Students walking into CT

The Facilities Planning Task Force is currently meeting to address facilities need in our district which includes considering a recommendation for a new space for Community Transitions (CT).

Community Transitions is a Special Education program within Bellingham Public Schools that serves students through the age of 21. CT provides a full continuum of services intended to prepare students with mild to severe disabilities for a successful transition to independent living, employment and/or post-secondary training. Staff, parents and the adult students work as a team to create and nurture partnerships with adult services, college staff and businesses in the local community to identify the best place to maximize each individual student’s potential for success.

Community Transitions currently resides in a wing at Bellingham High School and 80 students attend. The program has outgrown their current space and is looking for a new home. Moving to a new location would provide new opportunities for CT students and open space up in Bellingham High School.

Watch the video to learn more about the staff and students in this program.

5 Comments

  1. So much love and admiration for the leadership, teachers, and friends of CT. Very excited to see this program grow and serve our uniquely designed fellow humans and help them become a valuable part of our Bellingham community. As the Bellingham Promise is edified through Community Transitions makes this mom very happy. Loving, kind, and diverse. This is a program for other communities to use as an example of how to include this diverse population in their own communities.

  2. Loved learning more about this valuable program. Let’s give them the students and teachers the respect they deserve by giving them an appropriate space. This needs to happen immediately.

  3. CT gas given me the opportuinty to grow and gain skills to be a better person. Being in that small area has its issues but worked for the time being while I was there. I do wish that they are able to get a bigger space to hold this wonderful program that helps many adults with disabilities. I love this program it has helped me to become more independant and gain skills that you never get in a high school setting. So let’s get CT a new space to have a place to call home forever.

  4. The Community Transitions program should be housed at either Whatcom Community College or Bellingham Technical College. That was the original plan (approx 20 yrs old), and has continued to be the same goal for all the years since. The CT program serves young adults (ages 18-21), who continue to attend public education as recommended by the IEP team, and as required by law. Young adults should not attend classes in a high school, as they have already completed HS graduation requirements, and their post-school peer group are students who attend a 2 or 4 year college.

    I am a retired special education administrator from Bellingham. I now live one block from the USF-SP campus in St Petersburg, FL. Young adults with disabilities attend USF. They take both “special” classes and/or “regular” classes on campus. They share on-campus housing with non-disabled peers. They participate in all campus activities, and work in the community as appropriate. The program is not perfect, but is improving every year. A short-term goal is to open a second section of the program on the USF-Tampa campus.

    I do agree that the Bellingham CT program needs more space. And it needs to accommodate students with mild, moderate, and severe multiple disabilities. Please, do not house the CT program in a new building that will continue to segregate students with disabilities from students without disabilities in the same-age peer group. Thank you for your consideration! (And a special shout-out to Dominique, who has been committed to the CT program since its inception – You are AWESOME.)

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