Bringing Best Practices for Special Education Transition Services to Low Population Areas
Warren, Sheri L
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This qualitative action case study investigated special education transition services in a remote rural school. The focus of the study was the multipart research question: What is the effect of the application of best practices for transition services at this rural school as described by the students, parents, staff, and business people? A crosswalk of transition services was completed for the review of literature on best practices or evidence-based practices for transition services. Three best practices for transition services recommended by special education experts in the district (work experience, career awareness, collaboration) were applied to the transition program of five high school special education students in a rural school. Observations, interviews, document reviews, surveys, and a researcher’s journal were utilized to get the perspectives of all stakeholders. Using the Dedoose (Version 8.0.42, 2018) web-based analysis program, a priori codes and those that emerged from the data were applied and themes constructed. The student and parent participants all found benefit in the addition of the best practices. Business people welcomed the opportunity to teach students about their trades. They named social skills and a work initiative as the most important qualities in new employees. Recommendations for applying best practices to transition services are offered.