The Transitional Services for Special Needs students is being provided by the Orange Board of Education, under Mrs. Shelly Harper, Director of Special Services. The Transitional Coordinator, Lorri Risbrook-Olivera, and the Structured Learning Experience Coordinator, Eileen Ninivaggi, provide/oversee transitional activities in and out of the school. Over the years partnering colleges, businesses, hospitals, schools, municipal offices and community based organizations collaborated to develop meaningful on site job training experience for special needs students. Finally, the transitional coordinator recommends the appropriate post secondary placement and resources specific to the needs of each student. Students with special needs are informed of disability support services as they are accepted into college.


    Transitional services are provided to special needs students ages fourteen to twenty one of Orange High School, Orange Alternative High School, Orange Preparatory Academy, as well as with eligible eighth graders. In a joint effort with state agencies and community based organizations, the Orange school district offers opportunities for students to provide meaningful service to their communities. Students enrolled in the five credit course Career Orientation can participate in basic life skills, on-site job training and job shadowing experiences. Students are matched with appropriate sites that can meet the student’s needs and disability. Staff members and/or site supervisors are on-site with students to assist the students in learning the assigned tasks, staying on task and appropriate work behavior. The days and hours that community service sites operate are mutually agreed upon by each participating site and school district. The structured learning experience coordinator has received certificates by the state of New Jersey and the Department of Labor/OSHA to develop the lesson plan for each student, approves all work sites and grades the final project.


    Transitional services information is disseminated via parental mass mailings and/or email, student classroom presentations and departmental staff meetings. During parental and student contact the transitional coordinator works with students on service linkage, understanding the disability and accommodations, self advocacy, social skills and post secondary education decision making during individual, group, and family meetings. Transitional staff also play major roles with in-service trainings by providing participating staff with information pertaining to transitional services, structured learning experiences, and an outline of services to be provided to students throughout the district ages 14 – 21.




Last Modified on September 21, 2021