Three Community Based Services staff sit at a table with promotional material in a high school building during a Transition Planning services fair.

Westchester County Awards $97K Contract to CBS

CBS to provide innovative Transition Planning Services for high school students with disabilities.

Using a $97,844 contract championed by Westchester County Legislator Erika Pierce, Community Based Services (CBS) will provide innovative transition planning for high school students with disabilities. CBS provides community habilitation and respite services for children and adults as well as housing, employment, and day habilitation for teens and adults with autism and other developmental disabilities.

The contract will enable CBS to fulfill a great need among the 18% of students who have a disability. Transitions are difficult for most individuals and especially difficult for young people with developmental disabilities. Public schools provide services to children with disabilities who, upon reaching the age of 21, must leave the comfortable and nurturing school environment. When an individual reaches 21, the responsibility shifts, and services now must be requested and applied for by the families. Although there are agencies, services, and professionals to assist in the process, these adult services are fragmented. Most families are not aware that transition planning needs to start in the early years of high school. With access to transition planning services from CBS, families will be equipped to prepare for, navigate and find suitable support and services for their loved one.

“I have seen firsthand how difficult and disruptive this transition can be for families. Having accessible support through the process, including an understanding of the various steps needed and timelines involved, will be very helpful to families, especially working families. I am excited for the county to be working with CBS to provide this important support and guidance."

The contract will be used in part to identify a transition coordinator who will collaborate with schools and organize transition and resource fairs. By collaborating with schools, the transition coordinator can better reach students who have an IEP or 504 plan and are aging out of school-based programs. In addition, the transition coordinator will work with school personnel and the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities to organize transition fairs in Westchester County. Families who attend the transition fairs will receive information on transition planning, services available to children, adults, and families, and the coordination of services.

“Thank you, Westchester County, and the tireless effort of Erika Pierce. Your support demonstrates your understanding of how crucial this service is to families who have children with special needs. This contract will enable us to help them navigate the often-cumbersome process of finding quality services and enrolling them in NY State’s system. Educating families will be the priority so that access is made easier."

Visit Transition Planning Services to learn more. 

CBS provides people with autism and other disabilities the best quality of life through residential and community-based opportunities. The agency has been enriching lives, providing jobs, and cultivating dreams for people with disabilities since 1981.



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