Thank you for your willingness to partner with the WVDE on our State Systemic Improvement Plan (SSIP) related to improving graduation outcomes for students with disabilities! The SSIP work is now known as the West Virginia Guideposts to Graduation (WVGtG) representing the different pathways and supports available to students with disabilities on their journey toward graduation with a regular high school diploma. Through open, concise, and meaningful communication and collaboration that results in consistent high-quality professional learning and technical assistance, we expect to increase local capacity for preparing students with disabilities for everyday living, employment, education, and/or enlistment.

This webpage has been designed to provide resources and materials intended to build this capacity at the local level, as well as providing general information for the public. We are interested in your feedback to improve our website and resources. All feedback is anonymous, and responses are regularly reviewed for continuous improvement of our work to improve outcomes for students with disabilities. In order for the data to be comparable with other stakeholder input, we ask that you submit your responses through the following survey link – WVGtG External Stakeholder Feedback Survey.

Please contact the WVDE at for differentiated support and technical assistance related to secondary transition services, graduation, drop-out prevention, and post-school outcomes.

State Systemic Improvement Plan (SSIP)

Overview of WV Guideposts to Graduation (2021-2026)
This document provides a short description of what, why, and how the SSIP work can be leveraged to improve graduation outcomes for students with disabilities ages 14-21 so that by June 2025, 86% of students with disabilities will graduate from high school with a regular diploma.

SSIP Evaluation Plan (Fall 2022)
The Evaluation Plan provides a description of the expected outcomes and data collection methods used to measure progress toward the goal set by stakeholders for the State-identified Measurable Result (SiMR).

SSIP Theory of Action (Fall 2022)
The Theory of Action outlines the relationship between the resources and support offered by the WVDE and the potential impact to improve graduation outcomes for students with disabilities when local educational agencies (LEAs/districts) have the knowledge and capacity to implement evidence-based practices as well as engage meaningfully with students and families

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Data Dashboard

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Alternate Diploma

Alternate Diploma: Tip Sheet for Personnel (December 2022)
This tip sheet provides guidance and general information regarding students on the alternate diploma track.

Understanding Alternate Diplomas (September 2022)
What Teachers, Parents, and Students need to know.

WVASA Eligibility Checklist (Fall 2022)
This checklist contains the criteria used by IEP Teams to determine whether students with the most significant cognitive disabilities are eligible to participate in the West Virginia Alternate Summative Assessment (WVASA). This form is reviewed and completed annually even if students have previously been found eligible to participate in WVASA.

WVASA Eligibility Guidance (Fall 2022)
This is a companion document for supporting IEPs teams as they complete the WVASA Eligibility checklist.

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Effective Practices

Evidence-Based Resource Bank – Secondary Transition (March 2023)
This document provides an overview of Evidence-Based Practices (EBPs) related to improving graduation outcomes for students with disabilities ages 14-21.

Evidence for ESSA | Evidence For ESSA
The website is sponsored by the Center for Research and Reform in Education (CRRE) at Johns Hopkins University School of Education. Their mission is to provide clear and authoritative information on programs that meet the ESSA evidence standards and enable educators and communities to select effective educational tools to improve student success

IRIS | Resources (
The IRIS Center creates a host of materials and resources about evidence-based instructional and intervention practices. Developed in collaboration with nationally recognized researchers and education experts, these instructional resources are created for use in professional development activities, and independent learning opportunities for practicing educators.

WVGtG Implementation Frameworks to Support Effective Practices (November 2022)
These frameworks include High-Leverage Practices (HLPs) in Special Education, Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS), Universal Design for Learning (UDL), and West Virginia Tiered System of Supports (WVTSS). Each framework is summarized in the description and related resources are also provided as website and video links designed to provide schools, families, and the community with additional information to improve graduation outcomes for West Virginia students.

WVGtG Implementation Supports Resource Bank (November 2022)
The Implementation Support Resource Bank provides modules, information briefs, publications, and websites to support local education agencies (LEAs) across the state of West Virginia to implement effective practices with fidelity.

Early Warning Intervention and Monitoring System Implementation Guide (June 2020)
This Early Warning Intervention and Monitoring System (EWIMS) Implementation Guide is a supporting document for schools and districts that are implementing an early warning system (EWS). An EWS is a platform that uses local, historical student data; research-based early warning indicators; and predictive analytics to accurately identify students who are in danger of not achieving key educational milestones, such as on-time graduation. WVDE uses ZOOMWV as it’s single source for pre-k through grade 12 educational data.

