabilities to go to college and they’re able to receive financial aid, just like anyone else. So our community mental health centers, we, gave you a link to that. The community mental health centers provide so many resources and information to families, who have a young adult with an intellectual developmental disability or mental health concerns. So please visit that web page. It also helps provide with our Medicaid waivers, which can also help with future planning for where you’re going to live.
[00:33:44] And also the center for independent living is a wonderful resource that you can get. They provide classes, social skills classes, around the State. There’s wonderful resources there on their web page. So again, all of these are clickable links for you to go to and find out more information about these resources. And, so I encourage you to do that.
[00:34:10] I love this quote here. It’s actually one of my favorites. It’s called you’re off to great places, today is your day. Your mountain is waiting so get on your way, Dr. Sues. and that’s from the book called, Oh, the places you will go. And I usually give that book, well both of my children received it when they, I’m sorry, three of my children have received that book now when forgot, my daughter already graduated and she’s in college now. when they graduated high school. And we have one more to get through college or get through high school and he will get that book at graduation too. Because it’s, you know, a fun kid book, but it just talks about, you know, what you’re going to do with your life now. And I think that that’s great for us all to read. I pick it up every time there’s graduation and read it.
[00:34:58] But long after the last teacher or therapist has disappeared from your child’s life, your family is always the ones that’s going to be there. So, you know, is your child ready for the future? But you as a parent or a professional can make the difference now in their life that asking those questions that we ask and helping them to develop a school program and supporting their learning skills not only at school, but also in the home and community.
[00:35:29] So we’re hoping that everyone will be off to great places. And the mountain is waiting for them. So encourage them to, you know, think about their future. What do they want to do? Ask those hard questions that are, you know, not very fun, but we have to ask them. And I think that is real, real important.
[00:35:52] So some of the resources and references that we use today are on this page. One link that you are going to get in your handouts that’s provided in your handouts is called Dude where’s my transition plan. And this guide is wonderful. It’s one you can write in, you can make notes in. I did a session one time with students at one of the special ed cooperatives transition fairs, and we actually took that guide, every student that I was working with got a copy of the guide, and then we had them go through and actually fill out some of the fill in the blank parts.
[00:36:29] And a lot of it is like, who’s your doctor? Where do you go for your medicine? Who would you call for an emergency? It’s things that they need to know that maybe we have created that learned helplessness. That’s a harsh word, but that, you know, just kind of means we do everything for them, so why do they need to learn on their own? This guide is geared for teenagers, young adults with intellectual developmental disabilities. And it makes them begin to think. And you may have to help them with some of the questions of course, but it’s a really great, good plan for them to begin that transition planning process.
[00:37:12] And like I said, you can write in it and it becomes their kind of guidebook. And so we did that, that day in that class, at session and it was so good. And I got to take that home with them. And that’s been a few years and I hope that they’re still working in it and keeping that guide going.
[00:37:28] Again. We talked about the Vocational Rehabilitation Consumer Guide. So that’s a guide that you’ll have a link for also. The Kentucky Disability Resource Manual, that was one of the first ones that we showed you all, that has the online version and also a printed version. You will get the link to the online version and you’ll also get a link to the printed version. So that way you can have one on your computer and one in home. And I use that got a lot to look up different resources and stuff for not only myself, but for the families that I work with through Kentucky SPIN.
[00:38:00] One, we have not talked about in this session, but that you will get a link to, is called the parent guide, the Kentucky Parent Guide for Special Education it’s recently been updated and it is a wonderful guide that families use. And I want to make sure that you have the most updated version in the handout we gave you, because it just made me think of something that we not might not have updated in the handout. I will make sure before your follow-up email is sent today, that you have the most recent version of that guide in your handouts. And it is a wonderful guide. And it goes through the special ed process in a very parent friendly way. And I think you’ll really find that a very useful tool.
[00:38:44] The other thing was the Kentucky center for youth, Kentucky Career Center for Youth. And you will have some information about that in your handouts also. So that is what we had today.
[00:38:56] And I’m going to ask Michaela, Michaela, are there any questions? Or did anyone have any comments or anything they wanted to share? You can put that in the question box real quick. We do have a few minutes. And if you have a question, I’ll be happy to answer that for you. If you don’t, that’s totally fine, but just know that we are here. We are here at Kentucky SPIN,, if you don’t have any questions now you can always private email us and we will be happy to answer those questions for you.
[00:39:27] But I’m going to ask Michaela, were there any questions right now, Michaela?
[00:39:31] Michaela: We do have one question, and they just wanted to know. Do you know of any resources, where you can find places that hire individuals with disabilities or where they can go to find a job that would be disability friendly?
[00:39:47] Stella: That’s a great question. I believe one of the handouts that I’ll make sure is included in there is, one of those little one-pagers that we saw on the Kentucky Works page. And I’ll go ahead and pass that along to everyone in the handout. And it talks about some places that are, is what they were talking about, disability friendly that hire. I know UPS is one, but if you live rural, you know, that’s not gonna work for you.
[00:40:15] So what I encourage you to do, and I can only tell you from my own personal experience, what we did is we work, or I go to church with a family who owns a little a cafeteria here in our community. And I just reached out to them when Clayton turned 16 and asked if they would be willing to give him a job. And they did. And so he’s been there, like I said, for seven years. The other place, he has two jobs actually, one he’s still Hasn’t went back yet because of COVID, but it’s our church daycare. And so again, I reached out to someone and was able, you know, to set that up.
