Key elements in transition from school (VSO) to employment: a survey and a new approach

Friday, November 1, 2013
First author:
Corry Aarnoutse
Work as Catalyst for Belonging

Perspectief, kenniscentrum voor Inclusie en Zeggenschap, Utrecht, the Netherlands

All authors:

Corry Aarnoutse, Veroniek Janssens

Inclusive Employment
Human Rights, Employment, Transition, Identity

Promoting employment on the labor market for youngsters/ young adults with learning difficulties and/or disabilities and supporting better starting positions in schools.
We did a qualitative research in two special schools (VSO) in the Netherlands. Our research question was:
What do youngsters/ young adults, their personal network, and schools need to ensure a successful transition from school to work?
We interviewed ca. 60 students, parents, teachers, employers and other stakeholders.
Our research showed there is much to be gained by:
- enlarging the students self-determination together with their personal network;
- more orientation on citizenship, in line with and extending to the vision of the school. Guiding principle is the right of every student to participate in and contribute to society, even when severe handicaps are involved.
- enlarging the network of schools for example cooperating with local/regional business organizations
A culture change is needed, as well as extending networks for schools, and having best practices.