Preventing Dropout in Secondary Schools (2017 Educator’s Practice Guide)
 The goal of this practice guide is to offer educators specific, evidence-based recommendations that address the challenges of preventing dropout in secondary schools. This guide synthesizes the best publicly available research and shares practices that are supported by evidence. It is intended to be practical and easy for teachers and school leaders to use.

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Secondary Transition

WVGtG Secondary Transition Assessment Resource Bank (December 2022)
This document contains resources to help students, families and school personnel identify potential careers that meet students’ interests and the basic supports necessary to become, or remain, employed. Self-determination and independent living assessments are included to assist in developing an inventory of individual skill levels necessary for successful post-secondary goals related to household chores, personal care, common community errands, as well as personal growth and community participation.

Age of Majority (March 2023)
This document describes what Individualized Education Program (IEP) Team members need to know and do before a student reaches the age of majority. It also provides resources for school personnel, parents, and students that may be helpful in guiding conversations during transition planning.

Transition File Review (July 2023)
This resource provides information and criteria for monitoring and accountability as it relates to secondary transition plans.

West Virginia State Parks Directory for Work-Based Learning Opportunities (Fall 2022)
This resource provides contact information and potential jobs related to work-based learning opportunities in Parks, Forests, ATV/Motorized Trails operated by the State of West Virgina.

Classroom 2 Career
This is a one-stop website designed to help all students navigate the future by providing information on careers, colleges, military service, entrepreneurship, and on-the-job training.

A Transition Guide to Postsecondary Education and Employment for Students and Youth with Disabilities – 2020
To assist students and youth with disabilities in achieving their post-school and career goals, Congress enacted two key statutes that address the provision of transition service. This transition guide has been provided by the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services to aid in the seamless transition from school to post-school activities.

Pathways to the Future ( is a collection of resources and tools to help students with disabilities through the journey from youth to adulthood.

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Student and Family Supports

Communities In Schools
Communities In Schools (CIS) West Virginia and CIS site coordinators leverage partnerships to connect students and families with community resources, tailoring them to their specific needs.

Engaging High School Parents (January 2023)
Provides five (5) strategies and quick wins for school administrators to encourage family engagement for secondary students.

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WV Statewide Connections

WV Division of Rehabilitation Services (
The West Division of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) helps students with disabilities, ages 14-21, prepare and plan for their future. Services for high school students with disabilities can include self-advocacy training, career exploration, tutoring, mentoring, soft skills training, educational support, counseling on postsecondary education opportunities, vocational training assistance, college/university tuition support, workplace readiness training, work-based learning experiences, and job search and placement assistance. Further assistance is available beyond graduation that may include vocational training, college financial assistance, job placement services, and much more. For more information, please visit and, or contact DRS by email ( or call 1-800-642-8207.

WV DRS Offices – Location map and contact information
DRS maintains more than 30 local offices organized into six districts throughout West Virginia. Please use this link to find the office nearest you.

Project SEARCH – National Website
For more information, please contact WVDE Coordinator Mimi Browning.

Behavior and Mental Health Technical Assistance Center (
The Behavior/Mental Health Technical Assistance Center is funded by West Virginia Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and is housed at the Autism Training Center at Marshall University. For more information, please contact WVDE Coordinator Jennifer Anderson.

WV Autism Training Center (
The West Virginia Autism Training Center (WV ATC) was established in 1984 by the WV Legislature and housed at Marshall University.For more information, please contact WVDE Coordinator Jennifer Anderson.

WVU Center for Excellence in Disabilities (
WVU CED is a federally designated University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD), and part of a national network of similar centers across the country. WVU CED serves as a resource to the community in the areas of education, research and service as it relates to the needs of people with disabilities. For more information, please contact WVDE Coordinator Lee Ann Brammer

West Virginia Advisory Council for the Education of Exceptional Children
Parent support and statewide advocacy resources can be found on this website. The West Virginia Advisory Council for the Education of Exceptional Children (WVACEEC) is mandated by WV state Code §18-20-6 and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) §300.136. For information, contact Executive Director Dawn-Embrey-King

WV Parent Training & Information
The West Virginia Parent Training and Information, Inc. (WVPTI) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit parent organization committed to improving the lives and education of ALL children through a special emphasis on children and youth with all disabilities and special healthcare needs. We serve parents and families of a child or youth from birth to age twenty-six with special needs. We are committed to providing parents and families the tools to ensure that children, youth, and young adults with special needs lead enriched lives as full members of their schools and communities.

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