Township of Union Public Schools

 
TRANSITION TO ADULT LIFE
FOR STUDENTS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS
 
PLEASE NOTE:The resources and organizations listed are not to be considered formal recommendations of the Township of Union School District nor are they intended to service all populations.  Please contact the listed providers for additional information regarding programs, security, and answers to any other questions.  
 
Information will be added to this Transition web page as it becomes available throughout the school year. Please check back regularly for updates. Many events are held annually around the same time and location, so we will leave all announcements on this site, even if the event/information has passed; this may provide awareness of similar events in the future. 
 
If you need further assistance related to TRANSITION,
please contact our Transition Coordinators at Union High School (Room L112):
 
Ms. Sarah McCulloh, (908) 851-4431, smcculloh@twpunionschools.org
Mrs. Vanessa Tuohy, (908) 851-4431, vtuohy@twpunionschools.org
 
ACI CARES ACT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law on March 27, 2020. The CARES Act provides supplemental funding for programs and a vast array of resources to assist people with disabilities to continue living independently in their communities across the U.S.
 
Centers for Independent Living (CILs), including the Alliance Center for Independence (ACI), recently received funding to provide assistance to eligible individuals with disabilities facing hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This program is provided as a last resort. You must provide information that no other source of funding is available. Effective until June 30, 2021.
 
For more information, please visit: 
 
 

NJ STATE (AND UNION COUNTY) RESOURCES

FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES

 
Generally speaking, there are 3 NJ State Agencies that may assist our students.  They are:  
1. Division of Children and Families (DCF)
2. Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD)
3. Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (DVRS)
 

**FOR ALL STUDENTS UNDER 21 YEARS OF AGE:

 
DIVISION OF CHILDREN AND FAMILIES (DCF)/PERFORM CARE

(877) 652-7624, http://www.nj.gov/dcf/families/csc/

 

To complete DCF/CSOC application:www.performcarenj.org/families/forms.aspx or you may call the number above to request paper application via mail; you can then return it to:

 

Perform Care New Jersey, Attention: DD Eligibility Unit, 300 Horizon Drive, Suite 306, Robbinsville, New Jersey 08691-1919

 

**Please Note:  If applying for the first time after age 18, you must first apply to the Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD), and if found eligible, they will forward the application to DCF. 

 

DCF Services Offered to Eligible Children with Developmental Disabilities: 

 

*Summer Camp Opportunities:  Applications for camp assistance can be found at the PerformCare website; check back in March 2020 for updates. PROJECTED DEADLINE:  April 30, 2020

 

 

The CSOC Summer Camp Services 2020:  A Guide for Families

https://www.performcarenj.org/families/disability/summer-camp.aspx

 

*Respite Services:  Provides family caregivers with a short period of rest/relief by arranging alternate care-giving; it is usually provided by an agency that contracts with the Children’s System of Care (CSOC) and may include after-school activities, weekend recreational activities, a short-term placement in a licensed setting, or in-home/self-directed respite. 

 

*Assistive Technology Devices (ATD):  These are used to increase, maintain, or improve an individual’s functional capabilities and may include materials that make the environment more accessible, allowing the individual to compete in the workplace and enhance independence.  Families must seek three competitive bids, and the device must be prescribed by a physician or therapist; individual must have received a denial from their insurance carrier, including Medicaid, and may receive no more than $11,000 for ATD over a 3-year period.

 

*Home and Vehicle Modifications:  These are removable, structural modifications (such as ramps, grab-bars, etc…), and individuals may receive no more than $11,000 for home/vehicle modifications over a 3-year period. 

 

**FOR STUDENTS OVER 18 YEARS OF AGE

(Services are only for adults who have a developmental disability):

 

DIVISION OF DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES (DDD):

110 East 5th Street, Plainfield, NJ  07060, (908) 226-7800, www.state.nj.us/humanservices/ddd/home/

 
DDD Quick Guide for Families:  
This document has now been updated and provides condensed, easy-to-understand information from the policy manuals for both of the Division’s Medicaid waiver programs, the Supports Program and Community Care Program. As before, printed copies can be requested through the New Jersey Council on Developmental Disabilities (NJCDD), using their Quick Guide Request form here: 
 
Please note that, due to the COVID-19 public health emergency, NJCDD staff are working remotely and requests for printed copies will be fulfilled when NJCDD staff are able to return to the physical office.
A Spanish translation of the Quick Guide for Families will also be available soon.
 
This guide can be helpful for any family whose loved one will be entering Division services, but is particularly valuable for middle and high school students with intellectual/developmental disabilities and their families.
 
