ED/OSERS/RSA
Rehabilitation Services Administration
U.S. Department of Education

State Plan for the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program and
State Plan Supplement for the State Supported Employment Services Program
New Hampshire Division of Career Technology and Adult Learning State Plan for Fiscal Year 2012 (submitted FY 2011)

1.1 The NH Department of Education State Board of Education is authorized to submit this State Plan under Title I of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended [1] and its supplement under Title VI, Part B, of the Rehabilitation Act [2].

1.2 As a condition for the receipt of federal funds under Title I, Part B, of the Rehabilitation Act for the provision of vocational rehabilitation services, the NH Department of Education [3] agrees to operate and administer the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program in accordance with the provisions of this State Plan [4], the Rehabilitation Act, and all applicable regulations [5], policies and procedures established by the secretary. Funds made available under Section 111 of the Rehabilitation Act are used solely for the provision of vocational rehabilitation services under Title I of the Rehabilitation Act and the administration of the State Plan for the vocational rehabilitation services program.

1.3 As a condition for the receipt of federal funds under Title VI, Part B, of the Rehabilitation Act for supported employment services, the designated state agency agrees to operate and administer the State Supported Employment Services Program in accordance with the provisions of the supplement to this State Plan [6], the Rehabilitation Act and all applicable regulations [7], policies and procedures established by the secretary. Funds made available under Title VI, Part B, are used solely for the provision of supported employment services and the administration of the supplement to the Title I State Plan.
Yes

1.4 The designated state agency and/or the designated state unit has the authority under state law to perform the functions of the state regarding this State Plan and its supplement.
Yes

1.5 The state legally may carry out each provision of the State Plan and its supplement.
Yes

1.6 All provisions of the State Plan and its supplement are consistent with state law.
Yes

1.7 The (enter title of state officer below)
Yes

Commissioner of Education for the State of New Hampshire

... has the authority under state law to receive, hold and disburse federal funds made available under this State Plan and its supplement.

1.8 The (enter title of state officer below)...
Yes

Commissioner of Education for the State on New Hampshire

... has the authority to submit this State Plan for vocational rehabilitation services and the State Plan supplement for supported employment services.

1.9 The agency that submits this State Plan and its supplement has adopted or otherwise formally approved the plan and its supplement.
Yes

State Plan Certified By

As the authorized signatory identified above, I hereby certify that I will sign, date and retain in the files of the designated state agency/designated state unit Section 1 of the Preprint, and separate Certification of Lobbying forms (Form ED-80-0013; available at http://www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/appforms/ed80-013.pdf) for both the vocational rehabilitation and supported employment programs.

Signed?
Yes

Name of Signatory
Virginia M. Barry

Title of Signatory
Commissioner of Education for the State of New Hampshire

Date Signed (mm/dd/yyyy)
05/12/2011

Assurances Certified By

At the request of RSA, the designated state agency and/or the designated state unit provide the following assurance(s), in addition to those contained within Section 2 through 8 below, in connection with the approval of the State Plan for FY 2012
Yes

Comments:

ED 80-0013 Certification Regarding Lobbying

NH Department of Education, Division of Career Technology and Adult Learning- Vocational Rehabilitation:

1. Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program (CDFA 84.126) and

2. Vocational Rehabilitation Supported Employment (CDFA 84.187).

Signed?
Yes

Name of Signatory
Virginia M. Barry

Title of Signatory
Commissioner of Education for the State of New Hampshire

Date Signed (mm/dd/yyyy)
05/12/2011

* The signatory of the assurance with the authority to execute and submit the State Plan will maintain a signed copy of the assurance(s) with the signed State Plan.

Section 1 Footnotes

[1] Public Law 93 112, as amended by Public Laws 93 516, 95 602, 98 221, 99 506, 100-630, 102-569, 103-073, and 105-220.

[2] Unless otherwise stated, "Rehabilitation Act" means the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended.

[3] All references in this plan to "designated state agency" or to "the state agency" relate to the agency identified in this paragraph.

[4] No funds under Title I of the Rehabilitation Act may be awarded without an approved State Plan in accordance with Section 101(a) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR part 361.

[5] Applicable regulations include the Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR Parts 74, 76, 77, 79, 80, 81, 82, 85 and 86 and the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program regulations in 34 CFR Part 361.

[6] No funds under Title VI, Part B, of the Rehabilitation Act may be awarded without an approved supplement to the Title I State Plan in accordance with Section 625(a) of the Rehabilitation Act.

[7] Applicable regulations include the EDGAR citations in footnote 5, 34 CFR Part 361, and 34 CFR Part 363.

2.1 Public participation requirements. (Section 101(a)(16)(A) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.10(d), .20(a), (b), (d); and 363.11(g)(9))

(a) Conduct of public meetings.

The designated state agency, prior to the adoption of any substantive policies or procedures governing the provision of vocational rehabilitation services under the State Plan and supported employment services under the supplement to the State Plan, including making any substantive amendments to the policies and procedures, conducts public meetings throughout the state to provide the public, including individuals with disabilities, an opportunity to comment on the policies or procedures.

(b) Notice requirements.

The designated state agency, prior to conducting the public meetings, provides appropriate and sufficient notice throughout the state of the meetings in accordance with state law governing public meetings or, in the absence of state law governing public meetings, procedures developed by the state agency in consultation with the State Rehabilitation Council, if the agency has a council.

(c) Special consultation requirements.

The state agency actively consults with the director of the Client Assistance Program, the State Rehabilitation Council, if the agency has a council and, as appropriate, Indian tribes, tribal organizations and native Hawaiian organizations on its policies and procedures governing the provision of vocational rehabilitation services under the State Plan and supported employment services under the supplement to the State Plan.

3.1 Submission and revisions of the State Plan and its supplement. (Sections 101(a)(1), (23) and 625(a)(1) of the Rehabilitation Act; Section 501 of the Workforce Investment Act; 34 CFR 76.140; 361.10(e), (f), and (g); and 363.10)

(a) The state submits to the commissioner of the Rehabilitation Services Administration the State Plan and its supplement on the same date that the state submits either a State Plan under Section 112 of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 or a state unified plan under Section 501 of that Rehabilitation Act.

(b) The state submits only those policies, procedures or descriptions required under this State Plan and its supplement that have not been previously submitted to and approved by the commissioner.

(c) The state submits to the commissioner, at such time and in such manner as the commissioner determines to be appropriate, reports containing annual updates of the information relating to the:

  1. comprehensive system of personnel development;
  2. assessments, estimates, goals and priorities, and reports of progress;
  3. innovation and expansion activities; and
  4. other updates of information required under Title I, Part B, or Title VI, Part B, of the Rehabilitation Act that are requested by the commissioner.

(d) The State Plan and its supplement are in effect subject to the submission of modifications the state determines to be necessary or the commissioner requires based on a change in state policy, a change in federal law, including regulations, an interpretation of the Rehabilitation Act by a federal court or the highest court of the state, or a finding by the commissioner of state noncompliance with the requirements of the Rehabilitation Act, 34 CFR 361 or 34 CFR 363.

3.2 Supported Employment State Plan supplement. (Sections 101(a)(22) and 625(a) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.34 and 363.10)

(a) The state has an acceptable plan for carrying out Part B, of Title VI of the Rehabilitation Act that provides for the use of funds under that part to supplement funds made available under Part B, of Title I of the Rehabilitation Act for the cost of services leading to supported employment.

(b) The Supported Employment State Plan, including any needed annual revisions, is submitted as a supplement to the State Plan.

4.1 Designated state agency and designated state unit. (Section 101(a)(2) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.13(a) and (b))

(a) Designated state agency.

  1. There is a state agency designated as the sole state agency to administer the State Plan or to supervise its administration in a political subdivision of the state by a sole local agency.

  1. The designated state agency is a state agency that is not primarily concerned with vocational rehabilitation or vocational and other rehabilitation of individuals with disabilities and includes a vocational rehabilitation unit as provided in paragraph (b) of this section (Option B was selected/Option A was not selected)

  1. In American Samoa, the designated state agency is the governor.

(b) Designated state unit.

  1. If the designated state agency is not primarily concerned with vocational rehabilitation or vocational and other rehabilitation of individuals with disabilities, in accordance with subparagraph 4.1(a)(2)(B) of this section, the state agency includes a vocational rehabilitation bureau, division or unit that:

  1. is primarily concerned with vocational rehabilitation or vocational and other rehabilitation of individuals with disabilities and is responsible for the administration of the designated state agency's vocational rehabilitation program under the State Plan;
  2. has a full-time director;
  3. has a staff, at least 90 percent of whom are employed full-time on the rehabilitation work of the organizational unit; and
  4. is located at an organizational level and has an organizational status within the designated state agency comparable to that of other major organizational units of the designated state agency.

  1. The name of the designated state vocational rehabilitation unit is
New Hampshire Vocational Rehabilitation

4.2 State independent commission or State Rehabilitation Council. (Sections 101(a)(21) and 105 of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.16 and .17)

The State Plan must contain one of the following assurances.

(a) The designated state agency is an independent state commission that

  1. is responsible under state law for operating or overseeing the operation of the vocational rehabilitation program in the state and is primarily concerned with the vocational rehabilitation or vocational and other rehabilitation of individuals with disabilities in accordance with subparagraph 4.1(a)(2)(A) of this section.
  1. is consumer controlled by persons who:
    1. are individuals with physical or mental impairments that substantially limit major life activities; and
    2. represent individuals with a broad range of disabilities, unless the designated state unit under the direction of the commission is the state agency for individuals who are blind;
  1. includes family members, advocates or other representatives of individuals with mental impairments; and
  1. undertakes the functions set forth in Section 105(c)(4) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 361.17(h)(4).

(b) The state has established a State Rehabilitation Council that meets the criteria set forth in Section 105 of the Rehabilitation Act, 34 CFR 361.17

(c) If the designated state unit has a State Rehabilitation Council, Attachment 4.2(c) provides a summary of the input provided by the council consistent with the provisions identified in subparagraph (b)(3) of this section; the response of the designated state unit to the input and recommendations; and, explanations for the rejection of any input or any recommendation.

(Option B was selected)

4.3 Consultations regarding the administration of the State Plan. (Section 101(a)(16)(B) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.21)

The designated state agency takes into account, in connection with matters of general policy arising in the administration of the plan and its supplement, the views of:

(a) individuals and groups of individuals who are recipients of vocational rehabilitation services or, as appropriate, the individuals' representatives;
(b) personnel working in programs that provide vocational rehabilitation services to individuals with disabilities;
(c) providers of vocational rehabilitation services to individuals with disabilities;
(d) the director of the Client Assistance Program; and
(e) the State Rehabilitation Council, if the state has a council.

4.4 Nonfederal share. (Sections 7(14) and 101(a)(3) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 80.24 and 361.60)

The nonfederal share of the cost of carrying out this State Plan is 21.3 percent and is provided through the financial participation by the state or, if the state elects, by the state and local agencies.

4.5 Local administration. (Sections 7(24) and 101(a)(2)(A) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.5(b)(47) and .15)

The State Plan provides for the administration of the plan by a local agency. No

If "Yes", the designated state agency:

(a) ensures that each local agency is under the supervision of the designated state unit with the sole local agency, as that term is defined in Section 7(24) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 361.5(b)(47), responsible for the administration of the vocational rehabilitation program within the political subdivision that it serves; and
(b) develops methods that each local agency will use to administer the vocational rehabilitation program in accordance with the State Plan.

4.6 Shared funding and administration of joint programs. (Section 101(a)(2)(A)(ii) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.27)

The State Plan provides for the state agency to share funding and administrative responsibility with another state agency or local public agency to carry out a joint program to provide services to individuals with disabilities. No

If "Yes", the designated state agency submits to the commissioner for approval a plan that describes its shared funding and administrative arrangement. The plan must include:

(a) a description of the nature and scope of the joint program;
(b) the services to be provided under the joint program;
(c) the respective roles of each participating agency in the administration and provision of services; and
(d) the share of the costs to be assumed by each agency.

4.7 Statewideness and waivers of statewideness. (Section 101(a)(4) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.25, .26, and .60(b)(3)(i) and (ii))

X This agency is requesting a waiver of statewideness.

(a) Services provided under the State Plan are available in all political subdivisions of the state.
(b) The state unit may provide services in one or more political subdivisions of the state that increase services or expand the scope of services that are available statewide under this State Plan if the:

  1. nonfederal share of the cost of these services is met from funds provided by a local public agency, including funds contributed to a local public agency by a private agency, organization or individual;

  1. services are likely to promote the vocational rehabilitation of substantially larger numbers of individuals with disabilities or of individuals with disabilities with particular types of impairments; and

  1. state, for purposes other than the establishment of a community rehabilitation program or the construction of a particular facility for community rehabilitation program purposes, requests in Attachment 4.7(b)(3) a waiver of the statewideness requirement in accordance with the following requirements:

  1. identification of the types of services to be provided;

  1. written assurance from the local public agency that it will make available to the state unit the nonfederal share of funds;

  1. written assurance that state unit approval will be obtained for each proposed service before it is put into effect; and

  1. written assurance that all other State Plan requirements, including a state's order of selection, will apply to all services approved under the waiver.

(c) Contributions, consistent with the requirements of 34 CFR 361.60(b)(3)(ii), by private entities of earmarked funds for particular geographic areas within the state may be used as part of the nonfederal share without the state requesting a waiver of the statewideness requirement provided that the state notifies the commissioner that it cannot provide the full nonfederal share without using the earmarked funds.

4.8 Cooperation, collaboration and coordination. (Sections 101(a)(11), (24)(B), and 625(b)(4) and (5) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.22, .23, .24, and .31, and 363.11(e))

(a) Cooperative agreements with other components of statewide work force investment system.

The designated state agency or the designated state unit has cooperative agreements with other entities that are components of the statewide work force investment system and replicates those agreements at the local level between individual offices of the designated state unit and local entities carrying out the One-Stop service delivery system or other activities through the statewide work force investment system.

(b) Cooperation and coordination with other agencies and entities.

Attachment 4.8(b) (1)-(4) describes the designated state agency's:

  1. cooperation with and use of the services and facilities of the federal, state, and local agencies and programs, including programs carried out by the undersecretary for Rural Development of the United States Department of Agriculture and state use contracting programs, to the extent that those agencies and programs are not carrying out activities through the statewide work force investment system;

  1. coordination, in accordance with the requirements of paragraph 4.8(c) of this section, with education officials to facilitate the transition of students with disabilities from school to the receipt of vocational rehabilitation services;

  1. establishment of cooperative agreements with private nonprofit vocational rehabilitation service providers, in accordance with the requirements of paragraph 5.10(b) of the State Plan; and,

  1. efforts to identify and make arrangements, including entering into cooperative agreements, with other state agencies and entities with respect to the provision of supported employment and extended services for individuals with the most significant disabilities, in accordance with the requirements of subsection 6.5 of the supplement to this State Plan.

(c) Coordination with education officials.

  1. Attachment 4.8(b)(2) describes the plans, policies and procedures for coordination between the designated state agency and education officials responsible for the public education of students with disabilities that are designed to facilitate the transition of the students who are individuals with disabilities from the receipt of educational services in school to the receipt of vocational rehabilitation services under the responsibility of the designated state agency.

  1. The State Plan description must:

  1. provide for the development and approval of an individualized plan for employment in accordance with 34 CFR 361.45 as early as possible during the transition planning process but, at the latest, before each student determined to be eligible for vocational rehabilitation services leaves the school setting or if the designated state unit is operating on an order of selection before each eligible student able to be served under the order leaves the school setting; and

  1. include information on a formal interagency agreement with the state educational agency that, at a minimum, provides for:

  1. consultation and technical assistance to assist educational agencies in planning for the transition of students with disabilities from school to postschool activities, including vocational rehabilitation services;

  1. transition planning by personnel of the designated state agency and the educational agency for students with disabilities that facilitates the development and completion of their individualized education programs under Section 614(d) of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act;

  1. roles and responsibilities, including financial responsibilities, of each agency, including provisions for determining state lead agencies and qualified personnel responsible for transition services; and

  1. procedures for outreach to students with disabilities as early as possible during the transition planning process and identification of students with disabilities who need transition services.

(d) Coordination with statewide independent living council and independent living centers.

The designated state unit, the Statewide Independent Living Council established under Section 705 of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 364, and the independent living centers described in Part C of Title VII of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 366 have developed working relationships and coordinate their activities.

(e) Cooperative agreement with recipients of grants for services to American Indians.

