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

Published September 4, 2014.   Print   Print preview   Export to MS Word   Export to Excel  

State Plan for the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program and
State Plan Supplement for the State Supported Employment Services Program
Ohio Rehabilitation Services Commission State Plan for Fiscal Year 2014 (submitted FY 2013)

Preprint - Section 1: State Certifications

1.1 The Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA) 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 Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA) [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

OODA Executive Director

... 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

OODA Executive Director

... 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 SignatoryKevin Miller

Title of SignatoryOODA Executive Director

Date Signed (mm/dd/yyyy)06/26/2013

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 2014No

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.

Preprint - Section 2: Public Comment on State Plan Policies and Proceduress

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.

Preprint - Section 3: Submission of the State Plan and its Supplement

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.

Preprint - Section 4: Administration of 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 primarily concerned with vocational rehabilitation or vocational and other rehabilitation of individuals with disabilities (Option A was selected/Option B 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
Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA)

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 A 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.

Preprint - Section 5: Administration of the Provision of Vocational Rehabilitation Services

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. No

(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.

Preprint - Section 6: Program Administration

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.

Preprint - Section 7: Financial Administration

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.

Preprint - Section 8: Provision of Supported Employment Services

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.

Attachment 4.2(c) Input of State Rehabilitation Council

This agency is an independent commission.

This screen has never been updated.

Attachment 4.7(b)(3) Request for Waiver of Statewideness

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.

The Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA) requests a waiver of the Statewideness.

OODA develops and maintains Third Party Cooperative Arrangements (TPCA) with state and local public entities to provide contracted Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) services. These TPCA’s provide an opportunity for more consumers to receive services as well as providing an elevated level of expertise beyond employment readiness and training. Partnering with public entities such as County Boards of Developmental Disabilities or Mental Health provides a united approach of experts in working with these populations to be able to address specific needs for these different groups to provide better services. OODA is working with RSA to ensure that all third party cooperative agreements will be in compliance with federal requirements. These contracts provide a written assurance from the local public agency that it will make available to OODA the non-federal share of costs. OODA is responsible for providing leadership, oversight, and administrative support to locally developed cooperative arrangements. OODA maintains decision making authority on casework that is required and determined a non-delegable function. The vocational services provided under the OODA third party cooperative agreements comply with federal regulations requiring a unique pattern of service. New programs are required to explain how the services in the proposed contract will meet these requirements. A description of the services to be provided is contained in each contract’s scope of work. Standard contract language mandates the requirements to adhere to the Rehabilitation Act. These contracts also indicate that the local public agency will adhere to all state plan requirements, including order of selection for the provision of VR services in the administration of these arrangements. Locally, OODA has directly entered into agreements with public entities such as public universities, local education authorities, county mental health and drug addiction services boards, and developmental disabilities agencies. Therefore, these cooperative agreements are not statewide and a waiver is being requested.

Our locally-developed agreements include:

Developmental Disabilities Programs:

Programs for people with developmental disabilities are administered through contracts between OODA and local county Boards of Developmental Disabilities, Educational Service Centers or State Colleges. These entities are all public agencies that provide the non-federal share of costs. People with disabilities are typically referred for VR services by the local Board of Developmental Disabilities. Referrals may also come via the local OODA office or through local school systems. VR services through these programs are available to anyone eligible for local Board of Developmental Disabilities services. The full range of VR services and supports is available for people participating in Developmental Disabilities programs. In general, Developmental Disabilities programs offer community based assessment, benefits planning, job placement, job coaching, and job retention services.

Mental Health and Drug Addiction Services Programs:

Programs for people with mental health and alcohol and drug addiction are administered through contracts between OODA and local county Mental Health and Addiction Services Boards. People with disabilities are typically referred for VR services by the local boards. Referrals may also come via the local OODA office or through mental health and drug addiction service providers. The full range of VR services and supports is available for people participating in Mental Health programs.

Transition Youth Programs:

Programs for transition youth are administered through contracts between OODA and local county Boards of Developmental Disabilities, Educational Service Centers, Local school districts, or Colleges. These entities are all public agencies that provide the non-federal share of costs. Transition youth with disabilities (ages 14-22) are served by these programs, regardless of whether or not they are in school. Program staff is engaged with the school individual educational plan (IEP) as part of a transition planning team. This team assists in identifying necessary services and supports through schools, families, the Developmental Disabilities Board, OODA, employers and other community agencies. The full range of VR services and supports is available for individuals participating in Transition Youth programs, including post-secondary services and supports. Transition Youth programs generally provide career exploration, benefits planning, job shadowing, mentoring, vocational evaluation, community based assessments, summer work experience, job placement, job coaching and job retention.

Visual Impairment Programs:

Programs for individuals with visual impairments are administered through contracts between OODA and local municipalities. These entities are all public agencies that provide the non-federal share of costs. Services provided by the programs include call center training using adaptive equipment to meet the unique needs of persons with visual impairments. Low vision assessments, rehabilitation technology/adaptive equipment assessment and training, career development, job shadowing, mentoring, community based work assessments, summer work experience, benefits planning, job placement, job coaching and job retention services are also available as needed.

Brain Injury (BI) Programs:

Programs for those with brain injuries are administered through contracts involving OODA and a state university. The programs for persons with BI comprise a specialized set of services to meet the unique needs of Ohioans with cognitive impairments. These programs incorporate a team of neuropsychologists, physical therapists, occupational therapists, VR counselors, job developers, job coaches and job retention specialists. Programs for persons with BI provide neuropsychology assessments, work hardening programs, gait training, cognitive compensation strategy skill development, vocational evaluation, rehabilitation technology/adaptive equipment evaluations and training, community based work assessments, job placement, job coaching and job retention services, either in group or individual format, as appropriate.

Required Written Assurances:

Contracts that OODA develops with local public agencies to operate third-party cooperative arrangements provide assurance to OODA that the local public agency will make available to OODA the non-federal share of the funds. These contracts also indicate that the local public agency will adhere to all state plan requirements, including order of selection for the provision of VR services in the administration of these arrangements. As noted above, OODA also provides assurance that designated state unit approval will be obtained for each proposed service before it is put in effect.

OODA recognizes the importance of partnering with other state agencies to ensure the best possible quality of service to those eligible. During FFY 2013, OODA has expanded the cooperative agreements meant to achieve this enhanced level of services. OODA is also requesting a waiver of statewideness for the following state level agreements which are currently pilot programs:

Ohio Department of Aging (ODA):

The Ohio Department of Aging (DA) is collaboratively supporting a new vocational rehabilitation service delivery model to engage seniors with disabilities returning to work. This cooperative agreement focuses on providing education and tools for symptom and wellness management that will support the individual’s ability to maintain/obtain employment. This is being done through a series of workshops and an online course.

Ohio Department of Mental Health Peer Support Program

OODA is working with the Ohio Department of Mental Health in supporting a new Peer Support Training Program. OODA consumers with serious and persistent mental illness will be provided Peer Support Certification and access to 3 paid internship opportunities. The training and internships opportunities will improve employability of the consumers and result in permanent paid employment as certified peer support specialists in the behavioral healthcare system. This model is currently a pilot program in 5 counties.

This screen was last updated on Sep 23 2013 2:20PM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.8(b)(1) Cooperative Agreements with Agencies Not Carrying Out Activities Under the Statewide Workforce Investment System

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 Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA) has a long history of interagency cooperation and utilization of services and facilities of Federal, State and Local agencies and programs not carrying out activities through the statewide workforce investment system and who are not mandatory partners in the Workforce Investment Act. These cooperative partnerships contribute towards available services and rehabilitation of individuals with disabilities. OODA does not currently have any cooperative agreements with programs carried out by the Undersecretary for Rural Development of the United States Department of Agriculture or state use contracting programs.

The following information outlines OODA’s cooperative partnerships:

Bureau of Workers Compensation (BWC):

OODA has transformed the Cooperative Agreement with the Bureau of Workers Compensation (BWC) during Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2013, to better align services delivered by both agencies. OODA and BWC share a mutual interest in providing high-quality vocational rehabilitation services to Ohio citizens who have sustained work related injuries. Total program funds are utilized to support the vocational rehabilitation needs of individuals served through this partnership, including federal VR funds.

This Cooperative Agreement enables both state agencies to meet their respective missions in providing vocational rehabilitation services and increasing employment rates for individuals with disabilities.

Ohio Department of Mental Health (ODMH):

OODA will continue the formal written Cooperative Agreement with ODMH that will extend through the biennium. This partnership agreement supports continued work at a systems level on various inter-agency committees and workgroups to assure the appropriate delivery of services to mutually eligible consumers. At the local level, OODA offices cultivate ongoing relationships and collaborations with local mental health agencies and providers to ensure high-quality service delivery to individuals with mental illness. OODA plans to work with ODMH over the biennium to develop and facilitate regional trainings to increase OODA field staff service delivery outcomes to mutually eligible individuals.

The 2009 Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment (CSNA) for the VR program identified individuals with psychosocial impairments as an under-served population. While our service rate to this population has increased, the 2012 Needs Assessment results identify several counties in which we continue to underserve this population and our internal reports indicate that the rehabilitation rate with this population is lower than that for other disability groups. The joint projects between OODA and ODMH that will support improvements in these areas include:

• Participation in the Johnson & Johnson’s Community Mental Health Program and Dartmouth University’s Psychiatric Research Centers on Supported Employment Evidence-Based Practice. The nineteen grant sites are reporting data to Dartmouth, which indicates that the average employment rate for Ohio participants is 35 percent. As expected from previous research on this model, the data shows that the employment rates for participants with severe mental illnesses are increasing.

• A statewide workgroup co-hosted by OODA and ODMH that focuses on maintaining communication, collaboration and impacting policy and procedures that may impede the two systems from providing effective and efficient services to our mutual consumers and community stakeholders. OODA and ODMH have committed to a committee redesign to ensure that the goals and objectives of the community stakeholders are being met. During the next year, this collaboration, with stakeholder input, will establish and prioritize three top priorities in an effort to increase the service delivery and outcomes of mutually eligible consumers. Initial plans are to focus on improving service delivery timeframes, the availability of benefits planning to individuals and building cultural competency in service delivery staff.

Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD):

OODA and the Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) have maintained a state level partnership for more than 20 years, providing the operational framework for the continued joint coordination of VR and employment services. The departments share a vision of providing a comprehensive array of community support services resulting in competitive employment outcomes. OODA has renewed its interagency agreement with DODD to formalize the collaborative relationship to serve mutually eligible consumers. This interagency agreement set priorities for the partnerships surrounding training and service delivery expansion. OODA currently participates in multiple statewide workgroups to enhance successful practices for mutually eligible consumers. OODA and DODD will continue to support working relationships and collaborations at the local level between OODA field offices and County Boards of Developmental Disabilities. Collaborative activities include cross training to address issues of appropriate referrals, new directives from each agency, practices in serving mutual consumers and what services are needed to assist mutually eligible individuals towards competitive employment.

The 2012 Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment identified individuals with developmental disabilities as an underserved population, and our internal reports reflect a lower rehabilitation rate for individuals with developmental disabilities than for other disability groups. OODA is partnering with DODD on several projects that will support improvements in access to services and steps towards success for this population. DODD has been taking the lead on the Employment First initiative, signed by Governor Kasich that will promote community employment within Ohio. OODA is a member agency of the Ohio Employment First Task Force which is examining existing practices in the state system to identify and address barriers to employment for people with developmental disabilities. The member agencies agree that community employment should be the first option for all working age adults and transition-age youth with developmental disabilities. The member agencies have agreed to develop or review state-level interagency agreements to ensure coordination of services and enable data sharing. The agencies will also develop cross agency tools and processes to reduce duplication of services such as enrollment, eligibility, assessment and planning. The task force will also provide a united message to service providers regarding skills and competencies needed to provide effective services, including training and technical assistance of evidence based practices. OODA plans to continue to support DODD in this effort, both from a systems level and at the individual service level.

OODA is also one of the agencies represented on the Employment First Workgroup. OODA and DODD also share an interest in the development and implementation of Customized Employment programs for individuals with disabilities. DODD is implementing Ohio’s Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG) which has funded training and consultation for local boards and providers to develop and implement Customized Employment programs.

Ohio Board of Regents (OBR):

OODA and the Ohio Board of Regents (OBR) will continue to maintain a Cooperative Agreement, which outlines how the VR program and Ohio’s college and university system work together to support VR eligible individuals with disabilities attending post-secondary educational institutions. The agreement formalizes a process for referral development, coordinating services and sharing appropriate student information. OODA views this partnership as an important component for meeting standards and indicators related to wages attained for outcomes of Ohio’s VR program and for raising the quality of outcomes that we assist individuals with disabilities to achieve overall. OODA will continue to support OBR in meeting the goals of its 10 year Strategic Plan for Higher Education, including graduating more students, keeping graduates in Ohio and attracting new talent to the state. During FFY 2014, OODA will maintain a liaison to facilitate communication with OBR and with Disability Services Offices at Ohio’s colleges and universities. In addition, OODA agrees to work with Ohio’s colleges and universities in cross training efforts and activities that result in better services to students with disabilities.

OODA plans to partner with the Ohio Board of Regents to increase transition youth who access post-secondary education and training opportunities. The goal of this partnership is to increase wages for transition age youth. OODA’s partnership with BOR will work to access the skills development needs of eligible individuals, in relation to Ohio’s employment market, in an effort to properly align skill development and employability.

Ohio Department of Aging (ODA):

OODA recognizes the importance of partnering with other state agencies to ensure the best possible quality of service to those eligible. During FFY 2013, OODA has significantly expanded the cooperative agreements meant to achieve this enhanced level of services. In particular, the Ohio Department of Aging (DA) is collaboratively supporting a new vocational rehabilitation service delivery model to engage seniors with disabilities returning to work. This cooperative agreement focuses on providing education and tools for symptom and wellness management. OODA also plans to continue developing opportunities to partner through interagency cooperative agreements with other state programs.

Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS):

OODA and the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) have partnered together to provide employment opportunities for Ohioans with disabilities through the Consumer Support Advocate (CSA) program. Through the funding provided in this agreement, OODA consumers are interviewed, hired, and trained as Consumer Support Advocates who provide information and referral services to other individuals awaiting OODA services. The CSA’s, have assisted on average each month over 1,000 individuals with disabilities gain access to services provided by community organizations such as food bank, childcare, or transportation. In FFY 13, six CSAs have left the program for full-time employment with an average wage of $14.20 per hour, which is approximately $3.00 above the average wage for all consumers closed successfully.

OODA and ODJFS are also partnering to provide vocational rehabilitation services to individuals being served the HOME Choice program. The Ohio Money Follows the Person Grant Home Choice Demonstration Project is designed to assist those who have been in an institution for 90 days or longer in reestablishing their independence. While this program has just begun, we anticipate using these funds to serve approximately 40 consumers. The VR counselor will be part of the team developing the individual’s discharge plan from a long term care facility to ensure VR services begin as soon as possible.

OODA also plans to continue developing opportunities to partner through interagency cooperative agreements with other state programs. Potential partners include the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections (DRC), the Ohio Department of Youth Services (DYS), and the Ohio Department of Veterans Services.

In addition to these state level cooperative agreements, OODA enters into cooperative arrangements with local political entities through the Vocational Rehabilitation Public Private Partnerships (VRP3) program. OODA is working with RSA to ensure that all third party cooperative agreements will be in compliance with federal requirements. Details regarding this program are outlined in Attachment 4.7(b)(3).

This screen was last updated on Sep 23 2013 2:22PM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.8(b)(2) Coordination with Education Officials

  • 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.

Plans, Policies and Procedures for Coordination with Education Officials

Ohio has a long history of promoting interagency initiatives and agreements designed to facilitate the transition of students with disabilities from school to the receipt of vocational rehabilitation services. Collaboration includes a Cooperative Agreement with the Ohio Department of Education (ODE), Office of Exceptional Students. This agreement was updated in FFY13 and will continue through the biennium (SFY14-SFY15). OODA is working with RSA to ensure that all third party cooperative agreements will be in compliance with federal requirements. OODA has worked with the ODE to establish a publication entitled “A Guide to Transition Services: Helping Students with Disabilities Move from School to Work”. This publication is widely distributed to school personnel, as well as to students with disabilities and their families. This publication is currently in its third edition, and will continue to be used in training measures to promote collaboration between local education authorities and OODA field staff.

OODA has established a number of VR policies and procedures that include provisions for the coordination of services for youth with disabilities across the state. These include VR policies related to Eligibility and the Individual Plan for Employment (IPE.) OODA is currently developing a Vocational Rehabilitation Procedures Manual to consolidate various miscellaneous procedures and guidance into one document, which will be available on OODA’s internet. This will allow the public, including people with disabilities and our various community partners, wider awareness of our various rules and regulations. The on-line VR manual will include a chapter on services to transition youth.

The Ohio Department of Education provides Operating Standards for Ohio’s Schools to guide the provision of special education and related services for students with disabilities that are also useful in designing our future planning for services to students with disabilities. Ohio’s education operating standards have recently been updated to reflect Ohio’s Employment First initiative, which include collaboration.

OODA is currently partnering with Ohio Department of Education to monitor and evaluate the Project Search Program in Ohio. Through this partnership OODA seeks to evaluate current project search programs in the state, identify best practices and expand implementation in areas of service needs base based on the 2012 Comprehensive Needs Assessment. The long term benefit of this restructure will allow for an expansion of a promising practice of service delivery and practice work experiences yielding improved work skills development.

Development of the Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE)

OODA has policies governing Ohio’s VR program operation in compliance with CFR 361.45, ensuring that the Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) for transition youth is developed as early as is reasonably possible, but no later than the time at which the student leaves the school setting (unless that student is on an order of selection waiting list for services). Specifically, OODA’s VR Policy-0900 states that The Individual Plan for Employment (IPE) services must be developed and approved (i.e., agreed to and signed by the student and VR counselor) prior to the eligible student exiting school. VR agencies are authorized to finance transition services only for students who have been determined eligible under the VR program and who have an approved IPE.

It should be noted that as a part of Ohio’s plans for continuous improvement to the VR program, we have been working to engage students with disabilities at earlier ages than previously. We are now promoting referrals for VR service at age 14 so that we can become involved with the student earlier, thus becoming a more active participant in the transition planning process overall. This earlier intervention is expected to promote a better success rate (i.e., rehabilitation rate) and higher quality outcomes (i.e., wage per hour) for students with disabilities and will enhance OODA’s performance on these standards and indicators for the program. This is a focus for Ohio’s Employment First Initiative which will improve the success rate of employment outcomes by ensuring the focus is on integrated community employment and a measure of early intervention for transition students.

Cooperative Agreement with the Ohio Department of Education (ODE)

As mentioned above, OODA and the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) maintain a cooperative agreement which will remain in effect through the next biennium (State FY2014 and 2015). The vision of this partnership is to improve service delivery and outcomes for transition youth through supporting local level collaboration and early engagement of mutually eligible individuals. OODA plans to provide more training on functional limitations, research and to implement ways to improve the ability to obtain medical records, and improve relationships with Education Service Centers (ESCs). OODA will also address issues of employment readiness of transition age youth to increase participation in college and vocational training. OODA hopes that this collaboration with ODE will improve the quality of employment outcomes for transition youth.

Consultation and Technical Assistance under the Cooperative Agreement

OODA and ODE have designated both state and local personnel to provide transition services. At the state level, ODE and OODA have designated staff providing oversight and leadership for the development of policies, procedures, interagency training and other state-level partnership activities for transition services. VR counselors are assigned as liaisons to schools to serve transition students on targeted and/or general caseloads. Such counselors also participate on interagency transition teams in both special education and career-technical education programs. ODE makes transition-to-work specialists available at the local school district level to facilitate the transition services outlined in the IEP.

OODA staff at the state and local level provides consultation and technical assistance to school personnel, students, families and other agency partners through formal and informal trainings, joint problem solving and the exchange of information on policies and procedures. VR counselors serve as liaisons to local schools, attend IEP meetings regularly for prospective referrals and advise on state and local interagency groups. They also present at state and local conferences and training seminars and participate in local district career fairs and other interagency forums on VR eligibility and services.

Transition Planning under the Cooperative Agreement

The Cooperative Agreement outlines how transition planning is to occur at the local level for individual students with disabilities. Specifically, it designates that referral for VR eligibility, planning and coordination of services occurs when school district personnel, in partnership with family as appropriate, has begun to identify transition or other post-secondary services targeting an employment outcome on the IEP. This step should begin at age 14. As mentioned above, OODA has recently been targeting students as young as age14. Sooner planning seeks to promote the coordination of IEP and IPE services for students prior to exiting school. Earlier OODA contact also provides a venue for ongoing consultation and technical assistance to school personnel, the student/family and other transition planning team members.

