Parents / Family Members Helpful Tools

Parents play an important role in the secondary transition process for their children. The more educated parents are about the process, the more help they can be to their children. Parents should be aware of what is included in their child’s transition plan and will hopefully have provided some input themselves. Check out the information and links below to find out more about self-determination, guardianship, transfer of rights, preparing for college, and other articles and tools that can help you help your child in preparing for life after high school.

The Pacer Center works with National Center on Secondary Education and Transition (NCSET) to represent family perspectives and disseminate information to a national network of federally funded parent centers and the families they serve.

NTACT: the Collaborative is funded through a cooperative agreement with the Office of Special Education Programs and the Rehabilitation Services Administration (H326E20003) to improve the implementation of effective practices including pre-employment transition services, dropout prevention interventions, engagement in career and technical education, interagency collaboration, and other education and VR transition services for all students and youth with disabilities.  Visit their site WWW.TRANSITIONTA.ORG for resources and guidance on transition planning, graduation, post-school success, data analysis and use, and effective practices and predictors of post-school success. 

Click on a topic below for more information!

Predictors of Post-School Outcomes - Spanish
At this time twenty predictors of positive post-school outcomes have been identified by researchers. If students and their families, teachers, members of individualized educational program (IEP) teams, and agencies in our communities are aware of these, we can work together to include them in the planning and work we do with students to better support their goals. 

Find more about what transition plans in Arkansas look like and what they mean; click on each form for more information.

Required IEP FormsSpanish version here or Marshallese version here

Permission for Consent to Invite an Agency

Summary of Performance (SOP)

Sample Letter to Accompany SOP


Often parents have information that can be included in a transition plan, making it more meaningful. If you are a parent, consider reviewing these simple, yet important tools, and providing the information to your child’s teacher. 

Parent Transition Survey Spanish

Parent Questionnaire for Transition Planning (with Cover Letter)
This is a generic questionnaire from Ross-Pike Educational Service District in Ohio ( that is given to parents of students with a wide range of educational needs. The information included can assist in making educational plans which focus on your child's post-school goals.

Parent Guardian Inventory

Parents of Teenagers Survival Checklist
This quick and easy assessment allows you to rate your student's ability on a variety of skills including seeking employment, hygiene, transportation and current events.

The Parent Inventory
Complete this form and send to your child's teacher as an assessment that could be used in developing their transition plan to work toward employment goals.


Guardianship Resources 

National Guardianship Association 

Guardianship Checklist 

Guardianship Fact Sheet Spanish

Parent Brief on Age of Majority 

Age of Majority Parent Guide and Tip Sheets (Printer Friendly Version Here)- Taking on the rights of an adult can be challenging for all youth, but it is especially challenging for youth with disabilities. To assist parents in preparing their young person with disabilities to make these decisions, the Center for Parent Information and Resources released a parent guide and a series of tip sheets for parents of children with disabilities. 

Tips for Guardianship and Alternatives - an overview of guardianship and various alternatives and how individuals with ASD and their family members can begin to navigate this process. 

National Guardianship Association's Standards of Practice - Click here to review the Ethical Standards reflected within the NGA's Standards of Practice.


IDEA requires the consideration for technology needs for students with disabilities. These could be services or devices that are defined in IDEA. When students are planning to transition into the adult world it is critical that they are aware of available technology that they can use to support them in the post-secondary environment. IEP teams (including students and families) can greatly benefit from the tools provided below:

Student Self Evaluation Matrix - The self-evaluation matrix is intended to measure and improve assistive technology transfer to higher education settings. 

Transition Skills Checklist - use this assessment to determine what skills your students demonstrate and what skills they need to acquire.

Assistive Technology Assessment Process Planner - use this process planner when classroom strategies and tools do not meet the student’s needs.

Assistive Technology Implementation Plan - use this template to develop a plan to implement assistive technology with your students.

Family Information Guide to Assistive Technology and Transition Planning - this guide will provide you with information on transition, how to ensure your students' assistive technology needs are supported in the transition from high school to adult life, and information on laws related to transition and accommodations. There are many tools and valuable resources within this guide to help include consideration of assistive technology in the transition process. 