  1. There is in the state a recipient(s) of a grant under Part C of Title I of the Rehabilitation Act for the provision of vocational rehabilitation services for American Indians who are individuals with disabilities residing on or near federal and state reservations. No

  1. If "Yes", the designated state agency has entered into a formal cooperative agreement that meets the following requirements with each grant recipient in the state that receives funds under Part C of Title I of the Rehabilitation Act:

  1. strategies for interagency referral and information sharing that will assist in eligibility determinations and the development of individualized plans for employment;

  1. procedures for ensuring that American Indians who are individuals with disabilities and are living near a reservation or tribal service area are provided vocational rehabilitation services; and

  1. provisions for sharing resources in cooperative studies and assessments, joint training activities, and other collaborative activities designed to improve the provision of services to American Indians who are individuals with disabilities.

4.9 Methods of administration. (Section 101(a)(6) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.12, .19 and .51(a) and (b))

(a) In general.

The state agency employs methods of administration, including procedures to ensure accurate data collection and financial accountability, found by the commissioner to be necessary for the proper and efficient administration of the plan and for carrying out all the functions for which the state is responsible under the plan and 34 CFR 361.

(b) Employment of individuals with disabilities.

The designated state agency and entities carrying out community rehabilitation programs in the state, who are in receipt of assistance under Part B, of Title I of the Rehabilitation Act and this State Plan, take affirmative action to employ and advance in employment qualified individuals with disabilities covered under and on the same terms and conditions as set forth in Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act.

(c) Facilities.

Any facility used in connection with the delivery of services assisted under this State Plan meets program accessibility requirements consistent with the provisions, as applicable, of the Architectural Barriers Rehabilitation Act of 1968, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and the regulations implementing these laws.

4.10 Comprehensive system of personnel development. (Section 101(a)(7) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.18)

Attachment 4.10 describes the designated state agency's procedures and activities to establish and maintain a comprehensive system of personnel development designed to ensure an adequate supply of qualified state rehabilitation professional and paraprofessional personnel for the designated state unit. The description includes the following:

(a) Data system on personnel and personnel development.

Development and maintenance of a system for collecting and analyzing on an annual basis data on qualified personnel needs and personnel development with respect to:

  1. Qualified personnel needs.

  1. The number of personnel who are employed by the state agency in the provision of vocational rehabilitation services in relation to the number of individuals served, broken down by personnel category;

  1. The number of personnel currently needed by the state agency to provide vocational rehabilitation services, broken down by personnel category; and

  1. Projections of the number of personnel, broken down by personnel category, who will be needed by the state agency to provide vocational rehabilitation services in the state in five years based on projections of the number of individuals to be served, including individuals with significant disabilities, the number of personnel expected to retire or leave the field, and other relevant factors.

  1. Personnel development.

  1. A list of the institutions of higher education in the state that are preparing vocational rehabilitation professionals, by type of program;

  1. The number of students enrolled at each of those institutions, broken down by type of program; and

  1. The number of students who graduated during the prior year from each of those institutions with certification or licensure, or with the credentials for certification or licensure, broken down by the personnel category for which they have received, or have the credentials to receive, certification or licensure.

(b) Plan for recruitment, preparation and retention of qualified personnel.

Development, updating on an annual basis, and implementation of a plan to address the current and projected needs for qualified personnel based on the data collection and analysis system described in paragraph (a) of this subsection and that provides for the coordination and facilitation of efforts between the designated state unit and institutions of higher education and professional associations to recruit, prepare and retain personnel who are qualified in accordance with paragraph (c) of this subsection, including personnel from minority backgrounds and personnel who are individuals with disabilities.

(c) Personnel standards.

Policies and procedures for the establishment and maintenance of personnel standards to ensure that designated state unit professional and paraprofessional personnel are appropriately and adequately prepared and trained, including:

  1. standards that are consistent with any national- or state-approved or recognized certification, licensing, registration, or, in the absence of these requirements, other comparable requirements (including state personnel requirements) that apply to the profession or discipline in which such personnel are providing vocational rehabilitation services.

  1. To the extent that existing standards are not based on the highest requirements in the state applicable to a particular profession or discipline, the steps the state is currently taking and the steps the state plans to take in accordance with the written plan to retrain or hire personnel within the designated state unit to meet standards that are based on the highest requirements in the state, including measures to notify designated state unit personnel, the institutions of higher education identified in subparagraph (a)(2), and other public agencies of these steps and the time lines for taking each step.

  1. The written plan required by subparagraph (c)(2) describes the following:

  1. specific strategies for retraining, recruiting and hiring personnel;

  1. the specific time period by which all state unit personnel will meet the standards required by subparagraph (c)(1);

  1. procedures for evaluating the designated state unit's progress in hiring or retraining personnel to meet applicable personnel standards within the established time period; and

  1. the identification of initial minimum qualifications that the designated state unit will require of newly hired personnel when the state unit is unable to hire new personnel who meet the established personnel standards and the identification of a plan for training such individuals to meet the applicable standards within the time period established for all state unit personnel to meet the established personnel standards.

(d) Staff development.

Policies, procedures and activities to ensure that all personnel employed by the designated state unit receive appropriate and adequate training. The narrative describes the following:

  1. A system of staff development for professionals and paraprofessionals within the designated state unit, particularly with respect to assessment, vocational counseling, job placement and rehabilitation technology.

  1. Procedures for the acquisition and dissemination to designated state unit professionals and paraprofessionals significant knowledge from research and other sources.

(e) Personnel to address individual communication needs.

Availability of personnel within the designated state unit or obtaining the services of other individuals who are able to communicate in the native language of applicants or eligible individuals who have limited English speaking ability or in appropriate modes of communication with applicants or eligible individuals.

(f) Coordination of personnel development under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

Procedures and activities to coordinate the designated state unit's comprehensive system of personnel development with personnel development under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

4.11. Statewide assessment; annual estimates; annual state goals and priorities; strategies; and progress reports.

(Sections 101(a)(15), 105(c)(2) and 625(b)(2) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.17(h)(2), .29, and 363.11(b))

(a) Comprehensive statewide assessment.

  1. Attachment 4.11(a) documents the results of a comprehensive, statewide assessment, jointly conducted every three years by the designated state unit and the State Rehabilitation Council (if the state has such a council). The assessment describes:

  1. the rehabilitation needs of individuals with disabilities residing within the state, particularly the vocational rehabilitation services needs of:

  1. individuals with the most significant disabilities, including their need for supported employment services;

  1. individuals with disabilities who are minorities and individuals with disabilities who have been unserved or underserved by the vocational rehabilitation program carried out under this State Plan; and

  1. individuals with disabilities served through other components of the statewide work force investment system.

  1. The need to establish, develop or improve community rehabilitation programs within the state.

  1. For any year in which the state updates the assessments, the designated state unit submits to the commissioner a report containing information regarding updates to the assessments.

(b) Annual estimates.

Attachment 4.11(b) identifies on an annual basis state estimates of the:

  1. number of individuals in the state who are eligible for services under the plan;

  1. number of eligible individuals who will receive services provided with funds provided under Part B of Title I of the Rehabilitation Act and under Part B of Title VI of the Rehabilitation Act, including, if the designated state agency uses an order of selection in accordance with subparagraph 5.3(b)(2) of this State Plan, estimates of the number of individuals to be served under each priority category within the order; and

  1. costs of the services described in subparagraph (b)(1), including, if the designated state agency uses an order of selection, the service costs for each priority category within the order.

(c) Goals and priorities.

  1. Attachment 4.11(c)(1) identifies the goals and priorities of the state that are jointly developed or revised, as applicable, with and agreed to by the State Rehabilitation Council, if the agency has a council, in carrying out the vocational rehabilitation and supported employment programs.

  1. The designated state agency submits to the commissioner a report containing information regarding any revisions in the goals and priorities for any year the state revises the goals and priorities.

  1. Order of selection.
    If the state agency implements an order of selection, consistent with subparagraph 5.3(b)(2) of the State Plan, Attachment 4.11(c)(3):

  1. shows the order to be followed in selecting eligible individuals to be provided vocational rehabilitation services;

  1. provides a justification for the order; and

  1. identifies the service and outcome goals, and the time within which these goals may be achieved for individuals in each priority category within the order.

  1. Goals and plans for distribution of Title VI, Part B, funds.
    Attachment 4.11(c)(4) specifies, consistent with subsection 6.4 of the State Plan supplement, the state's goals and priorities with respect to the distribution of funds received under Section 622 of the Rehabilitation Act for the provision of supported employment services.

(d) Strategies.

  1. Attachment 4.11(d) describes the strategies, including:

  1. the methods to be used to expand and improve services to individuals with disabilities, including how a broad range of assistive technology services and assistive technology devices will be provided to those individuals at each stage of the rehabilitation process and how those services and devices will be provided to individuals with disabilities on a statewide basis;

  1. outreach procedures to identify and serve individuals with disabilities who are minorities, including those with the most significant disabilities in accordance with subsection 6.6 of the State Plan supplement, and individuals with disabilities who have been unserved or underserved by the vocational rehabilitation program;

  1. as applicable, the plan of the state for establishing, developing or improving community rehabilitation programs;

  1. strategies to improve the performance of the state with respect to the evaluation standards and performance indicators established pursuant to Section 106 of the Rehabilitation Act; and

  1. strategies for assisting other components of the statewide work force investment system in assisting individuals with disabilities.

  1. Attachment 4.11 (d) describes how the designated state agency uses these strategies to:

  1. address the needs identified in the assessment conducted under paragraph 4.11(a) and achieve the goals and priorities identified in the State Plan attachments under paragraph 4.11(c);

  1. support the innovation and expansion activities identified in subparagraph 4.12(a)(1) and (2) of the plan; and

  1. overcome identified barriers relating to equitable access to and participation of individuals with disabilities in the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program and State Supported Employment Services Program.

(e) Evaluation and reports of progress.

  1. The designated state unit and the State Rehabilitation Council, if the state unit has a council, jointly submits to the commissioner an annual report on the results of an evaluation of the effectiveness of the vocational rehabilitation program and the progress made in improving the effectiveness of the program from the previous year.

  1. Attachment 4.11(e)(2):

  1. provides an evaluation of the extent to which the goals identified in Attachment 4.11(c)(1) and, if applicable, Attachment 4.11(c)(3) were achieved;

  1. identifies the strategies that contributed to the achievement of the goals and priorities;

  1. describes the factors that impeded their achievement, to the extent they were not achieved;

  1. assesses the performance of the state on the standards and indicators established pursuant to Section 106 of the Rehabilitation Act; and

  1. provides a report consistent with paragraph 4.12(c) of the plan on how the funds reserved for innovation and expansion activities were utilized in the preceding year.

4.12 Innovation and expansion. (Section 101(a)(18) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.35)

(a) The designated state agency reserves and uses a portion of the funds allotted to the state under Section 110 of the Rehabilitation Act for the:

  1. development and implementation of innovative approaches to expand and improve the provision of vocational rehabilitation services to individuals with disabilities under this State Plan, particularly individuals with the most significant disabilities, consistent with the findings of the statewide assessment identified in Attachment 4.11(a) and goals and priorities of the state identified in Attachments 4.11(c)(1) and, if applicable, Attachment 4.11(c)(3); and

  1. support of the funding for the State Rehabilitation Council, if the state has such a council, consistent with the resource plan prepared under Section 105(d)(1) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 361.17(i), and the funding of the Statewide Independent Living Council, consistent with the resource plan prepared under Section 705(e)(1) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 364.21(i).

(b) Attachment 4.11 (d) describes how the reserved funds identified in subparagraph 4.12(a)(1) and (2) will be utilized.
(c) Attachment 4.11(e)(2) describes how the reserved funds were utilized in the preceding year.

4.13 Reports. (Section 101(a)(10) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.40)

(a) The designated state unit submits reports in the form and level of detail and at the time required by the commissioner regarding applicants for and eligible individuals receiving services under the State Plan.
(b) Information submitted in the reports provides a complete count, unless sampling techniques are used, of the applicants and eligible individuals in a manner that permits the greatest possible cross-classification of data and protects the confidentiality of the identity of each individual.

5.1 Information and referral services. (Sections 101(a)(5)(D) and (20) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.37)

The designated state agency has implemented an information and referral system that is adequate to ensure that individuals with disabilities, including individuals who do not meet the agency's order of selection criteria for receiving vocational rehabilitation services if the agency is operating on an order of selection, are provided accurate vocational rehabilitation information and guidance, including counseling and referral for job placement, using appropriate modes of communication, to assist such individuals in preparing for, securing, retaining or regaining employment, and are referred to other appropriate federal and state programs, including other components of the statewide work force investment system in the state.

5.2 Residency. (Section 101(a)(12) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.42(c)(1))

The designated state unit imposes no duration of residence requirement as part of determining an individual's eligibility for vocational rehabilitation services or that excludes from services under the plan any individual who is present in the state.

5.3 Ability to serve all eligible individuals; order of selection for services. (Sections 12(d) and 101(a)(5) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.36)

(a) The designated state unit is able to provide the full range of services listed in Section 103(a) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 361.48, as appropriate, to all eligible individuals with disabilities in the state who apply for services. Yes

(b) If No:

  1. Individuals with the most significant disabilities, in accordance with criteria established by the state, are selected first for vocational rehabilitation services before other individuals with disabilities.

  1. Attachment 4.11(c)(3):

  1. shows the order to be followed in selecting eligible individuals to be provided vocational rehabilitation services;

  1. provides a justification for the order of selection; and

  1. identifies the state's service and outcome goals and the time within which these goals may be achieved for individuals in each priority category within the order.

  1. Eligible individuals who do not meet the order of selection criteria have access to the services provided through the designated state unit's information and referral system established under Section 101(a)(20) of the Rehabilitation Act, 34 CFR 361.37, and subsection 5.1 of this State Plan.

5.4 Availability of comparable services and benefits. (Sections 101(a)(8) and 103(a) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.53)

(a) Prior to providing any vocational rehabilitation services, except those services identified in paragraph (b), to an eligible individual or to members of the individual's family, the state unit determines whether comparable services and benefits exist under any other program and whether those services and benefits are available to the individual.
(b) The following services are exempt from a determination of the availability of comparable services and benefits:

  1. assessment for determining eligibility and vocational rehabilitation needs by qualified personnel, including, if appropriate, an assessment by personnel skilled in rehabilitation technology;

  1. counseling and guidance, including information and support services to assist an individual in exercising informed choice consistent with the provisions of Section 102(d) of the Rehabilitation Act;

  1. referral and other services to secure needed services from other agencies, including other components of the statewide work force investment system, through agreements developed under Section 101(a)(11) of the Rehabilitation Act, if such services are not available under this State Plan;

  1. job-related services, including job search and placement assistance, job retention services, follow-up services, and follow-along services;

  1. rehabilitation technology, including telecommunications, sensory and other technological aids and devices; and

  1. post-employment services consisting of the services listed under subparagraphs (1) through (5) of this paragraph.

(c) The requirements of paragraph (a) of this section do not apply if the determination of the availability of comparable services and benefits under any other program would interrupt or delay:

  1. progress of the individual toward achieving the employment outcome identified in the individualized plan for employment;

  1. an immediate job placement; or

  1. provision of vocational rehabilitation services to any individual who is determined to be at extreme medical risk, based on medical evidence provided by an appropriate qualified medical professional.

(d) The governor in consultation with the designated state vocational rehabilitation agency and other appropriate agencies ensures that an interagency agreement or other mechanism for interagency coordination that meets the requirements of Section 101(a)(8)(B)(i)-(iv) of the Rehabilitation Act takes effect between the designated state unit and any appropriate public entity, including the state Medicaid program, a public institution of higher education, and a component of the statewide work force investment system to ensure the provision of the vocational rehabilitation services identified in Section 103(a) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 361.48, other than the services identified in paragraph (b) of this section, that are included in the individualized plan for employment of an eligible individual, including the provision of those vocational rehabilitation services during the pendency of any dispute that may arise in the implementation of the interagency agreement or other mechanism for interagency coordination.

5.5 Individualized plan for employment. (Section 101(a)(9) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.45 and .46)

(a) An individualized plan for employment meeting the requirements of Section 102(b) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 361.45 and .46 is developed and implemented in a timely manner for each individual determined to be eligible for vocational rehabilitation services, except if the state has implemented an order of selection, and is developed and implemented for each individual to whom the designated state unit is able to provide vocational rehabilitation services.
(b) Services to an eligible individual are provided in accordance with the provisions of the individualized plan for employment.

