Talking about tomorrow


Who is responsible for transition planning?

It’s important to know who should do what, and what to expect at each stage.

Usually education staff take the lead when someone is under 16, and coordinate planning. They must consult the young person to get their views, and gather information from family members and other relevant people, such as healthcare staff, social services or support workers.

Education staff should arrange meetings to agree what needs to take place to allow the young person to progress towards their goals, and who will be responsible. These should involve you and your young person, and your views must be taken into account. You can bring other people to these meetings if that helps you make your views known.

Read more on who is responsible for what.

At the moment it’s not clear who should take responsibility for the plan once someone has left school.

It’s usually parents who need to make sure things stay on track – so it’s important to know what the plan is and where you can find support.

Workshop handouts

These handbooks detailing local services and support were produced for the transition workshops as part of the Going Forward project, and are now available for download by clicking on the images below.

Please note all links were current on the dates shown but some services may since have changed.

Inclusion of a service does not imply a recommendation.
















When should transition planning start?

National guidelines in Scotland say transition planning should start “at least 2 years before the school leaving date.” That’s because it often takes a long time to get the right support agreed, funded and in place.

Many people find it’s a good idea to start collecting information well before then, so they’re prepared. Starting early means you can take your time, look at more options, and give yourself the best chance of getting the right support in place.

Every family is different, but planning starts with putting together a picture of your young person – their likes and dislikes, any ideas they may already have, and what they’ll need in future to help them thrive. The clearer you are, the more likely you’ll be to make decisions that work well.

Most young people won’t know what they want to do after school when they’re 14, so focus on making sure that when school comes to an end your young person is spending their time in a way that’s worthwhile for them, and gives them the best possible chance to go on developing their awareness, knowledge and skills. And don’t forget it’s OK for someone to change their mind – so flexibility is an important part of planning too.