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Transition Planning for Students with Disabilities

Cyclical Monitoring Annual Monitoring

Simply put, transition is helping students with disabilities and their families think about their life after high school and identify long-range goals designing the high school experience to ensure that students gain the skills and connections they need to achieve these goals the provision of funds and services to local school districts to assist in the transition process. This transitional process will include many aspects of planning for the future and should be fully understood by everyone involved each step of the way. Planning for the future is an investment in a child's well-being!

What is Indicator 13?

It is a federal mandate requiring youth age 16 and older to have an IEP with a postsecondary transition plan. In Wisconsin, transition requirements begin no later than in the first individualized education program (IEP) that will be in effect when the child is 14 and updated annually thereafter. The transition requirements are found in Wisconsin Statute 115.787(2)(g)1.

A postsecondary transition plan must include measurable postsecondary goals for students based on age-appropriate transition assessments related to training/education, employment and, independent living skills (if appropriate) and a description of transition services including courses of study needed to assist the students in reaching their goals.

For additional information, see the State Performance Plan, Indicator 13 which contains details of the Indicator 13 Assessment of which Local Educational Agencies (LEAs) will collect data annually starting in the 2011-12 school year. This link also includes school district profiles of compliance, compliance examples, webinars and the Indicator 13 assessment technical assistance guide. With LEA input, DPI is developing an online IEP transition form that will assist LEAs to meet the transition requirements with 100% compliance. The program will be piloted in the 2011-12 school year; personnel development for all districts use will begin in 2012.

What is Indicator 14?

Indicator 14 helps us describe the further education and competitive employment experiences of youth with disabilities as they transition from high school to adult life. Data for Indicator 14 is collected through the Post School Outcomes survey and website. See the Cyclical Monitoring for training and technical assistance on the sampling indicators and 2011-2016 procedural compliance cycle. Please note that data collection for Indicator 14 is a 2-year process; see the Indicator 14 Timeframe.

What is the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA)?

WIOA is the acronym for new federal legislation titled the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. The WIOA was signed into law in July 2014 to replace the portion of the Rehabilitation Act formerly called the Workforce Investment Act (WIA). Components of the WIOA specific to educational services went into effect on July 22, 2016. The WIOA includes new responsibilities for schools, in partnership with the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) and adult services, to support students and youth with disabilities to transition from school to college and/or competitive integrated employment. 

DPI’s Frequently Asked Questions about WIOA for LEAs and school personnel

Transition Improvement Grant (TIG)

The Transition Improvement Grant (TIG) provides statewide technical assistance and  effective, targeted, no or low cost professional development to Wisconsin LEAs and teachers in the area of postsecondary transition planning. The TIG aims to combine the use of the Postsecondary Transition Plan (PTP) with best practice strategies for improving post school outcomes for students with disabilities. The focus of the grant is on increasing positive outcomes for students as seen through Indicator 13 Postsecondary Transition and Indicator 14 Post School Outcomes data for students with disabilities.

DPI in collaboration with the CESA Statewide Network has developed a Transition Improvement Grant (TIG) Network.  Transition support information can be found at: TIG staff include:

  • Alicia Reinhard serves as the statewide Transition Consultant and TIG Director
  • Pam Jenson is the statewide TIG Coordinator, working out of CESA 2
  • Lisa Van Dyke is the TIG Administrative Assistant, working out of CESA 2
  • Mary Kampa serves as the statewide Post School Outcomes Coordinator, working form CESA 10
  • Jenny Jacobs is the CESA 7 TIG Coordinator and also assists with Post School Outcomes Outreach
  • Kathy Tuttle is the Northern Region TIG Coordinator, supporting CESAs 8, 9, and 12
  • Brenda Swoboda serves as the Western Region TIG Coordinator, supporting CESAs 4, 10, and 11
  • Jennifer Hilgendorf is the Urban TIG Coordinator, supporting CESA 1
  • LaNae Jabas is the Central TIG Coordinator, supporting CESAs 5 and 6
  • Brian Kenney is the Southern Region Coordinator, supporting CESAs 2 and 3

For more information on exciting transition improvement events and projects, please visit the TIG website:

If you have any questions about the TIG, please contact Alicia Reinhard, Transition Improvements Grant Director at the Department of Public Instruction at or 608-266-1146.

Summary of Performance (SoP)

The SoP is required under the reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 2004. The language as stated in IDEA 2004 regarding the SoP is as follows: For a child whose eligibility under special education terminates due to graduation with a regular diploma, or due to exceeding the age of eligibility, the local educational agency "shall provide the child with a summary of the child's academic achievement and functional performance, which shall include recommendations on how to assist the child in meeting the child's post-secondary goals" [20 USC 1414(c)(5)(B)(ii)]. For more information on the SoP, visit the Wisconsin Statewide Transition Initiative website:

Partners for Information About Special Education Transition Services (DPI, DWD, DHS)

Clearing House: DPI has partnered with the Department of Workforce Development (DWD) - Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) and the Department of Health Services (DHS) to create the Transition Resource Directory which is a listing of adult services available within each county.

Transition Action Guide/Interagency Agreement: Interagency documents are intended to clearly define necessary relationships, policies, and procedures between the DVR, the DPI and the DHS in order to create common understandings and establish collaborative efforts regarding services that will ultimately improve employment outcomes for individuals with disabilities.

Transition Action Guide (TAG) Module

  • Interagency Agreement: Department of Public Instruction/Division for Learning Support: Equity and Advocacy, the Department of Workforce Development/Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, and the Department of Health and Family Services/Divisions of Long Term Care and of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services for the coordination of services for individuals transitioning from education to employment. (12/2/10)
  • Transition Action Guide for Post School Planning: In Support of the Interagency Agreement. This Technical Assistance Guide (TAG) was developed to assist in the improvement of communication, coordination, and services for students with disabilities transitioning from school to work. It was designed to be useful for all persons and agencies (stakeholders) involved in the transition process. (Revised 2012)
  • 2016 Annual Status Report
  • 2014 WI State Trend Data
  • 2013 WI State Trend Data

DPI Information and Other Resources


Opening Doors Series