ED/OSERS/RSA
Rehabilitation Services Administration
ED

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
South Dakota Division of Services to the Blind and Visually Impaired State Plan for Fiscal Year 2014 (submitted FY 2013)

Preprint - Section 1: State Certifications

1.1 The South Dakota Department of Human Services 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 South Dakota Department of Human 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

Secretary, Department of Human Services

... 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

Secretary, Department of Human Services

... 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 SignatoryLaurie R. Gill

Title of SignatorySecretary, Department of Human Services

Date Signed (mm/dd/yyyy)06/27/2013

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 2014Yes

Comments:

Signed?Yes

Name of SignatoryLaurie R. Gill

Title of SignatorySecretary, Department of Human Services

Date Signed (mm/dd/yyyy)06/27/2013

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

Section 1 Footnotes

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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
South Dakota Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired

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

The State Plan must contain one of the following assurances.

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

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

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

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

(Option B was selected)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

If "Yes", the designated state agency:

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

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

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

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

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

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

X This agency is requesting a waiver of statewideness.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

(c) Coordination with education officials.

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

  1. The State Plan description must:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  1. There is in the state a recipient(s) of a grant under Part C of Title I of the Rehabilitation Act for the provision of vocational rehabilitation services for American Indians who are individuals with disabilities residing on or near federal and state reservations. 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.

Input of State Rehabilitation Council

SBVI State Rehabilitation Council

The Board of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (Board), the state rehabilitation council for the Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (Division), is in place to advise the Division in accordance with Title I, Section 105 of the Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1998. The Board advises the Division in the development of state plans, policy related to the expenditure of federal and state funds and the coordination and planning for service delivery to individuals involved in vocational rehabilitation and independent living services.

The Board serves as a representative for all individuals who are blind or visually impaired needing vocational rehabilitation and independent living services within the state. The Board’s mission statement reflects these priorities: "The mission of the Board of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired is to promote independence, employment and full inclusion for all citizens who are blind or visually impaired." All Board agendas are developed by the Board’s Executive Committee with the Division Director. Policies are provided to Board members in draft format to provide the opportunity for input prior to finalization of the policies. No recommendations by the Board of SBVI were rejected by the Division during the plan period.

Review of State Plan Goals and Strategies

The State Plan is the official document that outlines the activities of the past year and future plans for SBVI vocational rehabilitation services. Five attachments were revised and are prepared for submission for FFY 2013. Drafts were presented to the Board at the March meeting and suggested changes have been made.

SBVI’s goals and strategies attachments, along with all of the other attachments, were covered in detail at the March, 2012 Board meeting. All attachments were distributed to all board members for further review and comments. The Board approved the 2013 State Plan at the June, 2012 Board meeting.

Public Meetings

Public meetings are held on an annual basis to solicit input into the State Plan as well as to identify priorities for improving services to citizens who are blind or visually impaired. The Board of SBVI recommended sites and formats for the meetings as well as topics to be prioritized for discussion. Board members facilitate each of the meetings. Based on advice from the Board, consumer organizations host the meetings by circulating meeting announcements to constituents and providing refreshments and local transportation for the meetings.

The Division agreed with the Board’s recommendations related to public meetings including that meetings be held in Rapid City (in conjunction with the National Federation of the Blind 2012 State Convention), Lower Brule, Sioux Falls (in conjunction with the 2012 South Dakota Association of the Blind State Convention,) and a videoconference with sites in Aberdeen, Pierre, Rapid City, and Sioux Falls. The practice of conducting public meetings in conjunction with other events that bring together people who are blind or visually impaired has worked well; the Division will continue to seek out opportunities for this collaboration in the future. Board members served as facilitators at the meetings.

Governor’s Awards for Employment of People with Disabilities

The annual Governor’s Awards event is held to recognize individuals, employers and organizations for their contributions to the employment of persons with disabilities. This annual event is a joint effort of the Board of Vocational Rehabilitation, Board of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired and the Department of Human Services.

The Division supported the Board’s recommendation to assist with the Governor’s Awards, and supported attendance by Board members. The Board has a representative who assists in making the award selections along with a committee of the Board of Vocational Rehabilitation.

National Disability Employment Awareness Month Activities

National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) activities are planned in communities across South Dakota every year by DRS and SBVI staff for the month of October to raise awareness of the employment needs and contributions of individuals with all types of disabilities. In addition to a financial contribution towards the budget for the events, the Board of SBVI partners with the Board of Vocational Rehabilitation in reviewing proposals for local NDEAM events.

The Division endorses the Board’s involvement in planning and supporting NDEAM activities.

VR Program- Consumer Satisfaction

FY 2012 marks the fourth year that SBVI has partnered with the Board of SBVI to conduct a consumer satisfaction survey using the SBVI Client Satisfaction Questionaire-8 (CSQ-8) survey. The survey was sent to 169 individuals who received services and were closed from the SBVI Vocational Rehabilitation Program in FY 2012. Fifty-five surveys were returned for a return rate of 33%. The survey consists of eight core questions and an additional seven questions that were developed with the help of the Board of SBVI. Data analysis is conducted by Dr. Alan Davis at South Dakota State University.

Input from the Board regarding the Consumer Satisfaction Survey centered on increasing the response rate (the FY 2011 response rate was 25%). Strategies were employed (i.e. making follow up phone calls that boosted the response rate), and additional strategies will be explored in order to obtain as much consumer feedback as possible.

Assistive Technology Advisory Committee

The Assistive Technology Advisory Committee (ATAC) advises the board and the Division on assistive technology (AT) and related topics. The ATAC has played an important role in keeping the Board and Division updated on recent developments in the AT realm.

With guidance from the ATAC, the Division has developed multiple resources that provide resources to individuals on low-cost AT solutions and accessible cell phones.

Nominations for Board Vacancies

The Board of SBVI is asked for recommendations for individual’s names to be submitted to the Governor’s office for consideration of appointment for Board vacancies.

The Division submits names recommended by the Board for consideration by the Governor.

Board Representation at Consumer Organization Conventions

The Board of SBVI has made the commitment to financially support the attendance of consumers and a representative of the Board each year at state conventions of consumer organizations such as National Federation of the Blind of South Dakota and South Dakota Association of the Blind.

The Division supported the Board’s recommendation for Board member representation at consumer organization conventions. Board and public meetings are held in conjunction with consumer organization conventions when possible.

Transition Services for Youth who are Blind or Visually Impaired

The Board of SBVI recommended that the Division sponsor activities to address leadership, career planning, and skills of blindness needs of transition age students who are blind or visually impaired. Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors work with students to plan their participation as part of Individual Plans for Employment.