5.6 Opportunity to make informed choices regarding the selection of services and providers. (Sections 101(a)(19) and 102(d) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.52)

Applicants and eligible individuals or, as appropriate, their representatives are provided information and support services to assist in exercising informed choice throughout the rehabilitation process, consistent with the provisions of Section 102(d) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 361.52.

5.7 Services to American Indians. (Section 101(a)(13) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.30)

The designated state unit provides vocational rehabilitation services to American Indians who are individuals with disabilities residing in the state to the same extent as the designated state agency provides such services to other significant populations of individuals with disabilities residing in the state.

5.8 Annual review of individuals in extended employment or other employment under special certificate provisions of the fair labor standards act of 1938. (Section 101(a)(14) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.55)

(a) The designated state unit conducts an annual review and reevaluation of the status of each individual with a disability served under this State Plan:

  1. who has achieved an employment outcome in which the individual is compensated in accordance with Section 14(c) of the Fair Labor Standards Act (29 U.S.C. 214(c)); or

  1. whose record of services is closed while the individual is in extended employment on the basis that the individual is unable to achieve an employment outcome in an integrated setting or that the individual made an informed choice to remain in extended employment.

(b) The designated state unit carries out the annual review and reevaluation for two years after the individual's record of services is closed (and thereafter if requested by the individual or, if appropriate, the individual's representative) to determine the interests, priorities and needs of the individual with respect to competitive employment or training for competitive employment.
(c) The designated state unit makes maximum efforts, including the identification and provision of vocational rehabilitation services, reasonable accommodations and other necessary support services, to assist the individuals described in paragraph (a) in engaging in competitive employment.
(d) The individual with a disability or, if appropriate, the individual's representative has input into the review and reevaluation and, through signed acknowledgement, attests that the review and reevaluation have been conducted.

5.9 Use of Title I funds for construction of facilities. (Sections 101(a)(17) and 103(b)(2)(A) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.49(a)(1), .61 and .62(b))

If the state elects to construct, under special circumstances, facilities for community rehabilitation programs, the following requirements are met:

(a) The federal share of the cost of construction for facilities for a fiscal year does not exceed an amount equal to 10 percent of the state's allotment under Section 110 of the Rehabilitation Act for that fiscal year.
(b) The provisions of Section 306 of the Rehabilitation Act that were in effect prior to the enactment of the Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1998 apply to such construction.
(c) There is compliance with the requirements in 34 CFR 361.62(b) that ensure the use of the construction authority will not reduce the efforts of the designated state agency in providing other vocational rehabilitation services other than the establishment of facilities for community rehabilitation programs.

5.10 Contracts and cooperative agreements. (Section 101(a)(24) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.31 and .32)

(a) Contracts with for-profit organizations.

The designated state agency has the authority to enter into contracts with for-profit organizations for the purpose of providing, as vocational rehabilitation services, on-the-job training and related programs for individuals with disabilities under Part A of Title VI of the Rehabilitation Act, upon the determination by the designated state agency that for-profit organizations are better qualified to provide vocational rehabilitation services than nonprofit agencies and organizations.

(b) Cooperative agreements with private nonprofit organizations.

Attachment 4.8(b)(3) describes the manner in which the designated state agency establishes cooperative agreements with private nonprofit vocational rehabilitation service providers.

Section 6: Program Administration

6.1 Designated state agency. (Section 625(b)(1) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 363.11(a))

The designated state agency for vocational rehabilitation services identified in paragraph 1.2 of the Title I State Plan is the state agency designated to administer the State Supported Employment Services Program authorized under Title VI, Part B, of the Rehabilitation Act.

6.2 Statewide assessment of supported employment services needs. (Section 625(b)(2) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 363.11(b))

Attachment 4.11(a) describes the results of the comprehensive, statewide needs assessment conducted under Section 101(a)(15)(a)(1) of the Rehabilitation Act and subparagraph 4.11(a)(1) of the Title I State Plan with respect to the rehabilitation needs of individuals with most significant disabilities and their need for supported employment services, including needs related to coordination.

6.3 Quality, scope and extent of supported employment services. (Section 625(b)(3) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 363.11(c) and .50(b)(2))

Attachment 6.3 describes the quality, scope and extent of supported employment services to be provided to individuals with the most significant disabilities who are eligible to receive supported employment services. The description also addresses the timing of the transition to extended services to be provided by relevant state agencies, private nonprofit organizations or other sources following the cessation of supported employment service provided by the designated state agency.

6.4 Goals and plans for distribution of Title VI, Part B, funds. (Section 625(b)(3) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 363.11(d) and .20)

Attachment 4.11(c)(4) identifies the state's goals and plans with respect to the distribution of funds received under Section 622 of the Rehabilitation Act.

6.5 Evidence of collaboration with respect to supported employment services and extended services. (Sections 625(b)(4) and (5) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 363.11(e))

Attachment 4.8(b)(4) describes the efforts of the designated state agency to identify and make arrangements, including entering into cooperative agreements, with other state agencies and other appropriate entities to assist in the provision of supported employment services and other public or nonprofit agencies or organizations within the state, employers, natural supports, and other entities with respect to the provision of extended services.

6.6 Minority outreach. (34 CFR 363.11(f))

Attachment 4.11(d) includes a description of the designated state agency's outreach procedures for identifying and serving individuals with the most significant disabilities who are minorities.

6.7 Reports. (Sections 625(b)(8) and 626 of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 363.11(h) and .52)

The designated state agency submits reports in such form and in accordance with such procedures as the commissioner may require and collects the information required by Section 101(a)(10) of the Rehabilitation Act separately for individuals receiving supported employment services under Part B, of Title VI and individuals receiving supported employment services under Title I of the Rehabilitation Act.

7.1 Five percent limitation on administrative costs. (Section 625(b)(7) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 363.11(g)(8))

The designated state agency expends no more than five percent of the state's allotment under Section 622 of the Rehabilitation Act for administrative costs in carrying out the State Supported Employment Services Program.

7.2 Use of funds in providing services. (Sections 623 and 625(b)(6)(A) and (D) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 363.6(c)(2)(iv), .11(g)(1) and (4))

(a) Funds made available under Title VI, Part B, of the Rehabilitation Act are used by the designated state agency only to provide supported employment services to individuals with the most significant disabilities who are eligible to receive such services.
(b) Funds provided under Title VI, Part B, are used only to supplement and not supplant the funds provided under Title I, Part B, of the Rehabilitation Act, in providing supported employment services specified in the individualized plan for employment.
(c) Funds provided under Part B of Title VI or Title I of the Rehabilitation Act are not used to provide extended services to individuals who are eligible under Part B of Title VI or Title I of the Rehabilitation Act.

8.1 Scope of supported employment services. (Sections 7(36) and 625(b)(6)(F) and (G) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.5(b)(54), 363.11(g)(6) and (7))

(a) Supported employment services are those services as defined in Section 7(36) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 361.5(b)(54).
(b) To the extent job skills training is provided, the training is provided on-site.
(c) Supported employment services include placement in an integrated setting for the maximum number of hours possible based on the unique strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests and informed choice of individuals with the most significant disabilities.

8.2 Comprehensive assessments of individuals with significant disabilities. (Sections 7(2)(B) and 625(b)(6)(B); 34 CFR 361.5(b)(6)(ii) and 363.11(g)(2))

The comprehensive assessment of individuals with significant disabilities conducted under Section 102(b)(1) of the Rehabilitation Act and funded under Title I of the Rehabilitation Act includes consideration of supported employment as an appropriate employment outcome.

8.3 Individualized plan for employment. (Sections 102(b)(3)(F) and 625(b)(6)(C) and (E) of the Rehabilitation Act; 34 CFR 361.46(b) and 363.11(g)(3) and (5))

(a) An individualized plan for employment that meets the requirements of Section 102(b) of the Rehabilitation Act and 34 CFR 361.45 and .46 is developed and updated using funds under Title I.
(b) The individualized plan for employment:

  1. specifies the supported employment services to be provided;

  1. describes the expected extended services needed; and

  1. identifies the source of extended services, including natural supports, or, to the extent that it is not possible to identify the source of extended services at the time the individualized plan for employment plan is developed, a statement describing the basis for concluding that there is a reasonable expectation that sources will become available.

(c) Services provided under an individualized plan for employment are coordinated with services provided under other individualized plans established under other federal or state programs.

Required annually by all agencies except those agencies that are independent consumer-controlled commissions.

Identify the Input provided by the state rehabilitation council, including recommendations from the council's annual report, the review and analysis of consumer satisfaction, and other council reports. Be sure to also include:

  • the Designated state unit's response to the input and recommendations; and
  • explanations for the designated state unit's rejection of any input or recommendation of the council.

Comment: Council members recommended that the Agency continue to support and focus on transition activities. It was noted that the youth are our future and that the Agency should continue to seek ways to expand these programs, and to seek new and different ways of education and training.

Agency Response: The Agency agrees with this recommendation and will continue to support transition activities. Transition is one of the goal areas that the Agency has and maintains within our Agency Goals and Priorities.

Comment: Council members requested that the Agency include some background information in the state plan (attachment 4.11(e) relative to the results of the Agency and the number of customers who achieved a successful employment outcome in FY 2010, specifically the impact on the State’s economy on the Agency’s not meeting the standard in this area.

Agency Response: The economy in NH and the employment rate did impact the ability of our customers as well as other NH residents to gain employment during fiscal year 2010. The Agency agrees with this recommendation and additional information was added to the plan regarding the economy and the impact on the jobs available in New Hampshire that had an impact on the overall number of successful placements the Agency was able to assist with for the reporting period.

Comment: The question was raised as to whether the Agency had information as to why there was a slight decline in the rehabilitation rate for transition students reported in attachment 4.11(e)(2) item 3.3.

Agency Response: In working with employers in the current economy the Agency has seen a trend to hire unemployed adults into positions that may have in the past been filled by transition aged youth. One of the reasons for this is that there are currently in the marketplace adults who are in need and willing to work. As a whole there was a downturn in labor force participation rates by age group during the recession that may have also impacted NHVR customers in the same age grouping. New Hampshire Employment Security’s Economic & Labor Market Information Bureau noted that “Young persons in the age groups of 16 to 19 years and 20 to 24 years had lower participation rates for 2009, declining from 52.2 percent to 46.0 percent and form 78.9 percent to 74 percent respectively. These represent large single year drops in participation, but also continue a long term trend of declining participation.”

Comment: Council members supported current efforts and recommended continued support of postsecondary educational opportunities for customers including the exploration for expansion of programs such as Project Search that provide specific training and/or employment opportunities for customers.

Agency Response: The Agency concurs and continues to work toward supporting current projects and seeking opportunities for continuing and expanding opportunities for our customers.

Comment: SRC members questioned what the impact to the Agency and customers of the Agency would be if the current budget issues caused reduction of services and supports including the reduction and elimination of programs such as Medicaid for Employed Adults with Disabilities (MEAD).

Agency Response: At this time funding and the impact of any budget cuts is not known. As these decisions are made and any changes implemented, the Agency will need to look at the impact of these changes on the individuals we serve and determine if there are any changes the Agency needs to make to respond.

Comment: It was noted that transportation was identified as a need area throughout the state. The Agency was encouraged to explore and support the expansion of transportation options and opportunities available to customers; including possibly seeking opportunities for partnership with other entities around the provision of transportation.

Agency Response: The Agency agrees and acknowledges that transportation particularly in the rural areas of the state is challenging.

This screen was last updated on May 13 2011 11:15AM by Ella McAllister

This agency has requested a waiver of statewideness.

Identify the types of services to be provided by the program for which the waiver of statewideness is requested.

The waiver request should also include:

  • a written assurance from the local public agency that it will make available to the designated state unit the non-federal share of funds;
  • a written assurance that designated state unit approval will be obtained for each proposed service before it is put into effect;
  • a written assurance that all state plan requirements will apply to all services approved under the waiver.

NA

This screen was last updated on Jun 30 2009 9:15AM by Ella McAllister

Describe interagency cooperation with and utilization of the services and facilities of agencies and programs that are not carrying out activities through the statewide workforce investment system with respect to

  • Federal, state, and local agencies and programs;
  • if applicable, Programs carried out by the Under Secretary for Rural Development of the United States Department of Agriculture; and
  • if applicable, state use contracting programs.

The Agency continually seeks to build and maintain relationships with other agencies and organizations that would impact on the employment outcomes of individuals with disabilities. The Agency has continued to build even stronger relationships than were initially fostered by Ticket to Work Legislation. The Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG) has become the central organizing force for these efforts. Subsequent to the successful passage and implementation of the Medicaid for Employed Adults with Disabilities (MEAD) program, the next phase of the MIG grant focused on the development of statewide, integrated employment services for individuals with disabilities. The MIG includes partners from Community Mental Health, Area Agencies, Independent Living and community rehabilitation providers. Staff of NHVR is involved at all levels with this effort. This includes membership on the State Advisory Council and the State Steering Committee as well as numerous teams that have formed as the increased need for collaboration was identified. These teams include efforts to develop consistent standards and training for job developers, data sharing regarding employment outcomes and business relations and education and outreach to social security beneficiaries.

In June 2007, the NH Legislature passed a law establishing a Commission on Autism Spectrum Disorders. This Commission was charged with examining and making recommendations regarding the needs of children and adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). The VR Field Service Administrator was asked to serve on this Commission and participated in the completion of the 2008 Commission report. As a result of this effort, a Council on ASD was established with appointed membership from the Governor which includes the Commissioner of Education and the Director of NHVR. The field service administrator serves as the co chair of the Independent Living and Employment Work Group. Contact with the administrative staff of the Council confirms that the work plan of this group clearly defines the recommendations and priorities for NHVR in terms of serving this population. This includes efforts to engage the business community to ensure that individuals on the spectrum are prepared to meet NH’s workforce needs; work to develop innovative supported employment initiatives, access to all levels of training and opportunities for community inclusion and independent living. The Agency is encouraged to work with all partner agencies and entities that also impact on the lives of these individuals and whose collaboration with NHVR is essential to maximizing the services to and success of individuals who experience ASD.

NHVR collaborates with Northeast Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services (NDHHS) and other partners in the deaf community so that there is a team approach when placement of a customer is made. All parties having the same and updated information allows the customer and the team to have more success in obtaining job retention. It also allows for any communication issues that could be occurring in the team, so that the customer has the best chance of success.

New Hampshire Vocational Rehabilitation and the Manchester Veterans Administration (VA) Regional Office, VA Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Services (VR&E) have completed work on a Memorandum of Understanding and are in the process of visiting each others’ Regional Offices to implement our revised referral and service delivery process. Working together to promote a unified approach in assisting veterans with disabilities, NHVR and VR&E counselors are continuing to focus on identifying opportunities to assist the veteran by combining resources whenever necessary, leveraging our business contacts and orchestrating blended funding options to help our wounded warriors’ efforts to reenter the work force.

In addition, representatives from NH Employment Security, NH Department of Health and Human Services, NH Vocational Rehabilitation, Manchester VA Regional Office, VA Medical Center, US Department of Labor, Easter Seals, and the NH National Guard are continuing to work together to address the emergent needs of Service Members and families affected by deployment.

The USDA Rural Development office in New Hampshire does not administer any workforce development or economic development programs that would assist individuals with employment or small business startup assistance. New Hampshire does not have a state use contracting program.

This screen was last updated on May 13 2011 11:21AM by Ella McAllister

  • Describe the designated state unit's plans, policies, and procedures for coordination with education officials to facilitate the transition of students with disabilities from school to the receipt of vocational rehabilitation services, including provisions for the development and approval of an individualized plan for employment before each student determined to be eligible for vocational rehabilitation services leaves the school setting or, if the designated state unit is operating on an order of selection, before each eligible student able to be served under the order leaves the school setting.
  • Provide information on the formal interagency agreement with the state educational agency with respect to
    • consultation and technical assistance to assist educational agencies in planning for the transition of students with disabilities from school to post-school activities, including VR services;
    • transition planning by personnel of the designated state agency and educational agency that facilitates the development and completion of their individualized education programs;
    • roles and responsibilities, including financial responsibilities, of each agency, including provisions for determining state lead agencies and qualified personnel responsible for transition services;
    • procedures for outreach to and identification of students with disabilities who need transition services.

