Next Steps Clinic

Transition from Birth to Three to School

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To ensure that your child has a smooth transition, it is important for families, WV Birth to Three, and school systems to work together. There are different services available, including preschool special education and community options, so it is important for parents and families to identify what services will meet the needs of your child.

Transition Conference

A transition conference will be held up to 9 months before (but no later than 90 days before) your child’s third birthday. At the transition conference, the Birth to Three program, other future programs, and family members of your child will meet to discuss what services he or she will need in the future after WV Birth to Three services end.

Based on the transition conference, your child’s transition plan will be updated or developed. The transition plan will outline the steps to ensure your child’s successful adjustment to new services, activities, and programs.

What to expect at the transition conference:

  • Discussions about your child’s progress while in the Birth to Three program
  • Ascertaining your child’s strengths and weaknesses to develop an appropriate transition plan
  • Set developmental and educational goals for your child
  • Explanations of eligibility and enrollment requirements for various programs and community options
  • Exchange of information about community resources and supports
  • Request for parent’s permission for any necessary evaluations

Preschool special education

For families considering preschool special education, WV Birth to Three will work with the school and the family.

  • The school will explain the eligibility process to determine if your child is eligible for preschool special education services.
  • Parents will have an opportunity to visit the classroom.

Community options

Your child may be eligible to receive additional services at no cost to the family.

At the transition conference, the team will discuss eligibility and applications for additional community options, including:

  • Preschool special education
  • Early Head Start/Head Start
  • Child care
  • Private preschool programs
  • Private therapies
  • Other community agencies

Preparing for new programs

To ensure a smooth and successful first day of a new program, consider making prior arrangements for the following:

  • Assistive technology, special equipment, dietary restrictions, and/or medications
  • Staff training specific to your child’s needs
  • Communication process between program and home
  • Collaboration and/or networking with other parents in the program

Information and material developed from West Virginia Department of Education Policy 2419 and "A Parent's Advocacy Guide to Special Education."