Roles and Responsibilities under the Cooperative Agreement

The Cooperative Agreement outlines roles and responsibilities for local VR staff as well as staff of the Local Education Agency (LEA). Specifically, it is the responsibility of the LEA to provide services to which a student is entitled under IDEA, while it is OODA’s responsibility to provide and pay for VR services to eligible students as necessary to reach the goal as identified on the approved IPE. VR services complement services provided by schools, but they do not take their place. Services are coordinated with the Individual Plan for Employment (IPE) during the IEP meeting and/or other transition planning meetings. The Transition planning team includes the student, the family, school personnel and the OODA counselor.

Outreach to Non-Special Education Youth under the Cooperative Agreement

OODA also works in collaboration with ODE to conduct outreach to Non-Special Education Youth with Disabilities. VR counselors network with teachers, guidance counselors, nurses, psychologists and other school personnel to target students receiving services under a 504 plan. Through outreach efforts to local community agencies and organizations, VR counselors are able to identify students with disabilities who may have dropped out of school and are in need of VR services in order to get a job. Counselors also disseminate the “A Guide to Transition Services: Helping Students with Disabilities Move from School to Work” booklet to students and families through parent information centers and child advocacy groups. OODA partners with state and local agencies, WIA boards and youth councils, community rehabilitation programs, parent advocacy groups, and other public and private entities to co-sponsor career fairs, transition trainings, WIA youth conferences and transition weekends as venues to outreach to non-special education students with disabilities and their families.

This screen was last updated on Sep 23 2013 2:22PM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.8(b)(3) Cooperative Agreements with Private Nonprofit Organizations

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

In response to the feedback from RSA and due to OODA’s desire to ensure a high quality of service at a fair price, OODA implemented a standardized fee schedule in FFY 2013. The new standardized fee schedule will increase both the consistency and quality of services purchased. This new fee schedule provides the foundation for improved quality assurance through the establishment of vendor score cards, consistency with service definitions, and standardized reporting tools. While this is the first version of a standardized fee schedule for Ohio, OODA plans to move to a cost-based rate structure over the next couple of fiscal years. Currently service providers must fill out the VR Provider Agreement to be approved as a VR service provider. The provider designates which of the services, subject to the fee schedule, they will provide and which counties they will serve. The provider also signs and agrees to abide by the VR Provider Manual in providing services, the cost of the services, completing standardized reports and submitting bills in a timely fashion. For other programs and services not contained in the fee schedule, the provider completes the Fee Schedule Addendum. Examples of services that commonly fall under this addendum include transportation or job training programs. Once the providers complete the appropriate forms, they are reviewed by OODA staff for approval. Once agreements and addendums are approved, the provider is notified. The agreements allow the providers to add or delete services or counties throughout the year as well. This allows for expansion of services if a need should arise during the fiscal year.

Additionally, OODA plans to issue Requests for Proposals (RFPs) seeking the best price for a variety of other goods and services. Care will be taken, however, to ensure that selection methods do not overly restrict consumer choice of service providers available, nor do we want to compromise the quality of the services being provided.

This screen was last updated on Jul 29 2013 10:08AM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.8(b)(4) Arrangements and Cooperative Agreements for the Provision of Supported Employment Services

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.

As described in Attachment 4.8 (b)(1), the Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA), the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD), and the Ohio Department of Mental Health (ODMH) have consistently worked together to serve mutually eligible individuals with disabilities. As we work with people with more significant disabilities, the development of long-term supportive services is more important than ever. Though local conversations continue with county boards, limited resources have impacted the ability of some boards to set aside funding for the long-term supports associated with supported employment programs needed in various communities.

OODA works with the DODD to help in the transition of individuals with developmental disabilities into long terms supports funded through Medicaid. VR staff assists in completing paperwork for this funding to ensure that these fiscal resources can be leveraged. This process will be defined and outlined in our Cooperative Agreement with DODD for SFY 2014 and 2015. Ohio has an increased focus on supported employment services, as OODA aligns with DODD and other stakeholders to promote integrated competitive employment for all individuals with disabilities. Ohio’s Employment First Taskforce is a multi-agency partnership to promote an improved service delivery model for integrated competitive employment. The taskforce is examining existing practices in the state system to identify and address barriers to employment for individuals with developmental disabilities. The member agencies agree that community employment should be the first option for all working age adults and transition age youth with developmental disabilities. Local MOUs or agreements will include the braiding of local funds and resources to remove barriers to community employment. This would include supported employment and extended employment services. These local agreements will define OODA and DODD respective roles in providing these services.

ODMH funds a Coordinating Center for Excellence (CCOE) for Supported Employment for individuals with mental illness through block grant funding. This center has provided training to OODA staff. It plays a role on our statewide employment committee, as well as participating in other workgroups. OODA continues to collaborate with the Johnson & Johnson’s Community Mental Health Program and Dartmouth University’s Psychiatric Research Center Supported Employment Project along with the Ohio Department of Mental Health.

During the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) 2012 monitoring visit, OODA requested technical assistance to improve the Supported Employment program and outcomes associated with the delivery of supported employment services. OODA is currently in the process of updating supported employment policies and procedures, which should provide a strong foundation to address this recommendation. This update is projected to be completed with statewide training rolled out by September 30, 2013. OODA also plans to analyze the 2012 Needs Assessment data to begin to identify areas in the state where there is limited capacity for supported employment and other long term supports.

This screen was last updated on Jul 29 2013 10:14AM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.10 Comprehensive System of Personnel Development

Data System on Personnel and Personnel Development

OODA has developed and maintained a system of utilizing and analyzing available data on qualified personnel needs with respect to hiring staff, distribution of the workload and utilization of staff resources. Each year when planning for staffing needs, OODA looks at the waiting list to see which counties or areas of the state have the highest numbers of consumers on the list, review what counties are covered by our TPCA’s and their capacity numbers for the upcoming year, referral numbers, and the CSNA. This allows OODA to establish where the staff is going to be needed in the upcoming year. The Area Managers then look at where there are openings and where caseload sizes are too large or too small with the goal of balancing the worload by moving counselor positions or creating more caseloads. If there is a counselor vacancy in the northwest area, but the data shows that they have the workload covered at the current staffing level, then that position may be moved to the southwest where a need was identified. Ideal caseload size is around 80, if a team of counselor’s caseloads are all well above this, then a new caseload could be created and another counselor may be added to the team. The CSNA also helps OODA identify where different types of counselors may be needed, such as BSVI or RCD counselors.

The VR counselors are set up on teams with each team consists of 8 counselors, 1 caseload assistant, 1 supervisor and 2 support staff. A team of this size and makeup is felt to be the most manageable and efficient for OODA. We hire counselor positions more often than caseload assistants due to the team make up of 1 assistant for every 8 counselors. Counselors can do all functions while caseload assistants help with the front door, tasks, getting the needed info for counselors, and intakes. The assistants can’t do/sign eligibility determinations or plans.

At the end of FFY 2012, OODA employed 228 Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors (VRCs). Altogether, 22,227 people were served through the VR program in FFY 2012. [Served in this context means the total number of individuals on hand in Vocational Rehabilitation plan and beyond as of the conclusion of the Federal Fiscal Year (9/30/12) or closed during the fiscal year, excluding those closed before plan was initiated.] The ratio of VRCs to consumers, based on these figures, stands at 97 individuals with disabilities served per VRC.

Beginning signs of economic recovery bring hope for OODA to expand the VR program to meet the needs of all eligible Ohioans. We expect that the need for additional staff will increase along with our state’s VR needs. With our emphasis on positions that serve people directly, the greatest area of need will likely be Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors and Caseload Assistants (Vocational Rehabilitation Assistant Counselors), and Supervisory staff.

 

Row Job Title Total positions Current vacancies Projected vacancies over the next 5 years
1 Acct. Exam. 2, Office Asst. 3, Public Info Officer 55 4 30
2 Admin. Professional 2 & 4 9 2 4
3 BE Specialist & BE Program Coordinator 9 1 6
4 Deputy Director 1, 4, & 5 6 1 0
5 Program Admin 2, 3, & HCM Sr. Analyst 10 1 0
6 Rehab. Program Specialists 12 1 1
7 VR Counselors (ESS, Rehab. Teachers) 8 0 6
8 VR Assistant Counselors 26 2 3
9 VR Counselors (2, 3, 4) 227 17 69
10 VR Supervisors, Managers 34 1 6

 

Ohio has four current CORE-accredited (Council on Rehabilitation Education) Master of Science in Rehabilitation Counseling (MRC) programs. These programs are offered at Kent State University, Ohio University, Wilberforce University, and Wright State University.

When we contacted Ohio’s four CORE-accredited MRC programs for 2012 data, we learned from Wilberforce University that there are 18 students enrolled in their Master of Science in Rehabilitation Counseling program and three students graduated with certification or licensure or with the credentials for certification or licensure. Kent State University has 47 students enrolled and 17 graduates from 2012. Ohio University has 40 students who are enrolled full-time and 1 part –time student; 25 students graduated from the program. Although contacted more than once, Wright State University chose not to provide data about their students.

 

Row Institutions Students enrolled Employees sponsored by agency and/or RSA Graduates sponsored by agency and/or RSA Graduates from the previous year
1 Kent State University 47 0 0 17
2 Ohio University 41 0 0 25
3 Wilberforce University 18 0 0 3
4 Wright State University (no data received) 0 0 0 0
5 Total Combined Programs (Of data available) 106 0 0 45

 

RSC’s human resources staff maintain contacts at Ohio’s CORE-accredited universities and universities in contiguous states. These relationships and networking facilitate sourcing, recruiting, and hiring well-qualified professionals. RSC continues to offer unpaid internships to students in the CORE-accredited programs.

Announcements are posted for a two-to three week period and a recruitment plan is launched simultaneously. The plan is multi-faceted and includes social networking, web-based advertising, partnering with CORE-accredited universities, print advertising, and outreach to the disability community. RSC commits resources to recruiting and hiring diverse and qualified staff who embrace RSC’s mission and vision reflecting Ohio’s population.

Vacancy announcements for counselors are publicized in several different ways. Announcements are posted on the state of Ohio career page at http://careers.ohio.gov. In addition, web-based posting “consolidation” sites such as Indeed.com (http://indeed.com) and Ohio Means Jobs (https://ohiomeansjobs.com) pick up RSC’s vacancy announcements, giving RSC vacancies additional exposure.

