Leaving school can be a time of mixed emotions for both parents and their child. This time of transition also brings with it several challenges. There are some reputable information resources that you may find helpful as you prepare for this period:
- Autism Launchpad. This Australian website has been created as a resource for young people with autism or Asperger’s, and their families about finishing school and starting adult life.
- Raising Children Network has some useful information about preparing teenagers on the autism spectrum for work opportunities.
- Get Ready for Study and Work. This is a resource prepared by the National Disability Coordination Officer program (NDCO). Download a copy here.
- NDCOs in Tasmania have also developed a resource to assist students on the autism spectrum transition to tertiary education. You can borrow a copy of this resource from our resource library, request a hard copy of it from the NDCOs, or download a copy of this resource here.
Here are a few services and supports that aim to assist with this transition period:
- The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is rolling out across Australia, and is currently accessible for people in Tasmanian between the ages of 4 and 34 years. The participant information pack for the Tasmanian rollout can be viewed here. More information about accessing the NDIS can be found here.
- The NDIS acknowledges that transitioning from school is a period when extra supports may be needed. If your child is already an NDIS participant you could ask the NDIS about School Leaver Employment Supports (SLES). Information about SLES can be found here.
- The Australian Government’s National Disability Coordination Officer Program (NDCO) works strategically to assist people with disability access and participate in tertiary education and subsequent employment, through a national network of regionally based NDCOs. More information about the NDCO program in Tasmania, and the contact details for the NDCO in your region, can be found here.
- The Disability Employment Services is a network of organisations contracted by the Australian Government to provide specialist assistance to job seekers with disabilities who require support to find and maintain employment in the open employment market or to become self-employed. An information sheet about Disability Employment Services can be downloaded here. You can find a full list of disability employment service providers in your area on the NDCO website.
- Universities and TasTAFE campuses provide support to students with disabilities. Some University and TasTAFE campuses offer specific mentoring and support programs for students on the autism spectrum. To inquire about current support programs, families can contact Disability Services at UTAS, or Disability Support at TasTAFE.