Dr. Nyankori Thanks Local Nonprofit for Employment Opportunities for Students with Special Needs
December 21, 2010
On October 26, 2010, Dr. Richard Nyankori, Deputy Chancellor for Special Education for the District of Columbia Public Schools, joined the Washington DC and Metro Area Marriott Business Council to thank the many individuals and employers in the Washington metro area who have made significant contributions to the “Bridges…from School to Work” program.
Created by the nonprofit Marriott Foundation, Bridges creates mutually beneficial job placements to meet the workforce needs of local employers and the career goals of young people with disabilities.
Dr. Nyankori spoke at the reception, discussing the importance of opening doors for students with special needs so they have the opportunity to achieve in the workplace and lead happy, fulfilling lives.
“At DCPS we seek nothing less than one day creating a system of transition in which our graduates with disabilities are able to transition into pathways that ensure finishing college, serving the country through any number of public service opportunities, and holding well-paying jobs that they love,” said Dr. Nyankori.
Since 1990, Bridges has worked with more than 900 local employers to provide employment opportunities for more than 2,000 youth with disabilities, empowering them to succeed in the workplace.
At DCPS, when special education students turn 16 years old, their special education team convenes a meeting to discuss the students’ goals and create a plan after high school.
Many special education students plan to attend college after they graduate, and others want to enter the workforce directly after high school.
No matter their plan, DCPS and the Office of Special Education are well prepared to help students with disabilities plan for their future.
“In our context, we view transition as a poverty-cycle breaking activity,” said Dr. Nyankori. “It must be an activity that sets students up for viable economic livelihoods and deep civic participation. Doing anything less would be merely tinkering around the edges, rather than helping our students actually achieve their deserved independence and happiness.”
To learn more about Bridges, visit their website or contact Director Shelby Hill, (301) 562-9146.
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