Friday, June 28, 2013

Transportation Education Curriculum Helps Educators Prepare Students to Use Public Transportation

By Whitney E. Gray

Graduation is a hopeful time with many students going on to pursue higher education or get jobs and begin their careers. For students with disabilities and others who cannot drive, though, transportation may pose a barrier to achieving post-school success. Education and skill development regarding the use of public transportation options can help students access community experiences while they are in school and will ensure that students’ aspirations after graduation are not limited due to travel needs. Public transportation knowledge and skills can empower students to independently pursue their dreams.

Students from New York City
read a bus schedule
Easter Seals Project ACTION has released a new resource to help provide educators, transit professionals, families, and others with strategies for integrating transportation content, including travel instruction, into the educational experience for students, including those with disabilities. Improving Accessible Transportation Access and Choice forStudents: A Curriculum to Build the Knowledge of Educators, Human Services,Families, and Transit Regarding Transportation Education and Travel Instruction has nine, interactive, self-paced learning modules. Educators may download and customize the curriculum materials to align with academic content, instructional activities and unique learning opportunities available in their settings.
Through pilot testing and discussions, ESPA learned about ways this material may be used. For instance:

  • Educators, families, pupil transporters, and public transit professionals plan to use these materials collaboratively as a way to establish relationships and identify and implement strategies to build transportation services and supports for students as they leave high school.
  • Transition professionals and high school educators will use these materials with education colleagues and families to build early awareness of transportation needs for students with disabilities.
  • Family organizations will download the materials related to student-family summits to help them plan and carryout events in their communities.
ESPA encourages those who use the curriculum to provide feedback by completing the evaluation at the end of each module. If you have any additional suggestions for this material or identify any technical or content errors, please contact Judy Shanley, director of the Administration on Community Living, mobility management, and student engagement programs at Easter Seals, at

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