An Overview of the Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD)
Powerpoint Presentation given to the Transition Coordinator's Network on 10-21-2020
_____________________
 

To complete the DDD Application for Eligibility for DDD-funded services:

Please visit the main DDD application page here.  

  • SHORT Application: This revised application can be utilized by individuals who are 18 or older and were previously determined eligible for developmental disability services through the New Jersey Children's System of Care (CSOC).The Short Application is an effort to simplify and streamline the transition from CSOC to DDD.
  • FULL ApplicationThe Full DDD Application is for applicants age 18 or older who HAVE NOT been previously determined eligible for developmental disability services through DDD.
You may submit all the required documents to DDD yourself using the contact information above, or you may give the DDD application and signed/notarized Authorization to Release Information to one of the Transition Coordinators at UHS.  They may then hand deliver the application for you and ask the receiving DDD employee to sign for all documents; we encourage you to keep a copy of the entire DDD application package for your personal records.   
 
**Please note: You can apply for DDD eligibility at the age of 18, but you will not receive any services until you are 21, receiving Medicaid, and after you have exhausted your educational entitlement.  

 

 

DDD services offered to eligible adults may include: Assistive technology, behavior supports, career planning, cognitive rehabilitation, community-based supports, community inclusion services, day habilitation, environmental modifications, fiscal management services (Fiscal Intermediary), goods and services, interpreter services, natural supports training, occupational therapy, Personal Emergency Response System (PERS), physical therapy, prevocational training, respite, speech language & hearing therapy, support coordination, supported employment – individual and/or small group, supports brokerage, transportation, and vehicle modifications. 

 

The Arc of NJ Family Institute, A Step by Step Process to DDD Eligibility:
https://www.thearcfamilyinstitute.org/resources/ddd-eligibility-go-bag.html

NJ Comprehensive Assessment Tool (NJ CAT): During the intake process, the student's parent/guardian must complete the NJ Comprehensive Assessment Tool (NJ CAT); this survey is used to determine needed postsecondary supports as well as the amount of money that will be allotted for your individualized budget. 

 

Please contact Ron Wasserman, DDD Intake, at (908) 226-7802, for more information about the NJ CAT. 

 

 

NJ CAT Questionshttps://www.nj.gov/humanservices/ddd/documents/njcat_sample_assessment.pdf

 

Watch an archived NJ CAT webinarwww.youtube.com/watch?v=nluCSo5kFWk

 

DDD Supports Coordinator Selection Form:  After DDD Eligibility has been established when the student is age 21, you must complete this form which will allow you to choose (or you will be auto assigned) a Support Coordinator (SC) to help you develop an Individualized Service Plan (ISP) for supports to be provided by DDD after graduation. For more information, http://nj.gov/humanservices/ddd/services/support_coordination.html
 
Archived Webinar:  “DDD’s System Reform:  Understanding what it Means for Someone Entering DDD Services:" www.youtube.com/watch?v=z5SL7-puP58
 
To subscribe to the Division's E-news Bulletin: Send an email to DDD.Communications@dhs.state.nj.us, with Division Update Subscribe in the subject line.
 
DDD-Supports Program Policy Manual (updated 3/2019): 
(Please see page 194-195 for the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between DDD and DVRS)
 
Support Coordination Agencies (updated 2/20/2020):
https://www.nj.gov/humanservices/ddd/documents/support-coordination-agencies-list.pdf 
 
This website allows users to search for providers by name or services. You may filter your search results further by services, provider location, location type, etc., or use a combination of searches and filters to browse provider options.
 
Things to Be Aware When Transitioning from High School to Adult Life/Things to Consider When Choosing an Adult Service Provider: \Things to Be Aware When Transitioning From High School to Adult Life.docx
 
Understanding Self-Directed Services in NJ and the Role of the Supports Broker: 
 "...new resource developed by The Boggs Center on Developmental Disabilities, in collaboration with the NJ Division of Developmental Disabilities, the NJ Collaborative for Citizen Directed Supports, and people with disabilities and families.
https://www.nj.gov/humanservices/ddd/documents/understanding-self-directed-services-and-role-of-supports-broker.pdf
 
PLEASE NOTE:  IMPORTANT INFORMATION:  
Graduates Aging out of School System (for adults planning to receive services from DDD):

https://www.nj.gov/humanservices/ddd/documents/graduates-timeline.pdf

 
 
 
**FOR STUDENTS WITHIN TWO YEARS OF GRADUATION

(Services are for adults who may be seeking

some additional vocational supports):

 

DIVISION OF VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION SERVICES (DVRS):

New Jersey Department of Labor, 921 Elizabeth Avenue, 3rd Floor, Elizabeth, NJ  07201,

(908) 965-3940 

http://careerconnections.nj.gov/careerconnections/plan/foryou/disable/vocational_rehabilitation_services.shtml

 

If you wish to contact the Vocational Counselor at DVRS that has been assigned to our district, please contact Ms. Esther Phillip at the above telephone number or you may email her at Esther.Phillip@dol.nj.gov.