[00:40:49] Also that is what Vocational Rehabilitation does through supported employment. So that’s another great place. And even if your child is out of school and you know, or you’re working with someone that’s already exited high school, VOC rehab can still offer those supported employment opportunities. So you just need to reach out to VOC rehab and they will connect you with a counselor to hopefully, maybe provide those services for you.
[00:41:16] But the best thing I think to do is just that word of mouth. Just to ask around, we all know people and, you know, we all know people that are involved with other people. And so that is what’s going to go, you know, make that keep those opportunities out there available. So it may not be your circle, but it may be someone outside of your circle that knows someone that can hook you up that maybe is hiring or looking for, or whatever.
[00:41:43] The wonderful thing about support employment through VOC rehab, that helped Clayton along with his job is when he received his job, when he started working at the place he works, he was able to have support through VOC rehab. So he had a job coach that went with him on the job until he learned all the tasks that he needed to do for that job. And then the job coach faded out. And then what we did is, we just started utilizing those natural supports, so those folks that he works with, to assist as needed. And they helped him if he needed to clock-in or clock-out, or if he needed some gentle reminders to stay on task, because he is a talker. Those little things we now just use natural supports for.
[00:42:27] So those have been just some great opportunities that have worked for us. And I’ll be sure to include that handout. I’m making myself a note right now, that we include that, those employers that are kind of friendly, disability friendly in hiring people. So I hope that answered the question.
[00:42:50] If anyone else has questions, we have time for one more. If someone wanted to, if someone had a question. If not, I want to share that at the end of the webinar today, you will get an evaluation. It’ll pop up and it’s really fast. If you would take a few minutes and complete that evaluation, it really helps us plan for our future webinars.
[00:43:16] We have finalized all of our webinars through October and the first part of November. So we will have a flyer coming out very soon with all of those dates on it. But until then you’re more than welcome to check our website and we update that very often. And so you’ll be able to register under upcoming events, for any of our webinars that we have.
[00:43:38] We have some wonderful ones scheduled for the future. And since we have a second, I’m going to kind of just share some of those that we’ve got coming up. We actually have one, next Thursday, that is going to be on starting and maintaining parent support groups. So if that’s something you’re interested in. And then we are doing what we call Kentucky SPIN’s Tuesday Tips, and we’re doing those every Tuesday at 11. And we have quite a few different ones on that. We’re going to be talking about some of the ones coming up are on virtual supports and services in the IEP. So that’s kind of relevant to what we’re doing right now.
[00:44:20] Behavior tips and strategies for families. We’re going to have a Medicaid waiver update, and we’re going to have folks from Medicaid on that call to give us some of those important Medicaid waiver updates. We’re going to talk about social strategies, executive functioning, social skills stories.
[00:44:36] And then in the month of October, we are going to be charting the LifeCourse and going over all of those LifeCourse tools that you’re going to get handouts today for. So if you look at those handouts and you go, wow, I want to know more information about that. Sign up for our October Thursday webinars, because you’re going to love those. We’re going to go into more detail.
[00:44:56] So I’m gonna check in with Michaela one more time, and then if we don’t have any more questions, we will sign off. So with Michaela, any more questions?
[00:45:05] Michaela: Yes. so someone wanted to know, who can you reach out to if you’re having trouble with an employer hiring an individual with disabilities?
[00:45:23] Stella: Okay, that that’s a good one. First of all, our, I guess I’ll just, I’ll answer it in a couple of ways so we can kind of clarify. Is it, I’m thinking you’re meaning it’s an employer that doesn’t want to hire someone with a disability and how can you go about that? That’s something that VOC rehab is really good at doing, is being that middle person, as far as talking to the employer, on your person’s behalf. That really helps a lot because sometimes if the family member gets involved, you know, sometimes that can be a little difficult and awkward.
[00:45:58] If that’s not an option, then just reaching out to them, in a nonconfrontational way, and just approaching, you know, and saying, you know, showing them their skills, you know, a lot of times what folks will do is they will go into a place, into an employer’s place and look around and see what people are doing. And kind of carve out a job that is geared specifically for that person. So then that frees up people within the organization to do other things. And that’s, that’s always really, you know, helpful sometimes.
[00:46:30] So trying to find a solution before you go in with a problem, sometimes it’s a really beneficial way of solving the problem before it even becomes one.
[00:46:39] If it’s that the person is already employed there and they’re having difficulty. There are a lot of things, a lot of places you can reach out to, depending on that place of employment, you can go higher up and, you know, request a meeting and say, you know, we were having some issues. Of course there’s a lot of great tools through the Americans with Disabilities Act that you can read about and find for equal opportunity for all folks. And that’s something that might be worth looking into also.
[00:47:13] So I hope that answered that one. Was there another one or was that, was that the one?
[00:47:21] Michaela: That was the one. I don’t see any other questions right now.
[00:47:25] Stella: Okay, well, thank you all so much for joining us. I really appreciate it. And again, fill out our evaluation and check out all of our upcoming webinars and I hope everyone has a wonderful Thursday.