The student should be referred to Vocational Rehabilitation (VR). Vocational Rehabilitation is a state agency that provides services for people with disabilities to enable them to obtain and maintain employment.
The laws that have governed your child’s education for over a decade will NO LONGER APPLY WHEN YOUR CHILD LEAVES HIGH SCHOOL. The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), as well as Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act, will now ensure your child’s equal access.
Self-advocacy is an acquired skill for young adults. When the child becomes a young adult, he/she must learn to seek out support for personal needs and rights, to independently make choices on the accommodations needed, and take responsibility for ensuring that accommodations are provided. These skills are necessary throughout academic training and in the workplace.
In the junior year of high school, college bound students and their parents should be gathering college information, touring colleges, and research information on financial aid and scholarships (there are several scholarships specifically for the student who is deaf or hard of hearing). Once accepted at a college, the student should contact the Disability Support Services Office on campus, which will assist the student in obtaining accommodations, such as interpreters, note takers, computer assisted real time caption (CART), computer assisted note takers (CAN), and assistive technology.
Most vocational programs are located within community college curriculums. The VR counselor can assist the student in researching and applying to vocational programs. The student should contact the Disability Services Office on campus, which will assist the student in acquiring accommodations, such as interpreters, note takers, computer assisted real time caption (CART), computer assisted note takers (CAN), and assistive technology.
Your child may decide to pursue employment after high school. The VR counselor can play an important role in assisting your child to obtain employment. “Sampling” different jobs in the local community can be very helpful in exposing the student to many vocational opportunities. The VR counselor can assist in job development and placement, and in helping the employer understand and accommodate the needs of the employee who is deaf or hard of hearing on the job.