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Product Information Perspectives on Life after High School for Youth with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities: Findings of a Statewide Survey of Families

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In 2010, the Florida Center for Inclusive Communities conducted a survey of parents and professionals to learn what was important for inclusive post-secondary education (IPSE) opportunities for students who have intellectual disabilities (ID). The survey received responses from 353 professionals and 553 parents. Click on the "Web Links" tab above to read a description of all the findings, here are the areas covered with a small sample of what was learned:

Regarding demographics of respondents
- For both parents and professionals, intellectual disability was most prevalent among the youth they represented, followed by autism and developmental disability

Regarding high school experiences of students with ID
- 56% of students with ID had spent high school in segregated classes while only 33% were in fully inclusive settings

Regarding youth preparedness for life after high school
- Only 31% of professionals and 16% of families felt schools had prepared students for life after high school

Regarding important factors and components in IPSE
- The vast majority of respondents felt it was important for faculty to be well trained in things like curriculum accommodations and inclusion
- Other program factors that families and professionals agreed were very important included social opportunities and safety
- Less than half of both families and professionals saw on-campus housing and leaving with a diploma or certificate as "very important" factors for IPSEs.
- Most respondents saw a need to focus on obtaining customized, competitive employment upon graduation

Regarding hopes and fears for the future
- The overriding hope was that graduates with ID have the same life opportunities as those without
- Most respondents however expressed a fear that graduates would be denied such opportunities.

Results selected from summary report viewed online on 7/17/12 at www.thinkcollege.net/images/stories/Insight_13_F.pdf
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This web site is maintained by the Research and Training Center on Community Living with support from the National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services, the Human Services Research Institute and the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. E-mail weste050@umn.edu.
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