Frequently Asked Questions

Where Do We Go From Here?

Graduation can be as confusing a time as it is a celebration. With the pressure of the future impending and the removal of the school support system, it is important to plan now to assure that future needs and concerns are met.
The good news is that there are many state, county and township-led programs that can help in this often confusing time.

Below we hope to provide you with qualified contacts that might help you with issues such as:
  • Employment opportunities
  • Mental and Physical Health
  • Health Care/Insurance
  • Continued Education
  • Independent Living
  • Disability Resources

Employment Opportunities


The National Job Corps training centers are located in 122 locations nationwide with 3 locations in Illinois with the closest located in Joliet. Job Corps provides hands-on training for students after high school and is similar to a hands-on collegiate experience. You can visit their web page at http://www.jobcorps.gov/home.aspx or contact the Joliet office via the information below.


Health Care/Insurance Options

Though most health care programs are profit based, there are several organizations that might provide you with valuable advice and options to assure that your child’s needs are being met.

1-800-226-0768 or http://www.hbwdillinois.com

1-866-931-1110 or http://www.familyvoices.org

For general information and resources regarding other physical health questions and coverage issues visit: http://www2.hfs.illinois.gov/hfs/Pages/default.aspx

For general information and resources regarding mental health, visit: http://www.illinoismentalhealthcollaborative.com/

Continuing Education

The US Department of Education has a quality web page that explains the rights that your child or any student with a disability planning on pursuing education past high school is entitled to. Visit their web page at: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/transition.html

The Illinois Community College Board has a webpage that might assist you in questions that you might have regarding the procedures necessary for applying to a community college and what services, programs and degrees the various community colleges in Illinois offer. To see a list of the various schools in Illinois visit: http://www.iccb.org/colleges.html

You can also apply for services online at: www.dhs.state.il.us

IDHS also provides transition services and planning for students transitioning out of high school. Richard Robarts is the DeKalb area contact and he can be contacted by phone at: 815-758-2471, and by E-mail at: robarts@illinois.gov

Disabilityworks, a department of the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, increases employment opportunities for people with disabilities throughout Illinois. http://www.disabilityworks.org/

For other information on job training education, revisit page 3 of this pamphlet entitled “Employment opportunities.”

Independent Living

The Illinois Department of Human Services-Division of Rehabilitation Services offers not-for-profit establishments that assist in counseling individuals who seek to obtain independent living status. Often, such establishments provide living skills training, job readiness training and information about accessibility services. To learn more about centers for independent living or to find one nearest to you call: 312-814-4037

RAMP is a Center for Independent Living with several locations in Northern Illinois. The closest is located in downtown DeKalb. They aid individuals with disabilities and provide them with a network of resources that help promote independent living. You can reach their DeKalb office by phone at: (815) 756-3202 or by E-mail at: hfoulkner@rampcil.org

You can also visit their webpage by going to: www.rampcil.org

The Dupage Center for Independent Living is a not-for-profit organization that helps empower individuals with disabilities with the knowledge and skills necessary for independent living. They can be reached at: 630-469-2300 or visit their webpage at: http://www.dupagecil.org/

Other Resources

Illinois Life Span is a state funded resource program designed to aid individuals with disabilities. Their main function is to provide free information and referral services. Visit their webpage to learn more at: http://www.illinoislifespan.org/

The Arc of Illinois is an advocacy program committed to empowering individuals with disabilities so that they might participate fully in community life. They can be reached by phone at: 815-464-1832 or visit their webpage at: http://www.thearcofil.org

Youth Ready Chicago is a publicly funded program that seeks to help students with disabilities find quality apprenticeships with mentors that are understanding of their needs. To learn more about this program call their hotline at: 877-587-WORK (9675) or visit their webpage at: http://www.youthreadychicago.org/employers/Youth_with_Disabilities.html

Family Support Network of Illinois is an advocacy program designed to help individuals with disabilities and their families find the resources, support and funding they might need in order to live successfully in their community. Visit their webpage to learn more at: http://www.familysupportnetwork.org/

The Definitive Chicago Area Job Guide is an all inclusive internet job site whose mission is to help job seekers navigate the confusing world of internet job searching, research and resources. Access their webpage at: http://www.chicagojobs.org/