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Transition services is a coordinated set of activities oriented toward producing results.  Transition services are intended to prepare students to move from the world of school to adulthood.  Transition takes place before the child reaches age 14 and updated annually.  Transition planning considers post-secondary goals, vocational training, employment, independent living, and community participation.  Transition services are based on the student's preferences and interest. 

  • Enrolled in special education with an Individual Education Plan (IEP)
  • Based on individual needs, strengths, interest, and preferences gathered by assessment/interviews with student, parent, and staff
  • Annually discussed at IEP Meeting age 14+
  • Components of Self-Determination: Decision making, problem solving, independent living, goal setting, self-advocacy and leadership skills, risk taking, self-awareness
  • IEP Goal developed for plans after high school 

Schools and community agencies must work together to provide transition services to students with disabilities.



Table of Contents for the Online Guide

Section 1: Self-Advocacy, Person-Directed Planning, and Self-Determination
Section 2: Transition Services
Section 3: Employment and Supported Employment Services
Section 4: Social Security Programs
Section 5: Community and Long-Term Services and Supports
Section 6: Post-secondary Educational Programs and Services
Section 7: Information Sharing with Health and Human Services Agencies and Providers
Section 8: Guardianship and Alternatives to Guardianship
Section 9: Contact Information for All Relevant State Agencies
Section 10: Texas Transition and Employment Guide Definitions
Section 11: Transition in Texas Timeline

At age 18, all individuals, including those with intellectual and developmental disabilities, reach the legal age of majority. This means that a parent can no longer make decisions legally on behalf of their children. Most people with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities can manage their own affairs with assistance and guidance from others, such as family and friends. If guardianship is necessary, it should be tailored to the person's needs. Families considering guardianship should learn more about the process and other options available before making a final decision.  It's never too early to start learning and preparing for your child's future. 

Transition Informational Video

Medicaid Waivers Video

SSI Eligibility Programs Video

College Planning for Special Needs Video

Planning for Special Needs Video

Special Needs ABLE Account Video

Top 10 mistakes to avoid in transition planning Video

Transition tips for launching your special needs teen into adulthood Video

Assistive Technology Video

Bridging Apps website Website

TexasYouth2Adult transition Website

For an in-depth walkthrough of the transition website, visit this YouTube link



College Contacts for College Programs for Students with Disabilities, 2021 


  1.  El Paso Community College – Project HIGHER 

 El Paso, Texas 

 Rick Razo, Educational Coach – they partner with Workforce Solutions in El Paso 

 Rick Razo – 915-240-8393 – 

 Rosa Lopez, El Paso Community College Project Manager – 

 Project HIGHER is an innovative program that assists individuals with intellectual and    

 developmental disabilities (ages 18-25) in El Paso County to complete a level-one certificate  

 at EPCC and find employment in their area of study. 


  1. Lone Star College-Montgomery – LifePATH (A 4-Year Pathway) 

3200 College Park Drive, Conroe, TX 77384 

Montisha Hines-Goosby, Lone Star College-Montgomery Director - 936-271-6148  

Lone Star College lifePATH® is a four-year comprehensive model of post-secondary educational opportunities for students who have disabilities that affect executive functioning. lifePATH focuses on academic readiness, social expectations, and career exploration. 


  1. Lone Star College-Tomball – LifePATH Tomball (A 4-Year Pathway) 

30555 Tomball Parkway, Tomball, TX 77375 

Dr. Anne Ginnett - 281-655-3630 - 

Lone Star College lifePATH® is a four-year comprehensive model of post-secondary educational opportunities for students who have disabilities that affect executive functioning. lifePATH focuses on academic readiness, social expectations, and career exploration 

  1. University of North Texas - UNTWise Applied Learning Lab – Denton, TX 

Transition Services & Summer Camps 

Lucy Gafford, Director of UNTWise –940-891-6769 - 

  1. University of North Texas – UNT ELEVAR 

1155 Union Circle #311335, Denton, TX 76203-5017 

Contact:  Brenda L. Barrio, Ph.D. - 940-891-6800 - 

UNT ELEVAR (Empower, Learn, Excel, enVision, Advance, Rise) is a four-year inclusive postsecondary education program for students with intellectual disabilities (ID). Following the definition of the program’s name, ELEVAR [lift, soar, rise, in Spanish], the program’s vision is to empower young adults with ID who wish to continue postsecondary education (PSE) to become self-determined, independent, and healthy adults readied for integrated competitive employment. Most importantly, the UNT ELEVAR program welcomes young adults with I/DD to be part of the Mean Green family experience. UNT ELEVAR will seek the Comprehensive Transition Program accreditation from the U.S. Department of Education. 