RSC’s HR staff has used classified advertising to reach additional applicants. This can be effective in smaller job markets where resources are few. These advertisements generally link to other web-based posting sites such as monster.com and careerbuilder.com.

In areas in which counselor vacancies can be harder to fill (e.g., rural areas), announcements are sent via e-mail to Ohio’s CORE-accredited rehabilitation counseling programs, including the program at Wilberforce University, an Historically Black University (HBCU). In instances where the vacancy may be close to a contiguous state, announcements have been shared with CORE-accredited rehabilitation counseling programs in those states (e.g., West Virginia University, University of Kentucky).

Announcements for vacancies have been posted on university alumni electronic bulletin boards (e.g., The Ohio State University’s Alumni Career Connection).

RSC seeks a diverse and qualified staff committed to RSC’s mission and vision, a staff reflecting Ohio’s population as a whole. Specific strategies and action steps have been identified to achieve this goal of diversity, including collaborating with HBCUs with Master of Science in Rehabilitation Counseling programs.

RSC continued to hire VRCs in 2012 and as recruitment trends and technology evolve, so does the recruitment plan. Addressing current and projected needs for personnel who are qualified in accordance with paragraph (c) of this section is critical to successfully fulfill RSC’s mission to ensure individuals with disabilities achieve quality employment outcomes.

Each year, the training department creates a comprehensive plan to prepare and retain qualified individuals for service. The development of the plan begins with a review of training requests throughout the past year and a discussion of training needs with various staff members. The goal of each training is to assure that staff has the skills and information necessary to successfully assist individuals with disabilities to achieve an employment outcome. Through a collaborative effort, training topics which would benefit the entire agency were identified and discussed with HR. Topics range from customer service to Excel training. Since these items are included in multiple plans, we will work with other departments to assure duplication of training does not occur. While these agency wide trainings will be housed with HR, the collaborative effort allows us to work together to assure the agency wide training meets the specific needs of the VR staff.

Basic core training provided on throughout the year and includes quarterly new counselor trainings. This training is a multi-day comprehensive training which prepares counselors for providing services in the field. In addition, as part of OODA’s core training, monthly video conferences are offered to all counselors in order provide staff with information on current topics. Monthly topics have included ethics, confidentiality, appeals process, Ohio Benefits Bank, labor market information, etc.

OODA also reviews agency-wide goals and initiatives to develop trainings specific to the requirements of those initiatives. For example, Employment First will have its own specific training requirements and some specific training needs are provided for the staff working on this project. Business engagement has also been identified as an initiative that will have training developed in 2014. These trainings are included as part of the comprehensive training plan and are essential to the successful implementation of the initiative.

As needs are identified, the training plan is updated and training is developed to assure the needs of staff are continually met. By keeping the plan updated and implementing the plan based upon priority, we have a stronger ability to retain our staff and assure they are able to provide quality services.

 

The state of Ohio neither certifies nor licenses vocational rehabilitation counselors; therefore, data is not maintained on those areas. All graduates from Ohio’s CORE-accredited programs are eligible to sit for the nationally recognized Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC) examination, administered by the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification. All of these students are qualified to be VRCs at RSC.

RSC has adopted the national standard as the educational standard for Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors, as the state of Ohio does not define a standard for VR professionals. This is defined as: a Masters of Rehabilitation Counseling or a closely related field (e.g., counseling, social work, psychology, sociology, special education, communication disorders, human services); or current certification as a CRC. In addition, students who are currently enrolled in qualifying degree programs with a graduate date prior to the hire date are encouraged to apply.

RSC works closely with national and Ohio organizations to identify qualified individuals with disabilities. HR notifies all RSC staff, which includes all VRCs, each time a vacancy occurs at RSC. Our VRCs notify their qualified consumers about those opportunities for external applicants.

When new VRCs are hired with a Master’s degree in a field other than rehabilitation counseling, their official graduate transcript may not reflect coursework in counseling theories and techniques. In order to meet the national standard for VRCs, these new counselors are required to successfully complete coursework in counseling theories and techniques within their one year probationary period. By requiring this specific coursework, RSC ensures that those counselors can effectively provide appropriate vocational guidance and counseling services. Once the counselor has completed the qualifying coursework, RSc will reimburse the counselor for the cost of the course.

All applicants for a VRC position at RSC are told of the coursework requirement at multiple times during the recruitment and hiring process. Once hired, the new VRC and their supervisor are notified if the VRC does or does not need to take appropriate coursework within their one year probationary period in order to meet the standard.

All counselors hired prior to February 2012 meet the standard. Since February 2012, there are seven counselors who need to take qualifying theories and techniques of counseling coursework in order to meet the standard. All counselors and supervisors are aware of the coursework requirement, the time period in which the coursework must be completed (during the one year probationary period) and the consequences of failing to meet the requirement. Human Resources staff monitor and maintain contact through e-mail with both the counselors and their supervisors at regular intervals. Human Resources staff notify both the counselor and the supervisor if the new counselor meets or does not meet the standard. This is done within a few days of the date of hire. New counselors are told that they must provide a copy of an official transcript when the coursework is completed. Human Resources staff notify the supervisor and other parties that the requirement has been satisfied.

Human Resources staff maintain a log of all new counselors, their degree, the area of study, and the qualifying coursework name(s) and number(s). If new counselors appear to be at risk of not meeting the standard, then management staff, including labor relations, is included in discussions. Personnel who fail to take the appropriate coursework in the one year probationary period are subject to removal.

 

Like all State of Ohio agencies, the Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA) continues to integrate an Enterprise Resource Planning System to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the administrative processes across all state government agencies. This ERP system, called OAKS (Ohio Administrative Knowledge System), integrates the functions of capital improvements, financials, fixed assets, human resources and procurement. OAKS Reports allow OODA to track current staffing levels, historical staffing patterns, staff ratios and other pertinent information.

In 2012, OODA shifted its service model to a consumer-focused model for efficient service delivery. Staff is grouped into 27 service delivery teams, which are geographically dispersed in proportion to the number of projected cases around the state. Each team consists of 1 Vocational Rehabilitation Supervisor, 8 Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors, 1 Associate Counselor, and 2 support staff. Generally, the 2 support staff positions will be Accountant Examiners 2, while larger satellite offices will continue to be staffed by 1 Office Assistant 3 on a team headquartered in that office.

We anticipate that the need for professional and paraprofessional staffing as listed above will stay the same during FFY 2014 in accordance with the service model.

Preparation:

OODA is a learning organization, with ongoing commitment to fostering the skill development of staff at all levels. Specifically, vocational rehabilitation staff is offered both internal and external educational opportunities for position-specific skill mastery. OODA encourages staff to pursue knowledge related to the changing needs of the agency, the people we serve and the evolution of the VR role. OODA also works to ensure staff is informed of critical information at all levels of the organization. Information is shared at quarterly area meetings with all staff as well as at monthly senior Leadership meetings. OODA seeks to provide various avenues to share critical information in order that all staff are informed and trained.

OODA seeks to provide a meaningful training for all personnel. OODA is working to develop a core-level training that would provide the knowledge and basic requirements necessary of all individuals to be successful in their positions. OODA also plans to develop a hierarchy curriculum that would be position specific for support staff, counselors, and supervisory staff. To implement this vision for transforming training, OODA will utilize core competencies identified by deputy and area managers, needs expressed by customers, and state and federal priorities.

OODA provides monthly video conference trainings designed to train on agency policy and procedures, share information about community resources, maintain state and licensure requirements for Ethics trainings, as well as train on other topics as needed.

Staff is encouraged to maintain and increase technical skills by attending required and/or continuing education opportunities. Examples of conferences and other trainings promoted by OODA include: Introduction to Vocational Rehabilitation; Medical and Psychosocial Aspects of Disabilities; Labor Market information, Customized Employment, Self-Employment and Supported Employment; Social Security Work Incentives; Multiculturalism and Ethics.

Retention:

OODA values its employees and strives to create a work environment that supports the retention of qualified staff. The availability of training as described above serves to keep staff feeling challenged and interested in future opportunities for growth, whether in a current position or in seeking a promotion. Recently, OODA utilized input from a state advisory group in order to restructure the agency’s formal recognition program. OODA is excited to publically recognize and acknowledge staff accomplishments based on recommendations from other staff with award-recipients selected from a management review team. The newly restructured program was held in May 2013 and all agency staff is invited to attend.

 

Fluency in American Sign Language (ASL) or Spanish coupled with the qualifying master’s degree continues to present challenges. In 2012, RSC had 11 Rehabilitation Counselors and Program Specialists who have bilingual ASL skills and 2 counselors and program specialists who are fluent in Spanish. RSC continues to market opportunities to diverse populations, including students at Gallaudet University, whose student population includes a substantial number of deaf and hard-of-hearing students. As mentioned previously, we market all of our counselor opportunities to our counseling staff so they may share these announcements with their qualified consumers; we are always open to additional ideas and resources.

RSC was able to hire two highly qualified Rehabilitation Counselors for the Deaf (RCDs) in 2012/2013. Both candidates found find out about employment opportunities from web-based sources. Without technology, RSC would not be able to reach these highly valued candidates.

RSC has had several vacancies for RCDs. One of the strategies the agency has used is to post positions both at the master’s degreed level for counselors and at the bachelor’s degree level for assistant counselors (Caseload Assistants). We have posted these positions as continuous postings, unlike vacancies for regular counselors where the postings have a specific posting period. RSC has been able to fill the RCD positions as regular counselors, but will continue to recruit at both levels in order to fill vacant positions and serve our deaf and hard-of-hearing consumers.

OODA also purchases interpreter services (both ASL & foreign language) when needed by a consumer through case service dollars. If a provider has staff, such as a job coach, that are fluent in ASL or a needed foregin language and use the skill while providing VR services, such as job coaching, OODA pays a higher rate for that service.

 

OODA and the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) collaborate on a regular basis to provide guidance to educational agencies and VR personnel responsible for facilitating transition services. These staff also offer information about consultation and technical assistance resources to assist schools and related community support entities in planning for transition of students with disabilities.

At the state level both agencies have designated personnel to provide oversight and leadership for the development of policies, procedures, interagency training and other state-level partnership activities for transition services. On the local level, VR counselors are assigned as liaisons to schools and local school districts have collaborative transition to work specialists. At the state level both agencies have designated personnel to provide oversight and leadership for the development of policies, procedures, interagency training and other state-level partnership activities for transition services. On the local level, VR counselors are assigned as liaisons to schools and local school districts have collaborative transition to work specialists.

