Transition from school to employment can be scary and very exciting. Your final years in high school are an important time to start planning and thinking about future employment possibilities, post-school education, and connections with Spokane County employment agencies.
Job Foundation is an effort to engage students earlier in targeted employment planning and connection to the adult service system. Community-based employment providers will use their expertise to gather important foundational information about skills and supports needed for a job. They will work in partnership with school staff to leverage vocational academic, and life skill preparation being done in the schools on behalf of the individual student.
School To Work
Students who have jobs when they graduate are more prepared for adult life than those who don't. School To Work and Job Foundation is a collaboration between the Developmental Disabilities Division of Spokane County, your school, and the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) to help students with developmental disabilities, in their second to last and last year of school, find jobs before they graduate.
Access a brochure that more fully explains Job Foundation, and School To Work along with a side-by-side comparison of School To Work and Job Foundation. Also linked is the School To Work and Jobs Foundation application and the consent forms. Application and consent forms must be completed together and returned to the address at the bottom of the application.
Transition should be addressed in the students Individual Education Plan (IEP) by their 16th birthday or earlier, if appropriate.
It is important that students check their eligibility status of your Social Security Income (SSI) the month of your 18th birthday. Students will need to check their SSI eligibility status regardless of being previously denied or receiving benefits prior to age 18.
The Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) offers short-term employment supports before the age of 21. Short-term services are also available after age 21.
Long Term Employment
Long-term employment supports may be available through DSHS, Region 1, Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA)/Spokane County Community Services Department when you are age 21 and exited from school. Spokane County can assist you in navigating a complex system. Some of the ways in which we can assist you for a smooth transition are:
Attending Individual Education Plan (IEP) meetings
Discussing future goals
Explaining what each agency can offer in the areas of Employment
Discussing other resources, e.g., Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR)
Spokane County Community Services Department offers Resource Fairs to give students the opportunity to meet each qualified agency that provides employment services. On page 12 of the Participant Guide (PDF) are questions to ask an agency while deciding who to hire for employment supports.