“Don’t let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.” — John Wooden
“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as wht you become by achieving your goals.” — Zig Ziglar
Welcome to Peer Power! The place to be if you are a student with a (dis) ability!
Peer: “A person who is of equal standing with another.”
Peer Power is a program designed to provide you with knowledge, skills and peer support in a fun, relaxed social environment so that you can become better prepared to transition from high school to adult life! As a member of Peer Power, you help run your group based upon what it is you need to become better prepared to plan for your future.
What can Peer Power do for You?
Peer Power provides support while in high school and helps you to prepare for your future after you leave high school.
Before leaving high school you will learn how to:
• Actively participate in planning your future (learning all about your IEPs, actively plan and participate in meetings with school guidance counselors, learn about college, employers, housing, etc.).
• Identify your goals for adult life associated with employment, education, housing, social activities, school and community involvement, and anything else you consider important.
• Develop friendships and community connections and resources.
• Assertively express your choices to families, professionals and others.
After leaving high school, you will be better prepared to:
• Pursue and obtain and keep a job.
• Pursue and complete post-secondary education (go to college).
• Pursue and participate in activities of your choice in the life of your community and beyond.
“Transition: “The act of passing from one place to the next.” “An event that results in a transformation.” “A change from one place to another.”
Being on Equal Ground
You may spend a lot of their time in unequal relationships where someone besides you takes a lead role in making decisions about what goes on your life. The great thing about Peer Power is that you are given the chance to speak up and explore ideas without worrying that an authority figure might oppose. It’s all about being equal.
Understanding What It’s Like
Peers understand what it is like to be in transition. They share the same questions and even insecurities. But in Peer Power a “safe place” emerges for you to talk to others who really understand what it’s like to be a student with a disability and to be in transition.
Personal Power Through Expression
Peer Power is an opportunity for you to develop a sense of personal power. This is done by expressing yourself, talking about your choices, exploring ideas and discovering your awesome potential – with the support of your peers.
As a Peer Power group member, you will learn how to actively participate in planning your future. You will learn about jobs, college, social and recreational opportunities and other things your community has to offer. The best part is that the you get to help set the direction for knowledge you can develop from a Peer Power group.
In Peer Power you will learn two very important skills — how to plan for your future and how to communicate your choices in things that mean a lot to you. When Peer Power members have an interest in a career, education, a hobby or learning a new skill, the group will help you explore the steps you need to develop these interests into goals, and can help you reach those goals.
Assertive: “The ability to provide an appropriate level of importance to one’s needs, rights and desires and obtain them.”
In Peer Power you will develop assertiveness by participating in group discussions, talking about your experiences and providing information to others about things you know a lot about. You will develop assertiveness through role playing IEPs, job interviews, how to ask for accommodations and other things that are important to you. With the support of your peers, you become more assertive in “real life” by being able to talk about your needs, goals and plans to parents, teachers and others.