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Parent or guardian of a disabled child? 'Transition' resource session set Wednesday

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Parents of special needs or disabled children in St. Croix or Pierce counties are invited to attend a "Parent Transition Resource Night" from 6:30 to 8 p.m., Wednesday, April 10 at the Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College in New Richmond.

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The session is tailored for those who provide care for students aged 13-21 to plan for their transition after high school.

"The biggest mistake that parents made is waiting too long" to begin planning, said Michelle Uetz, transitional coordinator at River Falls High School.

Uetz said it's widely acknowledged that up to 10 percent of students enrolled in a given district have special needs which may qualify them to remain under that district's educational programs until age 21. Thereafter, young adults may require special guardianship, Social Security assistance, adult services, help with placement into a group home, or enrollment into the technical- or traditional college system.

Uetz urges caregivers to begin planning for this transition as early as possible, but it's never too late.

Wednesday's session targets parents and caregivers for youths enrolled at River Falls, Hudson, Somerset, Baldwin-Woodville, St. Croix Central and Glenwood City, but Uetz said parents from Pierce County are also welcome to attend.

Representatives from the Aging and Disability Resource Center and the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation will also be present.

Snacks will be offered and supervision and activities will be provided for special needs kids while parents attend the 90-minute meeting.

Reservations are requested and can be made by calling Uetz at 715-425-1830, ext. 2171 or visiting www.westernwisconsintransition.pbworks.com.

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