Organized within the New Hampshire Department of Education, NHVR participates in the State's transition initiatives. NHVR counselors across the state are involved in the local and regional partnerships which were developed to implement the activities of the grant. Counselors advocate for the inclusion of students with disabilities and special education staff in the systemic changes occurring in the schools.

NHVR understands the need for services to be identified and in place prior to a student leaving the school setting in order to assist the student with a smooth transition to post-school activities which may include post-secondary education, training, employment, and related vocational rehabilitation services which will lead to competitive or supported employment. To assure this planning, the Agency provides for the development and approval of an individualized plan for employment before each student determined to be eligible for vocational rehabilitation services leaves the school setting.

The Agency has entered into an interagency agreement with the state educational agency with respect to transition planning. This agreement includes information regarding roles and responsibilities, including financial responsibilities, of each agency, provisions for determining state lead agencies and qualified personnel responsible for transition services; and procedures for outreach to and identification of students with disabilities who need transition services.

Within the Department's Dropout Plan, NHVR works to help identify and assist youth with disabilities who may be at high risk of or who have already dropped-out of school to remain or return to school, transition plans and transition.

NHVR will be coordinating with various local partners through ARRA resources to engage in activities which will not only identify students who have dropped out of high school through Child Find activities, but connect with those students who might be at risk for dropping out, to develop activities which will stem from a personalized learning strategy. Such activities will assist the students to re-engage in their educational setting as well as connect them in a more meaningful way to their transition plan through their Individualized Education Plan. Further activities will include the development of Extended Learning Opportunities, with the support of their VR counselor toward identifying a career goal through the implementation of their Individualized Plan for Employment.

For the last four years, NHVR has been an active leader in the state and national Community of Practice on Transition (CoP). Using its strategy, it is intended to promote and to influence transition practice and policy on multiple levels, using more of a grassroots type of approach. The CoP sponsors an annual Transition Summit, and is currently focusing its efforts on youth engagement and developing and fostering local communities of practice throughout the state. In addition, NH CoP partners have been involved in supporting and participating in three recent job fairs which were open to youth. These job fairs combined hosted over 900 students, including some currently served by NHVR. The Agency has also been involved in the implementation of newly developed sector based employment opportunities in the healthcare and hospitality industries in two regions of the state. Currently NHVR is supporting a total of nine students in these programs in an effort to reach their employment goal.

NHVR has assigned a full-time school-to-work (STW) liaison to work statewide to improve services to youth with disabilities. The NHVR STW liaison has been successful in assisting local vocational rehabilitation counselors in providing information and access to schools for which this agency has had minimal contact in the past. The activities this position covers include:

* working with NHVR counselors to improve access and services provided to youth with disabilities;

* working with NHVR counselors to develop best practices and examples of best practices to youth with disabilities;

* providing training on activities occurring across the state as a result of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act 2004, the Rehabilitation Act and best practices with NHVR;

* coordinating efforts with NHVR counselors, school district staff, school-to-work staff and other constituents, to ensure the inclusion of youth with disabilities in the systemic changes occurring in the schools as a result of the IDEA 2004 and the Rehabilitation Act;

* providing advocacy for youth with disabilities to a variety of constituents;

* improving connections between NHVR and other transition service agencies;

* providing information and guidance regarding Labor Laws as they relate to job shadow, internships and work experience for youth with disabilities;

* marketing school staff, students and families, adult service agencies, etc. in a variety of areas, e.g., employment issues as a result of disability, transition of students with disabilities, availability of adult services, best practices in transition of youth with disabilities, accessing adult services, employer perspectives; develop relationships with other agencies providing services to youth with disabilities to maximize services offered;

* functioning as a liaison to the Department of Education which is systematically changing the types of services they offer to school districts; and

* providing technical assistance on grants as they are developed with multiple agencies and programs to ensure the inclusion of all youth.

The NHVR liaison continues to actively facilitate meetings with school staff, NHVR counselors and school-to-work staff to plan the inclusion of students with disabilities in the systemic changes occurring within the state.

The Agency will continue to expand and solidify its interagency approach to ensuring a successful transition from school to employment opportunities for students with disabilities throughout the State. On both the statewide and local level, VR Agency staff continues to participate in planning, program development and funding of transition from school to work initiatives with other agencies and school districts. In addition, the Agency staff have participated in training programs targeting the dissemination of best practice information.

The Agency continues to work closely with local school districts to develop, implement and expand programs designed to facilitate the transition process. Currently, the Agency has twenty-eight (28) counselors working with schools and students with disabilities, one (1) of whom is dedicated as a full-time counselor with school caseload. This allows the Agency to better respond to the needs of individual school districts and youth with significant disabilities in the respective districts. Efforts in transition will take a variety of forms including, but not limited to, interagency training, direct services to youth with disabilities and their parents, and team building. Over 1,500 persons with disabilities on the Agency's caseload are individuals under the age of 21. The Agency averages 600 referrals per year that are under the age of 21. Students served by the Agency represent all disability groups and not just those in special education programs. Counselors are frequently present in schools receiving referrals from teachers, guidance counselors, and administrators. Serving this population will remain a focus activity of the Agency.

The Agency plans to include statewide training and technical assistance intervention for schools and families for developing natural supports, which is a school and work based learning model including job training, monitoring and general workplace competencies in its continued innovation and expansion activities.

This screen was last updated on Jun 30 2009 9:17AM by Ella McAllister

Describe the manner in which the designated state agency establishes cooperative agreements with private non-profit vocational rehabilitation service providers.

NH Vocational Rehabilitation works with Community Rehabilitation Program providers (CRPs) to develop service descriptions and fees including fee for service. The Agency does not differentiate between profit and nonprofit agencies in the development of service and fee agreements. The agency has completed systemic changes for the type and provision of services, training/competency and outcomes that are related to Community Rehabilitation Programs and providers. NHVR has collaborated with other partners to achieve a statewide accepted competency model that utilized shared resources and will create consistency in how multiple systems utilize vendors that may provide services to customers in a variety of settings.

The process to determine the need for new, improved or expanded programs will be accomplished through:

1) public forums in seven regions to include customers of Vocational Rehabilitation, Vocational Rehabilitation staff, community rehabilitation programs staff, developmental services area agency staff, mental health center staff, and the general public;

2) meetings of Vocational Rehabilitation administrators and consultants;

3) meetings of the State Rehabilitation Council; and

4) consultation with the State Board of Education.

Through continuing statewide studies, the rehabilitation needs of individuals with disabilities, including individuals with significant disabilities, the Agency gathers data and utilizes this to identify ways in which the overall effectiveness of community rehabilitation program services might be improved.

The Division will continue to seek ways to identify and meet the needs of individuals with disabilities in New Hampshire including, where appropriate, provision of services to groups of individuals with disabilities through the establishment, development and improvement of collaboration with private vocational rehabilitation service providers including community rehabilitation programs.

This screen was last updated on Jun 30 2009 9:17AM by Ella McAllister

Describe the efforts of the designated state agency to identify and make arrangements, including entering into cooperative agreements, with other state agencies and other appropriate entities in order to provide the following services to individuals with the most significant disabilities:

  • supported employment services; and
  • extended services.

The Division of Adult Learning and Rehabilitation has developed relationships with both the State Community Developmental Services Administration and the State Community Mental Health Services Administration. The relationships are designed to enhance the collaboration of rehabilitation, case management and vocational service provider personnel with eligible individuals and their families regarding the implementation and continuation of individualized supported employment.

The Agency shall continue to provide training and technical assistance according to identified need with existing resources, including the development of new strategies and the refinement of existing structures to encourage full integration.

Individuals with significant disabilities to be served under this program will likely have developmental disabilities and/or mental illness, since these are the groups for which funding is available for long-term support after Vocational Rehabilitation services are completed. In addition, the Division will seek additional avenues to expand the availability of supported employment services, including ongoing support services provided through natural community-based supports by families, employers, life insurance carriers and community organizations, for individuals with acquired brain injuries, significant physical disabilities, and other disabling conditions. The Agency will continue to collaborate with the Division of Behavioral Health and with the Division of Developmental Services regarding any necessary system changes that will encourage and facilitate natural supports.

A Memorandum of Understanding has been created in collaboration with VR and the Bureau of Behavioral Health to provide the foundation for the statewide use of evidence-based practice for supported employment in the local mental health centers.

A pilot project involving a local mental health center and local VR office was accomplished in the past year. The Dartmouth Evidence-Based Practice model for Supported Employment was utilized. Staff from the mental health center and VR staff were trained together in the model's practice and monthly technical assistance meetings occurred to ensure fidelity to the program and examine the movement of this practice from a local level to the statewide level. The technical assistance monitored work done in collaboration and examined areas for improvement and expansion.

The new Ticket to Work Regulations, "Partnership Plus Model", allows the opportunity for NH to examine how VR and the Developmental Disabilities systems (providers, employers, Community Rehabilitation Program, etc.) can navigate the current waiting list and utilize the Ticket To Work revenue to ensure appropriate service provision occurs for customers and allows the Employment Network to receive monetary compensation for providing the supports.

This screen was last updated on Jun 30 2009 9:17AM by Ella McAllister

Data System on Personnel and Personnel Development

The Agency has implemented a comprehensive system of personnel development (CSPD) which identifies procedures and activities designed to ensure that there is an adequate supply of qualified professionals for the Agency. The CSPD plan has been amended with input from members of the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC). The full Council had the opportunity to review and comment on the CSPD plan, the development of the plan and related policies and procedures. Included in this plan are the following requirements:

* Data system on personnel and personnel development

* Plan for recruitment and retention of qualified personnel

* Personnel Standards

* Staff development

* Personnel to address individual communication needs

* Coordination with personnel under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

The Agency collects and analyzes, on an annual basis, data on qualified personnel needs and personnel development. An annual training needs assessment is completed to identify focus areas for personnel development activities for the upcoming year. Data collected for financial and planning purposes is used for this analysis. This is data that reflects current information regarding personnel who are employed by NHVR. Included within this assessment is a self-assessment of training needs, an update of individual growth plans, and identification of training needs by regional leaders and an evaluation of the statewide assessment of the rehabilitation needs of persons with significant disabilities.

Over the next five years, the Agency anticipates hiring staff to fill openings created through retirement and other personnel turnover. The Agency realizes the need for continued recruitment and training of qualified personnel. Succession planning is a necessary part of the Agency’s preparation to address projected hiring needs, and is included within the annual analysis of qualified personnel needs and personnel development.

The Agency has 45 Rehabilitation Counselor positions. At present thirty (30) of the staff holding these positions meet the standard; eight (8) caseload carrying counselors do not meet the standard; and there are three (3) vacancies. Current data indicates that the ratio of Rehabilitation Counselor to customers served is 136 customers to each Counselor. This information is reviewed quarterly by the Agency and the Policy committee of the State Rehabilitation Council. The Agency regularly reviews staffing patterns and caseload size to determine coverage needs. Although not optimal, the Agency believes that, at this time the current staffing is adequate to meet the needs of the Agency’s customers. Over the next five years the Agency projects a relatively stable staffing pattern. However, data indicates that there is an existing population of students with disabilities transitioning from school to post-secondary activities, including work that would require additional staff to adequately serve. These requirements will also be continually reviewed and adapted to meet any changing needs.

It is anticipated that all state unit personnel will meet the standard within seven years (10/1/2018).

Other Staff and Customer Ratios: The vocational evaluator works with approximately 70 customers a year.

During FY 10, there was turnover in six Rehabilitation Counselor positions. This is slightly higher the average 2-5 position vacancies the Agency has experience in the past few years. This represented a 13% turnover rate for Rehabilitation Counselors in the Agency.

Staff projections for the next five years:

Evaluating the past and current numbers of individuals served by the Agency reveals a stable pattern with moderate projections for any increases in these numbers served by the Agency over the upcoming five year period. Based on these stable numbers of individuals served by the program, the current staffing pattern is projected to be adequate in serving the individuals who apply for vocational rehabilitation services in NH over the next five-year period.

During FY 10 there was no turnover of vocational evaluator staff within the Agency. One administrator retired, one supervisory staff person was promoted and one supervisor left the Agency. There was one support staff person who left the agency during that period.

It is anticipated that this turnover pattern will be fairly stable over the projected five-year period. Over the upcoming five-year period staff leaving the agency through retirement and attrition are anticipated to be 2-5 administrative staff persons, 10-15 rehabilitation counselors, 1-2 supervisory staff, 0 vocational evaluator staff and 8-12 support staff.

During fiscal year 2009, the Agency plans added two (2) additional Counselor positions specifically designated to assist customers with benefit planning. In addition, two of the current Counselor positions are being designated to target placement activities within the Agency.

 

Row Job Title Total positions Current vacancies Projected vacancies over the next 5 years
1 Administrative Staff 10 0 5
2 Counseling Staff 45 3 15
3 Supervisor / Regional Leader 6 0 2
4 Vocational Evaluator 1 0 1
5 Support Staff 26 0 12
6 Other Staff 8 0 3
7 0 0 0
8 0 0 0
9 0 0 0
10 0 0 0

 

While there are no educational institutions in New Hampshire that offer graduate studies in rehabilitation counseling, there are several colleges and universities in the region that offer a Master’s degree in rehabilitation counseling, including:

Assumption College has 110 full and part time matriculated students currently enrolled in their Rehabilitation Counseling programs including the 41 who will graduate in May 2011. Assumption had thirty-seven students graduate with Master’s of Arts degrees in Rehabilitation Counseling in the previous year (2010). Although there is not any current RSA grant or scholarship funding to students attending Assumption College, twenty-one of the students currently extolled have received RSA traineeships in the past.

Springfield College has 41 students currently enrolled in their graduate Rehabilitation Counseling Services Program. Twelve of these students are receiving RSA funding. Eighteen students are expected to graduate this year while fifteen completed the program last year (2010). While Springfield College receives RSA long-term training grant funding they currently do not have distance educational opportunities available to enable students from other states to participate in training without travel requirements.

University of Massachusetts Boston currently has 23 students enrolled in their graduate degree program. Seven of these students received RSA academic support this year. Three of these students are expected to graduate this year while ten graduated last year (2010). UMass Boston has a RSA long-term training grant that supports students enrolled in their program and their CORE accredited Master’s program is available on campus or through online format.

Central Connecticut State University has approximately 100 students currently enrolled in their Counselor Education with Specialization in Professional and Rehabilitation Counseling Master’s in Science program. Of these, nine students received RSA funding this year. It is anticipated that sixteen students will graduate this year from the program while ten graduated in the last year (2010). While the program has RSA long term training grant funding for the Master’s in rehabilitation counseling program they do not have a distance learning component that would enable students from other states to participate in training without travel requirements.

Slave Regina University currently has 71 students enrolled in their Master’s Degree program. Twenty-three of these students have received RSA funding. Fourteen students are registered to graduate in May of 2011 while eleven students graduated in May of 2010. The school has RSA long-term training funding and has some opportunities for distance education.

In addition to regional programs, Agency staff have been able to take advantage of distance learning opportunities from institutions in other states to attain their Master’s degrees. Currently one NHVR staff is enrolled at Southern University in Louisiana . One NHVR staff graduated from that program in 2011.

All rehabilitation counseling graduates from the colleges listed will be eligible for Certification as a Rehabilitation Counselor through the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC).

 

Row Institutions Students enrolled Employees sponsored by agency and/or RSA Graduates sponsored by agency and/or RSA Graduates from the previous year
1 Assumption College 110 0 0 37
2 Springfield College 41 0 12 15
3 University of Massachusetts - Boston 23 0 7 10
4 Salve Regina University 71 0 14 11
5 Central Connecticut State University 100 0 9 10

 

The Agency continues to implement, and update as necessary, a plan to address current and projected needs for qualified personnel, including coordination and facilitation of efforts between the designated state Agency and institutions of higher education and professional associations to recruit, prepare and retain qualified personnel, including persons of minority and persons with disability.

Data received through the annual assessment of training needs is used for the development and implementation of the Agency’s in-service training plan and staff development activities. The results are also shared with supervisors and administrators and utilized in the updating and implementation of professional growth plans.

The identified training needs are utilized in the planning and development of training.

Staff also are encouraged to participate in professional development training and two NHVR staff members completed state level Public Supervisor training in FY10 and two additional staff members participated in the national leadership training program. Further activities toward recruitment and retention of qualified personnel are identified within the Personnel Standards and Staff Development sections below.

In addition to the communication and recruitment efforts with the colleges and universities in the region, NHVR uses the Recruitment Center for State Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors (www.rehabjobs.info) in recruitment efforts.

