Massachusetts Advocates for Children is a leader in advocating for appropriate transition services for students with disabilities. Services that address employment, education, vocational skill building, and daily living skills are critical for students as they transition from public school to adult life.

Through  cases, helpline, and community partners we learned of overwhelming obstacles for families in Boston. In response, MAC created the Boston Special Education Transition Project (BSET) in 2013 to help families get the services and supports that their children desperately need.

With its partners, MAC works at the legislative and administrative level to create important rights for students as they transition from public school education to adult life.

Inclusive Concurrent Enrollment (ICE)

MAC has worked over the years at the legislative and administrative level creating, among other initiatives, a new state program, Inclusive Concurrent Enrollment, for young adults ages 18-22 with intellectual disabilities and autism spectrum disorder, bringing public institutions of higher education together with school district to enable the students to attend college courses in an inclusive manner, participate in campus life, and develop employment and independent living skills.

Learn more about the Inclusive Concurrent Enrollment (ICE) grant program for students with severe disabilities in the video below which was produced by the Institute of Community Inclusion, a member of the Special Education Collaborative and provider of technical assistance to the program.

Additionally, NECN has an excellent report available on ICE:

Transition Laws

MAC played a leadership role in the passage of the law requiring transition age to begin at 14, as well as the implementation guidelines for parents and for professionals.

The legislative Task Force on Higher Education for Students with Intellectual Disability and Autism Spectrum Disorder released its final report, under the leadership of Rep. Tom Sannicandro, House Chair of the Joint Committee on Higher Education. MAC was instrumental in the development of the report. Task Force members included Julia Landau, MAC Senior Project Director, and Brian Heffernan, former MAC Youth Advocate Fellow. The report advocates for equal rights to higher education for students who have been denied the benefits for too long.

MAC helped establishment of the Transition Specialist Endorsement to ensure students receive appropriate transition services.

Boston Transition

The goal for this project is to increase employment, education, career and independent living opportunities for young people with disabilities in Boston. In order to do so, MAC is working directly with Boston Public Schools administrators and staff, and providing representation for students with special needs who are 14-22 years old.

MAC is conducting a survey of Boston families determine how we can best help Boston’s transition age youth with disabilities, age 13-22. For questions about the survey or to learn more about our Boston Transition project, please contact Johanne Pino (617) 357-8431 ext. 234  jpino@massadvocates.org.