  1. University of North Texas – UNT ENGAGE 

1155 Union Circle #311070, Denton, TX 76201 

Contact:  940-565-4203 - 

ENGAGE serves neurodivergent students enrolled at UNT with reaching their academic and vocational goals through person-centered planning and individualized services. Students participate in assessment and planning meetings to identify personal, academic, and vocational goals.  


  1. UT Austin – E4 Texas, Texas Center for Disability Studies 

Educate, Empower, Employ, Excel 

10100 Burnet Road, Ste 1.154, L4000, Austin, TX 78758 

This program also has training for food handler’s certificates. 

Joe Tate 512-232-0772 

Jigna Patel  512-232-0773 

E4Texas is for people who are 18 years and older and have graduated from high school, or have a GED, and want to be a Personal Care Attendant. 

8. UT Austin – UT Informal Classes 

2405 Robert Dedman Drive Room 1.116, Austin, TX 78712 

Contact: Jon Pierce – 512-232-4137 - 

UT Informal Classes offers continuing education classes that are designed for students with intellectual or developmental disabilities.  Time in each class includes meeting with other UT students.  Students may also be supported to participate in over one hundred additional continuing education courses.  


  1. Palo Alto College in San Antonio, TX – PROJECT ACCESS 

1400 W. Villaret Blvd., San Antonio, TX 78224 

Cindy Morgan, Senior Coordinator for Disability Support Services - 210-486-3020 

Project Access is a unique program offered to individuals with documented intellectual disabilities. It is designed to support students to access postsecondary education in order to develop skills for gainful employment. 

10. Texas A&M University – LEAP Summer Program 

2251 TAMU, College Station, TX 77843-4225 


Dr. Shaunta Singer -       

The Leadership, Employability, and Advocacy Project (LEAP) will select 30 youth, aged 14-22 at each event, from qualified applicants across the State of Texas.  To be selected, applicants must be between the ages of 14-22 at the time of the event, be entering 8th-12th grade during the school year, and must not have graduated/left high school or a district post-secondary program.  Students in post-secondary programs such as 18+ are also strongly encouraged to apply. 

  1. Texas A&M University – Aggie ACHIEVE 
    4225 TAMU - Department of Educational Psychology 
    College Station, TX 77843 

Dr. Olivia R. Hester, Program Director - 979-458-1593 - 

Aggie ACHIEVE (Academic Courses in Higher Inclusive Education and Vocational Experiences) is a four-year inclusive higher education program for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to expand their interests and prepare for inclusive employment in the community. 

  1. Texas A&M University – Postsecondary Access and Training in Human Services (PATHS) 

4225 TAMU - Department of Educational Psychology 
College Station, TX 77843 

Contact:  Tracy Glass - 979.845.4461 - 

The PATHS Certificate Program leads to a successful career as a Direct Support Professional General (DSP-G), a Direct Support Para-Paraprofessional (DSP-P) or a Child Care Professional (CCP). 


  1. Texas A&M University San Antonio –TU CASA 

Transition University for Career Advancement and Successful Adulthood 

One University Way, San Antonio, TX 78224 
College Station, TX 77843 

Contact:  Mariya Davis – 210-784-2517- 

The TU CASA model is designed to provide students with intellectual disabilities a true university experience while gaining the skills and knowledge needed to transition to independent adult lives. TU CASA addresses the critical needs in the community by establishing a sustainable program that: (a) provides 18 months of fully inclusive PSE opportunities with access to typical and specialized A&M-SA services and supports; (b) offers a meaningful credential upon completion that addresses academic, employment, and independent living domains; (c) utilizes a person-centered approach to meet unique student needs and enhance their quality of life; (d) employs comprehensive program evaluation; and (e) includes a plan for replication on regional and state levels. 


  1. West Texas A&M University  – Where the Learning Continues (WTLC) 

2403 Russell Long Blvd., Canyon, TX 79016 

Contact:  Andrea Porter – 806-651-2037- 

Where the Learning Continues (WTLC) at West Texas A&M University is a higher education experience committed to empowering students with intellectual disabilities by strengthening their academic knowledge, social skills, and unique abilities in a way that nurtures confidence and inspire independence. 

  1. Tarrant County College – First Choice 

Dr. Vickie Moss -  MOSS, VACOCHIA (VICKIE) - 817-515-2500 - 

The First Choice Program on Southeast Campus empowers you with the tools you need to confront challenges as you transition from dependency to independent living. We also provide specialized training and education if you want to enhance your livelihood without taking standard college courses.  

  1. Austin Community College – ACC STEPS - 

5930 Middle Fiskville Rd., Austin, TX 78752 

Christine Price - 512-223-7856 - 

ACC's STEPS is a two-year program for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities interested in gaining skills to enter the workforce or continue to develop their education. 