 

NHVR recognizes that the requirements of the CSPD provide an opportunity to increase the knowledge, skills and abilities of rehabilitation counselors, thereby enhancing the provision of services and the quality of employment outcomes. In accordance with 34 CFR 361.18 (c)(2)(i), NHVR has established the following personnel standard:

1. Master’s in Rehabilitation Counseling; or

2. Master’s in Counseling* and 4 core courses a. One course on Assessment b. One course on Occupational Information or Job Placement c. One course on Medical or Psychosocial and Cultural

Aspects of Disabilities d. One course on Community Resources or Delivery of Rehabilitation Services

*The Master’s degree must be in the field of counseling. Examples of degrees that may be considered as a Master’s in counseling or as counseling-related may include, but are not necessarily limited to, degrees in rehabilitation, special education, social work, and psychology. If your degree is in a counseling discipline other than rehabilitation counseling, a course on the Theories and Techniques of Counseling, as defined by CRCC, must be part of the degree requirements. Other required courses may be taken as part of or in addition to the original Master’s degree.

Or

3. Master’s degree from a recognized college or university in Behavioral Health, Psychology, Behavioral Science, Psychometrics, Disability Studies, Rehabilitation, Human Relations, Social Work, Human Services, Special Education, Marriage and Family, Vocational Assessment/Evaluation, and Occupational Therapy and six (6) specific post-graduate graduate level courses (aka core courses), one in each of the following:

a. Theories and Techniques of Counseling; b. Foundations of Rehabilitation Counseling; c. Assessment; d. Occupational Information or Job Placement; e. Medical or Psychosocial and Cultural Aspects of Disabilities, and; f. Community Resources or Delivery of Rehabilitation Services.

Priority will be given to a Master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling both in new hires and in support of training to assist staff to achieve the standard.

Outreach efforts will be targeted toward individuals who meet the personnel standards and who are from minority backgrounds or are individuals with disabilities. Recruitment efforts will be coordinated with disability groups and associations serving minority populations, through contacts and sharing of job opportunities available within the Agency.

While it is the intent of NHVR to hire and retain employees who meet the standard, in some instances we are unable to hire professional staff who meet these standards. Factors which impact on the hiring of staff in NH who meet the personnel standard include a limited pool of qualified candidates and geographical considerations that result from the rural nature of the state. NHVR has worked to address this issue in a number of ways including working with the NH Division of Personnel to develop the capacity to hire staff at a bachelor degree level who are immediately placed in a training plan to achieve the requirements of the standard. This plan provides for the training necessary to obtain their Master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling or a Counseling Master’s that meets the criteria of the standard and outlines the support the Agency will provide to achieve this. In addition, the Agency continues to seek programs and coursework, including those that utilize long distance technology that will assist Counselors to achieve the standard.

To ameliorate the impact of these factors, NHVR conducts outreach activities to reach potential candidates. NHVR has identified colleges and universities in New England that provide Master’s level training in rehabilitation counseling and will continue to work with these institutions toward the recruitment of qualified candidates. NHVR has worked with the University of Hartford and Assumption College to identify and provide needed coursework for staff. The Training Officer continues to seek alternative educational opportunities for staff through emerging long distance learning opportunities, including RSA-funded training opportunities such as the Southern University program in Louisiana.

NHVR supports retraining of new and existing employees through the following plan and policies:

Current employees are eligible for educational assistance to return to graduate level training. Any employee who enrolls in an accredited Masters program in Rehabilitation Counseling or a Master’s in Counseling that meets the standard will be eligible for release time.

All staff will be encouraged to continue to update and maintain their skills by completing 100 hours of in-service training every five years. The Training Officer will maintain current records of the training offered and credit hours earned. The In-Service Training Project (ISTP) provides training that is available and accessible to all NHVR personnel.

The Training Officer maintains records that track progress in meeting the personnel standard for all rehabilitation counseling staff. These records will include education level, completion of core courses, continuing education credits obtained and individual growth plans that outline how individual employees will meet the personnel standard within seven years. Records will be updated regularly and analyzed yearly to assess progress.

NHVR maintains records that identify the degree to which new hires meet the personnel standard. These records will be analyzed on a yearly basis to assess the success of the Agency in obtaining qualified personnel and to identify factors that impede the hiring of staff who meet the standard.

At this time, eight Rehabilitation Counseling staff do not meet the personnel standard and are in plan to achieve that standard.

 

The Agency continues to provide staff with appropriate and adequate training. The Agency recognizes the importance of having qualified, professional vocational rehabilitation staff to assist persons with disabilities to locate, train for, engage in and maintain employment. The in-service training project is designed to assure that Agency staff have the knowledge, skills and resources to assist persons with significant disabilities to achieve their employment goals. The activities of the project are targeted to address the needs identified through the training assessment and federal priorities and are evaluated and updated yearly.

Agency training includes a comprehensive orientation for new staff, ongoing training opportunities for existing staff at all levels of the organization, and a system to evaluate effectiveness of the training efforts. Training needs will be met through attending classes, workshops, and seminars in the state. Support staff, as well as counselors and management staff, are encouraged to attend training.

In-service training addresses retention of qualified staff, development of new skills for new staff, leadership development and capacity building. Basic and ongoing training is based on the Agency assisting staff to meet the identified counselor competencies; staff needs assessment, state plan forums and ongoing monitoring. Objective 2 of the in-service training project seeks to ensure that the staff have the training and resources to provide customer-focused service delivery. Trainings each year to meet this objective are focused on training that enhances service delivery and includes training in areas of assessment, vocational counseling, job placement, and rehabilitation technology. Specific trainings that address these subjects that are planned or in planning for fiscal year 2011 include: developing job opportunities; employer contact skills - working with employers in hiring and retaining individuals with disabilities; utilizing assistive technology and modification; maximizing comprehensive assessment; counseling skills; utilization of community resources; labor market trends; and case practice.

The Agency seeks to gather and use information obtained through research and collaboration with other agencies to enhance and further develop the skills and capacities of rehabilitation staff.

Job-related workshops and seminars will be sponsored in cooperation with other state agencies with whom the Agency has cooperative working agreements, and by state, regional and national trainers. This will include trainers from the Division of Mental Health and the New England Technical Assistance and Continuing Education (TACE) Center. These activities will coincide with the ongoing development and upgrading of professional growth plans.

 

The Agency has developed strategies to meet (through Agency staff and/or by obtaining the services of others) the individual communication needs of applicants and recipients of services through appropriate modes of communication or in native languages.

The Agency has taken actions to establish and maintain minimum standards to ensure the availability of personnel within the designated state unit who, to the maximum extent feasible, are trained to communicate in the native language or mode of communication of the customer.

The Agency utilizes interpreters to communicate in the native language of applicants and eligible individuals, and is developing procedures to assist counselors to obtain qualified interpreters, including the identification of resources within the state for interpreters, cultural information, and translation services.

The Agency includes on its staff, or arranges to have available to staff, those individuals able to communicate with applicants and eligible individuals who utilize manual communication, and/or tactile, oral and non-verbal communication devices. The Agency maintains a list of state/national certified interpreters for persons who are deaf or hard of hearing. The Agency has the ability to, and will provide large print documents, recorded information, computer disk formats, and assistive listening devices, as appropriate, to the individual.

 

In 2008, New Hampshire was the recipient of a collaborative grant written to support coordinated efforts between NHVR and the NH Bureau of Special Education funded through the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services (OSERS). The grant provides for $40,000 of various technical assistance activities to be provided to the state by identified Technical Assistance Centers. Utilizing the Community of Practice (CoP) strategy, NH is working with the National Secondary Transition Technical Assistance Center (NSTTAC) and the IDEA Partnership at the National Association of State Directors of Special Education (NASDSE) to focus on:

• Promoting effective transition planning, writing of measurable post-school goals and compliance toward Indicator 13;

• Developing strategies toward youth leadership and engagement in the NH CoP;

• Developing school-business partnerships;

• Evaluating the CoP strategy in NH;

• Promoting development of local communities of practice; and

• Coordination of a state team to represent NH at the annual NSTTAC Transition Institute in Charlotte, NC.

While the grant funds have been expended, NH Vocational Rehabilitation continues to be an active partner in the Community of Practice activities which continue within the State and support professional development activities.

NHVR staff continue to work with other areas of the department toward coordinating the Agency’s comprehensive system of personnel development efforts with personnel development activities occurring within the NH Department of Education.

This screen was last updated on Aug 16 2011 9:53AM by Ella McAllister

Provide an assessment of the rehabilitation needs of individuals with disabilities residing within the state, particularly the vocational rehabilitation services needs of:

  • individuals with most significant disabilities, including their need for supported employment services;
  • individuals with disabilities who are minorities;
  • individuals with disabilities who have been unserved or underserved by the vocational rehabilitation program; and
  • individuals with disabilities served through other components of the statewide workforce investment system.

Identify the need to establish, develop, or improve community rehabilitation programs within the state.

NH Vocational Rehabilitation conducts regular and ongoing assessments of the rehabilitation needs of individuals with significant disabilities residing in the state.

In 2010, completed the required triennial comprehensive statewide assessment of the rehabilitation needs of individuals in the state. Included in the needs assessment is a review of New Hampshire population statistics: NHVR service data; survey data to assess customer satisfaction; survey data to assess the provision of transition services and the needs of transition aged customers; and information received at forums held at strategic locations throughout the State. The full report can be viewed online at: http://www.education.nh.gov/career/vocational/documents/csna-fy2010.doc

The data in this section of the plan has been updated to include data available at the time of the FY 2012 state plan amendment preparation. This update includes information from 1) six public forums held throughout the state with the purpose of assessing the rehabilitation needs of individuals with significant disabilities residing in the state, receiving comments and recommendations to update the rehabilitation and career needs of individuals with significant disabilities residing in the state and the need for supported employment services; 2) an online survey that was available during the public comment period that allowed individuals who were unable to attend a forum (or chose not to attend) to provide input and recommendations; 3) input solicited from stakeholders including the Mental Health and Developmental Disability systems 4) review of demographic data and 5) the data from the current customer satisfaction survey.

The findings continue to support previously identified rehabilitation needs for persons with disability in NH in the following areas of :

Awareness

Education

Outreach

Access

Collaboration

Transition

Housing

Transportation

Placement

Information and Referral / Resources

Staff Development

Training

Assessment data was sought from various individuals, groups and agencies including individuals who experienced and/or worked with individuals with the most significant disabilities, including the need for supported employment services; individuals with disabilities who are minorities; individuals who have been unserved or underserved by the vocational rehabilitation program; individuals served through other components of the statewide workforce system and individuals served through Community Rehabilitation Programs (CRPs).

During FY 2010 NHVR, working with the State Rehabilitation Council, completed the required comprehensive statewide assessment due to be completed every 3 years. The next scheduled completion of the statewide assessment is set for fiscal year 2013.

This screen was last updated on Aug 4 2011 12:17PM by Ella McAllister

2000 Census data demonstrates a profile of 724,541 individuals residing in the state between the ages of 16 and 64. Of that total, 116,642 report to having a disability (16% of the state’s 16 to 64 population). Of these 116,642 individuals, 37.8% (or 44,090) report that they are unemployed.

Population in the state ages 16-64 - 724,541

Population ages 16-64 reporting a disability - 116,642

(16% of the state’s 16- 64 population)

% of those reporting as disability who are unemployed - 37.8%

In an attempt to gather further information about these 37.8% or approximately 44,000 individuals who are identified as unemployed, NHVR examined further population studies, including the 2002 American Community Survey that identified similar statistics with approximately 42,000 individuals with disabilities in the 18-64 age group that are not employed. In this study this not employed group was further broken down to show that a majority of the individuals in this group do not identify themselves as being in the labor force. The results show that of the 31,000 individuals in NH who identified themselves as unemployed and in the labor force, 16% or approximately 5,000 of these individuals reported having a disability.

During the period of 10/1/10-9/30/11, NH Vocational Rehabilitation anticipates a workload of 7,500 individuals.

Applicants expected on hand October 1, 2010 - 350

Number of Applicants expected during FY 2011 - 3,000

Customers in eligible statuses expected on hand 10/1/10 - 4,150

Total eligible individuals expected in FY 2011 - 7,500

Category Title I or Title VI Estimated Funds Estimated Number to be Served Average Cost of Services
Assessment $1,843,413 2,250 $819
Diagnosis/treatment of physical & mental impairmnt $653,355 600 $1,088
Training - Institution of Higher Education $895,041 450 $1,988
Training - Job Readines & Augmentive Skills $527,680 750 $703
Training - Vocational & Occupational Skills $743,363 1480 $502
Maintenance $87,867 500 $175
Transportation $283,347 345 $821
Personal Assistance Service $164,226 70 $2,346
Rehab Technology $550,248 140 $3,930
Other (Includes Post Employment Services) $768,391 446 $1,722
Totals   $6,516,931 7,031 $926

This screen was last updated on Jun 27 2011 10:22AM by Ella McAllister

The goals and priorities are based on the comprehensive statewide assessment, on requirements related to the performance standards and indicators, and on other information about the state agency. (See section 101(a)(15)(C) of the Act.) This attachment should be updated when there are material changes in the information that require the description to be amended.

  • Identify if the goals and priorities were jointly developed and agreed to by the state VR agency and the State Rehabilitation Council, if the state has a council.
  • Identify if the state VR agency and the State Rehabilitation Council, if the state has such a council, jointly reviewed the goals and priorities and jointly agreed to any revisions.
  • Identify the goals and priorities in carrying out the vocational rehabilitation and supported employment programs.
  • Ensure that the goals and priorities are based on an analysis of the following areas:
    • the most recent comprehensive statewide assessment, including any updates;
    • the performance of the state on standards and indicators; and
    • other available information on the operation and effectiveness of the VR program, including any reports received from the State Rehabilitation Council and findings and recommendations from monitoring activities conducted under section 107.

The State goals and priorities were jointly developed with NHVR and agreed to by the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC). Each year the SRC reviews these goals and priorities as part of the state planning process. This year the Agency's goals have been expanded to further define and demonstrate the priorities and activities of the Agency. These changes were based on the most recent results obtained during the updating of the comprehensive statewide assessment, the federal standards and indicators and on information that the Agency has gathered and used in strategic planning for the Agency.

NH Vocational Rehabilitation's goals and priorities in carrying out the vocational rehabilitation and supported employment programs

Goal 1---Quality self-determined employment outcomes for persons with disabilities in New Hampshire.

Goal 2---Effective and efficient use of resources

Goal 3---Increase educational attainment, employment and self sufficiency of transition-aged youth

Goal 4---Promote an environment that supports the Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor-Customer relationship

Goal 5---Provide ongoing support for the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC) and the Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC)

This screen was last updated on Jun 30 2009 9:34AM by Ella McAllister

  • Identify the order to be followed in selecting eligible individuals to be provided vocational rehabilitation services.
  • Identify the justification for the order.
  • Identify the service and outcome goals.
  • Identify the time within which these goals may be achieved for individuals in each priority category within the order.
  • Describe how individuals with the most significant disabilities are selected for services before all other individuals with disabilities.

This agency is not implementing an Order of Selection.

This screen was last updated on Jun 30 2009 9:35AM by Ella McAllister

Specify the state's goals and priorities with respect to the distribution of funds received under section 622 of the Act for the provision of supported employment services.

Approximately 95% of all funds available through Title VI, Part B will be used for client services. Individual service authorizations will be used to purchase individual services for eligible individuals; however, services may be contracted to service providers to develop supported employment services for groups not covered under other programs or to develop programs in areas of the state where supported employment services are not readily available.

The funds will be deployed statewide, as needed, for individuals with disabilities eligible for VI-B funding until exhausted, then supplemented with Title I funds as appropriate. It is planned to rehabilitate 85 persons in supported employment outcomes anticipated in fiscal year 2011. The majority of these customers are expected to be individuals with developmental disabilities and/or mental illness as these are the disabilities for which funding is available for long-term supports after vocational rehabilitation services are completed.

The Agency will continue to seek alternative sources for long-term supports, including the use of natural supports, as appropriate, to the individual. In addition the Agency plans to employ the Partnership Plus model under the Ticket to Work Program extensively over the coming year as an additional resource to assist this population with employment.

This screen was last updated on May 23 2011 9:49AM by Ella McAllister

This attachment should include required strategies and how the agency will use these strategies to achieve its goals and priorities, support innovation and expansion activities, and overcome any barriers to accessing the vocational rehabilitation and the supported employment programs. (See sections 101(a)(15)(D) and (18)(B) of the Act and Section 427 of the General Education Provisions Act (GEPA)).

