Regional Assessment and Resource Centre

Regional Assessment and Resource Centre

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What is the STEPS Program?

The STEPS program (Successful Transition from Elementary to Post-Secondary) is a two-year program for students with learning disabilities, ADHD and/or Autism Spectrum Disorders, and their families in the Kingston and surrounding areas. The aim of the program is to assist students with issues affecting their learning to make a successful transition from elementary to secondary school and beyond.  Program activities include information and training sessions for students and parents/guardians during the school year, as well as week-long summer programs to teach Adaptive Technology and prepare for high school.  

In the past, the program was fully funded by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and University, to help bring students with disabilities to post-secondary school. The funding for the program has since been withdrawn.  However, RARC is committed to continuing to providing this valuable program, and continues to provide this program at no cost. Students in the program are required to have an updated psychoeducational assessment. There is a fee for the assessment (with flexible payment options over a 2-year period). For more information about the psychoeducational assessment for the STEPS program, visit Psychoeducational Assessment.

  • Students watching a computer demonstration
  • student using the computer program inspiration
  • students playing a running game outside
  • student and parent using adaption technology together
  • student at computer
  • leader demonstration computer program inspiration

Goals of the STEPS Program

This two-year program begins in Grade 7, and supports students and their parents/guardians as they approach the transition to high school. Our goal is to give students the tools they will need to be successful in secondary school, which lead to further success in post-secondary school.

The STEPS Program aims to:

  • Teach students about their individual learning profile and learning challenges (such as learning disabilities, ADHD and Autism Spectrum Disorder) 
  • Promote self-knowledge and self-advocacy
  • Support parents/guardians in understanding how their child learns, their child's rights and responsibilities, and how to support their child in and out of the school environment
  • Train students and parents/guardians in Adaptive Technology, and explain how and why these accommodations can help students learn
  • Prepare students for the upcoming transition and what changes to expect at secondary school

Program recruitment runs from September to January for grade 7 students.  Program activities begin in May of the grade 7 year and run through until the summer before grade 9.  For information about the program, eligibility criteria, and to complete an application, please see the flyer and application forms below.   

To hear from former students and parents, please watch this video: STEPS Impact

COVID-19 Implications

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some STEPS program components have had to be adapted.  We are currently unable to conduct in-person assessments at this time.  We will schedule the updated psychoeducational assessments later in Grade 7 or Grade 8 when it is safe to do so.  Even though we may not be able to complete all assessments before STEPS programming begins in spring 2021, having an updated assessment is still a critical part of this program, and incredibly valuable to starting Grade 9 with up-to-date learning and accommodation information in place for students, and receiving an updated assessment is still a part of the STEPS program.

We hope that the in-person programming planned (starting in May 2021) can be delivered as usual, however if it is unsafe to meet indoors in groups, we plan to adapt the sessions to an outdoor and/or virtual setting.  Due to the changing nature of the pandemic and inability to predict what activities will be able to take place over the next 2 years, any part of the program may need to be adapted or postponed at any time.

STEPS Information Session

We are hosting an online information for the STEPS program on Wednesday, November 11, 2020 at 6:30-8:00pm on Zoom.  Link: or join with Meeting ID: 848 7590 4514 and Passcode: 444437


STEPS Information Flyer 2020 

STEPS Registration Form 2020

STEPS Financial Contract 

STEPS Teacher Contact Form (PDF 550 KB)

Contact Information

Our STEPS team is currently working from home.  Email is the fastest way to reach someone and if you would like to schedule a phone call, you can do so by email.  Our office is still accepting regular mail and faxes. Please do not bring packages in person - our office is currently closed to the public. 

For more information, please contact our Transitions Coordinator at:


phone iconPlease email to schedule a phone call

fax icon(613) 533-6564