We believe that preparing disabled children and young people for adult life needs to start as early as possible in order to allow them to develop the skills and knowledge they will need to have choice and control over their lives.
We know what works in supporting young people to have a positive experience of transition and to embark on adulthood with good outcomes, but there are still a number of organisational and societal barriers to making this work in practice and as a result the experience of young people and families varies widely. These challenges may be the result of a lack of clear and transparent information, changes in the professionals working with families, moving from children’s services to adults’ services or the length of time and the support they are given to plan. The nature of transition as a stage in a disabled young person’s life means that it cuts across a wide range of professional sectors, particularly education, health and social care.
In recent years there has been a significant focus on improving transition support. New duties emphasise a focus on outcomes that lead to fulfilling adult lives such as paid employment and higher education; independent living opportunities; good health; and friends, relationships and being part of the community. Education, Health and Care plans have the potential to continue to age 25 and involve a number of decision making rights and responsibilities for young people from 16 onwards.
What are we doing about it
We believe that preparing disabled children and young people for adult life needs to start as early as possible in order to allow them to develop the skills and knowledge they will need to have choice and control over their lives. Disabled young people and their families need to be supported to understand their rights and professionals need to be clear on how young people can be supported to develop the skills they need in order to be able to make informed decisions about the future.