Describe the methods to be used to expand and improve services to individuals with disabilities.

Identify how a broad range of assistive technology services and assistive technology devices will be provided to individuals with disabilities at each stage of the rehabilitation process; and describe how assistive technology services and devices will be provided to individuals with disabilities on a statewide basis.

Identify what outreach procedures will be used to identify and serve individuals with disabilities who are minorities, including those with the most significant disabilities; and what outreach procedures will be used to identify and serve individuals with disabilities who have been unserved or underserved by the VR program.

If applicable, identify plans for establishing, developing, or improving community rehabilitation programs within the state.

Describe strategies to improve the performance of the state with respect to the evaluation standards and performance indicators.

Describe strategies for assisting other components of the statewide workforce investment system in assisting individuals with disabilities.

Describe how the agency's strategies will be used to:

  • achieve goals and priorities identified in Attachment 4.11(c)(1);
  • support innovation and expansion activities; and
  • overcome identified barriers relating to equitable access to and participation of individuals with disabilities in the state Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program and the state Supported Employment Services Program.

NHVR Strategies to achieve State Goals

Goal 1---Quality self-determined employment outcomes for persons with disabilities in New Hampshire.

Strategies and Activities:

Complete Community Rehabilitation Program provider (CRP) restructuring/enhancing/re-engineering work to enhance services received through CRPs

o Develop competency-based model for certification of CRPs

o Support training to demonstrate competencies

Coordinate with the systems for community mental health centers and community developmental disability organizations to increase the expectations for integrated, competitive employment for individuals served under these programs

Increase internal placement capacity

Develop new relationships between NHVR and employers at a national, regional, and local level

o Collaborate with CSAVR/National NET Team

o Maintain partnerships with the NH Works systems

including business expos and job fairs

o Create innovative marketing strategies through

collaboration with Medicaid Infrastructure Grant

resources

Promote self-sufficiency and informed choice through use of internal agency work incentive services

Create a system for long term supports for customers who have been unable to maintain consistent employment through Ticket to Work Partnership Plus Initiative

Maintain options and technical assistance for customers and counselors related to the development and implementation of small business and self employment plans

Improve access to demand occupations through sector-based training and employment strategies

Target outreach efforts to support the employment outcomes of underserved populations

Improve vocational rehabilitation services to the deaf, hard of hearing, late deafened, and deaf blind communities

o Support and participate in the Biannual New England RCD

Conference/Training scheduled for 2010

o Provide appropriate training opportunities as needed

or staff to develop and improve needed skills regarding

services to the deaf, hard of hearing, late deafened,

or deaf blind communities.

o Improve communication accessibility for staff by

researching the feasibility of hiring a staff

interpreter for NHVR.

o Increase delivery of, awareness of, and coordination of

available educational and vocational services among at

risk students who are deaf, hard of hearing, and deaf

blind.

o Continue to support the work of NH-Vision Hearing Loss

Network (NHVHLN) and their partnering agencies that

provide educational support for students who are deaf,

hard of hearing, and deaf blind.

o Develop transition resources and increased

opportunities for students who are deaf, hard of

hearing, and deaf blind and their parents through

collaboration with DOE, and other partner, School-to-

Work transition program.

o Collaborate with the Bureau of Special Education to

establish suggested guidelines for the development of

Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) or other programs

that could improve outcomes for students who are deaf,

hard of hearing, and deaf blind.

o Collaborate with NHVR Office of Blind Services to

improve services to students who are deaf and blind.

o Improve job development, placement, and retention for

customers who are deaf, hard of hearing, late deafened

and deaf blind.

o Improve business owners understanding and acceptance of

customers who are deaf, hard of hearing, late-deafened,

and deaf blind.

o Collaborate with NHVR Office of Blind Services to

improve job opportunities for customers who are deaf

blind.

o Create opportunities to improve communication on the

job for customers who are deaf, hard of hearing, late

deafened, and deaf blind during Job Search Workshops.

o Continue to work with the Taskforce on Deafness and

Hearing Loss on projects relevant to the deaf, hard of

hearing, late deafened, and deaf blind communities.

Measurement plan:

NHVR will achieve or exceed the required federal standards for the following indicators:

1.1 The number of persons achieving employment outcomes will equal or exceed the previous year. FY 2008 outcomes were 1219. FY 2009 outcomes were 1101.

1.2 The percentage of individuals rehabilitated will equal or exceed 55.8%.

1.3 The average hourly earnings of all individuals who exit the program in competitive employment as a ratio to the average hourly earnings for all employment in NH will equal or exceed .52.

1.4 Of all the individuals who achieve competitive employment, the difference between the percent who reported their own income as the largest single source of economic support at closure compared to the percent at application. The difference must equal or exceed 53

1.5 The service rate for all individuals with disabilities from minority backgrounds as a ratio of the service rate for all non-minority individuals with disabilities will equal or exceed .80

NHVR will demonstrate equal or improved performance when compared to the baseline for the following measurable indicators:

1.6 The average number hours worked by persons rehabilitated. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: Average number of hours worked by individuals achieving an employment outcome - 27.7 hours per week.

1.7 The number of SSI recipients and SSDI beneficiaries who achieve Substantial Gainful activity earnings level for at least 9 months. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 95 customers who achieved a successful employment outcome in fy 09 and were identified as receiving SSI and/or SSDI at application met the SGA earning levels for at least 9 months.

1.8 The percent of persons rehabilitated in full-time competitive employment who are covered by health insurance through employment. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 24% of the individuals achieving an employment outcome.

1.9 Number of successful employment outcomes after participating in post-secondary education. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 96 individuals achieved a successful vocational outcome after participating in postsecondary education.

1.10 The number accessing Medicaid for Employed Adults with Disabilities (MEAD) at case closure. Due to the way the CMS captures data, a baseline was not set for this item yet. The Agency is working to update the collection of information to include this element.

1.11 The number of individuals who successfully achieve self-employment. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: Eleven (11) individuals were closed successfully with employment goals that included self employment in fy 09.

Goal 2---Effective and efficient use of resources

Strategies and Activities:

Build and support relationships with providers and partners in the state

o Develop menu of service for Community Rehabilitation

Programs that links fees to specific customer needs

o Implement a performance based payment system for

obtaining and retaining employment

o Implement a direct purchase process for hearing

appliances in collaboration with audiologists

Monitor fiscal management strategies that have been implemented to identify effectiveness

o Monitor cost containment strategies to identify impact

and to assure that strategies do not prevent service

provision for individuals

o Continue efforts to centralize accounting functions

o Utilize four-year budgetary planning process examining

historical trends to influence fiscal and program

planning

Utilize data driven decision making

o Align staff performance accountability measures with

goals and priorities

o Update and maintain quality assurance and

accountability system

Improve the availability and quality of interpreters in the state of New Hampshire.

o Provide administrative support to the NH Interpreting

Licensure Board

o Coordinate and provide the NH Interpreter Screening

Process to obtain additional licensed interpreters

o Update and disperse Interpreter Directory as needed.

o Work collaboratively with New Hampshire Registry of

Interpreters for the Deaf (NHRID) and other

organizations invested in the expansion of interpreting

services to assess the need for and promote the use of

all types of CART and interpreting services (e.g., ASL

interpreters, CDIs, oral interpreters, deaf blind

interpreters, etc).

Improve the accessibility to assistive device that can improve employment outcomes for customers who are deaf, hard of hearing, late deafened, and deaf blind

o Continue to use the Videophone RelaySystem (VRS) and

CSDIO (Video Remote Interpreter) and provide training

on how to use these services.

o Increase awareness of the availability of this service

at the Regional Offices and Employers across the State

of New Hampshire.

Measurement plan:

NHVR will achieve or exceed the required federal standard for the following indicator

2.1 Rehabilitation rate will equal or exceed 55.8%

NHVR will demonstrate equal or improved performance when compared to the baseline for the following measurable indicators:

2.2 Percent for whom eligibility is determined in 60 days or less from application unless the customer agrees to an extension. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 89 percent of applicants.

2.3 Percent of accurate presumptive eligibility decisions for persons eligible for SSI or SSDI. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 90 percent.

2.4 Percent for whom IPEs are developed within 120 days or less from eligibility unless the customer agrees to an extension. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 90 percent.

2.5 Average consumer satisfaction using the ACSI index model. Target greater than 70.

2.6 Average expended per rehabilitation for the life of the case. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: $4,300.

2.7 Annual number of persons in service (status 02-24 +32). A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 6,781.

2.8 Annual contribution to IPE costs through comparable benefits and services. It was identified that the current CMS does not collect this data. Work in 2010 will identify data collection strategies and follow up staff training on collection of this information.

2.9 Percent of persons referred to placement or supported employment providers who achieve employment meeting all rehabilitation criteria. A baseline has not been set for this item yet. Current work is in progress with Community Rehabilitation Program (CRP) staff on service delivery. A baseline will be determined following that activity.

2.10 The average wage achieved by persons referred to placement or supported employment providers. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: $9.11.

2.11 Percent of cases reviewed for which there is evidence that the service provider was given clear information about the customer's employment goals and expectations. This data was identified as not currently tracked within the Agency CMS. Determination of a baseline for this item was extended based on current work with CRPs both internal and through the development of a statewide Employment Information System.

2.12 Percent of cases reviewed for which referral to a job placement or supported employment service provider was appropriate based on the individual needs of the consumer. Data relevant to this item is not currently tracked in the CMS. Determination of a baseline for this item was extended based on current work with CRPs both internal and through the development of a statewide Employment Information System.

2.13 Percent of cases reviewed for which there is evidence of counseling and guidance provided by NHVR. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 90 percent.

Goal 3---Increase educational attainment, employment and self sufficiency of transition aged youth

Strategies and Activities:

Expand community employment opportunities and exploration of appropriate career paths, such as job shadows, informational interviews and work-based assessments

Build partnerships with school transition personnel and serve as a resource for career planning

Encourage career focused and work based experiences during the transition from school to work

Identify students with disabilities who have been underserved and develop strategies for engagement

Utilize alternative and extended learning opportunities (ELO) for skill acquisition and academic achievement for students who require non-traditional learning environments

o Develop sector-based training as an option for ELO’s

Measurement Plan:

NHVR will demonstrate equal or improved performance when compared to the baseline for the following measurable indicators:

3.1 Number of new applications from transition students. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 602 applications.

3.2 Number of new IPEs for transition students. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 304 Individualized Plans for Employment (IPE) developed.

3.3 Rehabilitation rate for transition students. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 67 percent.

3.4 Of transition students who achieve competitive employment, the difference between the percent who reported their own income as the largest single source of economic support at closure compared to the percent at application. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: 78 percent.

3.5 Average hourly wage of transition students rehabilitated. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: $8.97 per hour.

Goal 4---Promote an environment that supports the Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor –Customer relationship

Strategies and Activities

Support the development and retention of qualified rehabilitation staff through a comprehensive system of personnel development, leadership and succession planning

Provide training to staff in the utilization of rehabilitation technology to enhance customer employability

Utilize public forums and customer satisfaction survey data to foster continuous improvement of VR services

Explore strategies to maximize customer engagement throughout the VR process

Provide opportunities for individuals to make informed choice throughout the VR process

Measurement Plan:

NHVR will demonstrate equal or improved performance when compared to the baseline for the following measurable indicators:

4.1 Number of rehabilitation counseling staff who have achieved the CSPD standard. A baseline was determined utilizing fy 09 data. Baseline: Thirty (30) rehabilitation counseling staff.

4.2 Percent of cases reviewed for which there is evidence that assistive technology services and assistive technology devices were assessed and used as necessary for individuals with disabilities at each stage of the rehabilitation process. It was identified that current case review data collection did not include this element. Case review process to be updated to include monitoring of this element.

4.3 Percent of cases reviewed for which there is evidence that the consumer had the opportunity to exercise informed choice throughout the rehabilitation process. It was identified that current case review data collection did not include this element. Case review process to be updated to include monitoring of this element.

4.4 Percent of cases reviewed for which there is evidence of continued contact and customer engagement throughout the vocational rehabilitation process. It was identified that current case review data collection did not include this element. Case review process to be updated to include monitoring of this element.

Goal 5---Provide ongoing support for the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC) and the Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC)

Strategies and Activities

Inclusion of the SRC in the development of agency policy

Support the SRC and the SILC to build capacity for community involvement and participation

Support the training of SRC members relative to the implementation of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended

Measurement plan:

NHVR will demonstrate equal or improved performance when compared to the baseline for the following measurable indicators:

5.1 Number of annual stakeholder meetings exceed or are equal to 4 per year.

5.2 Post meeting ratings by SRC/SILC members related to the effectiveness of their meetings and opportunities for meaningful involvement. This will be measured by a survey of the SRC and SILC membership.

Identify how a broad range of assistive technology services and assistive technology devices will be provided to individuals with disabilities at each stage of the rehabilitation process: and

Describe how assistive technology services and devices will be provided to individuals with disabilities on a statewide basis.

Throughout the vocational rehabilitation process Rehabilitation Counselors routinely assess whether technology-related solutions would assist the customer in achieving a successful employment outcome as part of required services needed to be included in the Individualized Plan for Employment, and any subsequent amendments, as well as whether assistive technology services and/or devices are necessary to assist the individual to more fully participate in the vocational rehabilitation process.

The Agency recognizes that the term assistive technology service encompasses a broad spectrum of services that includes ‘any service that directly assists an individual with a disability in the selection, acquisition or use of an assistive technology device’ (Technology-Related Assistance Act, 1988). This includes the evaluation of an individual’s needs and may include services to assist in the selection, design, fitting, customizing, adaptation, application, maintenance, repair or the replacing of an assistive technology device(s). Included in this broad definition is the coordination and utilization of other therapies and interventions; and training or technical assistance to the customer about assistive technology services and in the use of any technology services that have been identified and/or provided.

One of the major needs in the area of assistive technology is to assure that customers and staff have access to information about techniques, devices and services that can effectively assist the customer reach their employment goals. Technical assistance and training related to the assessments for and provision of a broad range of assistive technology services and devices are available from a number of assistive technology providers in the state including the University of New Hampshire’s Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology services; New Hampshire Assistive Technology; the Vision and Hearing Network; and the NH Association for the Blind. These sources provide services throughout the state. Counselors, staff and customers also utilize resources that are available online such as the Job Accommodation Network’s information and resources.

- Identify what outreach procedures will be used to identify and serve individuals with disabilities who are minorities, including those with the most significant disabilities.

Wording added: In this area the Agency seeks to maintain a service rate for minorities that achieves or exceeds the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) target rate of .80. NH Vocational Rehabilitation met this standard for equity in access of services for minority groups, RSA standard 2.1 in fiscal year 2008.

As part of the continuing statewide studies of the needs of individuals with disabilities and how these needs may be most effectively met, New Hampshire Vocational Rehabilitation includes outreach procedures to populations such as racial and ethnic minorities.

Outreach procedures for identifying and serving individuals with the most significant disabilities who are minorities over the next three years will include:

• Continuing to identify and partner with local agencies that serve diverse populations to enhance services provided to these individuals including services to Hispanics;

• Continue to promote use of telephonic interpreting services for offices;

• Continue to promote cultural competency of all staff in order to effectively service NH’s multicultural population and recruit staff from the community; and

• Increased emphasis in the identification, referral and provision of effective vocational rehabilitation services to individuals with disabilities who are also a member of a minority group.

Identify what outreach procedures will be used to identify and service individuals with disabilities who have been unserved or underserved by the VR program.

NH Vocational Rehabilitation is committed to assisting individuals with significant disabilities, including individuals with the most significant disabilities, to secure suitable employment, and financial and personal independence by providing rehabilitation services. The Agency continually assesses the barriers and strategies to reduce barriers that relate to equal access to the State VR program. In planning this year specific input was solicited from the Developmental Disabilities Council; the Statewide Independent Living Council; the State MH Planning Council; the Governor’s Commission on Disability; the Autism Council and the executive committee of the Special Education Administrators in the state

In providing a quality customer focused service delivery system that is timely, effective and responds to the needs of individuals with disabilities throughout the state, the NHVR recognizes the need to expand and improve services to individuals with sensory, cognitive, physical and mental impairments who have traditionally not been served or have been underserved by the vocational rehabilitation program. This goal is to be accomplished through:

• Continue to maintain cooperative working relationships between NH Vocational Rehabilitation and community developmental disabilities organizations (area agencies) and community mental health centers.