OODA will provide targeted training to enhance personnel development. This will include targeted training on Employment First, Supported Employment, Eligibility and clarification of roles and responsibilities of OODA and school personnel.

This screen was last updated on Sep 23 2013 4:08PM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.11(a) Statewide Assessment

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.

OODA conducts a Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment (CSNA) at least every three years. The most recent CSNA, released in June 2012, was completed through contract with The Ohio State University - Center for Learning Excellence and the Nisonger Center. Guidance from the VR Needs Assessment Guide and its appendices was incorporated throughout the CSNA process and utilized by the CSNA Advisory Team which consisted of OODA Executive Team members, OODA management staff, OODA consumers, and OSU staff and researchers. The primary purpose of the Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities (OODA) CSNA was to provide a basis for allocating resources to effectively manage the order of selection waiting list and improve the employment opportunities and outcomes of Ohioans with a variety of disabilities.

The questions targeted by the CSNA were: 1) How many people will experience each type of disability in Ohio? 2) How many people with disabilities are unemployed? 3) How are different racial groups impacted by disabilities? 4) How many individuals with disabilities receive appropriate services? 5) How is the quality of services provided by CRPs perceived? 6) What are gaps in services provided to individuals with disabilities and how should gaps be prioritized? 7) How many of the individuals served by selected state agencies other than OODA would benefit from OODA services? 8) What are the policy implications of gaps in services?

In order to make policy decisions about the optimal distribution of resources, OODA needed information about the prevalence of the six major disability types in regions and counties in Ohio. This assessment took into consideration prevalence estimates on the number of people in Ohio with a disability, projection estimates identifying the number of people with a disability each year through 2016, and penetration rates of the number of people with a disability that OODA has served. The proportion of estimated Ohioans seeking employment was broken down by impairment, with a similar graphic demonstrating the proportion of each disability served by OODA throughout the state. Six disability types were specifically analyzed including visual, hearing, physical, psychosocial, communicative, and cognitive impairments. These disabilities have been defined in a variety of ways. However, the estimates and corresponding definitions used in the CSNA were judged to be consistent with the definitions used by OODA and appropriate for estimating the prevalence of disabilities, given the overarching purpose of the CSNA. Furthermore, the CSNA data will be used by VR Supervisors and Regional Managers to guide outreach efforts.

Another key component of the CSNA involved interface with other state agencies to analyze disability data among various departments: Mental Health, Rehabilitation and Correction, Aging, Developmental Disabilities, Education, Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services, Job & Family Services, Veterans, Workers Compensation, and Youth Services. We wanted to understand how these agencies identify and track disability-related data in their various case management systems. Opportunity for future interface with these agencies was also introduced throughout this phase of the CSNA process and has continued to some degree as a part of Ohio’s Employment First Initiative. OODA will continue to work with our state partners as we implement service delivery activities for various populations.

The CSNA also built upon information received from a series of Café Conversations which provided feedback from close to 1500 individuals with disabilities and interested community members. Needs of individuals with the most significant disabilities were discussed, including the need for Supported Employment. Results of the CSNA, Café Conversations and internal statistical reports point to the need to improve current strategies for helping individuals with the most significant disabilities become successfully employed. Strategies for making improvements in this area are detailed in Attachment 4.11(d) and our progress to date in making improvements is detailed in Attachment 4.11 (e)(2). Expanding the availability of long-term supports for people seeking supported employment outcomes is also necessary. Attachment 4.11(c)(4) describes OODA’s priorities in this area.

The CSNA methodology utilized several surveys in order to ascertain the needs of individuals with the most significant disabilities, including the need for supported employment; one survey was designed for individuals with disabilities about the quality of services they have/are receiving; one for individuals who left OODA without employment; one for VR supervisors related to the need for supported employment services; one for Ohio Business Leadership Network employers; and one for key informants. In addition to the survey results, numerous internal and external reports and secondary data were reviewed in order to fully understand Ohio’s disability population and to make subsequent recommendations as to VR service needs.

Needs of Individuals with Disabilities who are Minorities or Others who have been un-served or underserved by the Vocational Rehabilitation Program:

The 2012 CSNA data indicate that there are significant needs for VR services among African-Americans and individuals of Hispanic origin with disabilities. Similarly, data suggest additional need among older Ohioans and transitional age youth.

• The total number of African Americans with disabilities in Ohio is estimated to be 218,656. In 2010, other estimates indicate that 15.8% or 34,548 African Americans with disabilities may be seeking employment at any particular point in time. RSC served 2,947 African American in 2011. Thus RSC is serving approximately 8.5% of African Americans who could benefit from services.

• Estimates indicate that 15.8% of Hispanics or 6,446 individuals of Hispanic origin with disabilities may be seeking employment at any specific point in time. In 2011, RSC served 132 Hispanics/Latinos. Thus RSC is serving approximately 2.3% of Hispanics who could benefit from services. There would appear to be strategic value in enhancing services to the Hispanic population in Ohio.

• There are 1,743,816 youth in Ohio between the ages of 14 and 24. Estimates suggest that 111,604 may experience a disability. RSC served 3,416 individuals between 14 and 24 (transition age youth) in 2010.

• There are 2,287,424 individuals in Ohio over age 60. Estimates suggest that 848,634 may experience a disability. RSC served 806 individuals over age 60. Thus there appear to be opportunities to serve the older adult population in most Ohio counties.

The CSNA estimated the African American population in Ohio on a county-by-county basis with analysis of OODA outreach to African American consumers by county. Ohioans of Hispanic ethnicity were evaluated in a similar fashion to identify any unmet needs. OODA improved its service rate for individuals with disabilities from minority backgrounds; as of April 2013, OODA is in compliance with Standard 2.1 (minority service rate) of the Standards and Indicators. OODA will continue to work with our state partners as outreach activities for the various populations are implemented.

In many cases, the CSNA identified that significant numbers of individuals may not be served. If conditions remain unchanged, the overwhelming majority of counties will fall below a penetration rate of 15% in 2013 for all disability categories (79 counties for visual impairments; 79 for hearing impairments; 80 for physical impairments; 70 for psychosocial impairments; 85 for communicative impairments; 79 for cognitive impairments). These data suggest that there are many opportunities to address unmet need among individuals with disabilities in Ohio across all disability categories and across all counties.

Generating information to support resource distribution policy development was a primary objective of the CSNA. In response to this objective, the CSNA Advisory Team considered the “balance” of investment of resources across the state. One mechanism for investigating the balance of investment was referred to as “relative proportionality.” Relative proportionality was thought of as one means to assess the discrepancy between needs for services and number of individuals served.

Table XXIX. Relative Proportionality for Ohio: 2013

Impairment Category Seeking Employment Proportion of Total Seeking Employment Served by RSC Proportion of Total Served Percentage Point

Difference

Visual Impairment 23,504 10.4% 1,236 8.2% -2.3

Hearing Impairment 16,810 7.5% 1,079 7.1% -0.4

Communicative Impairment 12,357 5.5% 161 1.1% -4.4

Physical Impairment 58,927 26.2% 3,732 24.6% -1.6

Psychosocial Impairment 55,075 24.5% 5,327 35.1% 10.7

Cognitive Impairment 58,512 26.0% 3,625 23.9% -2.1

Total 225,185 100.0% 15,160 100.0% NA

Needs of Individuals with Disabilities Served through Other Components of the Statewide Workforce Investment System:

OODA has continued to partner with One-Stop operations at the local level. A number of field offices have been closed and staff has been embedded in the community, where counselors can be more accessible to individuals with disabilities. Through this process, we are increasing our presence overall at the One-Stop centers. This will help us stay connected with the needs of individuals with disabilities served through the Workforce Investment System. The CSNA has provided information to OODA in relation to gaps in VR services of use in the process of working with future need for service availability in Ohio’s Community Rehabilitation Program network of providers.

The final report from the CSNA can be found at http://rsc.ohio.gov/. OODA is incorporating the findings from the CSNA as a part of the strategic focus and has been using the data and analysis for informed decision-making. This includes allocating staff resources, partnerships with Ohio Department of Education and Ohio Department of Aging, and conducting outreach efforts to underserved populations and constitutes.

A wealth of additional knowledge can be obtained by referencing the CSNA report and its appendices for more specific findings. Based on the recommendations made in the CSNA, OODA has developed program objectives outlined in the agency strategic plan to meet the needs of Ohioans with disabilities.

OODA has continued to operationalize the CSNA on an ongoing basis including the above-mentioned purposes by Area Management for guiding outreach efforts, reference tool for establishment of CRP fee structures, developing and scoring Requests for Proposals (RFPs) by Program Specialists, Weekly Focus newsletter articles by Office of Communications, Ohio Business Leadership Network planning purposes, establishing the size and market power of the population of individuals with disabilities in Ohio by legislative and fiscal staff, and finally for Executive Team review and prioritization of program needs.

During FFY 14, we will be conducting a supplemental needs assessment to assess the need to establish, develop, or improve community rehabilitation programs. This evaluation will focus on whether there is a need to establish or expand provision of these Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) services in the state of Ohio to RSC consumers, as well evaluating whether the need exists by county and the type of service(s) needed.

For those counties identified with potential need to establish or expand vocational rehabilitation services, recommend the most viable and cost effective investment to provide the service(s) in those counties.

This screen was last updated on Sep 23 2013 2:19PM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.11(b) Annual Estimates

Number of Individuals in Ohio Eligible for Vocational Rehabilitation Services

According to the American Community Survey (as cited in Houtenville & Ruiz, 2011), Ohio is ranked 15th among the states in the number of residents with disabilities. More than one million individuals (13.3% of the total population/1,534,355 individuals) experience disabilities in Ohio. However, over the course of the past several Federal Fiscal Years (FFYs), Ohio’s Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) program has noted steady decline in the number of new eligible individuals identified for service. In FFY 2009, OODA completed 18,632 eligibility determinations; in FFY 2010, 16,738 eligibility determinations and in FFY 2011, 15,098 eligibility determinations were made by OODA. In FFY 2012, OODA noticed a slight increase with 16,274 eligibility determinations made by OODA. OODA is encouraged by the upward trend in eligibility determinations which may be in correlation with the continual decrease in the number of individuals and length of time individuals must wait for VR services. OODA’s goal for FFY 2013 is to make 17,500 eligibility determinations.

Number of Individuals Who Will Receive Services

Over the past several years, Ohio’s VR program has witnessed a steady decline in people served. In FFY 2012, OODA served 22,227 Ohioans with disabilities. The number of individuals served is a result of reduced resources and capacity in the overall VR system rather than a decline in the number of Ohioans with disabilities who need services. OODA conservatively projects that for FFY 2013 the number of eligible individuals with disabilities served by the VR program will remain constant at about 23,000 and will slightly increase to 24,000 in FFY 2014. [It should be noted that “served” in this context denotes the total number of individuals in a Vocational Rehabilitation plan and beyond as of the conclusion of the Federal Fiscal Year (9/30/12) or closed during the fiscal year, excluding those closed before the VR plan was initiated.] The number of people served by the VR program in FFY 2014 depends on a number of factors, including Ohio’s biennium budget process and OODA’s continued use of Cooperative Arrangements with various state agencies or other local public entities. OODA will do diligence to leverage all available federal funds, achieve organizational and fiscal efficiencies, and collaborate with other state and local partners to maximize capacity to serve eligible Ohioans with disabilities. Based on current budget projections, OODA is encouraged with the proposed increase of 2.5 million dollars in General Revenue Funds (GRF). Based on the increase in GRF, OODA expects to eliminate the waiting list for individuals with Significant Disabilities.

Cost of Services

During the past several Federal Fiscal Years, total case service spending for people with disabilities in the VR system has declined. This decrease results from reduced case services resources available and the lower number of people served, rather than a reduction in the need for services by individuals with disabilities. In fact, as of April 2013, OODA has approximately 1,900 eligible individuals waiting for services (1,250 Significantly Disabled and 650 individuals with Disabilities). Since April 2011, we have released 11,000 people from the waiting list.

The average case service spending per individual served by the VR program in FFY 2012 was $3,514 (served divided by total case service spending). In FFY 2013, OODA implemented a fee schedule, a strategy to ensure a fair and reasonable cost for services purchased by the VR program. The funding reflected below includes the proposed 2.5 million increase in GRF funding and corresponding federal match money. OODA does not expect to receive Title VI federal funds. As a result, OODA will not serve any individuals using Title VI funds, as shown below.

Category Title I or Title VI Estimated Funds Estimated Number to be Served Average Cost of Services
Most Significantly Disabled (MSD) Title I $68,250,000 18,000 $3,791
Significantly Disabled (SD) Title I $22,750,000 6000 $3,791
Most Significantly Disabled (MSD) Title VI $0 0
Totals   $91,000,000 24,000 $3,791

This screen was last updated on Jul 29 2013 10:24AM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.11(c)(1) State Goals and Priorities

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.

To achieve the above-stated priorities and to improve overall quality and accountability in VR services, OODA developed a strategic plan for Fiscal Years 2012-2013 and is currently in the process of developing a new plan for 2014-2015. RCS’s current strategic plan incorporates a mission statement, core values for the organization, and goals, objectives, initiatives and key executive performance metrics as listed below.

OODA’s Mission: To ensure individuals with disabilities achieve quality employment, independence and disability determination outcomes through integrated services, partnerships and innovation.

Organizational Values Include:

• Accountability

• Compassion

• Integrity

• Partnerships

• Quality outcomes

• Respect

Goals and Objectives Include:

Goal 1: To promote independence and self-sufficiency for Ohio citizens with disabilities.

Objective 1a: Increase the percentage of individuals with successful employment or independent living outcomes. OODA will improve the rehabilitation rate for the VR program from approximately 43% to the national standard of 55.8%

Objective 1b: Improve the accessibility, timeliness and effectiveness of services provided to individuals with disabilities. OODA will reduce the average time from referral to eligibility and order of selection decision from 115 days to 30 days.

Objective 1c: Improve ‘front door’ access and a welcoming experience for Ohioans seeking services from OODA. OODA will reduce the average time from referral to eligibility and order of selection decision from 115 days to 30 days.

Goal 2: To develop and sustain a statewide network of providers and partnerships that balances the needs and availability of comprehensive services.

Objective 2a: Increase service delivery capacity through statewide partnerships. OODA will maintain cooperative arrangements with the Ohio Department of Development for self-employment services and will develop additional Cooperative Arrangements with three other state agencies.

Objective 2b: Increase outreach and support to Ohio’s employers utilizing the Business Leadership Network (BLN) and the Governor’s Council on People with Disabilities. Increase business membership from 24 to 30.

Objective 2c: Share information about OODA services and resources with our staff, partners and employers in a coordinated manner.

Goal 3: To ensure excellence and accountability of OODA’s products, services and partnerships.

Objective 3a: Maximize the use and accountability of available OODA funds. OODA will implement new contracting and fiscal billing procedures.

Objective 3b: Increase the capability and productivity of our organization. OODA will create and implement a more detailed training plan for VR staff.

Objective 3c: Improve service delivery through innovation and modernization. OODA will continue implementation of the AWARE case management system and subsequent reporting structures.

The Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment (CSNA) and two rounds of Café Conversations held throughout the state have provided helpful data and feedback to OODA about the VR program performance useful in the development of this Strategic Plan. Recent RSA Monitoring Reports have provided additional guidance about areas of focus. The established goals and objectives will assist OODA in making needed improvements to the VR Standards and Indicators. Specifically, the number and quality of employment outcomes, the rehabilitation rate, the time to eligibility determination, and the minority service rate will be addressed through initiatives contained in this strategic plan. Information about initiatives and key executive performance metrics for OODA’s Strategic Plan can be found in Attachment 4.11(d) of this State Plan.

In reference to Supported Employment, OODA will utilize data from the CSNA to evaluate capacity of Ohio’s VR system to provide supported employment services across geographic regions of the state and across disability groups. OODA will have an updated policy and procedure in place regarding Supported Employment in FFY 2014. VR staff will be trained on the revised policy and procedure in order to ensure consumers who require ongoing supports after case closure are able to be successful in the employment situation.

This screen was last updated on Jul 29 2013 10:26AM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.11(c)(3) Order of Selection

  • 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.

Justification for order of selection

Justification for Order of Selection

The demand for vocational rehabilitation services in Ohio significantly exceeds available resources. As of May 2013, there are approximately 1,600 eligible individuals waiting for VR services (950 Significantly Disabled and 650 individuals with Disabilities). Given OODA’s current budget and staffing levels, it is expected that our need for an order of selection will continue. However, we are releasing people off the waiting list at regular intervals and expect continued reduction in the number of Ohioans on this waiting list. It is our goal to be serving consumers in the SD category immediately by December 2013, therefore maintaining the waiting list for those consumers categorized as individuals with disabilities (scenario 3 below).

 

Description of Priority categories

Order to be followed in Selecting Eligible Individuals to Receive Service

The Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA) has established, by way of Administrative Rule, the following definitions for priority categories under the Order of Selection.

• Most Significant Disability (MSD)- an individual who meets the definition of significant disability but whose disability seriously limits three or more functional capacities

• Significant Disability (SD)- an individual who has a physical, mental or cognitive disability that seriously limits one or two functional capacities (such as mobility, communication, self-care, self-direction, interpersonal skills, work tolerance, and work skills) in terms of an employment outcome and who is expected to need multiple vocational rehabilitation services over an extended period of time

• Disability (D) - an individual who meets the definition of eligible per rule 3304-2-54 of the Ohio Administrative Code (consistent with 34 CFR 361.42(a,)) but whose impairment does not rise to the level of a significant disability.

OODA has established policies and procedures for administering Order of Selection decision making. Accordingly, at any given time while OODA is under an order of selection, one of the following scenarios may be in effect:

1. Eligible individuals in all priority categories wait on the statewide waiting list.

2. Eligible individuals determined to have a Most Significant Disability are served immediately, and eligible individuals who have a Significant Disability or a Disability will wait on the statewide waiting list. When the capacity exists, a predetermined number of eligible individuals with disabilities in the SD priority category will be released on a set schedule based on capacity to serve in order of application date. All eligible individuals in the SD priority category will be released on a set schedule based on capacity to serve before any of the individuals with Disabilities in the 3rd priority category.

3. Eligible individuals determined to have a most significant disability and those with a significant disability are served immediately, and all individuals with Disabilities wait.

4. No eligible individuals wait and all are served immediately.

Regardless of scenario in effect, eligible individuals are released from the waiting list first by priority category; then by order of application date; then alphabetically by last name.

Currently, eligible individuals categorized as having a Most Significant Disability are served immediately, while eligible individuals categorized as having a Significant Disability and other individuals with Disabilities are placed on the statewide waiting list (scenario 2 above.)

 

Priority of categories to receive VR services under the order

Those individuals categorized as having a Most Significant Disability hold top priority and are served first. Individuals categorized as having a Significant Disability make up the second priority and other individuals with disabilities comprise the third priority group.

 

Service and outcome goals and the time within which the goals will be achieved

In FFY 2013, OODA has continued to serve all eligible individuals with the Most Significant Disabilities without a wait list for services. Since April 2011, OODA has released 11,000 people from the waiting list who are categorized as having a Significant Disability. Of the 11,000 released, in FFY 2011, 1,750 individuals were released, FFY 2012, 5,250 individuals were released and through April 2013, 4,000 individuals were released in FFY 2013. People in the third category (individuals with Disabilities) did not receive vocational rehabilitation services and remain on the waiting list.

In FFY 2014, OODA projects to eliminate the waiting list for eligible individuals with disabilities in the SD priority category by the end of the calendar year. OODA is uncertain of the impact of the agency’s pending name change and rebranding, Ohio’s Employment First initiative, and the elimination of the SD waiting list. To the extent possible, OODA will work to serve individuals in the third category of priority for services (i.e., individuals who do not have a significant disability); however, we project that these individuals will likely continue to wait. Information and referral services will be provided routinely to these individuals as well as monthly contact is attempted with all individuals waiting for service.

Priority Category Number of individuals to be served Estimated number of individuals who will exit with employment after receiving services Estimated number of individuals who will exit without employment after receiving services Time within which goals are to be achieved Cost of services
1 18,000 2,633 3,169 24 months $68,250,000
2 6,000 877 1,056 18 months $22,750,000
3 0 0 0 0 months $0

This screen was last updated on Jul 29 2013 10:29AM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.11(c)(4) Goals and Plans for Distribution of Title VI, Part B Funds

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.

During the past year, OODA expended Title VI, Part B funds on direct supported employment case services. At this time there is no specific plan to utilize any of the funds for allowable administrative purposes.