Transition week was held July 15-19, 2012 at the SD Rehabilitation Center for the Blind in Sioux Falls. The event offers a combination of career exploration, social activities, work experiences, and skills of blindness for participants.

Board Input on SBVI Policy

No policies were implemented by the Division in FFY 2012.

The Board of SBVI Annual Report

SBVI staff teamed with the Board of SBVI to complete and submit the Board’s annual report on the status of SBVI programs. The board has been instrumental in designing an annual report that is accessible and that provides valuable information to readers concerning SBVI programs. The Board also made recommendations on content, layout, and a redesign of the consumer satisfaction survey portion of the report.

The Board annual report was completed and submitted within timelines mandated by the Rehabilitation Services Administration. The Division incorporated all of the Board’s recommendations into the final report and redesigned the consumer satisfaction survey report to provide easily understood results.

This screen was last updated on Aug 20 2013 2:11PM by Eric Weiss

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

This agency has requested a waiver of statewideness.

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

The waiver request should also include:

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

Request for Waiver of Statewideness

The South Dakota Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBVI) provides work experiences for Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) transition age clients called Project Skills. This venture is a cooperative arrangement with the local school districts and SBVI. SBVI makes this program available to all schools; approximately 130 out of South Dakota’s 151 school districts are currently participating in the program. The program is available to the remaining school districts but they have chosen not to complete a contract with SBVI.

Type of Service

Many students with significant disabilities don’t have an opportunity to gain paid employment experience while in high school. Although willing, most employers cannot afford the supports these students frequently require on their first job. Employment provides students with invaluable opportunities to explore careers, learn appropriate workplace behaviors, and develop social skills. SBVI funds a program entitled “Project Skills” to address this need. This program is a cooperative arrangement between the State VR Agency and the local school systems. SBVI pays the wages, workers compensation, and FICA while the schools provide the job development, job coaching, and follow-along services for the student at the job site. By entering into a contractual agreement with SBVI, the local school districts are assuring that they will provide the non-federal share of the matching funds, including funds contributed to the school by a private agency, organization, or individual.

Written Assurances

Each school enters into an agreement with SBVI for Project Skills. This agreement requires the school district to provide written assurance that they will use non-Federal funds for their share of the Project Skills program. The Project Skills program is available only for VR clients, and an SBVI counselor approves each Project Skills work experience by completing a work agreement and authorizing services. All state plan requirements for SBVI will apply to all services approved under the waiver.

All services provided under this waiver are provided under an approved Individualized Plan for Employment and authorized by the VR Counselor. SBVI assures that all State Plan requirements, including the Order of Selection if appropriate, will apply to all services approved under the waiver.

This screen was last updated on Aug 20 2013 1:50PM by Eric Weiss

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.

Cooperative Agreements with Agencies Not Carrying out Activities Under the Statewide Workforce Investment System

Transition Project for SBVI Consumers

SBVI has a cooperative agreement in place with the South Dakota School for the Blind and Visually Impaired for provision of transition services to students who are blind on a statewide basis. This agreement supports a transition specialist who is trained in the skills of blindness. The purpose of the position is to educate blind or visually impaired students and their parents, as well as to work with SBVI rehabilitation counselors in the delivery of transition services. SBVI participates to the extent possible in IEP meetings and facilitates on-going communication between SDSBVI personnel, parents, and local school districts regarding the consumers' needs. SBVI is committed to providing the career exploration and work experiences to consumers to assist them in making informed choices about their services and employment goals. SBVI and the School for the Blind and Visually Impaired coordinate summer programming for students, and the transition specialist from the school provides ongoing support to joint consumers and their families.

Memorandum of Understanding with the Department of Transportation: Vending Machines at Rest Areas

This Memorandum of Understanding was entered into by SBVI and the Department of Transportation in order to define the responsibility of the respective departments for vending machines in rest areas located on interstate highway systems as defined in South Dakota Codified Law. A state law authorizes the placement of vending machines in rest areas located on interstate highway systems for the benefit of visually impaired vendors licensed by the Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired. SBVI awards contracts to vending companies for installation and operation of vending machine facilities in all operating rest areas. Revenues from highway vending support the division's Business Enterprise Program.

Memorandum of Understanding: Migrant Seasonal Worker Program and Training

The migrant and seasonal farm worker education, employment, and training memorandum of understanding between the Department of Human Services and the Black Hills Special Services Cooperative was developed to address coordination of services. This memorandum outlines the referral process between the two agencies and the coordination of services that takes place, and is designed to promote the efficient delivery of services to this special population.

Formal Agreement for Access to the Unsanitized Job Service Listings

In January of 1997, a Cooperative Agreement was developed between the Department of Human Services (DHS) and the Department of Labor (DOL). The purpose of this agreement was to develop arrangements for staff from the Department of Human Services to have access to the Job Service Listings in DOL's computer system. Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors benefit from having access to this information in assisting consumers to obtain employment. Having access to this system helps identify employment openings close to the consumer's home and employers who have historically been more open to hiring individuals with disabilities.

Formal Agreement for Information Follow-up Project

SBVI participates in the Information Follow-up Project that combines electronic data from the Department of Human Services, Department of Labor, Department of Education and Cultural Affairs, Technical Institutes, Board of Regents, Public Universities, Department of Corrections, Department of Social Services, and the Department of Commerce and Regulations. This project provides information on the number of consumers involved with other agencies. This program is also able to provide a summary report on individuals who were rehabilitated in previous years by the Vocational Rehabilitation program.

Memorandum of Understanding with Statewide Workforce Investment

The South Dakota Department of Labor and the Career Center Partner Agencies including SBVI support activities to improve the employment, education, training, and related supportive services to the citizens of the State of South Dakota. This MOU facilitates coordination among the Career Center partners in providing comprehensive services that are designed to assist unemployed individuals in finding employment that is consistent with their interests and abilities. In many communities, the vocational rehabilitation counselors are co-located with the Department of Labor Career Centers. In offices where agencies are co-located, our agencies share computer systems, office machines, and equipment. Collaboration of services between agencies is continually occurring at all office locations.

Participation in Councils

The State of South Dakota has selected the option to continue with the current Workforce Development Council composition. The option to continue with the current composition is allowed in the WIA for councils that were in place on December 31st, 1997. The Workforce Development Council currently has a member from the Department of Human Services and Vocational Rehabilitation. The State Rehabilitation Council for SBVI reserves a position on their council for a representative from the Workforce Development Council.