Mobile Apps to Support Transition-Age Youth - many free and low-cost apps are available to support transition-age youth with disabilities as they embark on their journey towards post-secondary education, job training, employment and independent living. This list includes apps that have been reviewed by parents and professionals and found to be useful and well-designed.


Tips for Parents 

Parents as Advocates 

2BSD: To Be Self-Determined
2BSD is about creating more self-determined lives. On this website, you’ll find information about all things self-determined: what it is, why it’s important, and how to promote it.

Self-Determination for Elementary / Middle School Students

Self Advocacy Skills and Self-Determination in Personalized Learning - considerations for how you can be engaged in supporting your development of self-advocacy skills, like participating in school meetings and advocating for instruction that helps students develop self-advocacy skills and self-determination. 

Field Hoffman Self-Determination Assessment Battery 
Observation Checklist     Student Scale     Parent Perception Scale     Teacher Perception Scale      Scoring Key
Uses five instruments to measure cognitive, behavioral, and affective traits to determine levels of self-determination. 

Self-Determination Checklist Student Assessment - Use this 19 item checklist for students to evaluate their self-determination skills. - Whether you're a teacher, parent, friend, OT, or just someone who loves a young person with a disability, your support is vital. I'm Determined knows that everyone is at different points of their journey to self-determination. Find tools to support the one you love in the best way for both of you.


Transitioning from high school to adult life often makes individuals think of where they will live, go to school and work. Something that is often overlooked is healthcare transition. This is an important piece to a successful transition. After all, where would we be if we didn't have the ability to take care of our health                needs? There is a tool used to assess the readiness levels of students with special health care needs and their parents to transition from pediatric to adult                 health care - Youth   Parent/Caregiver 

Got Transition - This website aims to improve transition from pediatric to adult healthcare through the use of new and innovative strategies for health professionals and youth and families.

Health Care Transition Guide for Teens in Middle School - This is a handbook for younger teens, written for middle school students with medical and/or developmental needs.

Now That You're In High School - This is a handbook for older teens. It covers many transition topics important to teens.

Finding Adult Providers It is important to find your adult doctors early - around age 18 to 21.

Being a Healthy Adult - This is a resource for the youth and their family. This adds role-playing activities and checklists to help families find their transition strengths.

Vital Records Log - Arkansas Guide to services for children with disabilities 

Online Medical Notebook Template - Use this care organizer to store your child's information.

Got Transition Medical Summary and Emergency Care Plan - This is a printable summary including daily care information and information needed in an emergency.

Emergency Information Form for Children with Special Needs - A quick reference guide regarding emergency preparedness for individuals with special healthcare needs.

Health Passport - This booklet that can be carried with you when attending hospitals or other providers of health and disability services contains information about how you want people to communicate with you and support you.

My Med Schedule Use MyMedSchedule to manage meds and labs on the go, set reminders, and make it easier to communicate with their healthcare providers.

My Medical App a comprehensive record-keeping app for your personal medical information.

The Wallet Card App - a free tool for teenagers and adults who have Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). It is designed to help them communicate clearly with law enforcement or first responders.

Medicaid Transportation Brokers

Smart 9-1-1 - When you dial 9-1-1 from a mobile phone, the 9-1-1 call takers have very little information to help you. Users of this service provide vital information to call takers, including information regarding your household members, address and location, vehicle(s), emergency contacts and communication preferences. 

Parent Advisory Council Transition - the PAC serves as a liaison between the families of children with special health care needs (CSHCN) and existing resources.

Transitioning from Independence: How Ready are You? - Young people can take care of their own health conditions or disabilities in a variety of ways. This FREE assessment from Shriners Hospital will help you build the skills you need to make a successful transition to adult care and independent living.

Building Self-Advocacy and Self-Care Management Skills – Learn what families can do at home to help students build self-care, self-management, and self-advocacy skills and become more involved in managing their ongoing health and wellness.

