Planning Steps for 17 & UnderIt is helpful to talk to others to help you plan. The first step is talking to people in your own family. However, there are other sources in our community to help.
When you have the opportunity meet with your child’s teacher, talk to them about the path ahead for school programs. In Ontario, school programs are in place for children/youth with special needs up to the calendar year that your son or daughter turns 21.
You will need a psychological assessment for your son or daughter that outlines their intellectual ability and their adaptive ability to qualify for adult developmental services. Talk to your school about this. Some parents will have this from an agency that they have worked with for developmental supports, but you will need to ensure that it provides the information necessary. You may need to make arrangements to get a new assessment privately.
You can ask the DSO (Developmental Services Ontario) to review your documents when your child is 16 years of age. The DSO is the entry point for all adult services for people with intellectual disabilities. You will need: 1. a copy of a psychological assessment for your son or daughter that show their overall IQ/cognitive scores and adaptive functioning, 2. a copy of their birth certificate 3. their health card information 4. the primary caregiver’s information and date of birth
However, they will not begin the formal assessment process until your son or daughter is at least 17.5 years of age.
Contact the DSO at 1-855-437-6797 #301. You can make arrangements to fax the documents to them to review. The fax number is 519 344 0153. The Intake/Team Support person is Tanya Sangerman. Once they review the documents they will mail a letter to you to confirm eligibility or notify you if more information is needed. Once your son or daughter reaches 17.5 years of age you can make an appointment to begin the process of the assessment of your son or daughter’s needs. (Also known as a SIS/Supports Intensity Scale assessment).
If you are involved with a children’s agency service provider you may wish to talk to the person you know to ask for their help. This might include places like:
John McGivney Centre
Family Respite Services Windsor-Essex
HDGH Regional Children’s Centre and Help Link
Community Living Essex County
There are great workshops that are scheduled on a regular basis to help parents know about the transition to elementary school and the transition to secondary school and life after high school. These will be listed in the calendar section of this webpage. They are called Planning for Success and IEP’s and More, Planning for Success (Life after Highschool) and Dollars and Sense.
You might find it helpful to talk to other families. Some places that do this are:
Autism Ontario | 519-250-1893
Ensemble | 519-776-6483 ext225
Windsor Essex Family Network | 519-974-1008
Planning for 17 and Over
Any person who wants access to services for adults with developmental disabilities must go through Developmental Services Ontario, also known as the DSO. You can call the DSO when your child is 16 to make sure that you have the right documents and information (such as the psychological assessment). Six months before your child turns 18 contact the DSO to start the application process. You can apply for income support (Ontario Disability Support Program) when your son or daughter is 17.5 years of age as well.
Phone: 1-877-480-2726 | Website: www.dsontario.ca
This is the only way to access services for programs and supports through agencies such as Christian Horizons, Community Living Essex County, Community Living Windsor, Family Services Windsor (APSW), Regional Support Associates, Windsor Essex Brokerage for Personal Supports.
Depending on the needs of your son or daughter you may want to also talk to:
Erie St. Clair LHIN: Related to medical needs and supports
Website: www.healthcareathome.ca | Phone: 519 973 9341
Canadian Mental Health Association
Website: cmha-wecb.on.ca | Windsor Phone: 519 255 7440 or Leamington Phone: 519 326 1620
Assisted Living Southwestern Ontario: adults with permanent physical disabilities- attendant care, supportive housing etc.
Phone: 519 969 8188
Dual Diagnosis Program: Assistance for persons with developmental disabilities combined with a mental health disorder.
Phone: 519 257 5111 ext 76805