Looking for postsecondary learning options

to help improve employment skills and pathways?


Spring 2020

Notice: Due to the Governor's 3/20 "Safer at Home" order,  as of 3/23,

workshop instruction will be provided online, 9 am - Noon, Monday - Thursday.
(Vendor number: PY1700, Code: 102, Subcode: SPR)

Spring 2020 Flyer


The Application Process:

1. Complete the Application Form

2. Send applicant's IPP to: Pathfinder@BeaconsNorthCounty.com (request IPP from the SDRC if needed).

3. Contact the applicant's SDRC Service Coordinator to request the addition of the vocational workshop to the applicant's IPP, and that a "POS" (purchase of service) request be submitted to fund the workshop.
here for sample letter. Or, include the workshop in the self determination plan to submit for approval.

4. Complete the Beacons Waiver form (if one has not already been completed).

5. Intake Meeting: After the applicant has completed the above steps, a member of our Pathfinder team will contact the applicant and/or her/his conservators to set up an intake meeting to make sure the workshop supports the applicant's IPP goals, the applicant meets the entrance criteria set forth in the application, and the applicant is interested in the pathway of the workshop.

As of 3/23/2020, average improvement rates for spring 2020 trainees in knowledge and performance has exceeded 200%.  

Areas of instruction have included: Google Suite tools, Website design, employment accommodation planning, Person-driven planning, 
cashier skills, retail skills for inventory, tagging and merchandise preparation, workplace safety skills, soft skills for social engagement with bosses, co-workers, and customers, and so much more!  




Customer Service Skills*
Approx. 16 week program, M - Th, 9:30 am - 12:30 pm
Dates: Jan. 13 - May 7, 2020 (Spring Break 4/13 - 4/17)

COVID Update: Online Workshop 9 - 12, M - Th.
Additional hours available as needed to work on skills.


Trainees interested in employment will learn:
workplace and soft skills such as cashier skills, soft skills and other tasks used in settings that require a high level of customer interaction (such as retail stores, grocery stores, restaurants, hospitality, animal care and more!);

develop person-centered plans to help shape their futures,

create interview & workplace accommodation plans, and

create websites for employment profiles to showcase earned digital badges and skill-specific certificates.

Job searches and application process, 
interview practice, direct engagement with local employers, unit pre & post assessments and progress monitoring are all included.

Post-Workshop Goal Pathway(s):
Beacons can now offer Tailored Day specialists, job coaching and paid internship opportunities. Post-workshop, trainees will have the option to work with Beacons Tailored Day specialists to get one-on-one worksite support to generalize the workshop skills for a paid internship or entry level job. Specialists will help the trainee develop new skills to increase the employability and/or retention of the trainee at a worksite. 

Cost: Eligible for SDRC funding if in the applicant's IPP.

*This workshop was made possible through a 2019 Community Project grant from the National Foundation for Autism Research (NFAR), funding from the Qualcomm Foundation for technology and the San Diego Regional Center.


Click here to e-mail

Workshop Hours
9:30 am - 12:30 pm

Mon - Thurs.

Community Outing

Consent Form

Beacons, Inc.


6150 Yarrow Dr., Ste. E

Carlsbad, CA 92011


Each Trainee will be provided with their own 15.6" touchscreen 

Chromebook w/ a mouse accessory, but may bring their own device if they prefer.

Lead Instructor: Cher Graham

Cher Graham serves as the lead instructor for the Pathfinder Workforce Development workshops. Families loved her when she taught in a local ATP program and Beacons is lucky to have her at the helm. Her first workshop at Beacons was in 2019 and she's been producing magical results with our trainees ever since.


Ms. Graham served as an educator for over 10 years working with individuals with disabilities as a Special Education Coordinator, Program Specialist and teacher. Ms. Graham has a Masters in Education, a Level 1 Administrative Services Credential, a Moderate/Severe Education Specialist Credential, and a B.A. in Business Administration. As a Special Education teacher, Ms. Graham has a strong record of advocating for and supporting individuals with developmental disabilities, as well as supporting their families. Formerly, she has been recognized as a “Distinguished Employee,” helped implement a Best Buddies program at the high school level, started a Kiwanis Action Club service organization for students with disabilities, and was influential in bringing a Special Olympics event to her district during her leadership as a Special Education Coordinator.


Ms. Graham also contributes her expertise as a former restaurant owner to help our trainees build workforce skills and employment pathways. As a business owner and operator, she managed over 40 employees and oversaw all aspects of the business including payroll, scheduling and staff meetings. During her ownership, she employed and coordinated numerous employees with disabilities through the ROP and Workability programs, and will use those skills to help our trainees become employees. It was during her time as a business owner that she discovered her true passion of helping people with disabilities find their place, and be included, as a valuable member of the workforce and society. She devotes her non-teaching time to her entrepreneurial endeavors sharpening her business development skills.


Beacons observes all state holidays. 

2020 State Holidays
1/1: New Year's Day

1/20: Martin Luther King Jr. Day

2/17: President's Day 

3/31: César Chávez Day
5/25: Memorial Day

7/3: Independence Day Holiday (Observed)

9/7: Labor Day

11/11: Veteran's Day

11/26 & 27: Thanksgiving

12/25: Christmas 

2020 Spring Break:
April 13 - 17

Workshop Ratios Spring 2020: 5:2

Workshop Max allowed: 10 Trainees

Workshop Minimum required: 4 Trainees 

Curriculum: Beacons uses customized original curriculum that integrates assistive technology and alternative response and presentation options. Included: Community worksite visits, materials and more all included! 

MonitoringWorkshops include pre- and post-assessments that are knowledge and performance based.

Costs: For eligible SDRC consumers, the SDRC will fund one workshop per session. Trainees with achievement levels of 3 for the majority of the units are not eligible to repeat.


Tutoring available? Up to 2 hours per week are included at no extra cost to reach proficiency.


ATP Students: Under § 4648.55 of the Lanterman Act, the SDRC cannot pay for services for individuals aged 18 to 22 years if that consumer is still eligible for special education through a school district. Only if the IPP team agrees that the "consumer's needs cannot be met in the educational system" or grants an exemption under subsection (d) may the SDRC purchase vocational education services. However, payment for a workshop can be done through a school district if the IEP team agrees that a workshop is needed to help a student meet his/her ITP transition goals related to securing competitive integrated employment or a paid internship. (Payment per a settlement agreement may also be an option). Click here to review the September 2019 policy letter from the U.S. Dept of Education on the importance of creating access to postsecondary opportunities.


Beacons, Inc. is a California 501(c)(3) tax exempt public benefit nonprofit.
EIN #82-5388073

Physical Address:

6150 Yarrow Drive, Suite E

Carlsbad, CA 92011

Contact Emails 

General: BeaconsNorthCounty@gmail.com
Club Beacons: Club@BeaconsNorthCounty.com
Pathfinder pWorkshops: Pathfinder@BeaconsNorthCounty.com

Tailored Day: TailoredDay@BeaconsNorthCounty.com



© 2018-2020 by Beacons, Inc. All rights reserved.