Families Healthcare Transition Infographic - This tool can help students and families learn more about moving from pediatric to adult healthcare.


AHEAD - find answers to many FAQs that you might have about going to college.

Financial Help - check out the financial resources that might be available to you in Arkansas!

The Smart Student Guide to Financial Aid - find information about scholarships and fellowships for students with disabilities.

ADHE Financial Aid Search - search through the Arkansas Department of Higher Education's available scholarships.

College 4 U! - independent college counseling for high school students

Getting Help for the Transition to College - Some students with disabilities may not be totally aware of the support services available at the college level. To provide more information of how to go about getting more information when considering post-secondary education options, the Disability Services Office at NC State University created a video DVD to help ease students’ minds and to give them helpful tips and advice. The video shows a current college student receiving supports and offering help to a current high school student who isn’t so sure he can make it at college. Parents, this is a great clip to watch with your child and plan how they might go about finding more about a college they would like to attend.

Going to College - This site has lots of information about going to college and being successful with a disability. A section of the site is for students interested in going to college. It has videos and other tools that can get students on the right track in planning for college. There are three modules that students, parents, and educators can participate in. the site also has a "Teacher Toolbox" that provides activities for teachers to use as they help guide students in the planning process. And finally, it has a Portfolio section to help students really get the important pieces organized so they are ready to be successful in college! 

College Navigator - the Department of Education's website for information about colleges and universities.

Testing Accommodations for Individuals with Disabilities from the U.S. Department of Justice - This provides information on the obligation of testing entities, both private and public, to ensure that the test scores of individuals with disabilities accurately reflect the individual's aptitude, achievement, or the skills that the exam purports to measure, rather than his or her disability. The document discusses who is entitled to testing accommodations, what types of accommodations must be provided, and what documentation may be required of the person requesting testing accommodations.

Arkansas Next - Find out more about how you can make life after high school more exciting for you. This is a publication distributed to schools, but you can find the information right here at this site! Learn more about apprenticeships, colleges in Arkansas, dorm life, and the hottest jobs in Arkansas! You can also read stories from actual students in Arkansas and how they are making the right decisions for the life they want to have after high school! 

Niche Best Colleges understands that what makes a college the "best" looks different to every student, and each college search comes with its own unique challenges. They aim to help prospective students find the school that best meets their needs through proprietary research, user-friendly guides, and hundreds of independent college rankings.

Arkansas Career Fields, Clusters and Pathways Chart

Arkansas Career Clusters Descriptions

Arkansas Apprenticeship - Visit this website to view a list of Arkansas' apprenticeship schools and find out how to become an apprentice.

Sample Job Application - Use this sample job application to practice memorizing personal information, work history and references.

Online Job Application - This online application can be used to practice job readiness skills during remote learning.


An important part of improving outcomes for students with disabilities is collecting information after they have left high school to see  what services have been used and how programs in high school may have helped them be successful. If you have a student who has recently left high school or will soon, please read more on Post School Outcomes Data Collection. We need your participation when it’s time to collect the data

General Transition Information


Take a look at these additional tools that can help your child in preparing for life after high school. 

Transition Considerations Timeline - use this short list of general considerations to help your student plan for their future!

NICHCY has been a valuable resource for many years, providing to parents, teachers, and students. The National Dissemination Center is a part of OSEP’s TA&D network, but it will no longer have its own website. We have copied and pasted into pdf formats the links to helpful information below. We encourage you to explore their site and copy and paste any important information you want to save to your files.

NICHCY is going away, but its resources are not. Find hundreds of legacy NICHCY publications, as well as our training curriculum on IDEA 2004, in the Center for Parent Information and Resource’s Library

Real Life Arkansas - Do your students need help determining how much money they will need to earn in their future? Do they need help deciding which occupation to choose? No problem! This site has three options to help them select the right career for their spending needs.

Categories of Disability under IDEA

Questions Often Asked by Parents About Special Education 

Evaluating Children for Disability

Deciding Placement Issues

All about the IEP

Developing Your Child’s IEP

Helping Students Develop their IEP

Transition Training Resources: Test Prep Review - Your source for FREE online practice tests.

