Tell Congress to Fund College TIPSID Programs for SWID
Monday, May 5, 2014
COPAA is grounded in the belief that every child deserves the right to a quality education that prepares him or her for meaningful employment, higher education, and lifelong learning, as well as full participation in his or her community.
More students with disabilities must have the opportunity to successfully transition to post secondary settings as well as to improve access to quality higher education for students with disabilities. COPAA is gravely concerned that programs that provide college access for students with intellectual disabilities are in jeopardy.
Summary: In 2008, Congress made an historic move and included the Transition and Postsecondary Programs for Students with Intellectual Disabilities programs (TPSID) and the National Coordinating Center (NCC) for students with intellectual disabilities (ID) program in the Higher Education Opportunity Act. These programs are proving to be successful in educating students with intellectual disabilities and leading to community living and competitive, integrated employment. The President’s FY 2015 Budget proposes to end funding for these programs. Please urge Congress to continue funding these promising programs!
Background: Since their creation in 2008, the TPSID program and related funding has supported the creation or expansion of programs at 45 colleges and universities serving 1,379 students. These model programs focus on academic enrichment, socialization, independent living, and employment. A comprehensive evaluation system conducted by the NCC found that, in just three years:
- 70% of participating students were involved in career development activities and paid internships.
- An additional 36% of students held 424 paid jobs, of which 89% paid minimum wage or higher, and some students held two or three jobs while they were going to college.
- 42% of employed students had never held a paid job prior to entering the TPSID program.
These programs demonstrate that people with ID can and will benefit from higher education (Grigal, Hart, & Smith, 2014). Great strides towards postsecondary education, life in the community and employment are being made through the TPSID programs. However, there are still far too few options available in our country and further model development is needed to build on this success.
It is essential that Congress support the TPSID programs and continue to fund them at least at the current funding level.
Your Message: In 2008, Congress made an historic move and included the Transition and Postsecondary Programs for Students with Intellectual Disabilities programs (TPSID) and the National Coordinating Center (NCC) in the Higher Education Opportunity Act. Since then, the TPSID program has supported the creation or expansion of programs at 45 colleges and universities serving 1,379 students. These programs focus on academic enrichment, socialization, independent living, and employment in order to create, expand or enhance high-quality, inclusive higher education experiences to support positive outcomes for individuals with intellectual disabilities, including paid employment.
Congress must support the TPSID program and NCC to ensure that thousands of students with intellectual disabilities have meaningful transition options into postsecondary education that leads to academic, career and independent living training, and employment.
Please include at least $10,384,000 for the TPSID programs in the final FY 2015 Appropriations bill.
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