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Preparing for Adulthood, Employment & Training

Bradford has recently developed a Preparing for Adulthood Prospectus which provides information to help you to do this, in the four ‘Preparing for Adulthood’ categories— education and employment; friends, relationships and community; independent living and good health.


The term “Preparing for Adulthood” is used to describe the process of moving from childhood into adulthood. Young people with Special Education Needs and Disabilities (SEND) should have equal life chances as they move into adulthood.

Preparing for Adulthood identifies 4 areas that young people should pursue:

These should be addressed as early as possible but definitely from the age of 13 and all outcomes and targets identified should be SMART and documented into a relevant plan (EHCP or MSP), for more information on SMART outcomes.

High aspirations are crucial to success, so discussions about long term goals should start early and ideally well before Year 9 (age 13-14) at school. Discussions should focus on the child or young person’s strengths and capabilities and the outcomes they want to achieve. To help capture aspirations we have produced our Aspirations pathway.

Who is involved

Everyone has a part to play in preparing children and young people for adulthood from the earliest stage. Schools should take a lead, in supporting pupils to achieve the best possible outcomes in education, employment, independent living and participation in society.

Preparation for Adulthood (PfA) Social Work Service (14-25)

The PfA social work service work with a specific group of young people aged 14-25 to help ensure they have targeted support to meet their aspirations. Their work focuses around the 4 main PfA outcomes; Employment, Independent Living, Social and Community Inclusion, and Health and Wellbeing.

The PfA team work with young people aged 14-25 who are; a resident in Bradford, have an EHCP and have complex needs as a result of a diagnosed moderate, severe or profound learning disability and/or a severe physical disability.

For more information about this service please visit the PfA page.


Transitions are very important stages of a child’s life and one where there will be important decisions to be made, and if a child has complex needs then we all need to work together to support these decisions, and plan their progress through school, college and beyond into the wider world.

Bradford have created a Transitions guidance for schools and colleges to help them support young people that are transitioning into a new setting or class.

The importance of PfA outcomes?

The SEND reforms meant that an EHCP must contain outcomes instead of objectives. A young person's aspirations will be recorded in Section A of the EHCP and the outcomes must be linked to these aspirations.
Short and long term outcomes will be agreed upon, to support the progress of the young person in meeting their educational and career aspirations. These steps must prepare and support them to achieve the preparing for adulthood outcomes:

  • Higher Education and/or employment - including exploring different employment options, such as support for becoming self-employed and help from supported employment agencies
  • Independent living - this means young people have choice, control and freedom over their lives and the support they have, their accommodation and living arrangements, including supported living 
  • Participating in society - including having friends and supportive relationships, and participating in, and contributing to, the local community 
  • Being as healthy as possible in adult life - ensuring access to the right health professionals who understand the young person’s learning difficulties and disabilities.

During personalised annual reviews the school, family, representatives from the council and professionals will get together with the young person to identify the most appropriate pathway, enabling them to achieve their PfA outcomes. These PfA outcomes will be captured in Section E of an EHCP..

For more information on outcomes please visit the Special Needs Jungle page.

Useful Information

Preparing for Adulthood have useful information about preparing for adult life and transition 

Contact a Family have more information about preparing for adult life and transition. For further information and advice is on the Contact a Family website

On our Local Offer you will find information about how children with SEND prepare for adulthood in Bradford:

  • Preparing for Adulthood information and advice
  • Independent and supported living including community aids and equipment
  • Employment and Training
  • Post 16 and HE, Training, Courses and Workshop Providers
  • Children to Adults Transition-Support Services
  • Bradford’s PfA Educational pathway and Aspirations pathway
  • Living Independently Housing Options

Bradford Council SEND Local Offer worked with young people, parents and carers, SEND services, colleges, training providers and employers to create and develop the visual PfA pathway as requested by key stakeholders to meet the needs of young people with SEND.

Searching for services:

Using the filter, select Preparing for Adulthood, Employment & Training filter and then use the subcategories to narrow the services down further.

Questions that may help identify next steps

Area of need


HE and / or employment

• Do they have a part time job? This could be paid or voluntary work • Have they completed work experience? • What are their career aspirations (triangulated with Section A)? What course are they studying which will / could lead onto either HE or employment?

Independent Living

• Can they cook a simple meal or make a drink for themselves? • Do they under stand the value of money? Can they apply this to a practical experience? • Are they able to travel independently? Do they want to learning how to drive (triangulated with Section A)?

Participation in society

• Do they attend clubs / organisations in their community? What is the impact on doing so? • What networks do they have / are apart?

Being as healthy as possible in AL

• Are they able to tend to their self care needs? • Can they make good choices in regards to diet? • Do they play sports or are they active in other ways and under stand the benefits of a healthy lifestyle?

Bradford Local Offer Logo

The Bradford SEND Local Offer is a free and impartial service provided by Bradford Council. The information contained within the website is available for the purposes of identifying services and provision that are available to children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities. This information does not represent a recommendation or an endorsement of a Service or Provider and neither does the Bradford Council or its partners make any representations or warranties as to the accuracy of the information.

Anyone seeking to use or access a service or provision is responsible for undertaking their own checks to determine the suitability and fitness for purpose of that service and provision. Some providers will be registered and inspected by external agencies, such as Ofsted or the Care Quality Commission. Anyone working with children and young people will be required to have appropriate Disclosure and Barring Service Check (the replacement for the Criminal Record Check), safeguarding policies and insurance in place, which they should make available to you on request.