Disability Info - This is a comprehensive website for all disability-related federal resources.

Transition From School to Adult Life Three Part Planning Sheet

18 & Life to Go - a legal handbook for young Arkansans covering topics like marriage & family, insurance, lease agreements, owning a car, personal injuries, employment, medical & privacy rights, and more!

Family & Community Engagement Framework & Toolkit – Each family’s needs are different and each community has a variety of characteristics and barriers. This Framework is designed to acknowledge these differences and encourage more families, educators, and community members to become engaged in the education and development of children. The Toolkit contains a vast variety of resources for framework essentials that correlates to the role of the stakeholder.


Your Money, Your Goals - a set of financial empowerment materials for organizations that help people meet their financial goals by increasing their knowledge, skills, and resources. 

Mapping Your Future - a public service, nonprofit organization that provides programs and initiatives to help people achieve financial wellness and lead successful lives.

Federal Student Aid - Whether you’re a student or parent, years away from college or just about to start, these checklists will help you get ready.

Financial Planning for Special Needs Families - tips and strategies for financial planning for families with children who have special needs

Economics Arkansas - offers plenty of excellent resources for your classroom, grades PreK-12. There are many classroom resources for downloading free of charge; the Stock Market Game, annual awards and financial support (grants). They nurture partnerships with many other organization to expand and improve the high quality of their trainings, programs and resources.

Financial Literacy Quiz (First Financial Credit Union) - This quiz will help you determine what you know and what you don’t know about personal finance so you can take important steps toward improving your financial future.

The City University of New York (CUNY) Financial Literacy Quiz - Financial literacy is the ability of individuals to make appropriate decisions in managing personal finances. Take this quiz to build your financial skills!

Appy Hour - a list of apps to help young adults with disabilities learn about and manage their money

Arkansas A.B.L.E. - a program that allows tax-advantaged investment accounts that help qualified individuals with disabilities and their families save for disability-related expenses. 


You Visit Virtual College Tours
It's time to apply for college, but you don't know where to start. Perhaps you live far away from prospective colleges, or your family doesn't have enough money for you to look at every school you're interested in. Wouldn't it be nice if there were a way you could magically look at schools from home? This is a real possibility, and YouVisit works their own magic by bringing college campus tours right to the convenience of your computer screen. Click on a school below to view the virtual tour!
University of Arkansas - Fayetteville
Arkansas Technical University
Harding University
University of Central Arkansas
University of Central Arkansas's Makerspace
 - UCA's Makerspace, powered by the Conductor, is a collaborative, interdisciplinary work space with tools to prototype concepts, make new things, and take ideas to the next level.

Virtual Field Trips
12 Famous Museums with Virtual Tours - Experience the best museums from London to Seoul in the comfort of your own home!

Over 30 Virtual Field Trips with Links including the San Diego Zoo, Yellowstone National Park, U.S. Space and Rocket Museum, Mars, the Great Wall of China, Boston Children's Museum and more!

NASA at Home - NASA is exploring our solar system and beyond, uncovering worlds, stars and cosmic mysteries near and far with our powerful fleet of space and ground-based missions. Explore our facilities. View our laboratories. Tour the Moon. Enter a clean room. Experience the James Webb Space Telescope – the most powerful space telescope ever built – and more! We invite you to tour NASA virtually from the comfort of your home or convenience of your mobile device. Virtual tour experiences range from actual video tours, or 360° virtual tours, inside our laboratories and facilities to curated photo galleries of images and video playlists.

Virtual Experiences in Arkansas - You can still visit some of your favorite Arkansas attractions via virtual efforts across the state to keep the community connected to the many places that make Arkansas unique. Many attractions are keeping their experiences open to the public through creative virtual efforts that range from interactive tours to virtual safaris to ballet performances.

The Ultimate List of Virtual Experiences in Arkansas - Museums, educational centers, and downtown networks across the state are establishing virtual experiences through mobile devices, apps, and videos.