Creating Opportunities Today; Maximizing Independence Tomorrow

Youth to Adolescent

Questions and answers for Health Care and Social Services

Who could be involved from my health care team during this transition?

Family members, OCTC/HGH rehab team and other community partners or community physician could be involved, as needed.

What information does the secondary school need from the rehab team and when does the school need it?

With your consent, the rehab team will provide up-to-date reports to the receiving school and to the special education department of the school board. Ideally, these reports should be sent by March of the school entry year.

What OCTC services may my child/teen be eligible to receive while s/he attends secondary school?

If children/teens meet the eligibility criteria, they can receive/continue to receive the following services: Medical Clinics (including Transition Clinic for with a physical disability, Registered Nurses and Physiatrist), Assistive Technology (Clinic for Augmentative Communication, Seating and Mobility and Technical Services), Recreation Therapy, Dietitian and for adolescents with physical disabilities: School Liaison Teacher and Social Work Services (Social Worker, Family Resource Worker).

If my child/teen cannot keep up with the writing demands at school, where can we get help?

The Occupational Therapist (OT) who works at your child/teen’s school can assess the need for a computer or other strategies to support writing. A referral to the Clinic for Augmentative Communication at OCTC may be required if your child/teen has a physical disability or if a standard computer does not meet his/her needs, and s/he requires a computer with specialized adaptations for writing at home. You can also have a discussion with the school staff to see if a referral to an OT at the Champlain Community Care Access Centre (CCAC) would be appropriate.

Who can assess the need for a manual or power wheelchair and make recommendations?

If you have visited your child/teen’s secondary school and are concerned about the greater distance your child will need to travel between classes. A referral can be made - one year in advance of the transition - to the Champlain Community Care Access Centre (CCAC) Occupational Therapy or Physiotherapy services or to the OCTC Seating and Mobility service.

I have concerns/questions about the Champlain Community Care Access Centre (CCAC) School Health Support Services (SSHS). How will my child/teen’s therapy be arranged when my child/teen transitions to high school?

You can contact your child/teen’s CCAC case manager at (613) 632-4861 or 310-CCAC. Here are examples of questions you might want to ask to help with this transition:

  • What happens to OT, PT and SLP Services once my child/teen transfers from elementary to high school?
  • My child/teen was discharged from School Health Support Services (SHSS) a few years ago but needs new assessments. What do I do?
  • When is a good time to make referrals? Before leaving current school? In the summer? After starting a new school?
  • What assessments are recommended? And why?
  • When should a request be made so that the new school is accessible and ready for my child/teen at the beginning of the school?
  • What equipment will my child/teen be able to take to the new school?

What are the recreation and social programs available my child/teen?

The OCTC Recreation Therapy runs a variety of recreation programs for eligible clients, Recreation Therapy can also provide you with information about community programs that may be appropriate for your child. You may contact Valoris Prescott Russell 613-673-5148 www.valorispr.ca for information on available community activities for your child/teen.

How can I link my child/teen to volunteering opportunities?

Look within your community and have conversations with family and friends about possible volunteer opportunities.

Contact Valoris Prescott Russell – Youth Developmental Services: www.valorispr.ca

Other options may be:

How will my child/teen create/ maintain a social network?

There are many social networks available. Options include your teen/young adult’s friends, your friends, student clubs and your community centre.

Other social networking possibilities:

What respite options are available in Prescott-Russell?

OCTC does not run respite programs in Prescott-Russell. For further information on respite options in your area, please contact the following:

How can I obtain an application for an Accessible Parking Permit?

For further information and to apply, please visit the following website: Accessible parking permit

You can also pick up an application at any Driver and Vehicle Licence Issuing Office or request an application by mail from:

Service Ontario
License Renewals Unit
P.O. Box 9800
Kingston, ON
K7L 5N8

Questions and answers for Education Services

Contact the OCTC School Liaison Teacher if your child has a physical disability and/or contact the school principal at your child’s current school to help you with this transition.

When should my child/teen make the transition from Elementary to Secondary School?

Your child/teen could change schools as young as age 11. Secondary School is either grades 7-12 or grades 9-12.

Some environmental considerations or the health of a student may be factors in determining the time of a transition. For example, the length of travel time to the secondary school may be too long for a younger child.

When should I start thinking about my child’s transition from elementary school to secondary school?

If assessments are required, you should start planning this transition 12 to 18 months ahead of time.

Who should I involve in this transition?

The resource teacher at school, your Case Manager from Valoris, and for children a physical disability, the OCTC School Liaison Teacher and/or the OCTC Social Work Services should be involve during this transition.

Can I visit the new school ahead of time – in the previous school year?

Your current school principal can help facilitate this visit. S/he will help you plan the transition.

Will my child/teen’s Individual Education Plan (IEP) be implemented at the new school?

You will need to set up a meeting with the school support team as soon as possible. OCTC Social Work Services and/or Liaison Teacher for children with a physical disability, your case manager from Valoris can help you with this if you would like support. Bring a copy of your child’s current IEP and begin discussions with your child/teen’s new school in order to address the needs of your child.

What are the assessments recommended for the transition to secondary school?

A psycho-educational assessment may be recommended. It may be required if you are considering a different placement. It might also be recommended if there is a change, for example, in your child/teen’s achievement rate, or in the learning strengths and weaknesses. Individual school boards do not always accept the assessments from other school boards.

How should I organize my child/teen’s transportation to the new school?

The school principal will assist you in determining the best method of transportation to school for your child/teen.

Here are some areas to explore further with your child/teen’s new school:

  • Safety: I would like the school to have a safety/evacuation plan in place for my child. How can I make sure this will be done?
  • Participation:Will my child be able to participate in the physical education program, regular school events, and school trips in his/her new school?
  • Physical education:I would like my child to be an active participant in the physical education program. How do I ensure that s/he is not left on the sidelines?

How early should we start the process of researching post-secondary options?

Upon your teen’s entry to high school, you and your teen should look into post-secondary programs and institutions, in order to find out what the admission requirements are and to ensure that you are planning accordingly (i.e. taking the right courses, having the right documentation to submit, etc.). You or your teen can seek assistance from guidance counselors, or you can contact the post-secondary institutions directly.

Is there a tool that could also be useful to me during this transition?

This IT kit from the Holland Bloorview Kids Rehab documents - Developing Skills for Growing Up - may be useful to you and your teen for this transition; here is the web document: OCTC IT Kit (PDF)

Transition from Adolescent to Adult

In preparation for the next transition, you can get ready by looking ahead. Here are some examples of areas you may want to research, learn about for support and information.

  • Disability awareness, Ability to explain diagnosis to medical professionals
  • Goal setting, problem solving, self-advocacy
  • Wills estate planning, educational funds, Registered Disability Savings Pan (RDSP)
  • Sexuality information
  • The role of social media and technology
  • Post secondary education, bursaries and loans
  • Career planning
  • Driving and community transportation
  • Leisure, recreation and sports/community programs
  • Safety and independence (When can I leave my child alone?)
  • Bullying/teasing/verbal slights
  • Respite
  • OCTC Transition Clinic for clients with physical disabilities
  • Developmental Services Ontario, Eastern Region (DSO-ER)
  • Caregiving/attendance care
  • Van and home modifications