Thornton Fractional School District 215 Student Services offers a gamut of day services programs to meet the various transitional needs of students with disabilities. Day Services programs help participants acquire new skills and refine existing skills in the areas of daily living, communication, decision-making, vocational training, and socialization.
These programs frequently combine vocational skills training with furthering independence in life skills. Individuals are provided opportunities to complete work in-house under the supervision of agency staff and receive pay for their finished work. All sheltered workshops must be approved by both the Illinois Department of Labor as well as the Federal Department of Labor and adhere to their guidelines. Individuals are paid a “piece rate” wage, determined by the percentage of work they are able to complete per hour. Rates are determined by time study data. Routine jobs found in these environments include collation, mailings, shredding, assembly, sorting, order fulfillment, and janitorial skills. Continued training may occur in the areas of social skills, money management, independent living, reading and writing, and communication.
The overall objective of the School Transition Program is to provide a well-integrated vocational training program to high school students who are currently participating in a special education program or are eligible for special education through their local school district. In addition to meeting work credit requirements for graduation, the program also assists students to recognize interests, to acknowledge and develop individual abilities, to assist students to obtain appropriate community-based assessments and to guide students to appropriate vocational goal and training of their choice so that they can lead productive lives
SPEED Academy for Lifelong Learning
Students at SPEED are taught skill sets needed for lifelong learning, life skills and community access through hands-on activities that are meaningful and relevant to their lives and interests. SPEED has specific Transition Programing for 18 to 21 year old students. Program components include academic or functional skills instruction in literacy, math, daily living skills, and social skills and vocational skill development that include sheltered workshop experience and/or community-based vocational training. The purpose of the program is to prepare students for adulthood in the areas of employment, post-secondary education/vocational training, and independent living.
Students at St. Coletta are provided with real world work-based learning experiences to help them develop appropriate work skills and behaviors. Integration into the community is an important part of transition services. Students have the opportunity to work on daily living skills through community participation. St. Coletta staff have built positive relationships with various businesses in the community, which allows the students opportunities to develop their skills in actual work settings. Students are provided instruction and support in the areas of employment, education, training and independent living skills.
In this program, organizations seek employment opportunities in the local community for the individuals they serve. A job match is conducted to pair the right job with the right individual. Full and part-time employment opportunities are developed and the individual is provided training and support by a job coach hired by the organization.
iCan Dream Center Dream Catchers Transition Program
Dream Catchers is an Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) Approved Transition Program that provides students aged 17-21 with a supported, meaningful, and successful transition into adulthood. In addition to reinforcing the traditional academic high school curriculum, Dream Catchers teaches students how to apply their knowledge and develop the critical skills needed to transition into a fulfilling life after high school. Students gain compensated work experience, earn credits toward graduation (if needed), and participate in various community activities.
Goals are developed collaboratively between student, family, and transition staff using a person-centered approach. Dream Catchers staff link students to the services they need upon their exit, whether it is employment, vocational training, or adult services. The linkage is individual and personal to each student.
Country Club Hills Team Transition Program
The goal of this program is to engage youth and young adults in their own futures planning process, providing them with developmentally-appropriate services and supports and involving their families in the process. Country Club Hills Team Transition staff help students facilitate their movement toward greater self-sufficiency and achieving their goals in the transitional domains of employment, career-building education, living situation, personal effectiveness, quality of life, and community-life functioning.
This program focuses on long-term, independent employment for individuals with disabilities. Job search assistance is provided and some job coaching may be provided for a short period of time. The Department of Rehabilitation Services gears their service provision to those individuals who would likely be successful in this type of short-term service category.
Sertoma Centre Insite Community Employment Services
The primary purpose of Community Employment Services is to provide the necessary supports for individuals to achieve successful employment in the community. This is achieved through individualized service design and planning including pre-employment assessment, employment skills training, job development, job coaching, and ongoing supports as needed to maintain and enhance employment opportunities.