For Families

When is the best time to think about life after high school?

Parents should be encouraged to consider the options for their sons and daughters, regardless of ability or disability, including a post-secondary education option for everyone who elects this path. This could be a college/university experience, a technical school or auditing classes and planning can begin as early as 5th or 6th grade!

The benefits of post-secondary education for individuals with an intellectual or developmental disability can be measured in their growth in a number of areas: academic and personal skill building, independence, self-advocacy, self-confidence, and friendship and socialization opportunities. For all students in a post-secondary education, the experience of being part of campus life, taking classes (whether auditing or for credit), joining student organizations, and learning to navigate a world of heightened expectations leads to the development of skills and confidence that are so important to a successful adult life.

Currently there are very limited options in Indiana for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities who wish to pursue this type of post-secondary educational experience. Through the efforts of the coalition, a grant was awarded from the US Department of Education to the Indiana Institute on Disability and Community. The grant is structured to address systemic issues in Indiana as related to post-secondary education opportunities, and, for those individuals who chose this option, to promote the transition of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities into higher education. One of the goals of the coalition is to help facilitate discussion around post-secondary educational options, helping individuals and families begin this process as early as practical. So if this is of interest to you, please check out our Frequently Asked Questions Page, Success Stories, Making the Transition, Funding, Public Policy and Resources tabs for more information to keep you moving in the right direction.

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