• Continue to collaborate with stakeholder partners and invest in services to address the following needs related to individuals who are considered underserved.

• Seek and implement strategies to expand and improve the provision of supported employment services.

• Seek and implement strategies to expand and improve services to youth in transition from school to work

• Seek strategies to improve service for persons with severe and persistent mental illness.

• Implement pilot project to include Benefits Specialist staff in Regional Offices.

• Seek strategies to expand and improve services to individuals who have experienced a traumatic brain injury.

• Seek strategies to improve services to individuals who experience autism spectrum disorders.

• Continue to increase collaboration efforts to provide vocational rehabilitation services for returning veterans.

• Continue to coordinate services for persons with developmental disabilities.

• Include in the staff training program disability specific training in areas that have been identified as disability groups that may be unserved or underserved by the vocational rehabilitation program.

Describe strategies for assisting other components of the statewide workforce investment system in assisting individuals with disabilities.

NH Vocational Rehabilitation maintains ongoing collaborative efforts with other workforce investment partners in the state. Agency staff participate on committees at various levels of the statewide workforce investment system such as the Interagency Directors Group (IDG). This allows for collaboration as activities and strategies are developed. It also provides an opportunity to assure inclusion for individuals with disabilities is considered in planning and implementation of new services or initiatives or as revisions are made. In addition, NH Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors have an on-site presence at local one stop centers to work with customers and to provide information and technical assistance to other workforce partners regarding providing equal access for individuals with disabilities.

Describe how the agency’s strategies will be used to overcome identified barriers relating to equitable access to and participation of individuals with disabilities in the state Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program and state Supported Employment Services Program.

NHVR analyzed the characteristics of individuals determined to be ineligible to see if any trends existed that would identify that a specific group (disability, race, etc.) experienced barriers relating to equitable access to Vocational Rehabilitation services. During fiscal year 2008, 2806 individuals applied for vocational rehabilitation services. Of these 2806 individuals, 23 were found ineligible (less than 1%). The following is a breakdown of the characteristics of these 23 individuals.

Closure Reasons

Reason for Closure #

02- Disability too significant 2

08- No disabling condition 7

09- No impediment to employment 1

11- Does not require VR services 13

Sex

Male 13

Female 10

Referral Source

Elementary or High School (public and/or private) 1

Post secondary educational institution 0

Physician or medical facility 1

One stop 4

Community Rehabilitation Program 0

Self 11

SSA 1

Other 5

Disability Code #

Visual Impairments 1

Deaf Blind 0

Deaf / Hard of Hearing 4

Cognitive 6

Mental & Emotional (500-534) 4

Physical 8

No impairment 0

Race:

Caucasian: 22

African American: 1

American Indian: 0

Asian: 0

Pacific Islander: 0

While this data did not demonstrate the existence of any trends related to a specific group (disability, race, etc.), NH Vocational Rehabilitation remains committed to assuring that no applicant or group of applicants is excluded from services solely on the basis of type of disability and that the Agency does not discriminate on the basis of age, gender, disability, race, color, creed, national origin, marital status or sexual orientation in its programs, activities and employment practices. Ongoing strategies to overcome identified barriers to equitable access include:

• Information and materials are provided to applicants and eligible individuals through appropriate modes of communication, i.e., the language or method of communication understandable to the individual.

• NH Vocational Rehabilitation ensures that Counselors are aware of how an individual’s cognitive disability might affect his or her ability to participate in the vocational rehabilitation process and the need to provide supports and accommodations to these individuals in the process.

• Working with the Bureau of Behavioral Health toward strategies and practices to improve supported employment outcomes.

• Exploring long-term funding options such as Partnership Plus, for individuals who need extended supports.

• Implementing Benefit Specialist pilot project.

 

This screen was last updated on Sep 9 2010 11:08AM by Ella McAllister

Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) and Supported Employment (SE) Goals

The following describes progress in achieving the goals and priorities and the uses of Title I funds for Innovation and Expansion activities for fiscal year 2010:

Goal 1---Quality self-determined employment outcomes for persons with disabilities in New Hampshire.

NHVR will achieve or exceed the required federal standards for the following indicators:

During fiscal year 2010, NH Vocational Rehabilitation met five of the six federal indicators under the federal standard 1: Employment Outcomes.

1.1 The number of persons achieving employment outcomes will equal or exceed the previous year. The baseline for this measurement was the FY 2009 data of outcomes or 1101 individuals who achieved an employment outcome. In FY 10, NHVR did not meet this measurement. Employment outcomes achieved in FY 10 were 1043 which is 58 less than target. The target established for FY 2011 is 1043 or greater.

1.2 The percentage of individuals rehabilitated will equal or exceed 55.8%.

Met in FY 10. The percentage of individuals rehabilitated in FY 10 was 62.27%

1.3 The average hourly earnings of all individuals who exit the program in competitive employment as a ratio to the average hourly earnings for all employment in NH will equal or exceed .52.

Met in FY 10. The ratio in FY 10 was .56.

1.4 Of all the individuals who achieve competitive employment, the difference between the percent who reported their own income as the largest single source of economic support at closure compared to the percent at application. The difference must equal or exceed 53 (math difference)

Met in FY 10. The difference in FY 10 was 53.11 (math difference)

1.5 The service rate for all individuals with disabilities from minority backgrounds as a ratio of the service rate for all non-minority individuals with disabilities will equal or exceed .80

Met in FY 10. The ratio in FY 10 was .82

NHVR will demonstrate equal or improved performance when compared to the baseline for the following measurable indicators:

1.6 The average number hours worked by persons rehabilitated. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. In FY 09 the average number of hours worked by individuals achieving an employment outcome was 27.7 hours per week. In FY 10 the average number of hours worked by individuals achieving an employment outcome was 27.07 which was slightly less than the baseline target.

1.7 The number of SSI recipients and SSDI beneficiaries who achieve Substantial Gainful Activity earnings level for at least nine months. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. In FY 09 ninety-five (95) customers achieved successful vocational outcomes that were identified as receiving SSI and/or SSDI at application and met SGA levels. In FY 2010 seventy-five (75) customers receiving SSI and/or SSDI at application achieved employment outcomes that met SGA levels at closure.

1.8 The percent of persons rehabilitated in full-time competitive employment who are covered by health insurance through employment. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. The percent of persons rehabilitated in FY 09 in fulltime employment who were covered by health insurance was 260 individuals working at 30+ hours per week or 24%. Target set at 24% or greater for FY 10. In FY 10 the percent of persons rehabilitated in full time employment who were covered by health insurance was 249 (24 %).

1.9 Number of successful employment outcomes after participating in post-secondary education. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. In FY09 The number of successful outcomes after participating in postsecondary education was 96. (This is 9% of the successful closures in FY09). In FY10, the number of successful outcomes after participating in postsecondary education was 75. (This is 7% of the successful closures in FY 10).

1.10 The number accessing Medicaid for Employed Adults with Disabilities (MEAD) at case closure. Due to the way the CMS captures data, we were not able to establish a baseline for this item in FY 09. The Agency is working to update the collection of information to include this element. During fiscal year 2010, fourteen (14) closures were identified as participating in the Medicaid buy in program.

1.11 The number of individuals who successfully achieve self-employment. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. Eleven (11) individuals were closed successfully with employment goals that included self-employment in FY 09. In FY 10, eleven (11) individuals were closed successfully with employment goals that included self-employment.

Additionally information and activity in 2010 and continuing into 2011 that has impact on this goal area has included:

In reviewing the outcome data for FY 2010, NHVR also looked at the economy in which our customers were working to obtain jobs. Resources included ‘Road to Recovery, New Hampshire’s Economy 2010’ and ‘NH Vital Signs’, publications from the New Hampshire Department of Employment Security. The statistics show that during the later half of calendar year 2009 and into 2010, New Hampshire’s economy was still showing the impact of the recession. During the downturn NH experienced increased gross job losses while simultaneously experiencing a decrease in job gains. This has led to a prolonged period of net job loss. In addition to job loss, NH workers were also forced to work part-time for economic reasons. These workers include those that normally work full time but are currently employed for less than 35 hours per week due to slack work or slow business conditions. This group also includes those who would prefer to be working full time but have been unable to find a full time job. During the period from July 2009 through June 2010 approximately 5.3 percent of NH’s employed were employed part-time for economic reasons (this is an increase from approximately 2.7 percent reported in the time frame July 2007 through June 2008). This increase is noted to be a function of the recession and slow recovery as many employees were working reduced hours to avoid layoffs and employers were reluctant to hire full-time workers until business conditions improved.

It was also of note that there was a downturn in labor force participation rates by age group during the recession that may have also impacted NHVR customers in the same age grouping. New Hampshire’s Employment Security’s Economic & Labor Market Information Bureau noted that “Young persons in the age groups of 16 to 19 years and 20 to 24 years had lower participation rates for 2009, declining from 52.2 percent to 46.0 percent and from 78.9 percent to 74 percent respectively. These represent large single year drops in participation, but also continue a long-term trend of declining participation.”

On June 28, 2010, Jim Hinson, Statewide Program Coordinator – Corporate Relations was designated the Community Rehabilitation Program Management Liaison to oversee NHVR efforts to restructure, enhance and re-engineer services provided to VR customers through Community Rehabilitation Providers. Prior to being designated the Community Rehabilitation Program (CRP) Management Liaison, CRP Training was given to all NHVR Staff and CRPs servicing NHVR customers. At this training, each step of the VR Placement Process was explained and reviewed to ensure continuity. Since then, minor adjustments have been made in order to improve service delivery to VR customers and to simplify the process.

Starting in August of 2010, the CRP Management Liaison began meeting with and updating each of our CRPs contact information. Currently, 44 out of 56 Community Rehabilitation Program providers’ files have been updated and face to face meetings have either taken place or are scheduled. Following these meetings, follow-up training was offered and accepted by CRPs that were still unsure about the VR Placement Process. As a result, communications between NHVR and the CRPs were strengthened and system improvements were made.

Throughout this restructuring effort, the need to develop a competency-based model for certification of CRPs became more apparent. In a collaborative effort to address this problem, NHVR is working with the Granite State Employment Project (a project of the Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG)) and other community partners to purchase the Association of Community Rehabilitation Educators (ACRE) Training curriculum. Meanwhile, ACRE Training is being conducted in key regions around the State of NH in order to address our immediate need and a small work group has been formed to develop the NH section of the ACRE curriculum. In addition, we will be holding our first Train the Trainers Workshop in July 2011 in order to establish a core group of NH trainers that will be qualified to teach the ACRE curriculum in the coming years. Additional training is also being scheduled in July 2011 to provide an overview for managers/supervisors as well as provide tools and information for supporting/supervising employment professionals.

NHVR continues to work to determine best ways to connect with the Developmental Disability (DD) system. With anticipated budgetary changes within the DD system, Lisa Hatz, Interim NHVR Director will be reaching out to Matthew Ertas, Bureau Administrator, Bureau of Developmental Services to discuss how this will impact VR and how we can best work together to serve the DD population. Project Search has assisted many customers with developmental disabilities in the last several years to obtain great employment situations.

NHVR currently has two internal placement staff and their role as Employment Specialist (ES) is developing nicely in the Manchester and Concord Regional Offices. These positions have played a critical role in our ability to establish the dual customer model and bring some stability to the area.

Employment Specialists have a dual priority in their job and are located within the Regional Office so they are easily connected to local businesses and customers. These Employment Specialists help the Regional Office build and maintain business relations, assisting customers with the “finishing touches” needed to be employment-ready and assist in managing the CRPs in their area.

NHVR continues to work aggressively with CSAVR/National Employment Team. As a result of this effort, links are being established between NHVR customers and our national business community. Job Leads from the USDA, IRS, J. Lodge, DeCA, FHWA, HHS and others are routinely shared with VR customers and direct contact is made when needed.

NHVR continues to work with NH Works and other community partners around the State of NH. NHVR participates in major business expos, HR conferences, Chamber of Commerce events, job fairs, and other disability specific conferences around the State of NH.

While attending various events around the State of NH, NHVR uses innovative marketing strategies that were created through a collaborative effort that was made possible by MIG resources. In addition to the national “Think Beyond the Label” marketing campaign, NH has developed the I Am Success and We Are Success marketing campaigns that highlight local success stories. I Am Success focuses on VR customer success stories and We Are Success spotlights business success stories. In order to emphasize NHVR as a legitimate business resource, additional marketing material was developed that shows NHVR and NH Division of Resources and Economic Development working together to meet the needs of their business customers. For more information about the We Are Success marketing campaign click www.nhletsworktogether.org and for more information about the I Am Success marketing campaign go to www.mcst-nh.org.

During FY 10 internal benefits counseling was provided to 152 customers who were served in the Portsmouth and Manchester regions.

Eighteen customers were closed status 26. Of those eighteen, three customers were eventually closed status 26 with wages above SGA. Our internal benefits counseling staff have also jointly partnered with the Institute on Disability with respect to the Real Study, a National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) research project designed to provide money coaching and benefits counseling to job seeking and employed individuals with disabilities.

*Activities to create a system for long term supports for customers who have been unable to maintain consistent employment through Ticket to Work Partnership Plus Initiative --Not achieved. Attempts were made to pilot a Partnership Plus initiative with the area MH center in the Portsmouth region, but despite initial interest, the MH agency has not engaged in further discussions to arrive at a formal agreement. NHVR continues to examine other state models of success with Partnership Plus.

During FY 10, technical assistance was provided to sixteen customers presenting self-employment plans for administrative approval. Three Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG) supported employment self-employment initiatives located in the Keene, Manchester and Nashua regions of the State met on a quarterly basis to share resources, provide regional updates, and gain better knowledge and awareness about VR’s self-employment policy, process, assessments and tools. Statewide self-employment training was provided to VR counselors via Dr. Bill Osgood of the Knowledge Institute with a newly developed, comprehensive, multi-step manual and website for assisting customers through the self-employment process. In FY 11 training will occur with the self-employment consultants to work with customers seeking Tier II plans. The consultants will then work with the counselors and customers directly.

NHVR is working on the continuation and expansion of Project SEARCH throughout the state. With ARRA funds, in addition to Nashua, sites are currently running in Concord, Keene and Manchester. Two additional sites in Dover and Claremont/Lebanon have anticipated start dates of September 2011.

The START certificate program within the hospitality industry continues on the Seacoast . The agency is currently working with Strafford Learning Center and Great Bay Community College to finalize a MOU for the program.

NHVR is committed in our efforts to support the employment outcomes of underserved populations. We have increased the number of disability specific conferences, business expos, job fairs, Chamber of Commerce events in larger cities and visits to local community colleges in order to build community partnerships with groups already successfully working with these targeted populations.

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services continues to be active and support activities and efforts, including providing administrative support to the NH Interpreter Licensure Board; maintaining the NH Interpreter Directory; and working collaboratively with New Hampshire Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (NHRID) and other organizations invested in the expansion of interpreting services to assess the need for and promote the use of all types of CART and interpreting services (e.g., ASL interpreters, CDIs, oral interpreters, deaf blind interpreters, etc).

The Office of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services provided information and support to the counselors working with customers who are deaf or hard of hearing throughout the year.

Goal 2---Effective and efficient use of resources

NHVR will achieve or exceed the required federal standard for the following indicator

2.1 Rehabilitation rate will equal or exceed 55.8%

Met in FY 10. The Rehabilitation rate in FY 10 was 62.27%

NHVR will demonstrate equal or improved performance when compared to the baseline for the following measurable indicators:

2.2 Percent for whom eligibility is determined in 60 days or less from application unless the customer agrees to an extension. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. In FY 09 eligibility was determined in 60 days or less from application for 89% of the customers who applied for services. In FY 10 eligibility was determined in 60 days or less from application for 91% of the customers who applied for services.

2.3 Percent of accurate presumptive eligibility decisions for persons eligible for SSI or SSDI. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. Target set for 2010 is 90%.

2.4 Percent for whom IPEs are developed within 120 days or less from eligibility unless the customer agrees to an extension. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. Target set for 2010 - 90%. In reviewing the data this year, it was identified that in FY-10 the average time to develop a Plan for Employment was 4.04 months. This is a reduction in time to complete the plan from FY 09 when the average time was 4.27 months to complete the plan.

2.5 Average consumer satisfaction using the American Consumer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) index model

From Customer Satisfaction Survey – Among all customers surveyed in 2008 the satisfaction index was 72.4. The ACSI score for all VR customers surveyed for FY 09 was 76.

