Welcome to VA DCDT 2013 - 2014!

Have you ever wondered how to discuss Social Security benefits with your students and families? Sign up for our easy to understand and engaging webcast about Social Security Benefits which will be held on April 24th. You’ll hear from Lucy Miller who is a national expert in the field.

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Virginia Department of Education Announces New Transition Center for Students with Disabilities
Center Established through Collaboration with Virginia Commonwealth University

The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) and Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) today announced the establishment of the Center on Transition Innovations (CTI). The new center is a collaborative venture of VDOE and the VCU School of Education’s Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (RRTC). It will serve as a statewide resource to support school divisions, service providers, students with disabilities and their families as they work together to facilitate successful transitions for students with disabilities after they leave school.

CTI, which was funded through a $2 million VDOE special education and student services start-up grant, will assist stakeholders in identifying career goals, encouraging skill building so individuals can live as independently as possible in their communities and increasing inclusive postsecondary competitive employment, education, and training opportunities.

“The Center on Transition Innovations will build upon the success of existing programs for transition-age students,” said Superintendent of Public Instruction Patricia I. Wright. “Its success will be measured in the independence and sense of fulfillment students with disabilities achieve after graduating from high school.”

Named to lead CTI are Paul Wehman as principal investigator and Elizabeth Getzel as director. Both are employed by VCU and will work with VDOE and other state agencies.

“Youth with disabilities are an incredible source of potential labor for businesses in the commonwealth, many with greatly untapped potential,” said Wehman, who directs the RRTC.  “With the new Center on Transition Innovations, we will be working closely with school districts, vocational rehabilitation, higher education and businesses to develop innovative ways to include these young people in the labor force.”

Through its website, CTI will provide information on available resources including online courses, webcasts, videos, newsletters, fact sheets and topical papers. CTI will also be involved in transition-related research and transition program development.

Congratulations to John McNaught on his appointment to the National DCDT board as the Southeast Representative.  John is Co-Director at the VDOE T/TAC at JMU and a a long time member of VADCDT.

Settlement Announcement Regarding Segregation of Workers With Disabilities in Sheltered Workshops
The Justice Department announced the nation’s first statewide settlement agreement vindicating the civil rights of individuals with disabilities who are unnecessarily segregated in sheltered workshops and facility-based day programs. The agreement with the State of Rhode Island will resolve violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) for approximately 3,250 Rhode Islanders with intellectual and developmental disabilities. 
To read more visit http://www.ada.gov/olmstead/index.htm

IDEA Partnership - Youth Webinars
Click Youth Webinar for more information

The program is around improving employment outcomes.  The guest speaker is David Leon, with DARS and he will talk about work incentives and benefits planning.  This goes with our VITC Fact Sheet on Work Incentives and Benefits Planning which can be found at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/special_ed/transition_svcs/va_intercommunity_transition_council/index.shtml
Participants must register.  The link is on the attached flyer.
Spring 2014 TPC Flyer

Dear VA DCDT Members:
Please submit your nominations for the following awards by the April 18th deadline:

1. Youth Award
2. Employer of the Year
3. Transition Practitioner of the Year
4. Transition Leader of the Year

If you have any questions, please contact Patricia Aldridge, VA DCDT Vice President (see below).

Dr. Patricia R. Aldridge, Associate Professor
Coordinator,  Special Education Programs
Department of Teaching and Learning
120-G Harris Hall
P.O. Box 9088
1 Hayden Drive
Petersburg, Va. 23806
(804) 524-6730
(804) 524 - 5757 (Fax)
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

2014 Leader Nomination Form
2014 Employer Nomination Form
2014 Transition Practitioner Nomination Form
2014 Youth Nomination Form
VADCDT 2014 Award Descriptions

The IDEA Partnership’s National Community of Practice (CoP) on Transition is sponsoring the second webinars on Youth Role in Transition Planning for professionals in the field. Through the personal stories and insights of youth from Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Hampshire, Michigan, Virginia, and Washington, DC webinar participants will learn about:

The youth experience and role in transition
The power of authentic youth engagement, self-determination and leadership in transition
Ideas for how to best support youth in the transition process

Please check out the sharedwork website for the recorded webinar from March 25, 2014.

Visit the sharedwork site for the recording from the first webinar and follow the wiki page for more information about this work.

For contact information about a Transition Council in your area, please click on link below.

Virginia Transition Councils

For information about the structure of Virginia Transition Councils, please click here.


Message from our President, Lisa Holland:

Welcome to the Virginia chapter of the Council for Exceptional Children’s Division on Career Development and Transition website (VA DCDT). Our organization is comprised of professionals, parents and students interested in improving the lives and adult outcomes for people with disabilities. Please browse our site and contact us with any questions you may have. If you are not already a member, consider joining our organization by emailing our Membership Chair: Kim Bledsoe: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Our goals for 2013 - 2014 include the following:

1. Increase subdivision membership by 10%
2. Promote/sponsor multiple professional development activities
3. Increase participation of representatives from multiple stakeholders
4. Explore ways to increase revenue to support VA DCDT projects

I would also like to take this opportunity to introduce the VA DCDT Executive Board for 2013 - 2014:

Past President
Marianne Moore
Middle/Secondary Transition Specialist
Virginia Department of Education

Lisa Holland
Transition Training Associate
Virginia Commonwealth University
Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (RRTC)
Center for Transition Innovations


Patricia Aldridge
Associate Professor
Virginia State University

Renee Bullano
Director of Research and Demonstration
Virginia Commonwealth University
Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (RRTC)
Center for Transition Innovations

Wanda Bass
Program Specialist
Virginia Department of Education T/TAC, VCU


      Legislative Lead
      Mary Young, Transition Consulting Teacher
      Loudoun County Public Schools

      Newsletter Lead
      Diane Loomis, Transition Coordinator
      Virginia Department of Education T/TAC, George Mason University

      Web Lead
      Joan Lovegren-O’Brien, Program Specialist
      Virginia Department of Education T/TAC, VCU

Kim Bledsoe
Transition Resource Teacher
Culpeper County Public Schools

Sue Britt
Woodrow Wilson Rehabilitation Center

Judy Averill

Doniella Kissinger
Ad hoc Student Representative
Longwood University

Kari LaBell
Ad hoc VACTE - SND
Douglass Support Facility

Upcoming Events
Apr 23 - Apr 30
Transition Practitioners Council (TPC) Meetings

Click here to view more events