The Guideposts: Who Should Use Them and How?

State Level Policy Makers

State level policy makers should use the Guideposts as a strategic organizational framework which can assist them in moving the state’s transition planning from a stovepipe focus on guiding categorical programs and funding to a more coordinated transition system focusing on successful outcomes for all youth.

Local Administrators and Policy Makers

Administrators and policy makers at the local level should use the Guideposts in making decisions regarding funding, in setting and establishing local priorities related to transitioning youth, and in evaluating the work of agencies supported by that funding.

Youth Service Professionals

Youth Service Professionals should use the Guideposts, and tools that NCWD/Youth has developed to implement them in their work.

Youth and Families

Youth and families should look for programs and activities that provide these features. Youth with disabilities should use the Guideposts in developing any individualized plans, such as Individualized Education Programs (IEPs), Individualized Plans for Employment (IPE), and service strategies as required by the Workforce Investment Act.

The following are examples of how the Guideposts are being used:

  • Led by an agency representing families with disabilities, one state developed a comprehensive Transition Strategic Plan for the entire state that address the needs of all youth and youth with disabilities. That Strategic Plan then served as the basis for state and local service planning and coordination. Several other states incorporated the Guideposts in their WIA Title I State Plan documents for describing how they would address the state and local needs of all youth. Many states have organized workforce development, special education and vocational rehabilitation conferences around the themes of the guideposts.
  • A successful program model for youth with disabilities, the High School-High Tech program, was completely revamped to align with the Guideposts.
  • A voluntary national organization of more than 50 organizations interested in transition-age youth, known as the National Alliance on Secondary Education & Transition, developed a set of standards and indicators to be used by school, workforce program and community leaders based on the Guideposts.
  • The Guideposts have been used in schools, vocational rehabilitation agencies, and youth serving organizations to guide individual planning tools such as the Individualized Education Program, the Individualized Transition Plan, the Individual Plan for Employment, and the Individual Service Plan, and the Individualized Family Service Plan.
  • Countless numbers of local program administrators and youth service professionals use the Guideposts as a quick reference desk checklist to make sure they are addressing all the needs of youth.
  • One foundation based in Washington, D.C. (The HSC Foundation) adopted the Guideposts as the basis for its community investment strategy and to guide the occupancy of its National Transition Center Youth Transitions Collaborative.