Project Skills

SBVI offers the Project Skills program as an option to provide work experiences to transition-age consumers. The Project Skills program is a cooperative arrangement between the state vocational rehabilitation agencies and the local school districts that provides paid work experiences to high school students with disabilities in South Dakota. Project Skills provides students the opportunity to learn different skills in a variety of job placements with the assistance of a job coach. This program will help to build the student's work history, references and help them move into different and better jobs as they mature and are ready to take on new challenges.

State Use Law

The State of South Dakota has a State Use Law as described in South Dakota Codified Law §5-20-4. The Department of Human Services has prepared a list of products and custodial/maintenance services offered by qualified agencies. The Department updates this list and furnishes a copy to the Bureau of Administration.

Programs carried out by the Under Secretary for Rural Development of the United States Department of Agriculture

SBVI does not have formal agreements with the programs that are carried out by the Under Secretary for Rural Development of the United States Department of Agriculture.

This screen was last updated on Jun 24 2009 5:11PM by Eric Weiss

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.

Coordination with Education Officials

Goal: Provide Quality, Individualized Services

The Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBVI) works cooperatively with local school districts, the Department of Education (DOE), the SD School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (SDSBVI), parent/student transition groups, and the Department of Labor to provide vocational rehabilitation services to eligible students as they transition from school to the adult world. The goals of the agencies include provision of quality, individualized services to students with disabilities to facilitate a smooth transition into employment and the vocational rehabilitation system.

Rehabilitation counselors occasionally face barriers when providing services to students with disabilities. At times, potentially eligible students are not referred to SBVI in time for the transition services to be done in a timely and efficient manner. Counselors are removing these barriers by ongoing contacts with special education teachers and directors to make them aware of vocational rehabilitation services and the role of vocational rehabilitation in assisting students to prepare for jobs and careers. In response to public comments concerning transition service issues, the Division of SBVI will continue to address transition as a priority.

Cooperative Agreement: Transition Services for Youth with Disabilities

Historically, the transition from school to adult life has left students with disabilities ill-prepared for independent living, work and post-secondary education. The lack of involvement of vocational rehabilitation and transition services has led to individuals with more significant disabilities to be served through sheltered workshops and activity centers. Studies of students with disabilities graduating from secondary schools indicate that the majority were under employed or unemployed, socially inactive, and still living at home with their parents. This lack of knowledge, resources, and skills demonstrated by these graduates often results in continued dependence upon society as well as the loss of potential human resources. Current philosophies and technologies are challenging our past practices as we re-evaluate the potential contributions of citizens with disabilities.

South Dakota's human service agencies and education system have accepted the challenge, and have forged a strong coalition to implement the necessary changes. This agreement presents a common policy and conceptual framework for addressing interagency transition planning at the local level, thus insuring that youth with disabilities have access to the services and resources needed to enter adult life (and the world of work) successfully. Cooperating agencies will benefit from maximum coordination of services, more efficient utilization of agency resources, increased service options, and improved interagency communication. Agencies covered by this agreement include SBVI, the Division of Rehabilitation Services, the Department of Education, the Division of Mental Health, the Division of Developmental Disabilities, and the Department of Social Services. A matrix of services is provided in the agreement which outlines each agency's responsibility for provision of services at specific ages throughout a student's transition from school to work.

The collaborating state agencies support the following policy statements which are formalized in the interagency agreement:

- All South Dakota citizens, including youth with disabilities, will have opportunities for full participation in work and community life;

- All human services systems in South Dakota will assist individuals to achieve independence and self-sufficiency, and

- All human services systems in South Dakota recognize organized constituent groups of persons with disabilities as primary sources of information for program development by consulting with and advising such groups.

Interagency Agreement

The South Dakota Cooperative Agreement Concerning Transition Services for Youth With Disabilities, was revised on January 2005. This agreement includes the following South Dakota entities: Office of Special Education, Division of Workforce and Career Preparation, Division of Mental Health, Division of Developmental Disabilities, Division of Rehabilitation Services, Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired, Department of Labor and Department of Social Services.

The agreement identifies each agency's roles and responsibilities including:

- Consultation and technical assistance to assist in planning for the transition of students with disabilities from school to post-school activities, including vocation rehabilitation services;

- Transition planning by personnel of the Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired and school district personnel;

- Roles and responsibilities of each agency including State lead agencies and qualified personnel responsible for transition services;

- Financial responsibilities; and

- Procedures for outreach and identification of students with disabilities who need transition services.

Cooperative Agreement between Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired and the South Dakota School for the Blind and Visually Impaired

The cooperative agreement between SBVI and the SD School for the Blind and Visually Impaired was implemented to coordinate efforts to ensure that students who are blind or visually impaired receive effective, seamless services as they make the transition from school to adult life and employment. The agreement specifies roles and responsibilities including:

- Consultation and technical assistance to assist educational agencies in planning for transition of students with disabilities from school to post-school activities, including vocational rehabilitation services;

- The role for transition planning by personnel of SBVI and SDSBVI and local school districts that facilitate the development and completion on individualized education programs;

- Roles and responsibilities including financial responsibilities of each agency and determination of state lead agencies and qualified personnel responsible for transition services; and

- Procedures for outreach to and identification of students who are blind or visually impaired who need transition services.

The cooperative agreement stipulates that SBVI and the School for the Blind and Visually Impaired will provide a full time staff person who is committed to working with students who are blind and visually impaired on a state wide basis. This staff person provides technical assistance, supports and services as the students move from their school settings to post-secondary school settings.

This agreement assures coordination of services between SBVI and the School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (SDSBVI) to ensure that students who are blind and visually impaired receive effective, seamless services as they make the transition from school to adult life and employment. Students served by SDSBVI reside both at the residential school in Aberdeen, as well as, in school districts on a statewide basis. Outreach personnel employed by SDSBVI work with students who are blind or visually impaired in the public school system.

SBVI and SDSBVI share information with students, parents, and local school districts about the importance of the skills of blindness to the success of students in the world of work. SBVI is an active participant in the transition planning process and participates in IEP meetings for students as early as age 14. For those students enrolled at SDSBVI, SBVI representatives will also attend pre-staffing meetings when appropriate. SBVI helps to determine appropriate vocational direction by providing work experiences and vocational counseling and guidance. The agreement clearly outlines that SBVI will attempt to have an IPE in place for every eligible student prior to graduation.

SDSBVI has a responsibility to all South Dakota resident students with visual impairments under the age of twenty-one. For students of "transition age" between 14 and 21, that responsibility is shared with SBVI. SDSBVI employs a transition specialist through a cooperative agreement with SBVI and has outreach consultants that work with students, families, schools, and SBVI staff on a state wide basis. Blind or visually impaired students residing in school districts that are unwilling to participate in project skills agreements are served through the SDSBVI transition specialist and outreach consultants to participate in paid work experience.

In addition, SBVI works with the liaisons from the Transition Services Liaison Project to provide additional technical assistance and training to students with disabilities, families, local education agencies and adult service agencies. These trained professionals collaborate to perform transition planning and provide the consultation necessary to promote a smooth transition for students from the educational setting to enter or prepare for employment.

Both SBVI and SDSBVI personnel are involved in transition services and regularly discuss mutual efforts and plan appropriate activities to benefit students and family members. A sharing of information takes place due to coordinated efforts between the SBVI Board and SDSBVI Advisory Council. Summer programs are coordinated to allow students to benefit from both SBVI and SDSBVI activities, and students are encouraged to participate in the Youth Leadership Forum, which is a week long seminar intended to prepare high school age youth to be community leaders and self advocates. All entities have been involved in planning the program, interviewing students, interviewing project staff and funding program activities.

Plans to facilitate transition services of students with disabilities

SBVI continues to explore and expand transition services available to students with visual disabilities. SBVI is committed to provide quality services in order to ensure a smooth and thorough transition into the adult world. SBVI believes that there should be an increased emphasis on independence, the importance of matching a person to a career that they are passionate about, and the potential of a mentoring program that will assist transition age consumers in making wise decisions on their future.

This screen was last updated on Jun 24 2009 5:12PM by Eric Weiss

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.

Cooperative Agreements with Private Non-Profit Organizations

Makeup of CRPs

Due to the geographic realities which exist in South Dakota, the Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBVI) recognizes one of the best sources available for the provision of rehabilitation services are community rehabilitation programs (CRP). CRPs consist of Adjustment Training Centers, Mental Health Centers, Career Learning Centers, Job Shops, Independent Living Centers, and Communication Services for the Deaf.

Establishment of Cooperative Agreements

The Department has contractual agreements with private nonprofit community rehabilitation programs to define services and responsiblities of the Division and agencies providing services. These contracts are outcome based and have been designed to assist the CRPs to streamline services for individuals with disabilities including those who have vision loss and mental illness or developmental disabilities. The need for and decision to enter in to cooperative agreements is determined by the SBVI Division Director.

Manner in which services are purchased from CRPs

The Division has fee-for-service arrangements in place with private nonprofit community rehabilitation programs. The rates are outcome based and services are purchased by SBVI from CRPs utilizing an authorization process. The amount of services purchased depends upon the amount and type of services needed by consumers as defined in individual plans for employment. Agencies eligible to receive authorizations must be approved vendors and must be current service providers of the Department or have CARF Accreditation. Fees are increased each year in accordance with the recognized cost of living increases.

Training Needs Assessment

SBVI and the Division of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) annually assess the training needs of staff and providers; one method used to determine training needs is the administering of an annual survey. Community Rehabilitation Programs are offered the opportunity to submit surveys in order to provide their input on upcoming training offered by SBVI and DRS.

Improve capacity and quality of services from CRPs

The Division continually works on improving the capacity and quality of services from CRPs. This is typically done through training sessions offered by the Region VIII CRP Rehabilitation Continuing Education program and the State VR agencies. Annual training conferences include Employment Specialists Training, Midwinter conference, and the Fall Conference. SBVI has provided blindness-specific training to CRP job development providers as a strategy designed to improve the quality of services provided.

This screen was last updated on Jun 24 2009 5:14PM by Eric Weiss

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.

Arrangements and Cooperative Arrangements for the Provision of Supported Employment Services

The coordination of time limited and on-going support services is vital to the provision of supported employment services. The Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBVI) has been proactive in working collaboratively with service providers and public agencies to coordinate funding sources and policies related to supported employment. These efforts are categorized into two areas:

• Formal Cooperative Agreements

• Informal Cooperative Efforts with Agencies

Formal Cooperative Arrangements

SBVI and the Division of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) have in place a formal cooperative agreement with the Divisions of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, Office of Special Education, and the Department of Labor. The purpose of the cooperative agreement is to:

• Define supported employment and related terms;

• Address eligibility requirements;

• Define the referral process;

• Identify responsibilities of each agency;

• Define extended support services to be provided by the Division of Developmental Disabilities and the Division of Mental Health;

• Identify time-limited services to be provided by SBVI and DRS;

• Describe the process for service plan development;

• Outline requirements for transition to extended services; and,

• responsibilities for post-employment services.

The Division of Developmental Disabilities entered into a letter of understanding with SBVI and DRS defining how each agency’s funding sources are coordinated in regard to the time limited and on-going support services. This agreement has had a significant impact on service provision for consumers who once lived in institutions or Intensive Care Facilities. These individuals have the most significant impediments to employment and benefit from access SBVI services to achieve supported employment outcomes.

A document established to help coordinate the services and funding between the Divisions of Mental Health, SBVI, and DRS serves as a policy directive for the Community Mental Health Centers and the local SBVI and DRS Offices. It provides guidance in three areas relative to providing vocational services for individuals with severe and persistent mental illness:

1. Services provided by the Community Mental Health Center;

2. Services available from Vocational Rehabilitation;

3. Appropriate Division to pay for the variety of services.

This screen was last updated on Aug 20 2013 3:28PM by Eric Weiss

Attachment 4.10 Comprehensive System of Personnel Development

Data System on Personnel and Personnel Development

Comprehensive System of Personnel Development

This attachment describes the strategies, procedures, and activities that the Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBVI) has implemented to ensure trained staff are delivering quality services to applicants and consumers. The Assistant Director of SBVI is the designated training officer for the Division; this position works with the DRS training officer and other SBVI and DRS staff to coordinate activities related to the comprehensive system of personnel development.

Currently, SBVI employs seven vocational rehabilitation counselors who serve consumers statewide and one vocational rehabilitation counselor at the Rehabilitation Center for the Blind. A total of 564 individuals were served during FY 2012. Caseloads, territories, and customer service are reviewed periodically to determine the best utilization of existing staff and to determine future ratios to best meet the needs of vocational rehabilitation consumers in SBVI.

The Rehabilitation Act as amended and the Vocational Rehabilitation regulations refer to Qualified Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors. SBVI has the following definitions in place to address qualified rehabilitation counselors employed by the Division:

Qualified Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor:

All Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors, Managers and State Office Personnel who

a. meet the standards for Senior Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor;

b. meet the standards for Senior Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor but are not CRC certified; or

c. meet the standards for Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor; have been employed by the Division for a minimum of six months; and have an approved plan to become CRC certified.

Counselors who meet the requirements to become certified through the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC) are considered qualified counselors. However, to be eligible for a promotion to senior counselor, counselors are required to be certified by the CRCC. Six of the eight SBVI counselors are CRC certified. The two remaining counselors are in approved plans to become CRC certified.

SBVI anticipates the need to recruit 5 counselors in the next five-year period. The average personnel turnover is 71 percent for a five-year period. South Dakota State University (SDSU) offers a master’s of science in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling. Recruitment of qualified staff is accomplished through promoting job announcements at SDSU in addition to other universities in Region VIII with Masters level programs. The University of Northern Colorado, Montana State University and Utah State University are other sources for recruitment of graduates with master’s level degrees in vocational rehabilitation counseling. In addition, South Dakota universities offer accredited programs with master’s degrees in counseling. Graduates of these programs are recruited for vocational rehabilitation counselor openings. Graduates are hired and trained to prepare for the CRCC to meet the highest qualifications in the state for rehabilitation counselors.

The following chart illustrates the number of personnel who are employed by the state agency in the provision of vocational rehabilitation services, and includes current vacancies and projected vacancies in the next 5 years.

 

Row Job Title Total positions Current vacancies Projected vacancies over the next 5 years
1 Administration 4 0 1
2 Counselors 8 0 5
3 Support Staff 2 0 1
4 Rehabilitation Center Teachers 5 0 3
5 Rehabilitation Center Administration 3 0 1
6 Rehabilitation Center Employment Consultant 1 0 0
7 0 0 0
8 0 0 0
9 0 0 0
10 0 0 0

 

Data System

The system to collect and analyze data related to qualified personnel needs and personnel development consists of two components. The South Dakota Bureau of Human Resources (BHR) maintains a database of all training activities attended by Division staff including BHR training, seminars, workshops, conferences, and undergraduate and graduate level courses supported by the Division. Individual offices maintain files on educational backgrounds, training activities and goals and plans of employees to meet the agency requirements for qualified rehabilitation professionals and Certified Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC). Supervisors are required to address training needs as a part of the annual employee evaluation. Individual training needs are reported to the training officer to be considered in the analysis of results from the annual training needs assessment. This analysis assists with prioritizing future training.

The Division has a web-based management information system which includes a CSPD module for tracking employee training and education. Input of information is required of individual employees and/or supervisors with access to all information by the Training Officer and other management staff. This system is efficient for addressing individual training needs as well as for projecting future personnel and training priorities. Staff progress toward meeting CSPD requirements is also tracked by the system.

This chart shows the institution of higher education in the state (SDSU) that is preparing vocational rehabilitation professionals, the number of students enrolled at SDSU, and the number of students who graduated during the prior year.

 

Row Institutions Students enrolled Employees sponsored by agency and/or RSA Graduates sponsored by agency and/or RSA Graduates from the previous year
1 South Dakota State University 15 2 7 7
2 0 0 0 0
3 0 0 0 0
4 0 0 0 0
5 0 0 0 0

 

Recruitment and Retention of Qualified Staff

Recruitment of qualified staff is accomplished through announcing positions through professional organization such as the Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation and Education Professionals (ACVREP) and RehabACTion. Training opportunities are available through these organizations to assist SBVI in preparing staff to deliver training and to retrain in priority areas for vocational rehabilitation service provision. ACVREP provides training in blindness specific positions; this training leads to professional certification in vision rehabilitation, orientation and mobility, and low vision therapy.

South Dakota State University in Brookings (SDSU) is the only post secondary institution that offers masters degrees in rehabilitation counseling in South Dakota. SDSU started their masters program in the fall of 2005, and their first student received a masters in rehabilitation counseling in the fall of 2007. SBVI has a cooperative agreement with SDSU to provide internship opportunities, participate on their advisory council, and to recruit qualified candidates. SBVI provides paid internship opportunities when possible for students pursuing their Masters degree in Vocational Rehabilitation, and the Division also offers unpaid internship opportunities for students with other related degrees when appropriate.

Vocational rehabilitation counselors who do not possess a master’s degree and CRC certification are required to have a plan with time lines for pursuit of a master’s degree and CRC certification. Retention is accomplished through the opportunity for all entry-level vocational rehabilitation counselors to participate in masters level vocational rehabilitation programs, and, once meeting the requirements for Senior Counselor are eligible to receive promotion to this level.

Leadership and management training and assignments with senior level management teams assist counselors to prepare for supervisory and administrative positions. Senior rehabilitation counselors are encouraged to apply for management and administrative positions when there are vacancies. Promotional opportunities are available through opening supervisory and management positions to employees of the designated state unit who are qualified for the positions.

To address the priority of recruiting individuals with disabilities, the South Dakota Bureau of Human Resources has in rule that any applicant who meets minimum requirements for employment who has been certified to have a significant disability by a rehabilitation counselor will be interviewed for the position. This ensures that individuals who have disabilities have the opportunity to interview and compete for openings in the designated state unit and other programs in state government. Efforts to recruit individuals from minority backgrounds include announcing positions through the State Department of Labor and the state’s Native American Vocational Rehabilitation programs. Job announcements are available to individuals residing on Tribal lands and the state’s Reservations.

It is the policy of the Department to provide equal opportunity employment to all employees and applicants for employment. No person working at the Department’s facilities is to be discriminated against in employment because of race, religion, color, sex, age, national origin, or disability.

 

Personnel Standards

Working in conjunction with the Bureau of Human Resources, the Division has established minimum standards for rehabilitation counselors and senior rehabilitation counselors. These standards are reviewed periodically in light of changing personnel needs, labor market supply and training resources. The Division relies on state standards for secretarial and program administrator positions. These are generic job classifications within the state Bureau of Human Resources system. The Division does establish specific work experience requirements in order for individuals to enter these positions.

Newly hired rehabilitation counselors are required to have a degree that will lead towards CRC certification or, if they possess only a bachelor degree, must agree to pursue a master’s degree as a condition of employment. The Division will support costs associated with pursuit of master’s degrees. Funds for supporting employees’ pursuit of master’s level degrees consist of RSA grants, in-service training money and program 110 funds. Senior rehabilitation counselors are certified through the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor process. The priority in filling counselor vacancies is a master’s degree and CRC certification. Eligibility for CRC certification (already possesses a master’s degree but no certification) is the next preferred option. Due mostly to lower starting salaries compared to surrounding states, it is necessary to hire individuals with bachelor’s degrees for entry-level positions and require then to become qualified vocational rehabilitation counselors within eight years. Based on this requirement, the following illustrates the completion date anticipated for counselors in the next five years:

- Hire date in 2013; target date to CSPD standards of 2021;

- Hire date in 2014; target date to CSPD standards of 2022;

- Hire date in 2015; target date to CSPD standards of 2023;

- Hire date in 2016; target date to CSPD standards of 2024; and

- Hire date in 2017; target date to CSPD standards of 2025.

Since South Dakota is a small state, there are several one of a kind staff positions. Each year in the personnel performance evaluation process, SBVI identifies the professional development needs of these staff. Each employee’s immediate supervisor monitors individualized staff development plans. National certification standards are used for the Orientation and Mobility Specialists (ACVREP). The diabetic education specialist receives training specific to alternative methods for diabetic management for individuals who are diabetic and have vision loss, no certification is required. The Assistive Technology Specialist attends regional and national training to keep up to date on the latest advances in technology. The SBVI Low Vision Specialist is certified in Low Vision Therapy through the Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation and Education Professionals (ACVREP). In addition, staff hold certifications for Deaf-Blind services from Helen Kellar National Center; Traumatic Brain Injury, Braille and assistive technology through training and various accrediting organizations.

 

Staff Development

The state’s in-service plan and annual updates outline the strategies that the Division has developed to meet the professional or paraprofessional training needs of staff that includes specific training related to assessment, vocational counseling, job placement, and rehabilitation technology. The primary strategy of this plan is to assist rehabilitation counselors to obtain the necessary academic training and professional experience to qualify for national CRC certification. Another important strategy is coordination of resources to access the most comprehensive training opportunities. Resources include in-service training, training sponsored by the Technical Assistance and Continuing Education program Region VIII (TACE), and cooperation for training with other organizations (i.e. Department of Labor, Department of Education, and professional organizations such as SD RehabACTion and the Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired). Cooperation with regional master’s programs allows South Dakota counselors to participate in master’s level vocational rehabilitation courses with tuition and fees covered by RSA scholarships. The last element of this plan is the development of a career ladder that will reward staff for professional development.

In prior years, the Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired has approached personnel development through a number of avenues. Each employee’s current level of education and training, as well as short term and long term training needs are tracked by supervisors who evaluate methods for addressing these needs at least annually through the Performance Planning and Review System (PPAR). Individual training needs assessments are conducted to evaluate current levels of education, understanding of fundamentals of vocational rehabilitation, blindness and disability-related issues, professional development and related topics. Self evaluation, supervisor input and recommendation sections on the PPAR assist in assessing needs for training which may be pursued through a number of approaches. The results of the assessments are recorded for individuals, groups of related positions (i.e. rehabilitation counselors, rehabilitation teachers, supervisors, managers, clerical, etc.) and for the agency as a whole.

The PPAR system allows for ongoing feedback between employees and supervisors by incorporating a self-audit while addressing professionalism, work quality and areas for development as well as areas of strength. Training needs are addressed utilizing a form that not only identifies needed training, but also includes fields for the date the training is scheduled and the date it is attended. BHR workshops are identified under the following headings: supervisory, job enrichment, and technology with other training and job-specific skills also included in the document used to track need and attendance. The training officer works to identify resources for obtaining training in areas related to vocational rehabilitation (including the Rehabilitation Act Amendments, Workforce Investment Act and RSA regulations), including serving individuals with the most significant disabilities and those of minority backgrounds. Consumers responding to satisfaction surveys and input from the Board of SBVI are also methods utilized to identify training needs.

Cooperation with other entities in state government such as the Department of Labor, the Department of Health, and the Department of Education ensures that training opportunities are available which address topics relevant to the field of rehabilitation. Staff have access to intensive training which applies to serving individuals with disabilities, at little or no cost. These conferences and/or seminars are also an opportunity to collaborate with other entities who deliver services to individuals with disabilities. Department of Labor employees are asked to provide training on labor market trends, economic development opportunities and other information to assist in training staff to utilize all existing resources when assisting consumers with job development and job placement activities.

Paraprofessional staff are offered ongoing training in word processing and other software applications as well as office-related courses such as effective writing, customer service and organization skills through the Bureau of Human Resources. Courses specific to the vocational rehabilitation management information system and requirements specific to vocational rehabilitation are offered through in-service training sessions usually taught by agency specialty staff.

Leadership development and capacity building are addressed through distance learning courses as well as agency sponsored training sessions. Assistive technology training is available through DakotaLink, the state’s assistive technology project, the SBVI Assistive Technology Specialist or the State Bureau of Information and Technology (for employees with disabilities who utilize assistive technology on the job). Annual training conferences address current research through contracting with national Rehabilitation Research and Training Centers to address specific topics identified in the annual training needs assessment.

SBVI works with the state’s Native American Vocational Rehabilitation Projects and the Native American Independent Living Project to provide training to staff on cultural diversity. Ongoing training is provided to address informed choice as it relates to agency policies and practices. The State Rehabilitation Council has recommended strategies that have been implemented for addressing informed choice in the rehabilitation process.

 

Communication with Diverse Populations

Interpreters are available for all training sessions as well as to consumers who are deaf/blind. Braille, materials on disk and enlarged print are provided to all staff or consumers who request alternative formats. The Division has developed fee schedules and vendors to address the need for interpreters of foreign and Native American languages.

 

Coordination of the CSPD and In-service Training

Training on IDEA and transition services for students with disabilities is coordinated with the State Division of Special Education and the Transition Services Liaison Project. Training needs of the state’s Native American Vocational Rehabilitation Programs, Centers for Independent Living, the Client Assistance Program and community rehabilitation programs are also gathered and reported to the TACE and considered in planning training activities within the division.

As previously stated, training needs are addressed through a variety of resources. In-service training is the main resource with the TACE Region VIII addressing regional and national priorities. Other resources accessed by staff to meet their individual training needs include: workshops, conferences and seminars hosted by other government organizations such as Special Education, Department of Labor and the Bureau of Human Resources. Professional organizations (SD RehabACTion, Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired, etc.) regularly work with the training officer to prioritize topics relevant to employment of people with disabilities and base workshops or conference sessions on the training needs assessment conducted by the Division. Consumer organizations (SD Coalition of Citizens with Disabilities, SD Association of the Blind, National Federation of the Blind of SD, and the SD Association of the Deaf) are examples of sponsors of training. Distance learning activities in which SBVI employees participate provide a cost-effective method for participation in a number of topics pertinent to RSA priorities. Independent study and mentoring by supervisors and senior rehabilitation counselors are other means for meeting individual staff development needs.

This screen was last updated on Aug 21 2013 3:23PM by Eric Weiss

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.

Statewide Assessment

I. State Unified Plan

Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBVI), the Designated State Unit for South Dakotan’s who are blind or visually impaired submits this attachment to address the "Needs Assessment" section of the State Unified Plan. The results reflect comprehensive statewide needs assessment conducted in FFY 2011 for the 2012 state plan and is conducted every three years. This assessment was conducted in cooperation by the public vocational rehabilitation agencies in South Dakota (Division of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) and SBVI), in addition to the State Rehabilitation Councils (Board of SBVI and Board of Vocational Rehabilitation).

The Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired has conducted an assessment of the needs of all individuals with disabilities as per the Needs Assessment section of the State Unified Plan and the requirements of the Rehabilitation Act, and state plan requirements. Public vocational rehabilitation includes workforce partners in this assessment process to assure that the workforce needs of the state to include individuals with disabilities were addressed. This assessment includes the vocational rehabilitation needs of individuals with most significant disabilities, individuals with disabilities who have been unserved and underserved including individuals who are minorities and all components of the Statewide Workforce Investment System.

II. 2012 Triennial Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment

In carrying out the Triennial Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment (CSNA), SBVI has adapted its process after the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) model of Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment development, and in compliance with the 2011 instructions from RSA regarding the assessment process.

The South Dakota SBVI CSNA was guided by an Executive Committee composed of Directors of the Designated State Units (DRS and SBVI), key planning staff, and Chairs from the Boards of Vocational Rehabilitation, Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired and the Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC).

In addition to establishing the Executive CSNA committee, the South Dakota agencies (SBVI and DRS) worked directly with the Region 8 TACE in developing data sets, and in designing, and interpreting needs assessment surveys and instruments.

The primary role for the Executive Committee was to facilitate the development of and commitment to the emerging goals of this specific CSNA cycle. The Chairs of all three Boards worked with the respective Directors and staff in engaging the collaboration of their general Board membership. The information sources that constitute the foundation of the SBVI CSNA came from the review of the following data, documents, public hearings, listening sessions and surveys:

• American Community Survey and Census Data; compiled and analyzed in partnership with Region 8 TACE

• SBVI 911 Year End Program Data for 2009 and 2010

• A Report of VR Extant Data Analysis for Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment (South Dakota) Jan. 21, 2011, Sukyeong Pi, Ph.D. Research Associate, Office of Rehabilitation and Disability Studies.

• Department of Vocational Rehabilitation Board Meeting; Indicator 14 results from 2007-08 Exiters, Dr. Greg Cooch

• Post High School Transition Survey 2010; Black Hills Special Services Cooperative

• SBVI Consumer Satisfaction surveys 2009/10

• Consumer Satisfaction Longitudinal Report

• Project Skills Year End Data 2010

• Project Skills Survey 2009

• Analysis of FFY 2010 Year End Results of Federal Program Evaluation Standards

• FFY 2010 Year End Results of All Cases

• 2009 Joint meeting of the Board of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (BSBVI); Board of Vocational Rehabilitation (BVR); Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC) March 10, 2009

• Public Listening Session Notes; Kyle SD May 14, 2010

• Eagle Butte Listening Session; Eagle Butte, April 22, 2010

• Board of SBVI Video Conference Public Meeting: Aberdeen, Pierre, Rapid City and Sioux Falls - April 27, 2010

• SBVI Public Listening Session in conjunction with National Federation of the Blind of SD State Convention – May 7, 2010

• Partners In Policy Making: Sioux Falls 2010 Public Listening Session April 24, 2010

• Partners In Policy Making: Sioux Falls 2010 Public Listening Session April 18, 2009

• Key Informant Interviews:

o Dan Rounds: Community Rehabilitation Programs

o Mary Modena: Sioux Falls Multicultural Center; Minorities

o Bill Molseed; South Dakota Workforce Programs

o Patrick Czerny: Dakota Link, Assistive Technology

• SBVI Counselor Rehabilitation Needs Survey

• Unsuccessful Outcome (28) Survey

Attachment 4.11(a) will document the results of a comprehensive, statewide assessment, by relating the identified needs jointly developed by the SBVI administration and the SBVI Board (SRC). Needs will be described in this attachment and related to specific agency goals when possible. Certain needs that were described, but were not necessarily statewide needs, or in some cases beyond the immediate scope of VR services, will be addressed in terms of agency “response”. The sum of this attachment reflects the SBVI commitment to respond as completely as possible to the range of needs brought out through the CSNA process.

1) The Needs Of Individuals With Disabilities Who Have The Most Significant Disabilities, Including Their Need For Supported Employment Services

“Individual with a Most Significant Disability” means an individual with a disability who meets the criteria for having a significant disability and in addition has serious limits in two or more functional capacities (such as, but not limited to, mobility, communication, self care, self direction, interpersonal skills, work tolerance, or work skills) in terms of an employment outcome. Individuals who meet the criteria for this Priority Level I category are determined to be individuals with the “Most Significant Disability”. The needs identified for this category were as follows:

a) Transitions for Students with Disabilities including students with the most significant disabilities: SBVI has included in the 2012 State Plan a goal to address the input regarding the needs of students with disabilities transitioning from secondary school. The agency will continue to build on its successful program serving students with the most significant disabilities exiting the school systems. The Comprehensive Needs Assessment points to several reoccurring themes including enhancing mentoring programs for transition students with a priority of mentoring programs for transition students attending the South Dakota Rehabilitation Center for the Blind (SDRC) especially for evening and weekend activities at the SDRC.

Also identified is the fact that the transition students have benefited from Project Skills, which is a paid work experience through a cooperative agreement between the schools and SBVI.

b) VR Education: This is a category that SBVI and its Board are currently working on and one that continues to require attention. We heard several comments regarding teacher education regarding transition planning, particularly as it pertains to students who have significant visual impairments. One of the agency’s goals will be to facilitate student’s movement from school to post secondary education and/or employment. The agency will also be working on a goal to further develop outreach methods so that other referral sources, employers, and citizens who are blind or visually impaired are aware of the unique services provided by SBVI.

c) Transportation: Transportation emerged as a systemic issue across South Dakota. All planning categories identified the absence of transportation alternatives as issues for South Dakotans as potential impediments for individuals with disabilities in accessing work opportunities, services, and community resources. Individuals with the most significant disabilities were the not an exception to this need.

