Improving Systems, Practices and Outcomes

RP Products by Topic: Transition

from the DEC Recommended Practices on Transition:

Transition refers to the events, activities, and processes associated with key changes between environments or programs during the early childhood years and the practices that support the adjustment of the child and family to the new setting. These changes occur at the transition from hospital to home, the transition into early intervention (Part C) programs, the transition out of early intervention to community early childhood programs, the transition into Part B/619, and the transition to kindergarten or school-age programs.

Transition Checklists

  • This checklist includes processes and behaviors used by practitioners to support the transition of newborn or very young infants and their caregivers from hospital services into early intervention services. The main focus of these practices is to implement activities in collaboration with family members and health care providers that promote positive relationships and child and family preparation and adjustment to home and community settings and services.

    The checklist indicators can be used to become acquainted with the family, guide first contacts, learn their story, assess their interest in early intervention and coordinate with other providers key to their well-being. The checklist rating scale can be used for self-evaluation to determine whether practices are in place and being implemented.

  • This checklist includes processes and behaviors used by practitioners to support the transition of toddlers from early intervention services into preschool special education services.

    The main focus of these practices is to implement activities in collaboration with family members and preschool program staff that promote positive relationships and child and family preparation and adjustment to new settings and services.

    The checklist indicators can be used to develop a transition plan in the child's IFSP, support caregiver decision-making and to promote practitioner planning, communication and collaboration skills. The checklist rating scale can be used for self-evaluation to determine whether practices are in place and being implemented.

  • This checklist includes processes and behaviors used by practitioners to support preschoolers and their caregivers transition from preschool special education services into kindergarten.

    The main focus of these practices is to implement activities in collaboration with family members and kindergarten staff that promote positive relationships and child and family preparation and adjustment to new settings and services.

    The checklist indicators can be used to develop a transition plan, encourage caregiver decision-making, update the child's IEP and promote practitioner planning, communication and collaboration skills. The checklist rating scale can be used for self-evaluation to determine whether practices are in place and being implemented.

Transition Illustrations

  • Transition from Hospital to Early Intervention Checklist
    Video Scrapbook on the Medical Home
    Go to: Video Scrapbook on the Medical Home

    These twelve videos clips that with medical home issues related to Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) systems. The transition from hospital to home is addressed. Transcripts of each video clip are provided.

    Courtesy WWW: The National Center for Hearing, Assessment and Management.

    Early Intervention Colorado for Infants and Toddlers Video Library

    The following videos are useful for learning about family experiences with first contacts, the early intervention process and other relevant topics related to beginning early intervention services. Practitioners share tips for early intervention processes.

    What is it like to begin services?

    Courtesy WWW: EI Colorado.

    Why did your family pursue Early Intervention?

    Courtesy WWW: EI Colorado.

    What is a Service Coordinator?

    Courtesy WWW: EI Colorado.

  • Transition from Early Intervention Services into Part B Preschool Special Education Checklist
    Foundations Of Transition

    3:37 - 5:13 summarizes research in effective transition practices. A family story is given to illustrate effective staff practices.

    Video courtesy WWW: CONNECT at Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute.

    Transition from Early Intervention to Preschool

    This presentation describes the process for transition from early intervention into preschool special education including legal requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education and Improvement Act (IDEA). From 2:00 - 4:01, strategies for parent participation and learning about the transition planning team are described.

    Video courtesy WWW: Utah Parent Center.

    Tina's Story

    Tina, a parent, describes how the early intervention and school district staff used collaborative planning strategies in transition planning and facilitated program visitation to support her preparation and adjustment to her child's transition to preschool.

    Video courtesy WWW: Utah Parent Center.

    Tom and Lori's Story

    Tom and Lori, Emma's parents describe how the Utah Parent Center supported their preparation for transition planning by offering useful questions to consider and visiting schools programs.

    Video courtesy WWW: Utah Parent Center.

    Christine's Story

    Christine, a parent, describes how positive the transition planning experience was and shares the support provided by the early intervention and school district staff.

    Video courtesy WWW: Utah Parent Center.

    Parents' Perspectives on School: Tips and Transition

    Six parents of children with disabilities and special health care needs share their top tips on preparing children and families for school transitions. EI to preschool and preschool to K transitions are represented.