During FFY 2013, the Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA) has been working on a VR Procedures Manual that will be completed by FFY2014. The Supported Employment program policy is a major area of focus for the VR manual. Content will include:

• definition of supported employment services;

• eligibility for Supported Employment services;

• assessment process for identifying a supported employment outcome;

• documentation of Supported Employment services on an Individual Plan of Employment;

• required documentation and proper coding for a Supported Employment case;

• process for transitioning to extended supports;

• case closure for a Supported Employment case; and

• accessing any needed post-employment services.

OODA does not expect to receive Title VI federal funds in 2014. As a result, OODA will not serve any individuals using Title VI funds; however, OODA is well aware of the critical role of developing supported employment programs in local communities, since such programs can provide long term supports needed for the successful employment of people with the most significant disabilities. OODA is working to redevelop the supported employment program model, which includes finalizing policy and procedures for staff. Policy and procedure development and implementation is projected to be completed by September 30, 2013 with a subsequent statewide wide training effort to complete by December 31, 2013.

This screen was last updated on Jul 29 2013 10:30AM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.11(d) State's Strategies

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.

Methods to Expand and Improve Services to Individuals with Disabilities

As noted in Attachment 4.11(c)(1), the Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA) has developed a Strategic Plan for Fiscal Years 2012 and 2013. OODA is in the process of developing a new plan for Fiscal Years 2014 and 2015. The strategic plan incorporates the agency’s mission values, goals, objectives, initiatives and performance metrics.

Goal 1: To promote independence and self-sufficiency for Ohio citizens with disabilities.

Objective 1a: Increase the percentage of individuals with successful employment or independent living outcomes.

Initiatives

•Implement and sustain the Customized Supported Self-Employment program

•Implement the provisions of Ohio’s Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) State Plan

•Provide Innovation and Expansion funds to the Ohio Statewide Independent Living Council (OSILC). The Innovation and Expansion funding is utilized in accordance with the State Plan for Independent Living. By providing OSILC with access to these I & E dollars, OSILC will be able to issue all Part B funding to the Centers for Independent Living and utilize more of their state funds for delivery of I L Services. This in turn has enabled OOD and OSILC to expand IL service delivery in Franklin and Delaware counties. Any further expansion will be done in accordance with the Expansion of the Network section of the Ohio FFY14-16 State Plan for Independent Living.

Key Executive Performance Metrics

•The number of individuals who achieved employment and exited the VR Program compared to the prior year

•Of all individuals who exited the VR program after receiving services, the percentage who achieved an employment outcome

•Of all individuals who achieved an employment outcome, the percentage with earnings equivalent to at least the minimum wage

•Of all individuals who achieved an employment outcome, the percentage of individuals with the most significant disabilities

•The individuals who achieved an employment outcome and earn at least the minimum wage as a ratio of the state’s average hourly earnings for all individuals

•Of all individuals who achieved a competitive employment outcome, the difference who report their own income as the largest single source of economic support at exit versus application

Objective 1b: Improve the accessibility, timeliness and effectiveness of services provided to individuals with disabilities.

Initiatives

•Reduce and eliminate the Order of Selection wait list

•Implement business relations and job focused tools and protocols

•Utilize enhanced medical contracts across the agency to assist in eligibility determination timeliness

•Work with RSA and SSA to integrate services to promote work

•Evaluate and implement in-house service delivery and placement services

Key Executive Performance Measures

•The number/percentage of consumers remaining on the Order of Selection wait list

•The service rate for all minority individuals as a ratio to the service rate for all non-minority individuals

•The number of individuals moving from public assistance to self-support

•The percentage of legislative and constituent inquiries resolved within five (5) business days

Objective 1c: Improve ‘front door’ access and a welcoming experience for Ohioans seeking services from OODA.

Initiatives

•Analyze feedback from on-going community level café conversations and implement selected recommendations

•Bring awareness and understanding of OODA’s mission to all Ohioans by renaming the agency to one that reflects those in need of disability and employment services

•Update the OODA internet site to provide clear and concise information about products and services

•Evaluate existing facilities utilized by OODA staff to ensure they are accessible to all individuals with disabilities

•Utilize the state Consumer Advisory Council (CAC) members to promote services and quality of the VR program

•Continue to refine the new Vocational Rehabilitation case service delivery model, which includes streamlining the referral to application process

Key Executive Performance Measures

•The average satisfaction rating of OODA consumers

•The average number of days from referral to an Eligibility/Order of Selection decision

Goal 2: To develop and sustain a statewide network of providers and partnerships that balances the needs and availability of comprehensive services.

Objective 2a: Increase service delivery capacity through statewide partnerships.

Initiatives

•Partner with the Department of Development to increase the capacity of the Small Business Development Centers to provide services to individuals with disabilities who are eligible for VR services

Key Executive Performance Measures

•The number of Business Enterprise (BE) operators/vendors

•The number of new OODA partnerships

•The percentage of individuals with disabilities who attain a self-employment outcome

•The percentage of individuals with disabilities who attain a supported employment outcome

Objective 2b: Increase outreach and support to Ohio’s employers utilizing the Business Leadership Network (BLN) and the Governor’s Council on People with Disabilities.

Initiatives

•Develop a comprehensive communications strategy to engage employers

•Actively engage with Ohio Business Leadership Network

•Utilize dedicated resources to solidify employer partnerships

Objective 2c: Share information about OODA services and resources to our staff, partners and employers in a coordinated manner.

Initiatives

•Develop new educational and marketing materials to promote OODA programs and services

•Evaluate and streamline the structure and efficiency of internal committees and advisory groups

•Evaluate focus of existing trainings, conferences and workshops

•Outreach and meet the VR service needs of individuals with disabilities identified in the 2012 Comprehensive Needs Assessment

Goal 3: To ensure excellence and accountability of OODA’s products, services and partnerships.

Objective 3a: Maximize the use and accountability of available OODA funds.

Initiatives

•Maximize the draw-down of all federal funds in order to serve more individuals with disabilities

•Implement partner and internal monitoring and compliance

•Implement an accountability process for legal agreement awards for service delivery

•Reduce administrative overhead costs while preserving quality service delivery

•Evaluate consistency of service provider fee schedules and monitoring tools

•Evaluate OODA’s eligibility for Medicaid funding

•Ensure that all contractors and service providers have basic knowledge of the fiscal and legal requirements contained in agreements with OODA

•Ensure that all management level staff have a basic understanding of the overall agency budget and specific knowledge of the budget as it applies to their area

•Align performance to OODA’s budget

Key Executive Performance Measures

•The rate of return on investment of the Business Enterprise program

•The percentage of outstanding audit/monitoring findings that were successfully resolved

•The amount/percentage of available federal funds utilized for VR services

•The percentage of case service dollars obligated

•The percentage of case service dollars expended

•The average expenditure per consumer served

•The average administrative cost per consumer served

•The percentage of new OODA agreements with performance-based deliverables

•The percentage of new OODA agreements for which requests for information/proposals were initiated

Objective 3b: Increase the capability and productivity of our organization.

Initiatives

•Create and implement an agency-wide training plan, with flexible options, for OODA staff and partner providers

•Implement a data warehouse for informed and timely decision-making Create a framework for individual employee development plans aligned to the agency strategic plan

•Implement a master plan for policy development and updates

•Utilize quality assurance resources to proactively address state and federal program integrity compliance (including centralized analysis of customer surveys)Formalize a succession plan for management

Key Executive Performance Measures

•The average number of individuals with disabilities served by VR counselors

•The percentage of OODA staff participating in job enrichment trainings

•The percentage of OODA employees who were trained in updated policies and procedures

•The percentage of OODA employees who received a timely performance evaluation from their supervisor

•The percentage of certified/licensed OODA staff, who are required to be licensed

Objective 3c: Improve service delivery through innovation and modernization.

Initiatives

•Implement policy strategy and development reflective of the Governor’s priorities

•Stay current and continue to upgrade the Accessible Web-based Activity and Reporting Environment (AWARE) case management system

•Utilize technology to support services provided by OODA staff (e.g. signature pads, printers)

•Evaluate strategies for modernization of the Business Enterprise Program

 

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.

OODA continues its goal of expanding and improving services to individuals with disabilities, including providing a broad range of assistive technology services and assistive technology devices at each stage of the rehabilitation process statewide. OODA recognizes the importance of the full utilization of assistive technology services and devices to assist eligible individuals with disabilities to achieve their full potential.

In FFY 2013 and 2014, OODA will partner with Assistive Technology (AT) Ohio to utilize federal funds provided for technology for eligible individuals with disabilities. The proposed partnership between OODA and AT Ohio includes a full-time dedicated employee of AT Ohio to assist OODA to provide training and technical assistance.

OODA will continue to provide adaptive equipment and related training as needed to ensure that those served have the skills to use technology in order to support them in achieving vocational rehabilitation goals. Specific training to be provided in 2014 includes JAWS scripting training which will build internal and service provider capacity.

 

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.

Outreach Procedures

OODA continues to identify and outreach to individuals with disabilities who are minorities, including those with the most significant disabilities, as well as individuals with disabilities who have been unserved or underserved by the vocational rehabilitation program. OODA utilizes the information provided in the 2012 Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment to evaluate and drive outreach efforts to underserved individuals.

 

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

Plan for Establishing, Developing or Improving Community Rehabilitation Programs

OODA will continue to work in partnership with community rehabilitation programs to meet the needs of people served by the VR program. In FFY 2012, OODA finalized a policy for the establishment or improvement of a CRP. OODA continually reviews the current availability of services and location of existing Community Rehabilitation Programs. Based upon assessments, OODA determine geographic areas which lack specific services and/or CRPs. The Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment (CSNA) identified that there are Community Rehabilitation Programs in all localities in the state, so the emphasis will be to further develop and improve the consistency and quality of services purchased from the CRPs. Attachment 4.8(b)(3) describes OODA’s plans in this area.

It is the intent of OOD to draft new policies related to both the Establishment, which may include construction, and Expansion of Community Rehabilitation Programs to reflect guidance provided by RSA on this topic and to incorporate information provided by RSA at the August 2013 Fiscal Conference. Draft policies will be submitted to RSA for review prior to implementation.

Also in response to RSA guidance received, OOD plans to conduct a targeted CRP needs assessment, as a supplement the 2012 CSNA, to meet the pre-planning requirements in the code to determine the need of individuals served by the VR program and the extent to which existing CRPs can meet these needs. This targeted needs assessment will identify gaps in service provision at the county level to determine whether or not a need exists in Ohio to establish, develop or improve CRPs for the purpose of providing VR services.

