Preparing Students with Low-Incidence Disabilities to Work in the Community
Youth with low-incidence disabilities face the prospect of unemployment after exiting high school. When schools provide real-life work experiences, such as internships or part-time work, students with disabilities can focus on their potential to transition into employment after high school. Achieving quality employment outcomes will depend on local collaboration among educational and community agencies, businesses, and families. One-Stop Career Centers were established to bring together numerous federal job training and employment programs under "one roof" to provide assistance to job seekers with and without disabilities. Social Security benefits offer monthly cash payments and access to health insurance benefits such as Medicaid and/or Medicare, as well as work incentives that are specifically designed to increase an individual's employment and earnings capacity. Supported employment has been shown to improve the competitive integrated employment outcomes for youth with disabilities. Customized employment is another service delivery model for changing the unemployment/underemployment challenges faced by individuals with disabilities.