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Transitions Pathway

What does transition mean? 

'Transition' is the process of moving from one school to another or through different key stages and also includes when a child/young person is preparing to move towards adulthood. 

Parents/Carers and their child/young person may find this a challenging and difficult time particularly when additional learning needs are part of the equation. Successful transition is vital to the students emotional and academic development and therefore careful planning is required.

This page will provide you with information and links to support around transitions from early years to preparing for adulthood.

Inclusive Transitions

There is a range of material and resources available, which have been designed by the East Midlands Education Support Service to support the transitions of children and young people with SEND at the various stages of their educational journey towards adulthood. To access these resources please click here Transitions Support

For further information on planning a transtion you can access the guide to transitions planning for parents/carers.

Early Years Transitions

The transition to school is likely to be the first major event in many children’s lives. This period is, for most children exciting and enjoyable, but it can also bring academic, social and practical demands that some children find challenging. This time can be just as worrying for parents, as it can be for the children who are going through this period of change.

The Education Support Service have produced information on inclusive transitions and you can access information and resources on early years transitions by clicking here East Midlands Early Years.

You can also look at the frequently asked questions on playgroup to primary school transitions on the Local Offer website. Please click here FAQs.


Primary to Secondary School

This is the transition that most people think of when considering a move from a primary school to secondary school.  It is also probably the stage at which a number of mainstream school placements will break down, and pupils are considered for alternative education provision such as a special school or other learning environment. Anxieties and problems can often be overcome by a sensitive, bespoke transition programme put in place in good time.  

The Education Support Service have produced information on inclusive transitions and you can access information and resources on key stage 2 to key stage 3 transitions including useful materials for children by clicking here Primary to Secondary

You can also look at the frequently asked questions on primary to secondary school transitions. Please click here FAQs

The Moving Up document below has a range of activities for a child transitioning from primary to secondary school to ensure they will be ready. Please click here or on the image below:

Moving up




Preparing for Adulthood

What is preparing for adulthood?

Preparing for adulthood can begin in primary school, and should aim to provide children and young people with a range of skills and experiences to promote the best possible outcomes in adulthood in relation to:

  • Employment
  • Independent living
  • Friends, relationships and community
  • Good health

All children and young people have the right to full-time education up to the age of 16 and now must attend education, attend training or be employed from 16-18. Many young people with special educational needs and disabilities benefit enormously from these last few years, whether they stay on at school or move to a college of further education.

How can secondary schools support the transition to adulthood?

Secondary schools have experience of supporting young people with decision making about their future after school. They provide careers advice to their students and this must be accessible for children with special educational needs too. Young people who receive ‘SEN support’ in school can continue to be supported at a college, if needed. Mainstream colleges have a range of courses. Some of the courses are specifically designed to support young people with SEN, often called ‘foundation learning’.

Parents and young people can find out about what is available by looking at the Post-16  section of the local offer please click here which has a summary of colleges, with links to their websites. Colleges also have open days/evenings when you can visit to find out more and discuss your child’s support needs. Your child’s school and prospective college should work together to plan the transition at this important point in their lives to make sure the young person is well prepared and supported. Additional funding for support can be used by the college.

Transitions planning

To try and help young people and their families through the process of deciding what to do after school, the Government has introduced what is called Transitions Planning. This will take place during reviews from Year 9 onwards.

If a child/young person has an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan, the annual reviews from Year 9 onwards will focus on drawing up something called a Transition Plan. This pulls together the views of a range of people about the plans for transition to adult life.

The purpose of transition planning is to ensure that:

  • Each young person experiences smooth and timely support to prepare for adulthood so that they are supported to meet their outcomes appropriately;
  • Each young person is involved in the process, contributes their views and wishes, and has as much choice as possible about the future outcomes they hope to achieve and how they will be supported in this;
  • The parents or carers of each young person are involved in the process as partners, and have clear and early information about how the transition process works and what the options may be for the young person;
  • Adult services receive sufficient advance notice of young people whose needs they will be responsible for meeting, so that financial and other planning can be undertaken in time.

How can I find out further information on preparing for adulthood?

The Education Support Service have produced information on inclusive transitions and you can access information and resources on Preparing for Adulthood by clicking here Preparing for Adulthood

You can also look at the frequently asked questions on seondary to further education and education to work setting. Just click here FAQs

The Preparing for Adulthood (PFA) website also offers a range of useful information and advice. For more information click here

Nottinghamshire County Council - Planning a Transition Tips and Good Practice Guide

You can access tips and a guide on transitions for parents/carers below:

For the 'Quick read transition Tips for parents' please click here or on the image below:

Quick Read Tips for Parents








For the 'Planning a transition guide - information for parents/carer' please click here or on the image below:

Planning a transition guide

Nottinghamshire's Transitions Pathway for Children and Young People with SEND age 13 -25

Nottinghamshire County Council have developed a transitions pathway to provide, information, advice and guidance on what should be happening at different stages as a young person makes their way towards adulthood. It also contains a range of information once a young person becomes an adult including employment and training opportunities, post 16 education and independent living. The pathway is fully interactive and has an introductory video to explain how you can use it and get the best out of it. To access the pathway please click here or on the picture:

Transition pathway



Nottinghamshire's Transition Protocol

Nottinghamshire's multi-agency transitions protocol can be viewed by clicking here or on the icon: 

Nottinghamsire's Transition Protocol

Nottinghamshire County Council - Preparing for Adulthood Team

What does the service do?

Nottinghamshire County Council have a Preparing for Adulthood Team, which is made up of Social Workers and Community Care Officers who provide planning, assessment, advice and support services for young people preparing for adulthood. They work with young people who have an impairment and require social care support that cannot be accessed through community services already in place.

The Preparing for Adulthood Team can work with young people whether they have received services from children's social care or not.

The team works with young people to help them be as independent as possible. This might be through community support, short term support, specialised support including support into employment and/or any assistive technology.

The Preparing for Adulthood Team can help with:

  • being independent;
  • being part of the community;
  • getting the right support;
  • giving support to carers including short breaks;
  • helping with safety and risks.

Age range

Young people can be referred to the Preparing for Adulthood Team between the ages of 14yrs-17.5yrs. If a young person is older than 17.5yrs, at the time they are referred, the referral will be passed to the relevant adult team.

Who can make a referral to the team?

Referrals can be made by anyone including parent/carers, person's GP, education support providers or community services.

How do I make a referral?

To contact the team you will need to contact Nottinghamshire County Council's Customer Service Centre. You can access their contact information by clicking here Customer Services Team

Further information

For further information you can click here Moving to Adult Services or watch the video below:

My Future Choices Magazine

My Futures Choices magazine is a free magazine for disabled young people, their families and people who support them. Included in each issue are stories on health, education, employment, friends and activities. All of the stories are written by young people themselves and gives an opportunity to share with other young people how they have successfully transitioned into adulthood. To access the magazine please click here My Future Choices

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