    Courtesy WWW: The Center for Learning and Leadership at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.

  • Transition from Preschool Special Education to Kindergarten Checklist
    So, You Are Going to Kindergarten

    Developed through a grant from the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care's Coordinated Family and Community Engagement Grant Program, this video is geared to incoming kindergarteners and their families. See kindergarten classrooms in action and hear advice from parents, children, teachers and a principal to prepare children and families for a smooth adjustment.

    Video courtesy WWW: Milton Early Childhood Alliance.

    Transition to Kindergarten Resources and Videos
    Go to: Transition to Kindergarten Resources and Videos

    Transitions: From Children's Perspectives provides comments and interviews by children on what to expect and what kindergarten is like.

    Transitions: A Community Perspective on Transition offers strategies used by community program and school personnel to assist families and their children and ensure smooth transitions.

    Courtesy WWW: National Center for Quality Teaching and Learning.

    From Kindergartner to Kindergartner: What's Important for You to Know

    Children in kindergarten offer advice for being successful and adjusting to kindergarten by sharing how to behave in different routines and how to be kind to others.

    Video courtesy the Capistrano Unified School District Department of Media Services of the WWW: Orange County Department of Education.

Transition Practice Guides for Practitioners

  • When a family transitions their child from a hospital stay into early intervention services, it is important for them to feel comfortable and respected in their communication with early intervention providers. Early interventionists should gather information from family members/parents about their experiences in the hospital in a sensitive and respectful manner. Learning about a family's concerns and priorities before and during a transition is an important first step in the process of developing trust, beginning a new relationship, and developing an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) that is responsive to the family's desires and needs.

    Video courtesy Illinois Early Intervention Training Program
  • Early intervention and preschool special education practitioners can support parents and caregivers during the transition to preschool special education by listening to parents' concerns and preferences, answering their questions, coordinating cross-agency communication, and providing parents clear and accurate information. Practitioners need to be sure parents and family members are informed and prepared to participate as decision-makers in the transition process.

  • Children's transition from preschool to kindergarten is successful for families and children when collaborative relationships exist between the preschool and kindergarten programs. Personnel from early care and education programs, preschool special education, family resource and support programs, and elementary schools need to plan and coordinate transition activities for families before and after a child's entry into kindergarten. Collaborative planning, clear communication, and a variety of transition activities support child and family preparation for and adjustment to the new setting.

    Video courtesy National Center on Parent, Family, and Community Engagement

Transition Practice Guides for Families

  • Before your infant leaves the hospital, you can take a number of steps to be sure needed supports are in place once your child is home. Referrals to community programs and early intervention services can begin while your infant is still in the hospital. You can play an important role in the discharge planning process by asking questions, sharing concerns, and obtaining key information about programs and supports you think will be useful for you and your infant.

    Video courtesy WHAT TO EXPECT
  • As your toddler approaches his or her third birthday, early intervention practitioners will work with you to plan your child’s transition from early intervention and, if potentially eligible, to preschool special education services. This transition involves key decisions about your child’s future. By communicating and collaborating with both the early intervention program staff and the preschool program staff, you can share information you need to actively participate in the transition planning process, share your concerns and preferences, and help your child adjust to the new setting and services.

    Video courtesy Utah Parent Center
  • The transition to kindergarten is an important time in your and your child's life and you want to be as prepared as possible. Learn about kindergarten requirements, expectations, and routines before your child is enrolled. Work with the preschool program staff and ask for their support to access key information and participate in kindergarten transition strategies. Engaging in transition planning activities will help you to be more prepared to support your child’s and your family’s adjustment to the new kindergarten setting in your local school.

    Video courtesy Center for Leadership and Learning, Oklahoma Health Sciences Center

Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center

  • CB 8040
  • Chapel Hill, NC 27599-8040
  • phone: 919.962.2001
  • fax: 919.966.7463
  • email: ectacenter@unc.edu

The ECTA Center is a program of the FPG Child Development Institute of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, funded through cooperative agreement number H326P120002 from the Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education. Opinions expressed herein do not necessarily represent the Department of Education's position or policy.

  • FPG Child Development Institute
  • IDEAs that Work