Exploring Special Education and Center for Independent Living Professional Beliefs on Collaboration and the Value-Based Principles That Drive Secondary Transition Service Delivery

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The importance of interagency collaboration to support the postschool outcomes of youth with disabilities is underscored in many ways. Perhaps one of the most important among them is the place of interagency collaboration as an evidence-based predictor of postschool success. Although Centers for Independent Living (CILs) receive U.S. federal funding to serve people with disabilities across the lifespan, little research exists to map the nature of their collaboration with local education agencies (LEAs) to this end. The current survey-based study examined perceptions of professionals in both settings (i.e., LEAs and CILs) on their current level of collaboration with one another and the value-based principles they believe influence their work as they support transition-age youth with disabilities (n = 581). Findings indicate a widespread belief in the importance of CILs in youth transition service delivery, a stark contrast between CIL and school-based transition professional perceptions of current collaboration, and a dynamic landscape of shared and divergent ratings of importance across value-based principles of transition practice. Practical implications are outlined to inform CIL and LEA collaboration to support youth with disabilities alongside directions for future research.