 

DVRS REFERRAL PACKET: \DVRS Forms.pdf

If you are interested in applying for eligibility from DVRS prior to graduation and with the support of your CST Case Manager and/or a Transition Coordinator, please visit the link above for more information. The "DVRS Referral Form," along with a signed and notarized "Authorization to Release Information," may be submitted to the student's Child Study Team Case Manager; upon receipt, they will then forward the student's Individualized Educational Plan (IEP), Psychological, and Educational Reports, to DVRS on your behalf. 

 

DVRS works to assist students with disabilities who may require services in order to prepare for, get, and keep a job. The ultimate goal is to create a smooth transition from school to work, so that upon graduation, a student is prepared to begin work and/or postsecondary training that lead to competitive employment. Updated testing (Psychological and Educational evaluations) is required within two years of graduation to determine the student’s current interests and abilities. Once found eligible, DVRS may provide counseling/guidance to current high school students, as well as help the student/family develop goals and objectives for an Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE). 

 
DVRS Services Offered to Eligible Adults:  Vocational counseling & guidance, placement services, job seeking skills, supported employment, time limited placement and coaching, job accommodations, skills training, college training, physical/emotional restoration, mobility equipment, driver training, and vehicle/home modifications. 
 

**Please Note:  Expenses for medical services, training, supplies, tools, and/or equipment are based on the individual’s income/ability to pay.  In some cases, DVRS may be able to assist the student in funding their college/vocational school education, paying for books, and/or providing a monthly reduced-fare bus pass.     

 

For more information about these three agencies (DCF, DDD, and DVRS),

as well as some additional NJ state/local transition-related resources, please visit: 

\NJ State-Union County Transition Resources 2017.docx

 
 

 

 

ADDITIONAL TRANSITION-RELATED INFORMATION

 

New Brochure of Guardianship and Alternatives

NJ Department of Education

New Brochure on Guardianship and Alternatives -1-.pdf

 

Long Term Planning and Legal Matters for People with Disabilities, NJ:

/Legal Matters 2017-18.docx

 
Pro Se Legal Guardianship Papers within the State of NJ:

                **Papers to obtain guardianship of the person and estate:

http://www.njcourts.gov/forms/10558_guardianship_person_and_estate.pdf

 

                **Papers to obtain guardianship of (only) the person:

http://www.njcourts.gov/forms/12009_guardianship_person.pdf

 

 

Mental Health Association in Union County: https://www.mhanj.org/mhanj-in-union-county/

 

LOCAL EMPLOYMENT INFORMATION

 

PACER's National Parent Center on Transition and Employment:  

Paving the Way: Parent Tips for Supporting Success in High School and Beyond

https://www.pacer.org/transition/learning-center/planning/supporting-your-teen.asp?utm_source=February+2019+NCC+Newsletter&utm_campaign=February+2019+NCC+newsletter&utm_medium=email

 

The Job Connection:  https://www.ucc.edu/continuing-and-professional-education-and-workforce-development/center-for-economic-and-workforce-development/job-connections-newsletter/

 

Are you a teen looking for a summer job? 

Check out the Youth Employment Pathways Progream (YEPP) Summer Initiative:  \YEPP.pdf

 

 
 
A Transition Guide to Postsecondary Education/Employment For Students and Youth with DisabilitiesOffice of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, US Department of Education,
 
 
TRANSITION-RELATED WORKSHOPS
 
Planning for Adult Life (PFAL)Training Series: 
A representative from The Arc of NJ will visit a number of locations throughout the region to teach skills related to seven (7) core areas (Transition Planning/Visioning, Health/Behavioral Health, Housing, Legal/Financial, Social, Self-Direction, and Post-Secondary Education/Employment).  
 
Achieved Webinars, Planning for Adult Life (PFAL), The Arc of NJ:
 
 
ADDITIONAL TRANSITION-RELATED WORKSHOPS
 
10/2/2021, 9:00am - 2:00pm
NJ Youth Transition Conference:  Navigating the Future
Youth, Caregiver, and Family Day
This conference is for all NJ youth in transition and their families, as well as the professionals who serve them.
 
