Engaging with Your Area Agency

Two young adults in a bright office work at a computer station. One of the people is using a wheelchair.

Engaging with Your Area Agency

In order to receive assistance with transition planning, parents should apply for services at a designated area agency while their student is still in school. If the student is determined to be eligible for services, this will enable the area agency to offer services to support the family while the student is still in school and help prepare for the student’s transition to adult services. Before the student turns 18, the area agency can assist the family with the process of enrolling the student in Social Security and Medicaid and may also provide family support services. In addition, students with developmental disabilities may qualify for home- and community-based adult services. In New Hampshire, transition planning can begin when the student turns 14 or earlier. In order to ensure that area agency services are in place when the student becomes eligible, an area agency representative should be invited to participate in transition planning at the student’s IEP meetings as early in their transition planning as possible.

For more information on area agencies and developmental services, visit drcnh.org/issue-areas/developmental-disabilities

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DRC-NH, in collaboration with the UNH Institute on Disability and the New Hampshire Council on Developmental Disabilities, distribute a quarterly RAP sheet to educate community members and policy makers about the latest research, policy, practice, and advocacy issues affecting individuals with disabilities and their families.

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By Kelly Nye-Lengerman, Stephanie Patrick, and Isadora Rodriguez-Legendre Every few months, staff from the Disability Rights Center-NH, UNH Institute on Disability, and NH Council on Developmental Disabilities gather together to plan the focus area for each issue. We consider the most pressing issues and look at where there are opportunities to help our readers understand these...