New law helps Delaware students with developmental disabilities

WILMINGTON — Gov. John Carney recently ensured that students with intellectual disabilities will gain greater access to postsecondary education by signing into law a bill creating the Delaware Advance Scholarship Program. It defrays tuition costs for college programs that enable students to hone the skills they need for a successful transition to adult life. adult life.

Delaware students with intellectual disabilities often receive tuition assistance from sources including the Division of Developmental Disabilities Services, the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and federal Pell grants. But remaining costs present a challenge for many families, most of whom have faced significant medical and therapy payments throughout their child’s life. The Delaware Advance Scholarship Program will help defray those costs and reward students with intellectual disabilities who choose to pursue college, just as other Delaware students have access to other state scholarships, such as the Student Excellence Equals Degree (SEED) Scholarship.

The Delaware Advance Scholarship Program will be available to students with intellectual disabilities attending any Comprehensive Transition and Postsecondary Program in Delaware – a federal designation for college programs that promote inclusive experiences. Currently, the only such in-state program is the Career and Life Studies Certificate (CLSC), based at the University of Delaware and administered by the Center for Disabilities Studies. The CLSC curriculum combines classwork, job training, peer mentoring and one-on-one coaching with opportunities to engage in UD’s campus activities. CLSC also offers students the option of living full-time in a residence hall on campus.

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