October 21, 2021  7:30pm
Virtual only
*Planning for Transition:  Why it is Vital for your Student’s Future
The transition planning process is evaluating the student’s skills, abilities, strengths, challenges, and preferences to envision their life after leaving school.  Planning involves setting goals for the student to strive toward and identifying the needs for support.  Carrying out the transition plan can begin and should be a part of the students’ Individualized Educational Plan (IEP).  Students and families must be actively involved in the transition planning process as early as possible and keep it moving forward.  This presentation discusses the importance of planning, the steps necessary to plan, and provides hands-on tools to put a plan in place.
RSVP:  Roger Askins, Transition Coordinator, (973) 564-7130, ext. 379, roger.askins@millburn.org
 
November 18, 2021 7:30pm
Virtual only
*SSI and Medicaid:  How to Apply and Why You Need To Do So
There are many different ways to initiate the Medicaid eligibility process, and it is important to make sure you have all of the necessary information.  This workshop will help parents and caregivers understand how to access health care services for their loved one with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities (I/DD) from the current health care system. 
PLEASE NOTE:  Medicaid is required to receive any adult services from the Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD) after graduation from high school.
RSVP:  Jodi Goldstein jgoldstein@westorangeschools.org
 
December 16, 2021 7:30pm  
Union County Educational Services Commission Central Offices, (UCESC) 
45 Cardinal Drive, 2nd Floor, Westfield, NJ 07090  Online option available as well. 
*Guardianship and Supported Decision Making:  Just the Basics
Guardianship can be a valuable tool that can be used to protect individuals who don’t or no longer possess the ability to make appropriate personal or financial decisions for themselves.  This workshop will help parents and caregivers understand the guardianship process, levels of guardianship, and alternatives to guardianship. 
RSVP: Josh Bornstein jbornstein@ucesc.org
 
January 20, 2022
Hosted by Linden Public Schools (LPS), Held at the Academy of Excellence (formally known as St. Elizabeth)
170 Hussa Street, Linden, NJ  07036  Online option available as well. 
*Accessing Services and ‘Natural Supports’
Everyone has a right to be involved in their community.  There are many supports for people with disabilities to help them do just that.  This workshop will discuss services for accessing the community and will provide hands-on tools for helping students to obtain natural supports in the community.  It will also include conversations on how to navigate some of the challenges associated with accessing services. 
RSVP: Celia Dipolvere cdipolvere@lindenps.org
 
February 17, 2022 at 7:30 pm
Virtual Only
*Yes, Your Child Can Work!  Working Toward Employment for People With I/DD
For many people, a job is something that helps define who they are.  It gives us a meaningful place to go every day, a way to explore our interests, a means of earning money, and a way to be a part of our community.  This workshop will discuss different employment options available to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and hands-on tools for preparing students for employment. 
RSVP:  Sarah McCulloh, Transition Coordinator, (908) 851-4431, smcculloh@twpunionschools.org
 
May 19, 2022 at 7:30pm
Governor Livingston High School IMC (library), 175 Watchung Blvd., Berkeley Heights, NJ 07922 Online option available as well. 
*Yes, Your Child Can Work!  Working Toward Employment for People With I/DD
For many people, a job is something that helps define who they are.  It gives us a meaningful place to go every day, a way to explore our interests, a means of earning money, and a way to be a part of our community.  This workshop will discuss different employment options available to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and hands-on tools for preparing students for employment. 
RSVP: Steve Siebelts, Social Worker, Berkeley Heights Public Schools, (908) 464-3100 ext. 2413, ssiebelts@bhpsnj.org
 
 
 
COLLEGE RESOURCES FOR STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES
 
Colleges and Universities may offer supportive and individualized services to students with disabilities. For more information, including documentation guidelines, please contact each school of interest. Below is a list of schools within the State of NJ and their link to these services; please note, this is not a complete listing of schools within the State.   
 
 
College Programs for Students with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and Scholarship Opportunities
 
 
Cabrini University 
 
 
County College of Morris
 
 
Drew University
 
 
Essex County College
 
 
Fairleigh Dickinson University
 
 
Kean Univerity
 
 
Middlesex County College
 
Project Connections, Middlesex County College, Edison, NJ:
             
Monmouth University
 
 
Montclair University
 
 
New Jersey City University
 
 
Rutgers University
 
 
Seton Hall
 
 
The College of NJ
 
 
Union County College
 
 
William Paterson University
 

20 Great Colleges for students with Learning Disabilities:  
 
 
 
 
 
SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITIES
FOR STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES
 
 
Dr. Rosa Hagin Scholarship for Graduating High School Students with Learning Disabilities and/or Attention Issues: