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
Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation State Plan for Fiscal Year 2014 (submitted FY 2013)

Preprint - Section 1: State Certifications

1.1 The Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation 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 Wyoming Department of Workforce Services [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

Wyoming State Treasurer

... 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

Administrator Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation

... 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 SignatoryJim McIntosh

Title of SignatoryAdministrator

Date Signed (mm/dd/yyyy)06/30/2013

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 not primarily concerned with vocational rehabilitation or vocational and other rehabilitation of individuals with disabilities and includes a vocational rehabilitation unit as provided in paragraph (b) of this section (Option B was selected/Option A was not selected)

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

(b) Designated state unit.

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

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

  1. The name of the designated state vocational rehabilitation unit is
Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation

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

The State Plan must contain one of the following assurances.

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

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

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

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

(Option B was selected)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

If "Yes", the designated state agency:

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

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

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

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

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

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

This agency is not 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. Yes

  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. Yes

(b) If No:

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

  1. Attachment 4.11(c)(3):

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  1. an immediate job placement; or

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

(a) Contracts with for-profit organizations.

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

(b) Cooperative agreements with private nonprofit organizations.

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

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

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

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

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

The State Rehabilitation Council meets once a quarter at locations around the state of Wyoming in order to make it possible for concerned citizens to participate. The SRC’s main focus has been to provide feedback to WY DVR and to provide the necessary community and consumer input that is needed to insure that WY DVR is providing the services necessary to individuals with disabilities to achieve employment outcomes.

In the past year, the SRC has continued to work on increasing membership in areas that ensures that the community is represented on the council. The council has been fortunate to have a stable membership base, but as terms expire, they want to be sure that they have candidates to fill the vacancies. The SRC has also been working to increase the knowledge of its members in what DVR does and how SRC members can assist. SRC members have had the opportunity to attend national conferences to gain a broader perspective of what are concerns in VR around the region and nation.

The SRC continues to meet at least once a year in a joint session with the State Independent Living Council. Both groups find these meetings to have value. It is an opportunity for them to discuss mutual disability related topics and to see how each council can work to advance the goals and needs of people with disabilities in the state of Wyoming.

The SRC has been working to better educate the public about DVR and the purpose the agency serves. The goal of this is to increase appropriate referrals, increase employment opportunities, and to educate the legislature on the need to continue funding DVR. The council has worked in conjunction with DVR to write talking points for the members to use when doing their outreach in their respective communities. Members of the council have also partnered with agency staff to conduct educational meetings in various locations around the state related to transition topics.

At each of the quarterly meeting, SRC members are given copies of consumer satisfaction surveys to review. Each month WY DVR sends out surveys to all cases that are closed in Status 26, 28, or 30. The client has the option to respond on the survey that he or she would like to have someone from the SRC contact him or her to further discuss their comments or concerns. The SRC members then divide up the survey’s and contact those individual’s. The information is then shared with the WY DVR Administrator and the remainder of the SRC.

At the February 2013 SRC meeting, the SRC members were informed the DVR was in the process of developing the FFY 2014 State Plan. The SRC was asked if they had any input regarding the formation of goals and priorities for WY DVR. The SRC was also informed that they would be asked to review this document before it is submitted to RSA for approval. A draft was mailed to all SRC members at the beginning of May to review prior to the public hearing on May 22, 2013. All SRC members were invited to attend the public hearing. At the June 2013 SRC meeting, the members were given a chance to provide any additional input prior to the FFY 2014 State Plan being submitted for RSA approval.

In reviewing drafts of the 2014 State Plan, the SRC provided the input that follows. The input was received at their quarterly meetings and/or in conference calls. The SRC was asked specifically if the members felt that there was a need to establish more Community Rehabilitation Partners (CRP) throughout the state. The SRC did not feel that there is a need for more CRPs. They did however express concerns that job coaches and job developers do not have a mandated background check or a certain level of experience/background in order to do this type of work. (This concern continues to be present from the previous year’s State Plan.) While centers undergo rigorous testing for Medicaid and to be CARF accredited, no such standards are in place for those individuals that have direct client contact. The SRC would like to see at the minimum a core standard of competencies that a job developer and a job coach need to have before he or she is allowed to provide services. These competencies would be required regardless of whether the person worked for a CRP or as an independent. This is an activity that will need to be coordinated with the statewide Rehabilitation Service Providers group, CRPs, the State Licensing board, WY Dept of Health, the Governor’s office and possibly the state legislature.

This screen was last updated on Jul 25 2013 11:32AM by Brian Hickman

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.

A. Shoshone Tribal Business Council

DVR and the Eastern Shoshone Tribal Business Council have a written memorandum of Understanding (MOU) concerning rehabilitation services for Native Americans. Special Federal grant funds for services to Native Americans living on or near the Wind River Indian Reservation were first awarded eight years ago. After the first grant was successfully completed, the program received an additional five year grant that was funded through the RSA, providing seamless service to this Native American population. A member of the 121 Rehab Program is a part of the SRC. Staff from the 121 program participate in training with WY DVR staff, as well as provide training and resources for WY DVR staff.

B. Northern Arapaho Business Council

DVR and the Northern Arapaho Tribal Council have a written MOU in place concerning rehabilitation services for Native Americans. DVR staff will provide educational/training support to staff of the Northern Arapaho Vocational Rehabilitation (NAVR) program. NAVR staff will participate on the State Independent Living Council (SILC) and in DVR staff training events.

C. Business Enterprise Program (BEP)

BEP is responsible for the administration of vending machine placement and services in State buildings and other small businesses that may operate in State buildings. BEP is a part of WY DVR and has an assigned program consultant that manages and oversees the program. This necessitates close working relationships with vending service providers, building administrators, job coaches, Community Rehabilitation Programs (CRP), and other government agencies.

The main objective of BEP is to assist individuals with disabilities in planning and setting up small businesses. Other entities are often involved in this process, including the Small Business Administration, the Small Business Development Centers, the Wyoming Women’s Business Center, the Wyoming Business Council, Social Security, private sector businesses, U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development, and Rocky Mountain Inventors and Entrepreneurs’ Congress.

D. Wyoming Relay/Deaf Services Program

The Wyoming Relay/Deaf Services program coordinates and cooperates with numerous Federal, State and local agencies and programs for the provision of services to individuals with communication impairments.

Pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Wyoming Legislature gave DVR administrative authority over Wyoming Telecommunication Relay Service (TRS) (also known as Wyoming Relay). The legislation established a special fee as the method of funding. DVR, through a competitive bid process, awarded a contract to a telecommunication service provider and oversees that contract. DVR also works cooperatively with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the Wyoming Public Service Commission (PSC), Local Exchange Carriers, and Radio Common Carriers to ensure that Wyoming Relay provides a quality telecommunications relay service to relay conversations between people who use text telephones (TTYs) or other specialized telecommunications equipment and people who use the standard telephone network. Wyoming Relay meets or exceeds all operational, technical, and functional federal and state standards.

The legislation establishing Wyoming Relay also created a committee on telecommunications services for the communications impaired. The seven members of the committee are appointed by the Governor. DVR collaborates with this consumer-based committee to evaluate the effectiveness and quality of current services, to determine the need for new services, to develop marketing and outreach plans, to establish the rate of the special fee, and to determine equipment needs for the telecommunications equipment distribution program.

Wyoming Relay works cooperatively with DVR staff, phone companies, independent living centers, educational outreach consultants, special education teachers, consumer groups, assistive technology service providers, public health agencies and senior citizen centers to provide information and training on obtaining and using specialized telecommunications equipment including TTYs (text telephone), amplified telephones, and telephone signaling devices for consumers with communication impairments.

The Wyoming Relay/Deaf Services program also provides training and information on how to use TTYs, relay service, assistive devices for persons with communication impairments, and the requirements of the ADA in providing services for persons with communication impairments including how to find and use interpreters. This training is provided to individuals; students; businesses; organizations; and city, county, state, and federal agencies. Wyoming Relay/Deaf Services has developed a specialized training program and works cooperatively with local and state law enforcement agencies, providing training to public safety dispatchers to ensure that 911 is accessible to callers using TTYs and captioned telephones. Additionally, all peace officers going through the law enforcement academy receive training to ensure that they are providing accessible services to individuals with communication impairments.

DVR works collaboratively with Wyoming Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (WYRID) to ensure that all known interpreters in the state of Wyoming receive a form jointly developed by DVR and WYRID which serves as a tool for assessing the skill level of interpreters. DVR collects the completed forms from interpreters, verifies the interpreter’s credentials, and then compiles the information that the interpreters choose to make public on to a list of interpreters. This list is distributed to the general public, individuals, businesses, organizations, and agencies.

Consultation by the Wyoming Relay/Deaf Services Consultant to facilitate the transition of students with hearing impairments is provided at the request of the student, parents, school personnel, WDE outreach consultants, or DVR counselors.

E. Division of Workers’ Compensation (WC)

DVR continues to have an agreement with WC which is part of Wyoming’s Department of Workforce Services, but is not a Workforce Investment Act (WIA) “partner.” The purpose of the agreement is to clarify procedures and responsibilities when an injured worker applies for the vocational rehabilitation option. (Refer to Wyoming Statutes, 27-14-408.) A handbook for clients explaining the WC and DVR processes is distributed to both agencies’ staff. A communication system to resolve client issues has been established and will continue.

F. Cooperation in Training Activities

DVR routinely collaborates with other organizations to provide training opportunities for DVR staff, as well as for staff of other agencies. The following is a partial list of collaborating organizations:

• University of Wyoming

• Wyoming Institute for Disabilities (WIND)

• Wyoming Department of Education

• Wyoming Department of Health

• Governor’s Planning Council on Developmental Disabilities

• Small Business Development Centers

• Wyoming Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery (WYSTAR)

• Community Rehabilitation Programs, statewide

• Region VIII Technical Assistance and Continuing Education Center

• Centers for Independent Living

• Protection and Advocacy, the Client Assistance Program

• Eastern Wyoming College

• Casper College

• Western Wyoming Community College

• Wyoming Work Incentives, Planning and Assistance

• National Association of State Head Injury Administrators

• State of Wyoming, Department of Administration and Information

• Department of Workforce Services partners

• Laramie County Community College

• Assumption College

• Utah State University

• Sheridan (WY) College

• Red Feather Eagle Vocational Rehabilitation program

• WY Parent Training and Information Centers

This screen was last updated on Jul 25 2013 12:08PM by Brian Hickman

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.

WY DVR continues to support the Local Education Agency’s (LEA’s) by continuing to be involved with community transition teams and transition related programs so that the needs of the school district as well as the individual students that are eligible for WY DVR services are met. Transition training was conducted on the local, statewide, and regional levels. WY DVR plans to continue support of training programs so that LEA’s will see the benefit of actively participating in transition and to assist with compliance with new state and federal regulations. To assist with this, WY DVR has a dedicated transition consultant that travels to all of the 48 LEA’s to provide education and consultation on the services the WY DVR provides. The transition consultant also participates on a community of practice that looks at suggestions for the improvement of WDE. The transition consultant has also provided trainings for students and parents. Specific training on what WY DVR provides as been provided to teachers of students that are hearing impaired. Plans are being developed for additional trainings in the winter of 2013 and the spring of 2014 on transition related topics. The consultant also works to increase appropriate referrals to WY DVY. WY DVR’s current MOU with the WDE with the following stated purpose:

The purpose of this MOU is to outline a collaborative framework, including the responsibilities of each agency in coordinating state and local services and resources, as outlined in state and federal regulation and rule as they apply to students with disabilities in transition from receipt of educational services in school to the receipt of vocational rehabilitation services.

This MOU has provisions which include:

Both the WY Department of Education (WDE) and WY DVR will work on:

1. Each agency will invite the other to participate in trainings related to secondary transition, as appropriate.

2. WDE and DVR shall each designate a contact person to coordinate communication.

3. WDE and DVR will be responsible for the salary and travel costs for their staff associated with the execution of this MOU. Other costs associated with trainings and technical assistance will be pre-determined and agreed to in writing prior to the actual training event.

4. The parties mutually agree to resolve disputes in a non-adversarial fashion by meeting to confer and discuss any issues that may arise. Issues that may arise will be immediately brought to the attention of the agency personnel involved to resolve as expeditiously and informally as possible and at the lowest appropriate level. If these agency personnel cannot resolve the dispute, it will be referred to the Director of Vocational Rehabilitation and the Superintendent of Public Instruction for resolution.

5. Both agencies will encourage LEAs and regional VR offices to participate in local activities, which create opportunities for students with disabilities to receive information on VR services, eligibility, and application procedures. These outreach activities may include, are not limited to, parent/teacher conferences, career fairs or special projects targeted toward groups of students with disabilities who have been traditionally underserved through vocational/transition services, such as students at risk of dropping out, students receiving services through 504 plans or groups of students identified as underserved through the annual analysis of statewide data.

Responsibilities of WDE include:

1. Maintain membership/educational interest representation on the State Rehabilitation Council.

2. WDE will monitor Local Educational Agencies (LEAs) and ensure compliance with the secondary transition requirements of IDEA.

3. WDE shall invite DVR to participate in an annual analysis of transition related data and other periodic analysis of relevant data as may be appropriate. This data will be exclusive of specific student identifiable information.

4. WDE shall disseminate information to LEAs regarding Wyo. Stat. §21-3-111 (a) (ii) and (xv) which would allow them to transfer appropriate devices.

5. When determined appropriate, the WDE will provide presentation opportunities at regional and statewide conferences, which target special educators.

6. WDE is responsible, through dissemination and oversight of federal and state funds to the districts, for all expenses incurred in the provision of the special education and related services required to provide students with a Free Appropriate Public Education.

Responsibilities of DVR include:

1. DVR’s Transition Consultant shall coordinate with the WDE Special Programs Division, the Local Educational Agencies (LEAs), and DVR counselors to develop and provide evidence- based system of seamless transition services from school to work/training for students with disabilities. DVR’s Transition Consultant shall meet with these and other local and regional community service providers, to provide training in the vocational rehabilitation program/process, including any changes in VR Service Program Rules, and changes in DVR policy.

2. DVR’s counselors shall assist LEAs in planning for the transition of students with disabilities from school to post school career and life. The DVR counselors shall act in a consultant role for the student, parents, and the LEA during IEP/transition meetings scheduled prior to eligibility determination by DVR. When requested by the LEA, DVR shall ensure that DVR counselors/representatives participate in the evaluation process of students who have applied for or otherwise requested DVR services in the development of the IEP or 504 plan of eligible students.

3. DVR shall provide WDE with the data it collects regarding students eligible for vocational rehabilitation services, and tracking information regarding employment outcomes for youth with disabilities. This data will be exclusive of specific student identifiable information.

4. DVR will assign vocational rehabilitation counseling personnel to serve as liaisons to local educational agencies to formalize a collaborative approach to student planning, referral development, and tracking. The purpose of this collaboration is to facilitate the development of appropriate IPEs for DVR eligible students prior to the students leaving high school.

5. When required as part of a student’s IPE, DVR shall negotiate with LEAs to purchase items of assistive technology from LEAs pursuant to their authority under Wyo. Stat. §21-3-111 (a) (ii) and (xv).

6. DVR shall counsel former students who are eligible for DVR services, and who are still eligible for free appropriate public education, to re-enroll in school for further study and training to enhance their opportunities for employment. DVR eligible former students as described, shall be eligible for services customary provided by DVR to adults over age twenty-one (21).

7. Whenever possible, DVR shall coordinate with the LEA for provision of vocational services (i.e., Vocational assessments, career exploration, job shadowing, vocational guidance and rehabilitation counseling, and work experience) for students determined eligible for DVR services. The DVR may negotiate with the LEAs the costs of vocationally related services prior to expenditure.

8. Identification of specific student groups with disabilities and in need of transition services will be based on the analysis of an annual statewide data drill down, which examines and targets areas of critical need including groups of youth with disabilities who have been identified as underserved by both agencies. Outreach activities will be designed and refined annually based in part on this analysis.

9. Redesign DVR brochure: “Transition Your Abilities” to increase clear communication and understanding of the purpose of the VR program, eligibility requirements, application procedures for services, and scope of services provided to eligible individuals, and disseminate the brochure to stakeholders. DVR will also Develop Technical Assistance presentations that address VR services and requirements targeted to core stakeholders; students, parents, schools, and communities and present at venues, which may include, but are not limited to career exploration days in schools, Wyoming’s Mega Conference on Disabilities, and WDE conferences targeting special educators.

10. DVR may be responsible for some vocational services that occur outside the school environment and are designed to prepare the student for post-secondary training or work. DVR is not responsible for any service that has not been directly agreed upon by during the development of the student’s IEP and is not included as a service on the student’s IPE.

In addition to the state level MOU, cooperation between LEA’s and DVR offices ensures that a transition team is established to facilitate the development and accomplishment of the objectives and long-term goals. These teams meet for Individual Education Program (IEP) development and scheduled planning sessions. The planning sessions, which include parents and consumers, determine the schedule of transition from the school system to vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the completion of the IEP and in order to develop the Individual Plan for Employment (IPE) of an eligible transition-age youth prior to that individual leaving the school setting. This process also includes students with disabilities who are not receiving services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Community team members participating in the planning sessions may include Youth Case Managers from WIA, representatives from an IL Agency, representatives from Higher Education or vocational programs, Community Rehabilitation Service Providers, advocates and other local supports. With a comprehensive transition team, the referral process is enhanced, outreach is improved, roles are more clearly defined and transition services are coordinated. Assessments, consultation and technical assistance are also planned and provided to the LEA and the student. Individual meetings and community planning sessions allow DVR to provide for the development and completion of the Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) for each student with a disability determined to be eligible for VR services before the student leaves the school setting.

DVR works with the local education agencies (LEA) to improve the referral process of students that are on an IEP and in identifying the 504 students. LEA’s are encouraged to invite DVR to IEP meetings as soon as transition planning is to occur, but no later than the last IEP before the student graduates or reaches the age of twenty-one (21). As the Transition Consultant is able, efforts will continue to be made to improve the referral process in all of the 48 LEA’s in Wyoming.

WY DVR established a Transition Consultant position. The primary responsibilities of this position are to coordinate with local, state and federal education officials on improving the process for students in transition. The Transition Consultant is a resource on issues surrounding transition, provides training to staff and provides a consistent statewide message from DVR to the LEA’s.

Services for the Visually Impaired

Collaboration with WDE’s Services for the Visually Impaired (SVI) and special education assists students and adults with disabilities in several ways. For example, the Montgomery Trust (a private trust specifically earmarked for the visually impaired) can provide assistive technology equipment to both visually impaired youth and adults. Also DVR collaborates with SVI, WILR, WSIL, and Centrum for Disability Services in providing services to clients.

DVR also has an MOU with Wyoming Institutions of Higher Education (IHE). The purpose of this MOU is to guide the planning and delivery of support services to individuals with disabilities who are mutual clients of DVR and students enrolled at a Wyoming IHE, so that there is a seamless delivery system for those services which overlap. These IHEs include the University of Wyoming and Wyoming’s seven community colleges.

This MOU has provisions which include:

1. DVR and IHEs are not required to alter their policies, which are different from each other, for providing services or support.

2. IHEs are required to provide services and accommodations to DVR clients only to the same extent as they are provided to other students with disabilities.

3. DVR is not prohibited from contracting with individual IHEs to provide services or support for DVR clients beyond those required to assure equal access to educational opportunities.

4. Information exchange and joint training.

5. Referral procedures.

6. IHEs will not require students who have a disability to apply for DVR funding before providing services or support. Nor will they deny or delay the provision of services or support while DVR is determining the student’s eligibility for DVR services.

7. In situations where referral has been made to an IHE for services, the appropriate IHE staff may be involved in developing the Individualized Plan for Employment.

8. The DVR Counselor and IHE staff will respect the individual’s right and responsibility to fully participate in all decisions regarding his or her vocational future.

9. Definition of reasonable accommodations and auxiliary aids.

10. Guidelines for the provision of auxiliary aids including that the funding source for auxiliary aids will be determined on an individual, case by case basis depending on the setting and the individual’s status as a student or DVR client, and in the case of equipment, a determination of who will retain ownership.

11. Additional guidelines for the provision of interpreter services.

12. Guidelines for the provision of different types of real-time captioning services.

This screen was last updated on Aug 15 2013 12:19PM by Brian Hickman

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.

Community Rehabilitation Programs (CRP)

WY DVR does not maintain cooperative agreements with private non-profit organizations. WY DVR conducts a fee for service with all CRPs to provide job development and job coaching services. The fees are negotiated on location-by-location basis, while keeping in mind the rates that are being paid elsewhere in the state. Due to the rural nature of Wyoming, it can be challenging to find service providers.

Description of the Manner in which the designated state agency establishes cooperative agreements with private non-profit vocational rehabilitation service providers

In Wyoming, WY DVR is required to write a contract with any vendors involving $5,000 or more. The process is dictated by the Wyoming Department of Administration and Information.

A draft request for proposal is developed by the Division including a list of potential proposers. The RFP must be in a format outlined by the Wyoming Attorney General who must review and approve it. The RFP is then submitted to the Purchasing Division of the Wyoming Department of Administration and Information which attaches all the required legal information, makes arrangements for announcing the request for proposals in newspapers statewide and then receives the sealed bids. The bids are scored by WY DVR staff and the Purchasing Division notifies the successful and unsuccessful bidders.

Contracts are negotiated by WY DVR staff and the proposer based on requirements. The Wyoming Attorney General then reviews and approves the contract before it is signed by the parties to the contract.

Utilization, Findings and Capacity of Community Rehabilitation Programs

The Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation makes extensive use of community rehabilitation programs, primarily to provide supported employment and related services. All Regions of the state continue to be served to some degree by community rehabilitation programs operating under the state’s developmental disabilities and behavioral health programs, or by independent organizations. Coverage is comprehensive for individuals with developmental disabilities, although a few agencies affiliated with the Developmental Disability (DD) system still do not provide extensive supported employment opportunities. These gaps have been, to a degree, filled through the use of independent non-profit or for-profit agencies, and through the employment of free-lance job coaches.

There are still geographic, programmatic and disability-related gaps in the capacity of community rehabilitation programs to provide the array of services the WY DVR needs for other clients with the most significant disabilities:

- Although there is progress, there are substantial gaps in services to persons with acquired brain injuries;

- State of the art supported employment services for persons with severe and persistent mental illnesses are more widely available than at the time of the previous Needs Assessments, but are still not available to all communities; and

- The potential for community rehabilitation programs to play a more substantial role in preparing students with disabilities for the transition from school to employment in the community has not been fully explored.

Historically, the Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation has made very effective use of community rehabilitation programs in serving the clients with the most significant disabilities. Over the past several years, significant progress has been made in encouraging mental health centers, among other providers, to become more involved in providing supported employment services.

Progress rarely happens in a straight line, however. In some instances, promising efforts at collaboration with service providers have lost ground for reasons that may or may not be under the control of the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation. In some cases, local staffs have succeeded in finding or developing alternative resources for supported employment services.

The demonstrated effectiveness of supported employment services in providing employment opportunities for individuals with the most significant disabilities argues for persistence in the face of adversity. With some mental health centers in particular, it is in the long-term interest of individuals with severe and persistent mental illness that collaborative supported employment programs are developed.

Policies for the use of Community Rehabilitation Programs

The Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation’s use of community rehabilitation programs continues to reflect a commitment to integrated, community-based employment.

The Division has issued a policy to the effect that CRP’s must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), unless the organization has been in existence for less than 12 months, or has been providing services to clients for less than that time.

The Division also maintains a policy that Mental Health Centers (MHC) from which DVR purchases services must be certified by the Division of Behavioral Health.

This screen was last updated on Aug 12 2013 4:21PM by Brian Hickman

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.

It is the mission of WY DVR to advance opportunities for Wyoming citizens with disabilities to be employed and independent in the least restrictive and most integrated environments possible. To this end, WY DVR has established and continues to maintain strong working relationships with State agencies and other appropriate entities to assist in the provision of supported employment services throughout Wyoming.

WY DVR does not have any formal agreements with providers of supported employment services and does not anticipate entering into any formal agreements in the near future. WY DVR provides services to clients on a client-by-client basis and pays the market appropriate rate for the services provided.

The goal of Wyoming’s supported employment program is to increase community integration, individual independence and productivity for persons with the most significant disabilities. In support of this goal, the Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation will:

- Increase training for staff on better identifying client’s with a most significant disability and their need for supported employment services.

- Continue cooperative efforts with school districts and other rehabilitation entities to enhance supported employment programs statewide; and

- Encourage dedicated funding for long-term support needed by supported employment clients. This will include networking with the Division of Behavioral Health, Regional Service Providers (RSP) of Wyoming, MHC’s, the Governor’s Planning Council on Developmental Disabilities, State and local education programs, Social Security employment incentives including TTW programs, training programs under WIA, and the employer community represented.

WY DVR completed a memorandum of understanding with the Department of Mental Health, Substance Abuse Services Division in September 2007. The purpose of the MOU is to enhance the working relationship between the Divisions in order to provide more effective services to individuals with disabilities in compliance with Rehabilitation Act of 1973. This includes increased collaboration in the evaluation, planning and implementation of supported employment services for persons with SPMI and transition age youth. Joint training on a bi-annual basis will focus on these issues, among others.

This screen was last updated on Aug 15 2013 12:20PM by Brian Hickman

Attachment 4.10 Comprehensive System of Personnel Development

Data System on Personnel and Personnel Development

Wyoming DVR’s Comprehensive System of Personnel Development (CSPD) includes procedures and activities undertaken to insure an adequate supply of qualified rehabilitation professionals and paraprofessionals. This system has four goals:

• Identify the current professional training needs of staff and plan for skills and knowledge development of staff one to five years from now;

• Coordinate personnel development activities with the Wyoming Department of Education as specified by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA);

• Coordinate a means to address training needs of current staff using institutions of higher education; and

• Coordinate activities to ensure staff are adequately trained and prepared to expand and improve services to clients.

The SRC has had an opportunity to review and comment on the development of plans, policies, and procedures regarding: 1) the plan for recruitment, preparation, and retention of qualified personnel, 2) personnel standards, 3) staff development, and 4) personnel to address individual communication needs.

Data System on Personnel and Personnel Development

Wyoming DVR maintains a system for collecting and analyzing data on an annual basis, which includes information on personnel needs, a plan for recruitment, preparation and retention of qualified personnel, personnel standards, staff development, and personnel to address individual communication needs. Information on the number, location and disability types served; number of agency personnel and level of education; and training needed to improve skills and maintain certification levels is included in this section.

Qualified Personnel Needs

Total counselor number is 29. The staff to client ratio is 1 Counselor for every 190 clients, 1 Area Manager for every 1,380 clients, 1 Assistant for every 263 clients, 1 Administrator for every 1,380 clients, 1 Consultant/Specialist for every 920 clients, and 1 Fiscal staff member for every 1,380 clients.

 

Row Job Title Total positions Current vacancies Projected vacancies over the next 5 years
1 Counselors 29 3 10
2 Area Managers 4 0 1
3 Assistants 21 0 10
4 Administrators 4 0 1
5 Consultants/Specialists 6 0 1
6 Fiscal 4 0 1
7 0 0 0
8 0 0 0
9 0 0 0
10 0 0 0

 

Wyoming currently does not have an institution of higher education which prepares rehabilitation professionals. The three nearest rehabilitation training programs are the University of Northern Colorado, Utah State University and Montana State University which concentrate on private and public rehabilitation respectively. Wyoming DVR also utilizes Assumption College and Texas Tech University as optional locations for distance education. All programs are Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) certified.

We currently have one counselor working on her master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling at Utah State University, one attending Texas Tech University and three attending Assumption College. Currently there are three counselors attending Utah State University to qualify for the Category R of the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Commissions qualifications for the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC) credential. The training process is monitored by having the attending staff members send a copy of each semester’s registration and a copy of his or her grades to verify course completion. Twenty-one staff members have the CRC credentials and five individuals are preparing to sit for the exam or having taken the exam and are awaiting results.

 

Row Institutions Students enrolled Employees sponsored by agency and/or RSA Graduates sponsored by agency and/or RSA Graduates from the previous year
1 Utah State University 70 5 4 30
2 Assumption College 0 3 1 0
3 North Texas 0 1 0 0
4 0 0 0 0
5 0 0 0 0

 

Wyoming DVR recruits VR counselors from the University of Northern Colorado, Utah State University and Montana State University whenever possible. Wyoming DVR actively participates on the advisory boards of the University of Northern Colorado and Utah State University, and has worked to improve communication with both schools to announce open positions and to recruit potential counselors. DVR has been actively posting current vacancy notices with the three universities. This is in addition to placing ads in local and regional newspapers, with DWS, and the Wyoming Job Network (Wyoming at Work). Wyoming DVR, in accordance with the ADA, seeks to employ and advance qualified individuals with disabilities as well as minorities.

Periodic announcement of staff position openings are sent via e-mail from a listserv of CORE Graduate Programs. DVR also maintains a listserv for smaller colleges in the area that have Master level programs in related fields.

Wyoming DVR CSPD requirements are for a counselor to have a Masters degree and be eligible to sit for the CRC exam. DVR attempts to hire individuals that meet this CSPD requirement, but if for some reason this is not possible, an attempt is made to hire someone with a related Bachelors degree and two years of experience. This new hire is made aware that at the end of his or her one year probationary period, he or she will be expected to apply to and attend a CORE accredited school to receive a master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling. It is expected of him or her to have this master’s degree finished in four years.

Wyoming DVR currently has fourteen counselors who meet or exceed the CSPD requirements. Of the remaining staff who do not meet the CSPD requirements, nine are currently working in a master’s degree program, or classes for CRCC category R and the balance are currently in a probationary period and will begin working to meet the CSPD at the appropriate time.

Wyoming DVR actively updates and implements a system which addresses current and projected personnel training needs. Coordination between Wyoming’s personnel training needs and institutions of higher education occurs when the CSPD consultant and division administrator participate in the university program advisory meetings. DVR also participates with TACE 8, Technical Assistance and Continuing Education Center Region VIII.

Wyoming DVR began developing training plans in 2004, stemming from the use of the Professional Development Guide and Matrix, the performance appraisal system, an annual training needs survey, and via focus groups. In 2006, use of Retention plans was instituted as well. The CSPD consultant tracks training needs of all employees and addresses those needs through annual in-services for both counselors and assistants. DVR also sends individuals to training sessions provided by the State of Wyoming Personnel Division and private or public vendors. Staff is also supplied information on providers’ websites to assist with expressed training needs. Training in specific areas, such as assessment, vocational guidance and counseling, job placement strategies, rehabilitation technology, and topics addressed in the Training Needs Assessment, are addressed at the annual statewide in-service, regional in-services, on-the-job training with the Area Consultant and Training Officer, and/or by means of a contracted vendor. DVR is continuing to look into the possibility of delivering training to staff by means of web cam technology, and creating in-house on demand training.

Wyoming DVR has made a conscious effort to address retention and recruitment of staff by raising the pay scale for all field professional and paraprofessional staff. The state legislature has approved a pay raise for state employees effective July 1, 2011, moving staff to 90% of Market value.

Wyoming DVR Futures Group

The DVR Futures Group is designed for those staff who are interested in moving into new/different roles within the Division and in developing the future direction of DVR. The current membership includes Counselors, Assistants and Program Consultants. Membership is open to any permanent employee, with approval of the supervisor and DVR Administrator.

This group meets periodically to provide input on business issues affecting the Division. They work directly with DVR’s Program Managers, and may attend selected Management Team meetings to provide input. They also identify projects which may benefit DVR. The Futures Group is or will be involved in several projects, including staff retention issues, policy development, case management computer system changes, basic VR training systems, and other issues that develop.

 

Wyoming DVR is committed to hiring qualified rehabilitation staff beyond the current minimum standards established by the State of Wyoming Personnel Division. An individual must have a Master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling, or another Master’s Degree which would allow the person to meet national CRC requirements. DVR looks for candidates that have a Master’s Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling, Counseling, Social Work, Sociology, Psychology, or other related degrees.

The State of Wyoming does not have a licensing standard regarding Rehabilitation Counseling or to be a Qualified Rehabilitation Counselor. WY DVR has set the standard to be a Qualified Rehabilitation Counselor as the person needs to have a Master’s degree and to be eligible to sit for the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor Exam. The State of Wyoming, Administration and Information, Human Resource Division has set the minimum qualification to be a vocational rehabilitation counselor is to have a Master’s Degree (typically in Social Services) plus 0-3 years of progressive work experience (typically in Vocational Rehabilitation) or a related Bachelors degree and 4-6 years of progressive work experience (typically in Vocational Rehabilitation) and preference for someone with their Certified Rehabilitation Counselor Certification.

Because of our difficulty in recruiting and hiring qualified rehabilitation professionals, when faced with no other alternative, DVR does hire individuals with a bachelor’s degree in a related field with a minimum of two years relevant work experience. (Note: This is the State of Wyoming’s personnel standard). In so doing, the individual is advised formally of DVR’s expectations, as they pertain to personnel standards, and is offered the position only with their acknowledgement and agreement to pursue a master’s degree. If a counselor has received education funding through the Agency, the individual contractually agrees to continue employment with DVR for three years subsequent to obtaining their master’s degree. If employment is terminated prior to this time, repayment may be required on a pro-rated basis.

Based on standards developed through the personnel system, each staff member participates in the annual Performance Appraisal System which analyzes job performance and identifies training needs. DVR continues to do annual training needs assessment of all staff and the CSPD Specialist tracks these training needs and links individuals to appropriate training. Training needs addressed at the statewide in-service are determined by polling of all DVR staff. Other avenues of obtaining training needs, such as focus groups, are also utilized. Counselors have immediate access to reference materials. This includes internet resources, reference books, and consultants. Staff may request periodicals and other resources be purchased for them on a case-by-case basis.

Wyoming DVR will assess counselor training needs on an individual basis in order to assure that we are in compliance with personnel standards. DVR’s Human Resources Development (HRD) staff member maintains individual counselor records that identify training needs, training received to date, and anticipated target dates for attainment of Master’s/CRC. Priority of training includes time parameters for completion as follows:

1) Individuals with bachelor’s degree > Master’s Rehabilitation

3 to 5 years

2) Related master’s degree > CRC

1 to 3 years

Progress towards identified training needs is monitored and tracked annually on an individual counselor basis.

Wyoming DVR’s CSPD attempts to create our own qualified rehabilitation counselors through the distance learning grant at Utah State University and other universities. All staff without master’s degrees are required to take advantage of the Utah State University or other distance learning programs with financial assistance from the Agency. The following table details the qualifications of current field staff:

Of 29 Counselors, 14 have their CRC, 7 have their Master’s degree without a CRCC, 5 have a Bachelor’s Degree, and there are 3 vacancies.

Of the 4 Area Managers, 3 have their CRC and 1 has a Bachelor’s Degree.

Of 12 Administration Staff 5 their CRC.

The Comprehensive Personnel Development System focuses not only on creating qualified rehabilitation counselors in Wyoming but on retention as well. The training grant is used to coordinate training activities to help counselors maintain their CRC credentials and encourage other counselors who may qualify to obtain their CRC.

Of those counselors/consultants having master’s degrees, in areas other than VR Counseling, all have been advised and encouraged to acquire the designation of a CRC Counselor in accordance with the methods offered by the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC). A record on each counselor/consultant towards accomplishment of the Agency standard is kept and monitored as to progress.

 

In 2010, WY DVR switched their training budgets to a central budget administrated by the Training Officer. This was done to keep a better control on funds and focus training funds on targeted areas.

All staff participates in an annual Staff In Service training. There are two In Service trainings, one for the counselors, managers, and consultants, and one for the support staff. Topics for these In Service trainings come from staff need and issues that are identified in quality assurance reviews, or at the discretion of the Administration staff. Information on other training topics and the training needs of the staff come from the individual retention plans that are developed yearly for staff. The agency has also been developing a more comprehensive approach to training staff to include a VR 101, new counselor training, etc.

A wide variety of training has been made available to counselors and consultants. WY DVR has to philosophy of training our support staff in the manner that is similar to our counseling staff, so many of their training topics are the same. This training has been provided by WY DVR, State of Wyoming Department of Administration and Information, as well as numerous private vendors. When contemplating the agendas for staff training, the Training Officer keeps in mind how to provide training in the categories of assessment, vocational counseling, job placement and rehabilitation technology. Training offered at the 2013 DVR in-service included topics on Personality Disorders, Motivational Interviewing, Technical Writing and Case Documentation, Fiscal training, and Ethics. WY DVR also encourages staff to participate in trainings offered by our partner agencies. Staff are strongly encouraged to participate in trainings provided by our TACE Region 8. There are also regular trainings provided by our statewide assistive technology center that staff have the ability to attend. While this list is not all inclusive of trainings offered or attended, it does illustrate the variety available to counselors and consultants in Wyoming.

TTW Update

Ongoing training is held throughout Wyoming on TTW and other Social Security issues. The training was presented by a partnership of the Work Incentives Planning and Assistance (WyWIPA), Plans for Achieving Self Sufficiency (PASS-CADRE), Protection and Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS) and DVR. A number of DVR staff have taken advantage of these trainings. DVR is considering changing to the milestone reimbursement method, which will necessitate additional staff training including TTW program review. Staff have traveled to Baltimore, MD to receive training on social security issues at the Social Security Administration offices.

Procedures to Disseminate Research

The DVR Central Office does maintain a lending library that contains some reference materials relevant to VR counseling. Reference materials are often requested by field staff or area managers and may be purchased for their use. In-service speakers/trainers often provide research information, as do many conference presenters. Program consultants in DVR’s Central Office stay current on trends in their specialty areas and share this with field staff. Specialty areas include: Governor’s Committee for Employment of People with Disabilities (GPCDD); the ADA; SE (Supported Employment); Staff Training, Quality Assurance (QA); Transition from School to Work; TRS; Deaf Services; BEP; and small business planning. As mentioned previously, all DVR staff have access to the internet for research purposes.

Performance Evaluation System

DVR must conform to the State of Wyoming Personnel Rules, which includes a Performance Appraisal system. This system requires that reviews be conducted twice a year with each employee. It can lead to improved performance through the analysis of strengths and weaknesses, and subsequent identification of training issues. This system does not impede the accomplishment of the purpose and policy of the VR program including serving the most significantly disabled. Also, counselors are assisted by their immediate supervisors, who review cases and act as consultants, trainers and resources regarding the vocational rehabilitation of clients.

The quality assurance/improvement consultant reviews case files on a regular basis with a standard protocol. She reports findings to the administrator, recommending solutions and/or training to continually correct deficiencies, and to recognize and report those practices working well.

Affirmative Action

DVR assures that it takes affirmative action to employ and advance qualified individuals with disabilities and minorities in employment. Thirteen percent of the staff have disabilities. The State of Wyoming Personnel System follows affirmative action requirements and assures that VR maintains appropriate hiring procedures.

 

WY DVR has established and maintains minimum standards to ensure the availability of personnel within DVR who are trained to communicate in the native language or mode of communication of the client, either by hiring applicants with these skills or by developing current staff skills in these areas. WY DVR does not specifically recruit staff based on their ability to provide services in a particular language.

The DVR handbook is available in Spanish. Interpreters are hired, as the occasion warrants, in order to effectively communicate with clients who utilize other languages. Several staff members have sign language skills and the Agency helps them maintain and improve those skills. A program consultant, who specializes in services for the deaf and hard of hearing, is available to help ensure that quality services are provided to this population. Essentials such as orientation to DVR, eligibility, etc., are on tape or in Braille for individuals who are blind or visually impaired. Other needs of individuals who are blind or visually impaired are met through purchase of services or from the WDE, Services for the Visually Impaired.

 

An MOU with WDE establishes reciprocal referral services, utilization of each Agency’s services and facilities to the extent practicable and feasible, and joint planning activities to improve services to individuals with disabilities.

This MOU strengthens the transition process and the availability of AT to VR clients who are in school. This agreement specifies joint training on AT, IDEA and other pertinent legislation. Refer to Attachment 4.8(b)(2) for additional information on this MOU and DVR’s coordination with education officials.

When and where possible DVR, WDE, and the local education agencies coordinate trainings related to transition. Some topics that have been provided or are being considered in the future are career counseling, job placement, success in higher education, utilizing Disability Resource Centers, etc. WY DVR staff participate regularly or act as the presenter in as many trainings as possible. There are current plans to try and get WDE and WY DVR staff together in the winter of 2013 to discuss better coordination. No definite date at this time as been set. If a fee is required to attend any training the staff member’s agency pays the associated costs out of their training budgets.

This screen was last updated on Aug 12 2013 4:25PM by Brian Hickman

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.

Attachment 4.11 Assessments; Estimates; Goals and Priorities; Strategies; and Progress Reports

4.11(a) Results of Comprehensive Statewide Assessment of the Rehabilitation Needs of Individuals with Disabilities and Need to Establish, Develop, or Improve Community Rehabilitation Programs

The Rehabilitation Act, as amended in 1998, requires each state to conduct a Needs Assessment every three years. The purpose of the Needs Assessment is to identify and understand the needs of individuals with disabilities in the State and to use that information to make appropriate operational and programmatic adjustments to ensure the effective and efficient delivery of services to those individuals.

WY DVR conducts a statewide comprehensive needs assessment every 3 years. The most recent was started in 2012 and completed in April 2013. Prior to that a needs assessment was started in 2009 and completed by February 2010.

The 2012 Needs Assessment was a statewide assessment, jointly conducted by DVR and the State Rehabilitation Council, examining the need to establish, develop or improve community rehabilitation programs within the State, and describing the rehabilitation needs of individuals with disabilities residing within the State, particularly the vocational rehabilitation needs of:

1. Individuals with the most significant disabilities, including their needs for supported employment services;

2. Individuals with disabilities who are minorities and individuals with disabilities who have not been served or are underserved by the vocational rehabilitation program carried out under this Title; and

3. Individuals with disabilities served through other components of the statewide workforce investment system (other than the vocational rehabilitation program), as identified by such individuals and personnel assisting such individuals through the components.

The State’s goals and priorities are based on an analysis of:

1. The performance of the State on the standards and indicators established under Section 106 of the Rehabilitation Act;

2. Other available information on the operation and the effectiveness of the vocational rehabilitation program carried out in the State; and

3. Any reports received from the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC), under Section 105(c) and the findings and recommendations from monitoring activities conducted under Section 107.

Results of the 2012 Needs Assessment will assist WY DVR in evaluating its priorities and in establishing an action plan to guide future rehabilitation program development. The goal is to provide the foundation for an action plan that identifies opportunities for improving program performance.

The contractor was asked to complete an overall assessment of the need for services in the State of Wyoming as well as make suggestions for improvement.

METHODOLOGY

WY-DVR contracted with the Center for Public Policy and Administration (CPPA) at the University of Utah to assist with the needs assessment for 2012-2013. CPPA designed the needs assessment using five general methodological approaches:

1. Estimates of the target populations through analysis of the 2010 Census, the American Community Survey and Social Security Administration data;

2. Analysis of WY-DVR administrative data, including 911 service data, and consumer satisfaction data, if available;

3. Focus groups with individuals whose cases have been closed in successful (26) or unsuccessful status (28);

4. Mail surveys with WY-DVR customers; and

5. Electronic online surveys with WY-DVR staff, Department of Workforce Services staff, Work force Centers, Association of Providers - Community Rehabilitation Programs, Department of Education - Special Education Staff, Department of Health - Behavioral and Mental Health, Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation and other service providers.

This report describes the methods and results from the research.

This study was designed to obtain input from stakeholders throughout the process. A stakeholders’ group formed at the beginning of the contract included members of the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC) and employees of Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (WY-DVR) administration. The CPPA team worked with the stakeholders’ group on several occasions during the project to plan and make course corrections throughout the study. Interactions occurred in person, via email and in phone calls. SRC members provided input on framing the research questions, interpreting the WY-DVR program performance data, and refining surveys of providers and consumers. Once the data were collected and preliminary analysis completed, the stakeholder group reviewed the draft document to help interpret the findings prior to CPPA finalizing the report. This collaborative approach is consistent with the intent of the Rehabilitation Act for the State Rehabilitation Council to direct the Statewide Needs Assessment process. The approach also ensures that the results are more likely to be used because the end-users are invested in the process.

The following research questions guided this comprehensive statewide assessment of needs of individuals with disabilities:

1. What are population estimates and characteristics of individuals with disabilities in Wyoming? How do these compare with WY-DVR customers?

2. What are estimates and characteristics of individuals who receive Social Security disability benefits (SSDI and SSI)? How do these compare with WY-DVR customers?

3. How do the processes and outcomes of Wyoming VR services compare with other peer states? What are the anomalies and are these of concern?

4. What do vocational rehabilitation customers perceive as their unmet needs and barriers to successful outcomes?

5. What do rehabilitation providers perceive as unmet needs and barriers to successful outcomes for their customers? How do provider perceptions of needs and barriers compare with the customers’ perceptions?

6. What groups appear to be unserved or underserved by VR services? What are the unmet service needs of these groups?

7. What are barriers and special service needs of racial and ethnic minority populations with disabilities?

FINDINGS

Based on the information collected, analyzed, and presented, specific areas warrant attention as WY DVR develops its next state plan. The following highlights a few items the researchers observed. WY DVR needs to determine, based on input from its State Rehabilitation Council and the public, the key areas on which to focus its state efforts over the next few years.

The service needs that are requested the most by consumers with most significant disabilities include: job search assistance; education and training; and career/job decision-making and selection. These needs are very similar to providers top three of: career/job decision-making and selection; life skills training; and job search assistance. Providers rate the consumer’s need for life skills training higher than consumers rated it, which may be a reflection of providers’ experience. In looking at the availability of the services with the greatest need, providers perceive life skills training as not easily obtainable in the community. WY DVR may want to increase capacity of support services in this domain.

Counselors’ heavy caseload impacts the quality of service as indicated by customers and some providers. The limited interaction and the delays between appointments could be impacting customers’ enthusiasm toward the VR process and negatively impacting successful outcomes.

Providers responded in their survey that they felt that the following were the top unserved or underserved populations in WY: Mental illness and substance abuse, Young Adults/Transition, and Intellectual/developmental and cognitive disabilities. Provider recommendations to address the unserved and underserved populations include: improving DVR services (including reduce caseload sizes, and increase counselors’ knowledge of community resources); and improving education/outreach on services (including building community awareness; improve collaboration with other agencies; and funding, especially increasing funding for services).

Customers need assistance in understanding their benefits and the impact of employment on benefits. Consumers and providers both identified a lack of knowledge about the impact of employment earnings on benefits. This need was expressed in both the consumer and provider surveys and in one focus group. Recent studies indicate that benefits planning services is correlated with higher earnings for vocational rehabilitation customers. One factor impacting customers understanding their benefits is the lack of Social Security Administration-approved Certified Work Incentive Coordinators (CWIC) in Wyoming. CWICs go through a rigorous training and testing process to become certified. Community rehabilitation programs (CRP) can access these trainings from the Work Incentives Planning and Assistance (WIPA) National Training Center at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Qualifications of WY DVR service providers for supported employment are a concern expressed in the focus groups and both surveys. WY DVR policy manual requires Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) accreditation but from discussions with the working group and other WY DVR staff members, it is clear that not all providers have it. In part, this appears to be due to the working definition used for what is a provider. The meaning of what a “community rehabilitation program” looks like has evolved as the demand for community-based services has increased. Although CARF accreditation “assists service providers to improve the quality of their services” it can be an expensive and difficult process that is not reasonable to expect smaller providers to achieve. At the same time, a number of respondents expressed concerns about provider skill level. There does not appear to be an alternative WY DVR process to assess the quality of providers.

This screen was last updated on Aug 15 2013 12:22PM by Brian Hickman

Attachment 4.11(b) Annual Estimates

Based on the 2010 data from the U.S. Bureau of the Census, Wyoming has 66,666 residents who report a disability, and consequently could be eligible for Vocational Rehabilitation services. In Federal Fiscal Year 2014, an estimated total of 5,519 individuals will receive vocational rehabilitation services in Wyoming. The estimated total cost to serve these 5,519 individuals is $12,050,814.

In FFY 2013 Wyoming DVR was not under an order of selection, priority categories have not been established.

Category Title I or Title VI Estimated Funds Estimated Number to be Served Average Cost of Services
Title I - Vocational Rehabilitation Title I $11,612,949 5,062 $2,294
Title VI Part B - Supported Employment Title VI $300,000 344 $872
Title I - Supported Employment Title I $137,865 113 $1,220
Totals   $12,050,814 5,519 $2,183

This screen was last updated on Aug 1 2013 5:16PM by Brian Hickman

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.

Based on the 2014 Statewide Needs Assessment, the goals and priorities in carrying out the VR Program jointly developed and agreed to by WY DVR and the SRC are:

1. Increase the employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities in Wyoming.

a. Rehabilitate at least 679 individuals with disabilities. In Federal Fiscal Year 2012, WY DVR successfully closed 678 individuals with disabilities.

b. Improve outreach to and referral services from Local Education Agencies to aid an individual’s transition from school to work through the efforts of the WY DVR transition consultant, and WY DVR counselors to educate on VR services.

c. Improve services to veterans with disabilities by having a program consultant act as a liaison between WY DVR and the Veterans Administration to increase referrals and assistance to all veterans with a disability.

2. Increase by 5% the number of clients with significant disabilities in starting small businesses/self employment. In Federal Fiscal Year 2012, WY DVR closed 14 clients with small businesses. Clients will be assisted in setting up small business by using the Small Business Development Fund (SBDF) and other resources for starting a small business.

3. Successfully rehabilitate 275 or more SE individuals with the most significant disabilities. In Federal Fiscal 2012 272 SE individuals.

4. Improve the recruitment, training, and retention of staff.

a. Recruitment

i. Increase the percentage of counselors with Master Degree to 75%. In FFY 2012, WY DVR had 16 of 29 counselors with a Master Degree.

ii. Increase the percentage of counselors with the CRC designation to 65%. In FFY 2012, WY DVR had 16 out of 29 counselors with the CRC designation.

b. Training

i. Increase training on disability topics of relevance to staff needs and goals of agency

ii. Train staff on federal, state, and agency policies and procedures

c. Retention

i. Maintain a rate of 10% or less of staff loss. In FFY 2012, WY DVR lost 7 out 67 staff members for a 10.4% retention rate.

5. Improve services to Transition age clients by seeing an increase in successful outcomes by 5%. WY DVR closed 144 successfully in FFY 2012.

6. Increase the percentage of ABI clients successfully employed by 5%. WY DVR closed 21 successfully in FFY 2012.

7. Increase the percentage of SPMI clients successfully employed by 5%. WY DVR closed 240 successfully in FFY 2012.

8. Increase collaboration with Federal and State agencies, non-profits and other organizations to build stronger partnerships.

i. Continue WY DVR’s involvement in the Supported Employment Leadership Network (SELN) to increase the employment opportunities for individuals with Intellectual Disabilities.

ii. Work with the members of the SELN to develop standards of competencies for job developers and job coaches in the state.

This screen was last updated on Aug 19 2013 4:37PM by Brian Hickman

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.

Title VI, Part B funds will be used and distributed through four DVR regional budgets. Rehabilitation Counselors at the local level will authorize Supported Employment services as needed from a variety of CRPs and independent vendors statewide. DVR estimates that approximately $437,865 will be expended on Supported Employment services in FFY 2014. Funding sources include: $300,000 in Section 622 funds, supplemented with $137,865 from Title I (Section 110) funds.

Approximately 457 individuals will be served in Supported Employment, but only 344 will receive services from the $300,000 Title VI, Part B grant, if available. The rest of the SE individuals will receive services from the Title I, Part B grant.

This estimate is for the cost of services provided directly to the individuals. These services, which are purchased from vendors, include supported employment job development and job coaching. This estimate does not include DVR administrative costs such as staff salaries, staff travel, telephone, postage, rent for office space, indirect costs, etc. DVR administrative costs are paid for with Title I, Part B (section 110) funds.

Supported employment services are available statewide, with twenty CRPs and a number of independent vendors currently participating in the provision of services.

WY DVR’s goals for the distributation of Title VI, Part B funds can be found in Attachement 4.11(c)(1), goal numbered 6, 7, and 8.

This screen was last updated on Aug 15 2013 4:34PM by Brian Hickman

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.

DVR has provided innovation and expansion (I&E) funding for activities designed to continue addressing some of the needs identified in the previous and current Needs Assessments (WYARNs). Most activities are designed specifically to expand and improve the VR services available to individuals with the most significant disabilities. WY DVR will continue to solicit ideas and programs that can be used to improve or enhance services to clients with disabilities throughout the state of Wyoming, to possibly include the need for additional CRP’s in the state.

The following activities are planned for I&E funding in FY 2014:

A. DVR will provide funding support for the SRC. Expenditures may include travel, stipends, advertising, supplies, meeting room rental, interpreters, facilitation services, and costs related to consumer satisfaction/outreach.

Estimated Cost: $25,000

B. DVR will provide funding support for the State Independent Living Council (SILC). Due to federal grant award reductions in the Title VII, Part B - Independent Living Services program and estimated decreases in Social Security Reimbursement funds, (program income transfers to the IL programs), DVR will need to use I&E funds to support the SILC. Expenditures may include travel, stipends, advertising, supplies, meeting room rental, interpreters, and facilitation services.

Estimated Cost:

$25,000

 

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.

Assistive Technology Services and Devices:

A broad range of assistive technology services and assistive technology devices are provided to individuals with disabilities at each stage of the rehabilitation process. Wyoming DVR uses the Centrum for Disabilities, a non-profit agency that provides AT evaluations and equipment to clients throughout the state. An AgrAbility program began in May 2006 as a grant program administered by the University of Wyoming. The Assistant Administrator, Field Services, is on their Advisory Panel, and DVR will continue to work with them to provide AT services to the agricultural community. AT services and devices are available on a statewide basis.

 

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

Populations that are Unserved or Underserved

Minorities with Disabilities

Objective: Promote opportunities to enhance equal access and quality service for individuals who are culturally diverse within the

rehabilitation system.

Objective: Section 121 Project staff to attend the DVR annual Counselor and Support Staff In-Service Training sessions.

Method: Advise Project staff of in-service training through invitation/announcement, including a copy of the agenda.

Objective: Collaboration between the Wyoming Relay/Deaf Services Program and the Section 121 Projects on availability of services.

Method: Provide information to the Project staff and their consumers on the availability and use of the Wyoming Relay, the distribution of TTY and amplified phones; obtaining assistive devices, obtaining qualified interpreters and developing interpreter training that addresses culturally appropriate services.

Objective: Provide supportive services to minorities with disabilities.

Methods: Determine what types of rehabilitation services are currently available to minorities with disabilities in the State of Wyoming.

Identify all existing rehabilitation organizations currently offering services to minorities with disabilities to better coordinate services.

Identify the most critical rehabilitation needs of minorities that are not currently being met by existing services and facilities.

Determine what actions DVR can implement to improve rehabilitation services for minorities with disabilities in the State of Wyoming.

The populations discussed below were identified in the 2012 Needs Assessment as “underserved.” All were being served, but in less-than representative numbers, or less effectively than other populations. The discussion below focuses on describing efforts made to better serve these groups.

Persons with Severe and Persistent Mental Illness (SPMI) (Goal 7).

Objective: Improve and expand services to persons with SPMI.

Method: Encourage the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Division to support the expansion of successful employment models for individuals with SPMI.

Objective: Continue to develop Supported Employment (SE) services with MH organizations on a statewide basis.

Method: Contacts with MHCs and promotion of SE services.

Objective: As training becomes available in the area of working with and serving those with mental illness, have DVR staff and appropriate mental health personnel attend. Invite mental health personnel to attend DVR in-service when appropriate topics are involved.

Method: Invite mental health personnel to attend DVR in-service at no cost to them when the training is being presented in their area of the State. Alert mental health personnel to training via other entities.

Students in Transition from School to Work (Goal 1b)

Objective: Strengthen and improve the working relationship with WDE to increase timely referrals and provide information and training on how WY DVR can assist students in transition.

Methods: Continue to involve the WDE in SRC activities and meetings.

Continue to encourage LEA’s to identify students with disabilities and make timely referrals to VR.

DVR’s Transition Consultant will work with the school districts, WDE, and DVR staff statewide.

Provide support for DVR Transition Counselors.

DVR will meet with LEA’s to identify best practice policy in the coordination of services between local school districts and DVR field offices.

Objective: Encourage LEA’s to make timely referrals to DVR.

Methods: Increase field staff communication with LEA personnel to educate them regarding VR mission and services.

Develop procedures with LEA’s to help facilitate more timely exchange of information regarding potential Transition student referrals.

VR staff will attend IEP meetings when invited by the school.

Identify new systems to improve referrals and working relationships, including replicating successful service models existing within the state.

Individuals that are Intellectually Disabled

Objective: Improve and expand services to persons that are Intellectually Disabled

Method: Continue WY DVR’s involvement in the Supported Employment Leadership Network (SELN) to increase the employment opportunities for individuals with Intellectual Disabilities.

 

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

At this time, it is the conclusion of the SRC and DVR administration that there is not a need for more community rehabilitation programs in WY.

WY DVR will continue to monitor the service provision in the state and consult with the members of the SRC to see if there is a need in the future.

 

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

WY DVR has been able to meet all of the Standards and Indicators for the last five years except for indicator 1.1 in FFY 2010. They are a number of independent variables that effect WY DVR’s performance each year; WY DVR strives to meet all Standards and Indicator

With Wyoming’s economy being dominated by mineral extraction and construction, there are limited opportunities for individuals with disabilities to find employment and employment that pays sustainable wages for the person to be independent. WY DVR continues to work to find creative strategies to find employment opportunities, including helping clients start small businesses.

WY DVR continues to develop appropriate referral sources to ensure that those individuals with disabilities that are eligible for the program are being referred to WY DVR. WY DVR also works to locate and develop service providers in order to provide the needed services to individuals with disabilities in a timely manner and at the least cost possible. Due to the rural nature of Wyoming, this can prove challenging and at times can affect the provision of services to consumers.

WY does not foresee any problems with meeting the Standards and Indicators for the Federal Fiscal Year 2014.

 

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

WY DVR closely works with its partners that provide services under Wagner-Peyser and the Workforce Investment Act. In many instances WY DVR is co-located in the same office same to make for the referral and service provision more effective. WY DVR plans to more effectively use its funding resources in connection with these partners to better serve individuals with disabilities. WY DVR will partner with WIA and Wagner-Peyser caseworker to identify training solutions and other solutions to leverage more resources to assist in returning a person with a disability back into employment. WY DVR also partners with Youth WIA caseworkers to explore options to establish summer work experience opportunities for students in transition.

WY DVR is working with its partners to establish a Supported Employment Leadership Network (SELN). The goal of this group is to increase the employment opportunities of individuals with intellectual disabilities. The SELN brings together Community Rehabilitation Providers, Supported Employment Providers, Medicaid Waiver providers, Vocational Rehabilitation, and WIA providers.

 

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.

General Education Provisions Act (GEPA):

GEPA requirements include describing proposed steps to ensure equitable access to, and participation in, Federally-funded programs. The potential impediments to equitable access or participation include gender, race, national origin, color, disability or age. In addition to the proposed steps previously described in this document, the following actions have been or will be taken to ensure equitable access and participation in DVR’s programs:

1. The 2012 Assessment of Rehabilitation Needs identified four disability populations of concern in Wyoming: Persons with Mental Illness, Students with disabilities who are in transition from school to work, Persons with Intellectual Disabilities, and Persons with acquired brain injury (ABI).

A. Students with disabilities continue to be a special concern for DVR. With distance and the amount of staff available, WY DVR has struggled with providing adequate services to the 48 school districts in Wyoming. To increase our impact, DVR has hired a full-time transition consultant that coordinates efforts at the state level, as well as reaches our to each of the school districts to explain our services and how we can better serve this population. DVR has also placed several counselors into caseloads that focus primarily on transition students.

B. WY DVR’s involvement in the Supported Employment Leadership Network (SELN) is to increase the employment opportunities for individuals with Intellectual Disabilities.

D. WY DVR will continue to work with MHC and other CRP’s to work with client’s with mental illness to improve their opportunities for employment and the necessary support services they need to be successful and independent.

2. Memoranda of Understanding (MOU)

A. DVR has an MOU with the University of Wyoming and all Wyoming Community Colleges. This MOU is designed to guide the planning and delivery of support services to individuals with disabilities who are mutual clients of DVR and enrolled at a Wyoming institution of higher education.

B. An MOU is in place with the Section 121 Program on Wyoming’s Wind River Reservation. Through this MOU, DVR provides consultation with Project staff and Native Americans with disabilities.

C. The Wyoming Division of Workers’ Safety and Compensation and DVR have an MOU to provide rehabilitation services to DVR eligible individuals who have been injured in job-related accidents. Joint training for both Divisions occurs periodically as needed.

3. Individuals who are Deaf or hard of hearing have potential barriers to equal access and participation due to their disability. DVR has taken steps to ensure equal access and participation in our programs for these individuals.

A. Training has been provided to DVR Counselors, Assistants and Managers on: the use of text telephones (TTY); the use of telecommunications relay service (Wyoming Relay, internet and video relay); Deaf culture; strategies for communicating with hearing-impaired clients; and the use of sign language interpreters during Regional in-services which are conducted periodically across the state.

B. DVR collaborates in many ways with the Wyoming Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (WYRID): to identify all known sign language interpreters in the State; to evaluate their skill level using a method which was jointly developed by DVR and WYRID; and to compile and distribute the list of interpreters to all DVR staff, other service providers, government agencies, businesses and individuals.

C. Training is routinely offered to service providers, government agencies and private sector businesses on Deaf culture, communication strategies, use of interpreters, use of text telephones and Wyoming Relay. This type of training facilitates appropriate referrals to DVR as well as the provision of services and employment for DVR clients.

D. Wyoming Relay is a program administered by DVR. A public awareness campaign is conducted on an on-going basis which includes radio, television, print and billboard advertising statewide.

 

This screen was last updated on Aug 19 2013 3:40PM by Brian Hickman

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

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

1. Increase the employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities in Wyoming.

a. Rehabilitate at least 640 individuals with disabilities

b. Increase services to individuals with disabilities that are of a minority race

c. Improve services to aid individuals transition from school to work

d. Improve services to veterans with disabilities

WY DVR closed 678 clients successfully. WY DVR was able to utilize all of the list strategies to meet this goal. WY DVR has been successful in reaching out to minorities. With the work done by WY DVR’s Transition Consultant, there has been an increase in the amount of students in transition that are being referred to WY DVR. WY DVR has seen an increase in referrals and information sharing since a program consultant was designated to act as a liaison with the local Veterans Administration.

2. Increase by 5% the number of clients using the Small Business Development Fund (SBDF) and other resources for starting a small business.

In FFY 2012 WY DVR was able to close 14 people in small businesses. WY DVR was able to utilize the Small Business Development Fund in order to help these individuals with disabilities to find employment.

3. Successfully rehabilitate 205 or more SE individuals with the most significant disabilities.

WY DVR was able to close 272 SE individuals in FFY 2012. WY DVR was able to utilize all strategies to meet this goal.

4. Meet or exceed all RSA Performance Standards and Indicators for FFY 2012.

WY DVR was able to meet all of the RSA Performance Standards and Indicators for FFY 2012. WY DVR was able to do this by utilizing all of the listed strategies.

5. Continue to improve the recruitment, training, and retention of staff.

a. Recruitment

i. Increase the number percentage of counselors with Master Degrees level counselors to 75%

ii. Increase the number percentage of counselors with the CRC designation to 50%

b. Training

i. Increase training on disability topics of relevance to staff needs and goals of agency

ii. Train staff on federal, state, and agency policies and procedures

c. Retention

i. Maintain a rate of 10% or less of staff loss

WY DVR has been able to recruit more counselors with Masters degrees in FFY 2012 for those vacant positions. For existing staff WY DVR was able to continue to send staff to training in order to achieve his or her Masters degree in order to qualify to sit for the CRC exam. WY DVR conducted In Service trainings for both counseling staff and support staff to train them on topics that aid them in supporting clients in their efforts to locate and maintain employment.

In FFY 2012, WY DVR lost 7 staff members for a 11% retention rate. Compared to losing 11 staff members in FFY 2011.

6. Improve services to Transition age clients by seeing an increase in referrals by 5%.

In FFY 2012, WY DVR served 1,562 transition aged individuals compared to 1,491 in FFY 2011. This was an increase of 4.5%. WY DVR has been working to identify and develop appropriate referrals. WY DVR is also making sure that cases are opened for a client at the appropriate time and this may effect the reported number of individuals served. The agency was able to maintain the presence of a staff member from the WY Department of Education, Special Education Unit, on the SRC. The agency has three counselors with caseloads that are primarily focused on transition clients. There are also two counselors that have about half of their caseloads focused on transition clients. WY DVR has a 11.8% referral rate in FFY 2012 from Secondary Education, compared to a 10.8% in FFY 2011.

7. Increase the percentage of clients with an ABI served by 5%.

WY DVR saw a small decrease in FFY 2012 in the number of ABI clients with 206 compared to 207 in FFY 2011. WY DVR closed 21 successfully in employment in FFY 2012. WY DVR has been working to train staff on correctly identifying clients with ABI. There may still be challenges with coding ABI has the Primary disability. In 2012, WY DVR ended its support of Project B.R.A.I.N. and there has been some problems with the WY chapter of American Brain Injury Association, and this may have lead to problems with identifying and referring clients with ABI to WY DVR.

8. Increase the percentage of SPMI clients served by 5%.

WY DVR served 2137 individuals whose primary disability was coded as SPMI in FFY 2012 compared to 2124 in FFY 2011. WY DVR only saw a 1% increase in the number of SPMI clients served. Part of the challenge of working with this population is that many of the Mental Health centers use the medical model, which does not see employment has a therapeutic option. WY DVR continues to reach out to the Mental Health centers to increase referrals to the agency. WY DVR saw 240 individuals with SPMI closed successfully in employment in FFY 2012.

9. Increase collaboration with Federal and State agencies, non-profits and other organizations to build stronger partnerships.

The SRC and SILC continue to meet at least once a year in a joint session. WY DVR has a designated a program consultant to be a liaison with the Veterans Administration to better reach out to and coordinate services for individuals with disabilities and have been in the Armed Forces.

WY DVR continues to work with its sister agencies within the Department of Workforce Services to better serve its clients. WY DVR works closely with WIA and Wagner-Peyser partners to better access services for its clients.

 

Supported employment services are available statewide, with twenty CRPs (including MHC) and a number of independent vendors currently participating in the provision of services.

1. Individuals with the most significant disabilities have access to supported employment on a statewide basis;

2. Within each CRP, a supported employment coordinator has been designated and a network of coordinators exists statewide;

3. Supported employment coordinators market supported employment to employers in their communities; and

4. Employers are prominently involved in supported employment throughout the State.

5. Improved services to the SPMI population will be achieved by implementing joint training with the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Division, discussed on 3/30/2011, with Michael McKee of Peak Wellness Center and Dick LeFevre of Protection and Advocacy.

WY DVR served 709 clients with supported employment services in FFY 2011 and we were able to serve 745 in FFY 2012. This was an increase of 4.9%. WY DVR will continue to encourage CRP’s to designate a Supported Employment Coordinator to work closely with WY DVR to increase referrals, services, and employer education. WY DVR has utilized the BLN in the past to help educate employers about supported employment and working with individuals with disabilities and WY DVR has begun transitioning to doing this employer outreach themselves. WY DVR was not able to meet with Mike McKee and Dick LeFevre due to staff and scheduling conflicts. WY DVR does invite CRP staff to attend their annual In Service trainings to learn more about disability and supported employment topics.

 

Performance Indicator 1.1. The number of individuals exiting the VR program who achieved an employment outcome during the current performance period compared to the number of individuals who exit the VR program after achieving an employment outcome during the previous performance period.

Required Performance Level: Equal or exceed previous performance period (676)

Actual Performance: 678

Performance Indicator 1.2. Of all individuals who exit the VR program after receiving services, the percentage who are determined to have achieved an employment outcome.

Required Performance Level: 55.8%

Actual Performance: 57.9%

Performance Indicator 1.3. Of all individuals determined to have achieved an employment outcome, the percentage who exit the VR program in competitive, self-, or BEP employment with earnings equivalent to at least the minimum wage.

Required Performance Level: 72.6%

Actual Performance: 99.1%

Performance Indicator 1.4. Of all individuals who exit the VR program in competitive, self-, or BEP employment with earnings equivalent to at least the minimum wage, the percentage who are individuals with significant disabilities.

Required Performance Level: 62.4%

Actual Performance: 89.1%

Performance Indicator 1.5. The average hourly earnings of all individuals who exit the VR program in competitive, self, or BEP employment with earning levels equivalent to at least the minimum wage as a ratio to the State’s average hourly earnings for all individuals in the State who are employed (as derived from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) report “State Average Annual Pay” for the most recent available year).

Required Performance Level: .52 (ratio)

Actual Performance: .56

Performance Indicator 1.6. Of all individuals who exit the VR program in competitive, self-, or BEP employment with earnings equivalent to at least the minimum wage, the difference between the percentage who reported their own income as the largest single source of economic support at exit and the percentage who reported their own income as the largest single source of support at application.

Required Performance Level: 53%

Actual Performance: 55.3%

Evaluation Standard 2 - Equal Access to Services. A DSU shall ensure that individuals from minority backgrounds have equal access to VR services.

Performance Indicator 2.1. The service rate for all individuals with disabilities from minority backgrounds as a ratio to the service rate for all non-minority individuals with disabilities.

Required Performance Level: .80

Actual Performance: .95

WY DVR was able to utilize all of it’s goals, priorities and strategies to meet the Standards and Indicators. WY DVR monitors its progress towards these goals on a monthly basis in an effort to work on making corrections where needed or to identify new strategies to meet these standards and indicators.

 

1. In FFY 2012, WY DVR provided continued financial assistance for further expansion of the WBLN. After the 107 Review completed in April 2012, WY DVR terminated its contract with the WBLN on 5/1/2012.

Estimated Cost: $469,484

Actual Cost: $277,852

2. WY DVR provided funding support for the SRC. Expenditures included travel, stipends, advertising, supplies, meeting room rental, interpreters, facilitation services, and costs related to consumer satisfaction/outreach efforts.

Estimated Cost: $30,000

Actual Cost: $19,378

This screen was last updated on Aug 26 2013 2:36PM by Brian Hickman

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

Attachment 6.3 Quality, Scope and Extent of Supported Employment Services

Community rehabilitation programs (CRPs) providing supported employment (SE) services in Wyoming must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF). Community mental health centers (MHCs) providing supported employment services must be certified by the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Division of the Wyoming Department of Health. The DVR management information system (Wyoming Rehabilitation and Employment System aka WYRES) includes criteria to measure integration, client satisfaction, scope of service, client wages and hours worked per week, variety of work options, and disability groups served. This data collection system allows DVR to make informed decisions to modify, improve, or expand SE services delivered through CRPs and MHCs.

SE services provided to individuals are coordinated through an individualized plan for employment (IPE) that includes a description of the services needed; the identification of the state, federal, or private programs that will provide the extended services; and a description of the basis for determining that extended services are available.

SE services which may be provided to individuals with significant disabilities include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. If necessary, a supplemental evaluation to the evaluation of rehabilitation potential provided under 34 CFR Part 361.

2. Job development and placement into competitive, community integrated employment.

3. Traditionally time-limited services needed to support the trainees in employment, such as:

a) Intensive on-the-job skills training and other training provided by skilled job trainers, co-workers and other qualified individuals, and other services specified in 34 CFR Part 361.48, in order to achieve and maintain job stability;

b) Provision of follow-up services, including regular contact with employers, trainees with significant disabilities, parents, guardians, or other representatives of trainees and other suitable professional and informed advisors in order to reinforce and stabilize the job placement; and

c) Discrete post-employment services following successful case closure by DVR that are unavailable from an extended services provider and that are necessary to maintain the job placement.

Each client’s IPE describes the timing of transition into extended services to be provided by other state agencies and private non-profit organizations following the termination of time-limited services by DVR. DVR will provide traditionally time-limited services for a maximum of 18 months, unless a longer period to achieve job stabilization has been established in the IPE.

SE services are available statewide, with nineteen CRPs currently participating in the provision of services. The following represent improvements in quality, scope, and extent of supported employment services statewide:

1. Nineteen CRPs (including MHCs) throughout Wyoming have implemented SE programs;

2. Individuals with the most significant disabilities have access to supported employment services on a statewide basis;

3. Within each CRP, an SE coordinator has been designated and a network of coordinators exists statewide;

4. SE coordinators market supported employment to employers in their communities;

5. Employers are prominently involved in SE throughout Wyoming;

6. The Department of Health, Division of Developmental Disabilities continues to be used as a resource for supported employment services for individuals with ABI;

7. The Wyoming Centrum for Disability Services was created in 1998 at Central Wyoming Community College with the strong support of DVR. The Centrum delivered assistive technology and job site accommodations to individuals with significant disabilities statewide, beginning in 1998 and continuing through 2004. The Centrum has been reorganized as an off-campus 501(c)(3) corporation and provides Social Security benefit information related to Ticket to Work; and

8. DVR completed an MOU with the Department of Health, Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Division in September 2007. The purpose of the MOU is to enhance the working relationship between the Divisions in order to provide more effective services to individuals with disabilities in compliance with the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. This includes increased collaboration in the evaluation, planning and implementation of SE services for persons with SPMI and transition age youth. Joint training on a bi-annual basis will focus on these issues, among others.

This screen was last updated on Aug 15 2013 4:49PM by Brian Hickman

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Last updated on:08/26/2013 2:36 PM

Last updated by:sawyhickmanb

Completed on: 08/26/2013 2:36 PM

Completed by: sawyhickmanb

Approved on: 08/29/2013 6:34 AM

Approved by: rscoshellj