by Tatyana Nyborg
Metro Campus Editor
On March 31, the Regional Transition Fair occurred at the Metro Campus of Tulsa Community College (TCC.)
Representatives from community agencies, post-educational institutions, vendors, TCC employees, parents and high school students came to learn about resources available for students with disabilities after graduating from high school.
Overall, 35 organizations and institutions (vendors) participated in the fair, including the Oklahoma Developmental Disabilities Services, Pathways Adult Learning Center, Central Tech, Relay Oklahoma, Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services, and others.
After visits with the vendors, the attendees of the fair had an information session at the Thomas McKeon Center for Creativity.
John Hilborn, Instructional Support Coordinator/Transition Services at Broken Arrow Public Schools, gave a talk at the fair; “We follow the American disability laws. The schools are not required to identify students with disabilities; it is a student’s choice to disclose it. Then the school can contact the person.”
“An accommodation will be provided if an individual requests it,” he added. “You need to advocate for yourself and know which services to contact.”
“Students should not hide their learning disabilities,” Hilborn stated. “A child must be ready to talk to a teacher and ask for help.”
Kaye Ellis, manager at the TCC Resource Center for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, offered additional advice.
“The services, which are in charge of helping students with disabilities, need to identify the barrier for a student’s participation in a class and what will work for them,” she said.
“Perhaps, a student needs a note taker or she/he can try a new technology like the Internet,” Ellis explained.
“Our goal is to find out what is effective for a student,” she concluded.
Parents of high school students with disabilities asked questions at the information session and received professional answers about college readiness.
For more information about helping to students with disabilities, contact Yolanda Williams, TCC director of the Education Access Center, at 918-595-7115.