  1. Arlington Baptist University - Green Oaks Life Prep 

500 Houston Street, Arlington, TX 76011 

Contact:  Jean Jewell -  817-861-5000 - 

Three year intensive training program focused on independent living skills, skill-based training in the horticulture and culinary arts/hospitality industries and applied learning through internships.  


  1. Alvin Community College – STRIVE 

3110 Mustang Rd., Alvin, TX 77511 

Contact:  Mary Vlahovich – 281-756-5714 – 

STRIVE is a 2-year college program for adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities. The program provides vocational training with the end goal of the student obtaining a job. This is not an accredited college degree program. 

9. Houston Community College – VAST Academy 

1301 Alabama 101, Houston, TX 77004 

Contact:  Sue Moraska – 713-718-6832 - 

VAST Academy provides post-secondary transition programs and comprehensive support services which lead to meaningful credentials, employment and independence for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities on three campuses of Houston Community College. Opportunities include vocational certificates, pre-college and freshman success "bridge" courses, career readiness credentials, internships and employment assistance offered through an inclusive, relevant and affordable avenue. 


  1. Dallas College El Centro Campus - The Moving On/Next Step Program 

801 Main Street, Dallas, TX 75202 

Contact: Thomas Murray - 214-860-5940 

This program is specifically designed for students with learning disabilities. Courses are intended to prepare students for the workplace by teaching them interpersonal skills and basic work-related academic and computer skills, along with essential career awareness and job search skills needed for independence. Classes span from two to four semesters, based on individual needs and scheduling requirements. Student eligibility is determined by an interview/assessment conducted by the program coordinator. To ensure individual success and educational effectiveness, enrollment is limited to 14 students per class.   

21. Dallas College Richland Campus – Richardson ISD Transition Partnership 

12800 Abrams Road, Dallas, TX 75243-2199 

Contact:  Keysha McCloud - 972-238-6180 - 972-238-6372 - 

Richland has a partnership with Richardson ISD. Students with IDD have the option to transition to college, while still receiving support from the school district. Students attend classes on Tuesday and Thursday on the college campus. Students take 2-3 classes and receive tutoring. Additionally, the TRI program is available, which was designed for students with TBI. Students with IDD are allowed to take some of these courses too. 

 22. Lee College - Life Skills for Intellectually Disabled Students 

200 Lee Drive, Baytown, TX 77520-4703 

Contact: Lauren Oehler - 281-425-6457 - 

Designed for the developmentally disabled adult to enrich and enhance adult life, this course provides students with a wide variety of skills, including functional skills in computer technology, basic math and reading, and leisure time activities. Students must be 21 years of age or older and NOT enrolled in public school. Beginners and/or returning students welcome. Pre-registration with Lee College Center for Workforce & Community Development is required before attending class. 

  1. Navarro College – The Elevate Program 

3200 West 7th Avenue, Corsicana, TX 75110 

Contact:  Micaela Herndon EdD - 972-923-6440 - 

The Elevate Program serves students with cognitive and learning disabilities, ages 18-21, who are enrolled in local K-12 schools. They spend half a day attending classes at Navarro College and half a day on a job site. During their time on campus at Navarro College, students take courses that focus on improving work-related reading and communication skills. Students also learn basic computer skills and develop employment and job search skills. Additionally, students are enrolled in a physical activity course. Upon completion of all courses, a Continuing Education Certificate of Completion for Marketable Skills will be awarded. 


  1. Texas Tech University – Connections for Academic Success and Employment (CASE Program) 

2500 Broadway, Lubbock, TX 79409 

Contact: Taylor Fidler - 806-742-4561 – 

The CASE program assists students with Autism and other developmental disabilities to navigate college, to empower them to reach their postsecondary academic goals, and to find competitive employment after graduation. The CASE program offers an innovative college support program for students diagnosed with Autism and other developmental disabilities pursuing an academic degree at Texas Tech University or South Plains College in West Texas. With the support of the Burkhart Center for Autism Education and Research, CASE provides research-based, customized supports for students to facilitate their successful transition to college and the entrance into competitive employment after graduation.  




  1. The University of Oklahoma – SOONER WORKS 

Contact:  405-325-4543 - 

Sooner Works is a transition program at the University of Oklahoma for students with an intellectual disability. It provides an integrated postsecondary educational and employment experience.  


  1. Highline College – ACHIEVE Program 

23835 Pacific Highway S, Building 99, Room 180, Kent, Washington 

Contact: 206-592-3526 – 

Achieve is a comprehensive post-secondary transition program that includes credit and non-credit classes, intensive advising, involvement in campus life, community-based internships, and assistance with job placement. 

For additional Texas College Information, visit: 


For additional programs in other states, visit: