It is our philosophy to provide an outcome-based program that will promote students’ optimal independence in his/her home and community by teaching individualized, age appropriate life skills.
Passed in 1990, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (Public Law 101-476), or IDEA, requires that each student with a disability receive transition services. A student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) must contain a written statement of transition services beginning at age 14, or earlier if appropriate. IDEA defines transition services as:
A coordinated set of activities for a student, designed within an outcome-oriented process, which promotes movement from school to post-school activities, including post-secondary education, vocational training, integrated employment (including supported employment), continuing and adult education, adult services, independent living, or community participation. The coordinated set of activities shall be based upon the individual student’s needs taking into account the student’s preferences and interests, and shall include instruction, community experiences, the development of employment and other post-school adult living objectives, and when appropriate, acquisition of daily living skills and functional vocational evaluation. (PL 101-476)
The CITE (Community-Integrated Transition Education) Program provides instruction and opportunities to address the adult outcome areas discussed above. The educational services focus on age-appropriate skills and activities, utilizing age-appropriate and natural settings to the greatest extent possible (e.g., community job site, health club, student’s home, community classes, etc.). The program’s goal is to create a smooth transition from school to post-school activities, so that a student may successfully participate in his/her community as an adult.
The CITE Program is offered to students with disabilities who have completed four to five years of a high school program and have not accepted a high school diploma. Students are typically between the ages of 18 and 21 years old. The time spent in the CITE Program can range from one to three years, depending on the individual goals and needs of the student and family. After four or five years in a high school program, the student would go through the graduation ceremony with his/her same aged peers and receive a “Certificate of Attendance.” This certificate states that the student has successfully completed the high school portion of their education, and may continue to receive educational services in the CITE Program.
The students in the CITE Program follow the Oak Park and River Forest High School District 200 calendar for days of attendance, holidays, teacher in-service and parent/teacher conference days. The students' day is approximately 8:00 am - 2:45 pm. However, the specific goals/needs of the student and family may dictate a more individualized time schedule. The students' home base is the River Forest Community Center (8020 Madison St, River Forest, IL 60305), which serves as a meeting place for the students and staff, as well as transportation services. Students use this area for activity scheduling, preparation and planning for activities, budgeting, computer and phone usage, leisure/recreation, meal preparation and lunch, and any additional individualized academic instruction.
Students in the CITE program will receive related services – physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, counseling, nursing, orientation, nursing, orientation and mobility services, and itinerant hearing and vision services, transportation, and DRS – as determined by the IEP. Related service minutes, or time spent with a student, will typically be listed in the IEP as “monthly minutes." This will allow greater flexibility in addressing the student’s needs within their individual transition plans. To the greatest extent possible, all services will be provided in integrated settings (e.g., student’s home, community, vocational site, etc.) and focus on goals to facilitate a smooth transition to post-school activities.