The goal of transitioning students out of high school is to prepare them for being on their own. But this process begins much earlier. Parents are responsible for helping children make choices and understand the consequences of those choices in an age appropriate manner.
Allowing students to make mistakes is a key part of the process of growing up. This is part of the maturity and growth process whether a student has a disability or not. The time frame, the parameters, and other things may change depending on the disability, but students still need to be able to make choices, make mistakes, learn from their mistakes and gradually become more independent. This is part of the transition process.
For a student with a disability, there may be more things that need to be discussed, figured out and possibly managed. That's probably why there is more discussion about transition with students with disabilities than students without disabilities.
All students, including those with disabilities, should be expected to work. Work defines us, provides self sufficiency, and is part of socialization. To try and ignore or not address that a student has a disability is a disservice to the student and will hinder them as an adult.
- In post-secondary education, if a student needs classroom or living accommodations, a student has to identify him/her self as someone with a disability and clearly identify what his or her needs are in school in order to get help from student support services.
- In the working world, if an adult needs an accommodation in order to perform the essential parts of his/her job, then they need to be able to identify that they have a disability, what it is, how it impacts their work, and what kind of accommodation they need (if they know).
If someone with a disabilities grows up with people not being willing to talk about disability openly, then it will put him/her at a disadvantage in the school and work world. Open discussion about disability and understanding their disability is part of the transition process as well.