Transition to Adulthood

The transition from being in school for most of the day to adulthood is a huge step for families of children with disabilities and special health care needs.  Once you think you have things figured out with school and kids systems you now have to navigate different adult systems. Below are a variety of resources related to the transition to adulthood. Feel free to reach out to us for assistance, using our Contact Us form.

Resources on Supported Decision Making are here

Statewide Resources

The CYSHCN Network offers several trainings related to health transition that are listed below and  here. Feel free to give us a call at the Regional Center to learn more or see our front page for upcoming trainings.

  • Youth Health Transition Introduction to Youth Health Transition: The Process of Getting Ready for Health Care as an Adult Available as a webcast at: Introduces the steps involved when moving from pediatric to adult health care.
  • Build Your Bridge: Moving from Child to Adult Health Care Introduce and discuss when to start thinking about health care transition to adult care providers as well as offers helpful tools and resources.
  • Dreaming Differently To meet the needs of a unique audience, the “Build Your Bridge” curriculum has been adapted for families who are raising children with significant intellectual or developmental disabilities and medical complexity.
  • Bridging the Gap An overview of youth health transition with information tailored to different, mixed audiences (e.g., parents, teachers, nurses, etc.). What’s After High School? A broad overview of the transition to adult life for youth with disabilities and special health care needs. Includes: envisioning a youth’s future; post-secondary concerns; long-term supports; transitioning to adult health care; legal considerations; and supported decision making.

Family Voices of Wisconsin has fact sheets on transition including information on Supported Decision Making and accessing healthcare:

Wisconsin Promise created a Transition Guide (Fall 2018): Contact us for a paper copy. 

Health Care Transition

The Wisconsin Youth Health Transition Initiative serves as the hub for health care transition-related information. Other resources include:

Transition to Adult Long Term Care and Supports

Transitioning from the Children’s Long Term Support waiver to the Adult Long Term Care waiver can be assisted by your child’s CLTS case manager. Your local Aging and Disability Resource Center can assist you learn more about adult long term care supports. You can find your local office by using this map:

DHS has created a comparison of the two long term care options (Family Care and Iris) for people with physical or intellectual disabilities. It is here

School Supports and local County Communities on Transition (CCoTs)

When it comes time to plan for transition, many local schools have resource fairs and transition nights to help families navigate this process. Contact your local school and see if they have a transition coordinator or ask the special education director to see about these. Also, most counties have a group of educators and other organizations that meet as a County Community on Transition to support each other and families through these processes. Information on C-CoTs can be found at

Transition from School to Post-Secondary Education and Employment

  • The Division of Vocational Rehabilitation is your first connection to employment. Most students connect with DVR during high school.  They have a great video introducing their services:
  • Information on Project SEARCH internship programs in Wisconsin:
  • Think College provides information on program access to post-secondary education for people with intellectual disabilities.
  • Jump Start at Nicolet College in Rhinelander is a post-secondary program for adults with intellectual disabilities
  • Northwood Technical College Hospitalities Foundations is a 16-week program preparing students for career opportunities in the area of entry-level hospitality and other customer service employment settings for students with intellectual disabilities or other obstacles