If this targeted needs assessment results in agency goals, priorities and strategies that necessitate the establishment construction or expansion of a Community Rehabilitation Program, then it would be the intent for OOD to submit to RSA an amendment to the 2014 VR State Plan to move forward with such a project in accordance with OOD agency policy.

 

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

Performance on Evaluation Standards and Performance Indicators

OODA is working to make program improvements in the following areas:

• Standard 1.1: Number of employment outcomes

• Standard 1.2: Rehabilitation rate

• Standard 1.5: Ratio of State’s Average Wage to employment outcomes making at least minimum wage

OODA plans to establish stronger partnerships with businesses in order to increase employment opportunities for Ohioans with disabilities. In FFY 2013, OODA hired a Business Relations Manager who will help bridge the gap between VR and employers as well as ensure individuals are informed of the best job markets where there are more opportunities for employment. OODA continues to focus on quality employment outcomes which should have a positive impact on overall outcomes as well as hopefully decrease recidivism.

 

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

In FFY 2013, OODA will continue to work with other state agencies in assisting individuals with disabilities. In FFY 2012, OODA entered into new agreements with Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, Ohio Department of Aging, and Ohio Department of Mental Health to assist individuals with disabilities. OODA provides training and technical assistance and staff give presentations at various events, conferences and meetings. These activities will continue in FFY 2013 and 2014.

In FFY 2012, OODA hosted the first annual Disability Job Summit for VR consumers, VR professionals, employers, and agency partners. Partners from the statewide workforce investment system were invited to participate. The event was a success with over 700 individuals in attendance, including Ohio’s Governor John Kasich. OODA plans to continue the Disability Job Summit conference in the fall of 2013 which facilities the conversation and partnerships between VR professionals, employers, and consumers, as well as other community partners that serve individuals with disabilities. Our goal for the 2013 Summit is to increase attendance of business partners.

 

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.

Overcoming Barriers to Accessing and Participating in Services Equitably

Over the course of FFY 2012, OODA continued initiatives designed to improve access to VR services for individuals with disabilities. OODA embedded VR counselors in multiple locations within communities to improve access for consumers to their VR counselor. During FFY 2012, after implementing a new front door process, OODA has seen a reduction in the time it takes to determine eligibility. OODA continues to look to streamline ways to collect medical documentation in order to more timely and efficiently determine eligibility for VR services.

 

This screen was last updated on Aug 28 2013 1:37PM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 4.11(e)(2) Evaluation and Reports of Progress

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

Evaluation of Goal Achievement: In the FFY 2012 State Plan, the Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA) identified goals for the Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) program. The following is a report of our progress in achieving those goals established in the FFY 2012:

Promote independence and self-sufficiency for Ohio citizens with disabilities.

In FFY 2012, Ohio exceeded the number of employment outcomes compared to the prior fiscal year assisting 3,510 individuals achieve independence and self-sufficiency. During FFY 2013, OODA will continue to focus on maintaining compliance in all Standards and Indicators. In particular, OODA will strive to maintain or improve Standard 1.1: Number of employment outcomes, 1.2: Rehabilitation rate and 1.5: Ratio of State’s Average Wage to employment outcomes. OODA also continues to focus on improving the ‘front door’ experience for individuals with disabilities. In FFY 2012, OODA decreased the time it took to determine eligibility, allowing more timely access to services for eligible individuals. OODA plans to continue to look for ways to make improvements in this area, including evaluating ways to better obtain medical information in a more timely manner, allowing OODA to decrease the time to determine eligibility.

Develop and sustain a statewide network of providers and partnerships that balances the needs and availability of comprehensive services.

OODA strives to continue to balance the needs and availability of services. In FFY 2012, OODA developed and implemented a statewide fee schedule which ensures VR consumers receive high quality, consistent services at a fair price. Through the implementation of the fee schedule, providers signed agreements to adhere the VR Provider Manual, the cost of services, reporting requirements, and the submission of invoices.

OODA also utilizes the results of the 2012 Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment (CSNA) to focus the allocation of resources to enhance the employment outcomes of Ohioans with disabilities. OODA utilizes the CSNA to identify areas around the state where additional service delivery is needed.

Ensure excellence and accountability of OODA’s products and services and partnerships.

OODA’s Division of Performance and Innovation (DPI) supports the agency in implementing its strategic plan to ensure that client and stakeholder expectations are met while providing value to Ohio taxpayers through efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability of services. OODA utilizes Active Strategy, a performance management software program, to provide transparency and accountability tracking progress of the agency’s goals, objectives, and initiatives of the VR program and OODA as a whole. DPI oversees performance management of the VR program which includes a continuous cycle of planning, creating, implementing, tracking, and evaluation. DPI is guided by accurate and timely intelligence to ensure complete analysis, rapid deployment of resources to quickly address issues or performance opportunities, effective tactics and strategies to ensure proactive solutions, and relentless follow-up and assessment to ensure good performance is maintained or issues do not recur.

Additionally, OODA has developed a contract monitoring handbook which is a guide for monitoring and evaluating contractors in order to ensure the same level of quality services are provided by OODA partners.

 

Supported Employment continues as a focus for OODA as we seek to better serve and rehabilitate people with disabilities. With the development and implementation of an updated Supported Employment policy and procedure, VR staff will receive training on policy and practice of providing Supported Employment services to our consumers. This training is planned for FFY2013. Through the implementation of a revised policy, OODA is also working to establish partnerships that will assist in providing ongoing supports after case closure in order to ensure the success of individuals with disabilities.

 

In FFY 2012, OODA achieved successful performance on Evaluation Standard 1 (Employment Outcomes) by meeting four of the six performance indicators in the evaluation standard. The two indicators OODA did not meet were 1.2: Rehabilitation rate, and 1.5: Ratio of Average State Wage to cases closed with minimum wage or greater. OODA also achieved successful performance on Evaluation Standard 2 (Equal access).

While OODA has achieved successful performance, OODA strives to continue making program improvements on the quantity and quality of employment outcomes by focusing to improve Performance Indicators 1.1, 1.2, and 1.5. OODA will focus on strategies to help identify and match consumers with employment opportunities in their communities, better utilize labor market information, and actively work to increase relationships with employers in Ohio to provide more employment opportunities for Ohioans with disabilities.

OODA was encouraged to see continued improvement on indicator 1.6 (self-support at application compared to self-support at closure).

 

OODA has utilized the funds for innovation and expansion to support the Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC) in Ohio. The Ohio SILC promotes access and independence of people with disabilities in their communities and works to provide a network of independent living services and supports. This enables Ohioans with disabilities to independently live, work, and participate in their community.

This screen was last updated on Jul 29 2013 10:38AM by Pamela Laing

Attachment 6.3 Quality, Scope, and Extent of Supported Employment Services

  • 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

The purpose of the Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency (OODA)’s Program for Supported Employment is to assist persons with the most significant disabilities to succeed in competitive, integrated job opportunities by facilitating the coordinated, individualized support services they need and establish sustainable on-going supports to maintain long term competitive employment.

Basic Philosophical Assumptions for the Program:

•All people, regardless of their disability, can do meaningful, productive work in competitive environments if given the choice, the necessary job stabilization and ongoing support services for job maintenance.

•Support is a function of job stabilization and maintenance and is not a treatment or training setting.

•The job cannot be isolated from the larger context of an individual’s life; therefore, non-work related issues must be addressed to ensure success.

•Failure is not due to individual functional limitations or the disability per se, but to inappropriate job selection and/or inadequate supports.

Target Populations Served:

OODA is committed to serving individuals with the most significant disabilities. The following people are targeted for supported employment services:

•Persons employed in a segregated workshop or participating in a day activity program.

•Students in special education programs transitioning to community employment.

•People moving from institutional care into the community.

•People with severe and persistent mental illness that have traditionally been unsuccessfully in maintaining competitive employment.

•People with multiple disabilities that require coordinated services from multiple agencies.

•People who have been traditionally underserved in supported employment by virtue of ethnic origin, geographical considerations or an inability to access extended supports, and who require the development of natural supports for employment retention.

Program Eligibility:

Initial eligibility for supported employment services, funded in whole or in part with federal vocational rehabilitation dollars, is established by OODA counseling staff. Ohioans with disabilities who are determined eligible for SSI or SSDI, designated as eligible for services by County Boards of DD, and those designated as having a severe and persistent mental illness by Community Mental Health Centers are targeted populations for supported employment. It should be noted that OODA is redeveloping interagency agreements with the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities and the Ohio Department of Mental Health to expand upon Supported Employment supports. The interagency agreements will include training and technical assistance on acquiring Medicaid waivers for mutually eligible individuals. Final determination for providing supported employment services occurs during the comprehensive assessment period and the development of the Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE). The need for supported employment services is established when the individual with a disability determines a vocational goal compatible with integrated community employment and identifies the need for long-term on-going supports. OODA works with each person to identify community resources or individuals (i.e., natural supports) to provide the necessary extended support services.

Services to be Provided:

Community Rehabilitation Programs (CRPs) typically provide services purchased by OODA for Ohioans served in Supported Employment. Currently these services are purchased on a fee-for-service basis, according to OODA’s fee schedule. In accordance with federal requirements, services provided are as follows:

•Assessment services needed to ensure appropriate job match and supports

•Job development

•Job placement

•Intensive on-the-job training or coaching of the individual with the disability, his/her employer, supervisor and/or coworkers by skilled employment consultants

•Other VR or support services needed to ensure success in community employment

•Follow-up and monitoring of job performance during the stabilization process

•Discrete post-employment services not commonly available from those who provide extended services

•Identification and development/facilitation of natural supports

•Customized Employment

•Timing of Transition to Long-Term Supports

The transition to extended supports begin at least 90 days prior to successful case closure with the conversion from VR supports to ongoing and/or natural supports as outlined in the IPE.

To promote increased understanding and use of Supported Employment by VR staff, OODA has updating the Supported Employment policy. Appropriate training will be provided to all VR staff in the fall of FFY2013. This increased understanding will improve identification of consumers who need supported employment services upon case closure. OODA anticipates that more supported employment closures will be reflected in data collection based on this increased understanding.

This screen was last updated on Jul 29 2013 10:40AM by Pamela Laing

System Information

System information

The following information is captured by the MIS.

Last updated on:09/23/2013 4:10 PM

Last updated by:saohlaingp

Completed on: 09/23/2013 4:10 PM

Completed by: saohlaingp

Approved on: 09/24/2013 5:59 AM

Approved by: readonly