2.6 Average expended per rehabilitation for the life of the case. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. Average expended per rehabilitation in FY 09 – services purchased/life of the case – was $4,300. Average expended per rehabilitation in FY 10 services purchased/life of the case – was $4,593 which was slightly higher than the baseline year.

2.7 Annual number of persons in service (status 02-24 +32). A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. Number served in FY 09 was 6,781. The number of individuals served in FY 10 was 7,698.

2.8 Annual contribution to IPE costs through comparable benefits and services. At the beginning of FY 10, it was identified that the current CMS does not collect this data. Work in 2010 identified a collection strategy. In FY 10, forty-nine (49) cases were identified as using comparable benefits ($55,803). Additional training to staff on collection of this information is planned for FY 11.

2.9 Percent of persons referred to placement or supported employment providers who achieve employment meeting all rehabilitation criteria. The Agency is currently working with CRPs on service delivery; baseline to be determined following completion of this activity. New forms and procedures were employed early summer (the last quarter of FY 10). Plans for assessing the implementation of the forms and procedures are set for mid year FY 11.

2.10 The average wage achieved by persons referred to placement or supported employment providers. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. The average wage for all persons referred to CRPs for placement services for 2009 was $9.11. In FY 10, for customers who worked with a CRP and achieved an employment outcome, the average wage was $9.27 per hour.

2.11 Percent of cases reviewed for which there is evidence that the service provider was given clear information about the consumer’s employment goals and expectations. Data not currently tracked in the Agency computer management system (CMS) – this item was extended based on current work with CRP both internal and statewide EIS system. However, due to budget cuts within New Hampshire the statewide EIS system project has been put on an indefinite hold. As a result the Agency is seeking other methods to gather this data and plans to include a review in mid FY 2011.

2.12 Percent of cases reviewed for which referral to a job placement or supported employment service provider was appropriate based on the individual needs of the consumer. Data not currently tracked in the CMS – this item was extended based on current work with CRP both internal and statewide EIS system. As noted above due to budget cuts the statewide EIS system project has been put on an indefinite hold. As a result the Agency is seeking other methods to gather this data and plans to include a review in mid FY 2011.

2.13 Percent of cases reviewed for which there is evidence of counseling and guidance provided by NHVR. This item was not included in past case review activity so no baseline was able to be determined from existing data. Staff training is scheduled in this area and a target set for future reviews to include a review of the documentation of counseling and guidance services has been set for mid 2011.

Additionally activity and information in 2010 and continuing into 2011 that has impact on this goal area has included:

NHVR has worked the last year to ensure the new component pricing and CRP services have had a smooth transition. The agency is looking at adding new incentive services in the FY 11 year to link directly to the RSA standards and indicators. The agency is exploring several models of direct purchasing for hearing aids to assist in cost savings.

The agency has monitored and discussed counselor performance on a monthly basis with the counselor’s supervisors. Various strategies have been employed to provide support to struggling counselors. The agency in FY 11 will update our quality assurance program and have different teams that will work on those around the state. Attending the QA summit in Portland, Oregon last year was instrumental in viewing other systems to support what we would like to create in NH.

Goal 3---Increase educational attainment, employment and self-sufficiency of transition-agedd youth.

NHVR will demonstrate equal or improved performance when compared to the baseline for the following measurable indicators:

3.1 Number of new applications from transition students. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. In FY 09 there were 602 new applications received from transition-aged customers. In FY 10 there were 66 new applications received from transition-aged customers.

3.2 Number of new IPEs for transition students. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. In FY 09 there were 340 new IPEs for transition- aged customers. In FY 10 there were 400 new IPE implemented for transition-aged customers.

3.3 Rehabilitation rate for transition students. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. In FY 09 the rehabilitation rate for transition-aged customers was 66.8%. In FY 10 the rehabilitation rate for transition-aged customers was 64%.

3.4 Of transition students who achieve competitive employment, the difference between the percent who reported their own income as the largest single source of economic support at closure compared to the percent at application. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. For transition-aged customers achieving an employment outcome 78% reported their own income as the largest single source of economic support compared to application. For transition-aged customers achieving an employment outcome 82% reported their own income as the largest single source of economic support compared to application.

3.5 Average hourly wage of transition students rehabilitated. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. The average hourly wage for transition-aged customers who achieved an employment outcome in FY 09 was $8.97 her hour. The average hourly wage for transition-aged customers who achieved an employment outcome in FY 10 was $9.69 per hour.

Additionally activity in 2010 and continuing into 2011that has impact on this goal area has included:

CRP menu of services updated. This provides transition counselors with greater ability to provide these services to students.

Need to have greater discussion as to how we want to use CRPs or other opportunities to provide these opportunities, particularly work based assessments.

Development of Power Point and timeline for services for purposes of developing a consistent VR message across the state.

Presentations and materials have been provided to over a dozen schools as of February 2011.

Students who are at-risk are being identified through the ARRA funded projects covering Manchester, Portsmouth and Somersworth. Strategies such as ELO development, soft skill building, paid work experience, internships and attendance of Adult Ed classes are being utilized for engagement of students.

ACES (A Chance to Experience Success) first cohort of students during July 2010 at Keene State College. Eleven students with LD/ADHD participated in a two-week on campus experience focusing on career development and building independent living skills. Students develop a portfolio of their experience to use to build stronger IEPs and IPEs.

Fee for service to Enriched Learning Center in Berlin to provide soft skill development through classroom experience as well as work experience leading to paid employment. Service is open to 10 students/young adults in the Berlin and Conway areas who are at-risk and in their last year of high school, or who may have left school within the last couple of years, but need additional skills/supports due to having fallen through the cracks while in school

As noted earlier, Project Search has assisted many customers with developmental disabilities in the last several years to obtain great employment situations. From the Nashua project nine individuals were able to obtain and maintain employment in the following jobs: Facilities Assistant, Dermatology Assistant, Podiatry Assistant, Phlebotomy lab Assistant, OB/GYN Assistant, Project Assistant, Office Support staff, LNA, and Housekeeper. Fiscal year 2011 to date has seen an expansion of this project to other areas in the state with trainees in the following locations:

-Concord currently has 10 in their class (full year, Concord Hospital)

-Manchester has eight (full year, Catholic Medical Center)

-Keene has four (half year, Cheshire Medical Center)

Strafford Learning Center exploring construction and extraction trades as part of their project to develop Extended Learning Opportunities or ELOs.

Goal 4---Promote an environment that supports the Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor - Customer relationship

4.1 Number of rehabilitation counseling staff who have achieved the CSPD standard. A baseline was determined utilizing FY 09 data. Fiscal year 2010 data on this item will be measured against this baseline. The FY 09 count of rehabilitation counseling staff who have achieved the CSPD standard is thirty. Ten (10) staff are currently working toward the CSPD standard. There were two (2) vacancies. Current staffing reveals that thirty staff holding rehabilitation counselor positions have achieved the standard. Eleven staff are currently working toward the standard at this time. There are currently three (3) vacancies.

4.2 Percent of cases reviewed for which there is evidence that assistive technology services and assistive technology devices were assessed and used as necessary for individuals with disabilities at each stage of the rehabilitation process. It was identified that current case review data collection did not include this element. It was further identified that this is a training need area for staff. Training in rehab tech services was available in 2010: additional training in this area will be provided in 2011. During FY 10, 154 individuals received assistive technology services and/or devices.

4.3 Percent of cases reviewed for which there is evidence that the consumer had the opportunity to exercise informed choice throughout the rehabilitation process. It was identified that current case review data collection did not include this element. It was further identified that this is a training need area for staff. Training planned in FY 2010. Case review process to be updated to include monitoring of this element. Rehabilitation counselors have consistently included informed choice in the process; as a result we are no longer tracking this item as part of the Agency goals and priorities.

4.4 Percent of cases reviewed for which there is evidence of continued contact and customer engagement throughout the vocational rehabilitation process. It was identified that current case review data collection did not include this element. It was further identified that this is a training need area for staff. Training planned in FY 2011. Case review process to be updated to include monitoring of this element. In reviewing this element for FY 10, it was identified that a standard for contact would be developed to provide a target to measure this element against.

Additionally activity in 2010 and continuing into 2011 that has impact on this goal area has included:

To support the development and retention of qualified rehabilitation staff through a comprehensive system of personnel development, leadership and succession planning, NHVR added another staff person to assist in training and coaching counselors in the Agency last year and this has increased capacity for training and support available to staff. Planned activities for 2011 include leadership development and succession planning.

Toward implementing strategies to maximize customer engagement throughout the VR process, counselor standards have been implemented that provide additional emphasis on the need for ongoing and consistent communication between the customer and the counselor in the VR process.

Goal 5---Provide ongoing support for the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC) and the Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC)

5.1 Number of annual stakeholder meetings exceed or are equal to four per year.

• Met in FY 10 and this item is on track for FY 2011.

5.2 Annual ratings by SRC/SILC members related to the effectiveness of their meetings and opportunities for meaningful involvement.

• First end of year evaluation to be collected in June of 2011

Additional information about the SRC: The State Rehabilitation Council has intensified its efforts to recognize successful VR customers, their counselors, and employers. The SRC is actively involved with the reiterations of the annual Agency customer satisfaction survey, as well as the development and modifications of Agency Policy. The SRC continues to work in close partnership with the Agency as it reviews data in order to make recommendations relative to service delivery, priorities, and the “order of selection.”

Additional information about the SILC: The Statewide Independent Living Council has undertaken two projects which are focused on the dissemination of information to individuals living with disabilities, community providers, state agencies, family members, and legislators. The SILC Monthly Resource Guide is sent to over 500 individuals and organizations. These resource guides are geared toward a specific topic each month. Guides have been published providing resource information on such topics as successful school transitions; healthy eating; deaf/hard of hearing; blindness/visual impairment; transportation; health care, etc. As a result of this effort, the SILC has increased the awareness of its mission and role within New Hampshire. The SILC also publishes a monthly newsletter which is sent to over 750 individuals and organizations. The newsletter highlights the work of the SILC and its members in its mission to promote the IL philosophy.

Additionally activity related to identifying activities targeted to improve services delivery to individuals who have been unserved or underserved include:

Continuing to maintain cooperative working relationships between NH Vocational Rehabilitation and community developmental disabilities organizations (area agencies) and community mental health centers. Administrative staff maintain ongoing relationships via membership on key committees as well as collaboration with staff on a local and statewide level including participation on the Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG) Statewide Advisory Committee, and the Employment Leadership Committee from Bureau of Developmental Services.

Agency staff participate with the Autism Council which has set as its yearly priority the development of regional collaboratives and completion of a resource driven web site. This work group is tasked with providing the resources relative to employment and independent living. There is the noted link to Project Search and to ensuring that students on the spectrum have opportunities for inclusion as soon as possible. Several members of the work group have joined together to develop an ARRA proposal for VR which would provide after school socialization and skill development as a prevocational approach that would prepare students on the spectrum for inclusion in sector-based training and provide a blueprint for strategies and support they will need to be successful in industry-based training.

 

Number of individuals who will receive service provided with funds under part B of Title VI of the Act: It is anticipated that NHVR will serve 1,700 persons in supported employment during fiscal years 2007-2012.

Analysis - Goals were set at: Planned to rehabilitate - 425 persons in supported employment during fiscal years 2007-2012, approximately 85 each year. In FY 2009 the agency served 394 individuals who were identified as requiring supported employment services with an outcome of rehabilitating 43 individuals.

The majority of these customers were, as expected, individuals with developmental disabilities and/or mental illness as these are the disabilities for which funding is available for long-term supports after vocational rehabilitation services are completed. These funding sources have had various challenges to their resources over the last several years. The Agency does, and will continue to, seek alternative sources for long-term supports, including the use of natural supports, and benefits planning as appropriate, to the individual.

Approximately 95% of all funds available through Title VI, Part B will be used for client services. Individual service authorizations will be used to purchase individual services for eligible individuals; however, services may be contracted to service providers to develop supported employment services for groups not covered under other programs or to develop programs in areas of the state where supported employment services are not readily available.

The funds will be deployed statewide, as needed, for individuals with disabilities eligible for VI-B funding until exhausted, then supplemented with Title I funds as appropriate. It is planned to rehabilitate 45 persons in supported employment outcomes in fiscal year 2011. The majority of these customers are expected to be individuals with developmental disabilities and/or mental illness as these are the disabilities for which funding is available for long-term supports after vocational rehabilitation services are completed.

The Agency will continue to seek alternative sources for long-term supports, including the use of natural supports, as appropriate, to the individual. In addition the Agency plans to employ the Partnership Plus model under the Ticket to Work Program extensively over the coming year as an additional resource to assist this population with employment.

 

Evaluation Standard 1--Employment outcomes. Assisting eligible individuals, including an individuals with significant disability, to obtain, maintain, or regain high-quality employment.

In Fiscal Year 2010 the Agency was successful in meeting or exceeding the performance levels established for five of the six performance indicators in this evaluation standard, including meeting or exceeding the performance levels for all three of the primary indicators (Performance Indicators 1.3, 1.4, and 1.5).

Indicator 1.1: Difference in the Number of Individuals with Employment Outcomes: Fiscal Years 2010 and 2009: Did not meet. In FY 2010 the Agency achieved 58 less employment outcomes than the previous year.

Indicator 1.2: Percentage of Individuals Receiving Services Who Had Employment Outcomes: Met with 62.23% (target >=55.8%)

Indicator 1.3: Percentage of Individuals with Employment Outcomes Who Were Competitively Employed: Met with 95.49% (target >=72.6%)

Indicator 1.4: Percentage of Individuals with Competitive Employment Outcomes Who Had Significant Disabilities: Met with 92.27% (target >=62.4%)

Indicator 1.5: Ratio of Average VR Hourly Wage To Average State Hourly Wage: Met with a ratio of 0.545 (target >=.52)

Indicator 1.6: Difference in Percentage of Individuals Achieving Competitive Employment Who Report Own Income as Primary Source of Support at Closure and Application: Met with a math difference of 53.11 (target >=53.0)

Evaluation Standard 2--Equal access to services. Ensuring that individuals from minority backgrounds have equal access to VR services.

In Fiscal Year 2010, the Agency met the indicator for this standard.

Indicator 2.1: Ratio of Minority to Non-Minority Service Rate: Met with a ratio of 0.828 (target >=.80)

 

The Agency reserves funds for innovation and expansion activities each year. Funds expended in these activities during fiscal year 2010 were $130,000. Funds set aside for these activities for FY 2011 are $130,000. The following describes progress in achieving the goals and priorities and the uses of Title I funds for Innovation and Expansion activities for the fiscal year 2010.

Monies set aside for innovation and expansion were used to support the Agency goals and priorities identified in section 1 above including:

• Support of the State Rehabilitation Council and the

Statewide Independent Living Council

• Support for Business Networking efforts

• Self-Employment development activities including staff training

• Career Planning Tools further development and Training

• Customer Satisfaction survey

This screen was last updated on Jun 27 2011 11:46AM by Ella McAllister

  • Describe quality, scope, and extent of supported employment services to be provided to individuals with the most significant disabilities
  • Describe the timing of the transition to extended services

Number of individuals who will receive service provided with funds under part B of Title VI of the Act: It is anticipated that NHVR will serve 1,700 persons in supported employment during fiscal years 2007-2012.

Analysis - Goals were set at: Planned to rehabilitate - 425 persons in supported employment during fiscal years 2007-2012, approximately 85 each year. In FY 2007 the agency served 392 individuals who were identified as requiring supported employment services with an outcome of rehabilitating 82 individuals.

During FY 08 the Agency served 397 individuals identified as requiring supported employment services with the result of rehabilitating and additional 82 individuals.

The majority of these customers were, as expected, individuals with developmental disabilities and/or mental illness as these are the disabilities for which funding is available for long term supports after vocational rehabilitation services are completed. These funding sources have had various challenges to their resources over the last several years. The Agency does, and will continue to, seek alternative sources for long-term supports, including the use of natural supports, and benefits planning as appropriate, to the individual.

This screen was last updated on Jun 30 2009 9:50AM by Ella McAllister

The following information is captured by the MIS.

Last updated on 08/16/2011 at 9:53 AM

Last updated by sanhmcallistere

Completed on 08/16/2011 at 9:53 AM

Completed by sanhmcallistere

Approved on 09/19/2011 at 3:13 PM

Approved by rscosadlerc

Published on 09/27/2011 at 10:52 AM

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