The move from primary to post-primary school can be difficult for any student. For students transitioning this year, there are additional hurdles to overcome since primary schools have been closed since March 12th resulting in little, if any, preparation for the new experience in September. For all students, the school atmosphere will be different; lots of different classes and many new teachers; learning to manage a timetable, new subjects, lockers, homework and study, all of this against the background of a longer school day.
There are transition resources available as free downloads on the DSI website and parents can refer to and use these as they work with their child at home, the booklet ‘Supporting students with Down syndrome transition from Primary to Post Primary School’ is one of these resources that we have developed to help parents.
A workbook for students with Down syndrome has also been developed. The workbook is designed in two sections: one section intended for use before the student leaves primary school in sixth class; and a second section designed for completion in the early stages of post-primary school.
Additional resources and information can be accessed, this website has been developed by a group of Support for Learning Teachers in North Lanarkshire Council, Scotland, to support children with ASD, their families, teachers and schools with communication and transition. This is an excellent website with many resources available for topics such as transition to post-primary school, transition from class to class within primary school and improving/developing communication. While the resources have been developed primarily as a support for students with ASD and for schools & teachers in Scotland, many of the resources can easily be adapted for students in schools in the Republic of Ireland, regardless of their learning needs and abilities.
For any student with Down syndrome, thought, planning, and preparation will ease the transition to post-primary school benefitting both the student and the school. Feel free to send any specific queries you may have around the transition to post-primary school to firstname.lastname@example.org