Life After High School: Research shows post-secondary programs lead to higher employment rates for individuals with disabilities
Thursday, March 19th 2015
Over the last few weeks, we have spent a lot of time discussing independent living for individuals with special needs. Last week, for example, we focused on some incredible intentional communities that are being developed in Florida – these communities are helping to revolutionize the way that we view special needs & disability housing. The week before that, we examined the finances behind independent living and provided a discussion of the various government benefits that are available and how to qualify for them. And, the week before that, we provided our readers with an update on our special needs housing development projects, the progress of our New Futures initiative training sessions, and the growth of our housing non-profit, ILO.
Today, we would like to again revisit the independent living theme with yet another perspective: post secondary education. Many parents of individuals with special needs wonder how their child will be financially supported once they reach adulthood – while there are many financial planning options (ABLE savings, government benefits, special needs trusts, etc.) there is a way for parents to help their child help him or herself – by ensuring that they are employable. And, according to recent research, the best way to ensure that your child with special needs is employable is to help them enroll in and complete a post secondary program.
Please join us for a discussion of post secondary options for individuals with special needs and to learn how M&L can help your family member with his/her journey towards higher education.
Individuals with Disabilities and Post Secondary Employment
As mentioned above, a recent study titled Post secondary inclusion for individuals with an intellectual disability and its effects on employment found that there were “significant positive employment outcomes for individuals with Intellectual Disabilities who attend post secondary programs compared to those who did not attend those programs.” More specifically, 90% of the individuals who attended a post secondary program achieved employment. By comparison, only 50-60% of individuals who did not attend a post secondary program achieved employment.
The evidence is pretty clear. Those who pursue education and/or training have a higher chance of succeeding in the job market. The question now becomes – how do I help my child with disability find a post-secondary program? Well, we can help! To begin, the staff at M&L has designed a workshop specifically to help families with special needs answer this question; our The Roadmap for Transitioning Planning & a Discussion of Post Secondary Options help families with special needs understand how to prepare their children for post-secondary learning, and offers a discussion of the different programs and options available to them in the Maryland, Washington, D.C. and Virginia area. We offer this workshop periodically throughout the year, so please contact us if you would like to be notified of the next time we present!
Our website is also an excellent tool to help you find and pay for the right post-secondary program for your family member with special needs; our resource page has a section titled ‘Post Secondary Options’ that contains a number of individuals resources, how-to’s, and helpful guides that will walk you and your family member with special needs through the process of preparing for college in high school, choosing the right college, and preparing to transition from home life to independent living. As well, we have published a number of different blog posts on the topic, including this post on a post-secondary program that we think very highly of: Riverview School’s G.R.O.W. Program. To see all of these blog posts, please select Special Needs Education, Education Grants and Scholarships, and Post Secondary from the drop down box titled “Blog Categories” on the right hand side of our website.
Would You Like More Information?
As always, if you have any questions or would like additional information regarding post-secondary programs for individuals with disabilities, or any special needs financial or life-planning question, please let us know! In addition to being a special needs financial and life planning expert, M&L owner/founder Maedi Tanham Carney, CFP®, CWIC is also a parent of a child with special needs. If you are planning for a milestone or struggling with planning for the future of your child with special needs, Carney can provide empathetic advice based on professional and personal experience. It’s what we do best, and we would love to hear from you!
Thanks again for taking the time to drop by our blog today. We hope that you enjoyed and learned something valuable from our discussion. See you next week!
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