Life as an adult is more than just college and careers. Being part of a community – in whatever setting your child will live – means knowing how to make friends, participate in social or recreational activities, stay organized, manage time, and handle responsibilities such as finances, meal planning, health care decisions, and household chores.

What’s My Role?

Families play an important role in helping support, develop, and encourage growth of these skills in your child. If your child is not ready to handle some of these critical tasks independently, especially financial and health care decisions, thinking about options such as supported decision-making or guardianship for students with more significant disabilities may be warranted. Parents should also consider financial planning and how to ensure that your child receives any government assistance to which they are entitled, as well as other financial support.

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Supported decision making is an alternative to guardianship. Guardians make decisions for the person with a disability. 


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Ensuring a secure future for your child begins early. Working through these foundational steps during your child’s childhood will set you up to have a smoother transition to adulthood.

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his list below does not include every skill, and all these skills may not apply to all people. It is important to remember that everyone is unique, and individual support needs may vary.

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