A growing number of students on IEPs are leaving high school with job skills, but employment opportunities are limited. Schools are focusing education on academic and vocational skills that will benefit the individuals after high school, but the businesses are not always affording the opportunities of employment to this population. Partnerships with local businesses will give students the opportunity to gain high-level skills necessary to move on to the next level of employment. The majority of the students would not need supported employment for an extended time. When businesses open their doors to form a partnership with the schools, they are in actuality increasing their business. Local school employees and families would be more likely to support businesses that support students. Another advantage of schools and business forming partnerships would be that the businesses could inform the school of the specific job skills that are necessary for students to be successful in various fields of employment. The schools, in turn, could incorporate them into their vocational training, therefore, producing students ready to work and decrease on the job training. A partnership would be a win-win situation for all parties.
Written by: Shari Hunter