Reports

Transition to Employment: A Case Study Looking at Improving Outcomes for Transition Age Youth by Including Teachers in the Process

Publication Year: 2013

This case study focuses on the efforts of West Virginia Department of Rehabilitation Services (WVDRS) to improve employment outcomes for transition age youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities. 

The Student Transition to Employment Project (STEP) provides training for teachers and aides from various county schools to become certified vendors with the West Virginia Division of Rehabilitation Services (WVDRS). This process allows for a smooth transition from school to work for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). Students continue the transition process with adult professionals whom they already know and trust, and who are familiar with all aspects of the student’s life. This effort is a partnership between WVDRS, Vocational Services, Inc. (VSI) (a community rehabilitation provider), and special education staff in 24 West Virginia counties. Solely funded by the West Virginia Developmental Disabilities Council (WVDDC) for the first three years, WVDRS is currently providing joint funding for STEP. As of February 2012, 75 teachers have become registered as certified vendors and 73 students have entered employment through this project.

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Collaborating Towards Better Outcomes: A Case Study Featuring Interagency Collaboration for Better Outcomes for Transition Age Youth

Publication Year: 2013

This case study features King County School-to-Work project as employed by Washington Division of Vocational Rehabilitation. It particularly focuses on interagency partnerships and collaboration for the purpose of improving employment outcomes for transition-age youth with developmental disabilities. 

The School-to-Work (STW) project in King County, Washington assists students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) in obtaining employment after leaving high school. STW is a collaborative effort between 17 school districts in King County, the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR), 15 employment service providers, the King County Work Training program, and the King County Developmental Disabilities Division (KCDDD). DVR and KCDDD have taken a lead role in this project in funding and coordinating youth employment service delivery. The project streamlines transition services provided by DVR, KCDDD, and employment vendors to improve employment outcomes for students.

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Employment for Individuals on a Waiting List: A Case Study on Using State Legislature's Funds

Publication Year: 2013

This case study focuses on the efforts made by the Utah state Office of Rehabilitation to use funds available from the state legislature. Utah's office of rehabilitation used state legislature to fund long-term supported employment for individuals on a waiting list.

In 2006, Utah’s developmental disability agency, the Division of Services for People with Disabilities (DSPD), was faced with a waiting list that reached 2,012 people due to budget limitations. The Utah State Office of Rehabilitation (USOR), DSPD, and the Utah state legislature created House Bill 31 to fund a pilot project that provided long-term supported employment (SE) for 100 individuals with disabilities in fiscal years (FY) 2007 and 2008. In 2008, House Bill 45 was passed to continue funding long-term SE through a special pool of state dollars that would serve individuals on the DSPD waiting list.

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From Day Habilitation to Vocational Rehabilitation: A Case Study Focusing on Persons with Developmental Disabilities

Publication Year: 2013

This case study is derived from the pilot program run by Missouri Division of Vocational Rehabilitation. This program focused on improving the process of referring individuals with developmental disabilities from day habilitation to vocational rehabilitation.

The Missouri Division of Vocational Rehabilitation piloted a process for referring individuals with developmental disabilities (DD), who receive day habilitation services from community rehabilitation provider agencies and who are interested in employment, to the Missouri state Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) program to access services and supports necessary to obtain community employment.

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The Role of Community Rehabilitation Providers in Employment for Persons With Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities: Results of the 2010-2011 National Survey

Based on the 2010-2011 National Survey of Community Rehabilitation Providers, findings are presented on people with all disabilities and people with intellectualand developmental disabilities (IDD) who are served in employment and nonwork settings by community rehabilitation providers. Findings suggest little change over the past eight years in participation in integrated employment. Overall, 28% of all individuals and 19% of individuals with IDD were reported to receive individual integrated employment services.

Case Studies of Emerging/Innovative Vocational Rehabilitation Agency Practices in Improving Employment Outcomes for Individuals with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities

Publication Year: 2013

The Vocational Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (VR-RRTC) based at the Institute for Community Inclusion at the University of Massachusetts Boston partnered with a national group of content experts to identify potential promising VR employment practices serving people with psychiatric disabilities. In funding the VR RRTC, NIDRR requested an emphasis on identifying promising practices for two particular populations (people with mental illnesses and people with intellectual disabilities) and to identify promising practices related to order of selection and the designation of most significant disability. This report provides a summary of case studies of VR employment practices for persons with mental illnesses.

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Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies Helping People With Psychiatric Disabilities Get Employed: How Far Have We Come? How Far Do We Have to Go?

Publication Year: 2013

Case Studies of Promising Practices in Vocational Rehabilitation

The Vocational Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (VR-RRTC.org) based at the Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI) at the University of Massachusetts Boston partnered with national content experts to identify promising VR employment practices serving people with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (IDD). The National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR), the funding agency, requested an emphasis on identifying promising practices for people with mental illnesses and people with intellectual disabilities/developmental disabilities, and to identify promising practices related to order of selection and the designation of most significant disability. This report provides a summary of four promising VR employment practices for persons with IDD. The study included a nationwide call for nominations through extensive outreach using a variety of channels and venues, including (but not limited to) direct contact with VR agencies, Technical Assistance and Continuing Education (TACE) Centers, the Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation (CSAVR), the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA), and NIDRR. The VR RRTC formed a Delphi expert panel to review and rate all nominated practices using a systematic, multi-step procedure to evaluate nominations.

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Agency Decision-Making Control and Employment Outcomes by Vocational Rehabilitation Consumers Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired

Publication Year: 2013

Introduction: We hypothesized that consumers who are blind or visually impaired (that is, those who have low vision) who were served by state vocational rehabilitation agencies with decision-making control over administrative functions would experience better vocational rehabilitation outcomes than consumers served by vocational rehabilitation agencies with less control in these areas. Methods: We merged person-level RSA-911 (fiscal year 2010) data with agency-level data collected as part of the National Survey of State Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies, which we conducted in 2011. We employed multilevel modeling, controlling for select person-level characteristics, and agency-level indicators of primary decision-making control by vocational rehabilitation agencies in six key administrative functions: human resources, infrastructure, management information systems, policies and procedures, program evaluation, and purchasing. Dependent variables were measures of "any employment" and "competitive employment" outcomes. Results: We report a positive association between agency decision-making control over policies and procedures and competitive employment outcomes by consumers who were blind (odds ratio = 2.64; 95% confidence interval 1.23-5. 72). Among consumers who are visually impaired, agency decision-making control over human resources was negatively associated with any employment closures (odds ratio = 0.56; 95% confidence interval = 0.36-0.93) and competitive employment outcomes (odds ratio = 0.56; 95% confidence interval = 0.33-0.97). Discussion: Results demonstrate the potential for factors related to agencies, in addition to factors related to individuals, to function as mediators of vocational rehabilitation outcomes for consumers who are blind or visually impaired. Implications for practitioners: Findings highlight the importance of understanding how management control over areas such as policy and procedures have the potential to influence service delivery and subsequent employment outcomes.

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