Guidance for Students

Post-School Survey Guide for Students and Families/Caregivers

What is the Post-School Survey?

The Post-School Survey gathers information about education and employment activities students experience in the first year after high school. The survey is conducted with all former students in Washington state who were aged 16-21 and receiving special education services when they exited high school.

Why is this information important?

The information gathered in the survey gives schools, districts, and the state of Washington an idea of what students are doing one year after leaving high school. It can help schools and districts learn how they can better prepare students for their next steps.

When and how will I be contacted?

The year after you leave high school, a former teacher or other school staff member will call you between June 1 and November 1. It will take about 5-10 minutes.

Answering the Questions in the Post-School Survey

Details about the questions that are asked during the Post-School Survey and tips for responding

Questions about work:

  • Are you working?
  • If so, where? How long?
  • How many hours? How much do you get paid? Who do you work with?

Questions about education:

  • Are you going to school?
  • If so, where? How long?

Questions about agency connections:

  • Have you had contact with any agencies for support?
  • If so, who?
  • Provide your teacher with a reliable way to reach you next year (phone, email, text).
  • Make sure you or someone in your family knows the following information:
    • The number of hours you work at your job (or the last job you had).
    • How much you earn (or earned) per hour.
    • The name of your school or training program (if you are enrolled in one).
    • The names of any agencies you contacted after high school.
  • Answer truthfully.
  • Be as accurate as possible.
  • Take your time.
  • Ask for help if you don’t understand.
  • It’s ok if you don’t know or don’t remember.
  • You do not have to answer any questions you don’t want to.

You may not understand some of the questions, and that’s ok. Some ways you can ask for help:

  • Can you say that again?
  • What does that mean?
  • Can you give me an example?

It’s ok if you don’t know the answer or if the question does not fit with your experience. Ways you could respond:

  • Ask for more information to be sure you understand the question.
  • Tell the interviewer: “I don’t know.”
  • Tell the interviewer why the question doesn’t fit your situation.
  • All questions are voluntary. You don’t have to answer any questions if you don’t want to.
  • When you do answer the questions, it helps schools think of more ways to prepare students for the future.
  • If you choose not to answer, you can say: “I don’t want to answer that.”
  • Yes, if you are unable to answer the questions because you are unavailable or for any other reason, a family member or guardian can answer the questions for you.
  • If someone else answers the questions for you, they should be someone who knows the details of your job, school, or other activities.
  • You can share this information with your parents or guardian so that they can answer accurately.
  • Don’t worry if you aren’t working or attending school.
  • The survey is meant to understand what you are doing, not to tell you what you should be doing!

If you need accommodations to answer survey questions over the phone:

  • Make sure your school knows what accommodations you need. You can include it with your contact information or tell your teacher.
  • Remind the interviewer or have a family member remind them when they call you for the survey.

Data Confidentiality

What is done with my information?

Your answers help schools learn how they can better prepare students for life after high school, and your information is kept confidential. It is summarized into reports about the post-school outcomes of students throughout Washington. Your name will not be shared. The only people who will have access to your information are your former teachers and administrators from your school district and CCTS staff.

Can I see the reports?

CCTS publishes county, ESD, and state PSO reports every January. You can request district-level reports from your school's special education office.

Who do I contact if I have more questions?

If you have further questions about the Post-School Survey, please contact your school district.