Special Education Resources

Parent Resources

Appalachia Intermediate Unit 8

Offers services and resources to students and their families in Bedford, Blair, Cambria, and Somerset counties.


Autism Connection of Pennsylvania

From the website:

Autism Connection of Pennsylvania is a lifeline for families and individuals affected by autism providing education, advocacy and support.

Founded by parents in 1996, Autism Connection of Pennsylvania is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, serving thousands of people seeking help for autism concerns. Professional staff, all parents who understand, provide telephone support, weekly autism news, autism-friendly activities, and coordinate more than 76 support groups across Pennsylvania.

If you are an adult on the autism spectrum, contact us. We have each known, worked with, and supported people with autism for more than a decade. Feel free to call us with whatever concerns you may have. It is likely that someone on our staff has experience with whatever you may be going through. If we cannot personally help you, we have an extensive list of resources for your reference.


Developmental and Behavioral Health Services (formerly Bedford-Somerset MHMR)

From the website:

This Web site is a resource for individuals, families and agencies concerned with behavioral health. It provides information about behavioral health services, laws, and related news, as well as communication tools and other features. Regardless of where you begin your search for assistance with behavioral health issues, the Network of Care helps you find what you need - it helps ensure that there is "No Wrong Door" for those who need services. This Web site can greatly assist in our efforts to protect our greatest human asset - our beautiful minds.


Parent Education and Advocacy Leadership (PEAL) Center

The PEAL Center is a coalition of parents and professionals providing technical assistance, on-site parent training workshops, and literature regarding early intervention, special education, and transition to stakeholders in the central and western regions of Pennsylvania.


Parent Education Network (PEN)

PEN is a coalition of parents and professionals providing technical assistance, on-site parent training workshops, and literature regarding early intervention, special education, and transition to stakeholders in the eastern and south central regions of Pennsylvania.  



Pennsylvania Department of Education Bureau of Special Education Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network

Publications to support you as you participate in educational decision-making for your child.


Special Education ConsultLine, Office for Dispute Resolution

ConsultLine is a statewide service funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Bureau of Special Education that provides assistance to parents and advocates of eligible or thought-to-be eligible children with school-related concerns, special education regulations, and the special education complaint process.



From the website:

For the first time ever, 15 nonprofit organizations have joined forces to support parents of the one in five children with learning and attention issues throughout their journey. With the right support, parents can help children unlock their strengths and reach their full potential. With state-of-the-art technology, personalized resources, free daily access to experts, a secure online community, practical tips and more, Understood aims to be that support.


Transition Resources

Career Cornerstone

Features career exploration for careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, Computing, and Healthcare. Explore over 185 degree fields and find out about education requirements, salaries, networking, precollege ideas, and career planning resources. Browse interviews with hundreds of professionals who offer candid insight into their own diverse careers. 


Getting Them There

Information regarding interests and preference assessments and resources to prepare high school students for post-secondary eduation.


Job Accommodation Network

From the website:

The Job Accommodation Network (JAN) is the leading source of free, expert, and confidential guidance on workplace accommodations and disability employment issues. Working toward practical solutions that benefit both employer and employee, JAN helps people with disabilities enhance their employability, and shows employers how to capitalize on the value and talent that people with disabilities add to the workplace.


My Next Move

Career Exploration


O*Net Resource Center

From the website:

The ONET program is the nation's primary source of occupational information. Central to the project is the ONET database, containing information on hundreds of standardized and occupation-specific descriptors. The database, which is available to the public at no cost, is continually updated by surveying a broad range of workers from each occupation. Information from this database forms the heart of O*NET OnLine, an interactive application for exploring and searching occupations. The database also provides the basis for our Career Exploration Tools, a set of valuable assessment instruments for workers and students looking to find or change careers.


Pennsylvania Career Zone

PA Department of Education-recommended career exploration site.  Includes three major pieces:  "Assess Yourself", "Explore Job Families", and "Budget Your Life".


Pennsylvania CareerLink - Commonwealth Workforce Development System

From the website:

The Commonwealth Workforce Development System (CWDS) provides access to Pennsylvania workforce development and independent living services provided by the Departments of Labor & Industry and Human Services.


Pennsylvania Department of Health Transitioning to Adult Living in Pennsylvania

A guide to transitioning to adult life. Includes a checklist to help assess independent living skills.


Pennsylvania Secondary Transition for Youth Engagement Wiki

From the website:

This wiki provides information and resources regarding how to engage youth and young adults in this process.



Pennsylvania Secondary Transition Guide

From the website:

This website, which is continually updated, provides youth, young adults, parents, and professionals with secondary transition resources to facilitate a young person’s progress towards post-secondary goals related to education, employment, and community living.


Planning for the Future Checklist

A helpful checklist for ages 14 to 21, focusing on the three transition outcome areas:  Community Living, Employment, and Education/Training after high school.