Response Statement: Access to transportation appears to be a systemic issue for citizens of South Dakota, and is not restricted to citizens with disabilities. While much of the needed response lies outside the scope of SBVI, the response of the agency will be to maximize:

1. Existing internal transportation support capacity within the case service system; and

2. Influence the larger systems of South Dakota that may have the capacity to expand the state’s transportation resources.

b) Life Transition Supports & Safety Net SSA Public Assistance: Results of the needs assessment revealed that consumers are struggling with managing the changes in personal and work relationships that occur in their personal lives over the course of their VR programs. The concern and confusion experienced by consumers over their SSA benefits and other safety net assistance, including the use of Social Security PASS Plan supports and the availability of benefits counseling can have a negative impact on their motivational state for work.

c) Assistive Technology: SBVI received a number of comments regarding the use of assistive technology for individuals who are blind or visually impaired. Included in these recommendations were the need for continued training, both for consumers and staff, equipment exchange, deaf/blind communication devices, and making sure that SBVI stays actively engaged in the area of assistive technology at the state level to insure accessibility for all individuals in South Dakota who need to make use of the different kinds of technology.

d) Mental Health Services: Mental Health issues appeared in the needs assessment more as a broad systemic service issue rather than a specific SBVI VR need. However, SBVI depends on certain mental health supports being in place in a community in order to successfully execute an Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) for individuals who, in addition to blindness or significant visual impairment, also have severe and persistent mental illness (SPMI). This topic also interacts with rural service issues where in the more remote South Dakota communities basic supports for individuals with SPMI are minimal or absent.

e) Pre-Placement Training: The CSNA needs assessment results indicated a growing need to assist consumers obtain the skills and supports necessary for successful daily living, money management, and skills to develop and maintain personal and work relationships. The absence of life management skills, including soft skills in work settings, undermines the effectiveness of VR programming. To address this emergent rehabilitation need a new goal will be introduced into the SBVI State Plan. It will be designed to ensure that SBVI consumers receive services that allow them to maximize their ability to communicate, interact and perform to their potential in employment settings. Strategies to implement this goal are also being developed by the agency.

2) The Needs Of Individuals With Disabilities Who Are Minorities And Have Been Unserved Or Underserved

SBVI surveyed consumers and staff regarding possible underservice for individuals with disabilities with an emphasis on serving individuals who are members of minority communities. In addition, as part of the CSNA, SBVI submitted its 2010 911 Data to for an impartial analysis intended, in part, to determine if the patterns of service in SBVI suggested underserved or underservice for any individuals, including minorities. The analysis was completed by Sukyeong Pi, Ph.D. Research Associate, Office of Rehabilitation and Disability Studies. Her analysis of the South Dakota Data concluded from the perspective of data, there was no evidence of under-service of minorities by SBVI in South Dakota. In addition further analysis of closure rates shows SBVI is closing minorities, including Native Americans, at a rate higher than the percentage of those minorities in the general South Dakota population. The data analysis indicated that minorities were being served at appropriate levels, but suggested that the agency may have some under-service concerns in some remote rural counties. At the qualitative level of the CSNA, communities and SBVI staff reported what they perceived as needs for minorities, unserved and underserved. Those perceived needs were as follows:

a) Transportation: Transportation emerged as a systemic issue across South Dakota. All planning categories identified the absence of transportation alternatives as issues for South Dakotans as potential impediments for individuals with disabilities in accessing work opportunities, services, and community resources. Minority communities reported this need frequently and often in relationship to very rural communities with few or no public transportation options.

Response Statement:

The response of the agency will be to maximize:

1. Existing internal transportation support capacity within the case service system; and

2. Influence the larger service systems of South Dakota that may have the capacity to expand the state’s transportation resources.

b) Life Transition Supports & Safety Net SSA Public Assistance: SBVI has committed to a goal of strengthening the agency’s ability to provide services to the ever changing minority population in South Dakota.

Response statement:

In response to South Dakota’s largest minority population; Native Americans, SBVI commits to continue cooperation with the Section 121 American Indian Projects in South Dakota. SBVI has cooperative agreements with all the Section 121 projects and an SBVI staff member is assigned as the liaison between the projects and the Division of SBVI.

1) The Division continues to recruit individuals from minority backgrounds for counseling, rehabilitation teaching and other positions in the agency.

2) The Division regularly invites the Section 121 Project staff to conferences or other training sessions sponsored by the Division.

3) In-service training needs assessments include the 121 American Indian Programs.

4) Employees and consumers of SBVI participate in the Native American cultural events to learn strategies for addressing cultural issues when serving South Dakotans of American Indian heritage.

5) SRC membership includes a representative of the Directors of the 121 American Indian Projects.

6) The SBVI Counselor Manual includes specific guidance on providing culturally sensitive services to American Indians with disabilities.

7) SBVI staff has done outreach activities on American Indian reservations during promotion of National Disability Employment Awareness Month and in conjunction with Reservations events such as health fairs.

8) The Division has been providing training and technical assistance to schools funded by the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

9) The Division continues working with the 121 American Indian Projects to update the cooperative agreements to better coordinate services between the 121 Programs and SBVI to ensure that individuals with blindness and/or severe visual impairments are being adequately served.

d) Language/Culture: Communication and cultural issues were expressed in qualitative inputs as issues for minority groups and under/unserved populations. The impediments were described in the framework of communication, trust and connection. The service implications of these three impediments depended on the specific minority community and their history. Many of those histories were further complicated in the refugee communities. The refugee communities were described in a category separate from the indigenous minority populations.

Response statement: SBVI has taken the following additional steps to assure equal access individuals with disabilities from other minority groups:

1) Sioux Falls is experiencing an increase in individuals with cultural diversity. SBVI has made arrangements with Lutheran Social Services for foreign language interpreting. The data as well as key informant interviews indicate growing numbers of specific minority communities seeking opportunity in South Dakota.

2) SBVI will continue to utilize organizations such as Lutheran Social Services and the Multicultural Center to bridge impediments of communication, trust and connection in order that the agency can more effectively conduct needs assessment, support referrals and service delivery.

e) Rural Citizen Supports: Some South Dakota rural communities are so sparsely populated that the economy of scale in these areas prohibit the maintenance of critical levels of the provider supports essential to supporting a VR program. The data suggests that some rural counties may be underserved, but the South Dakota response to any underservice cannot be a singular statewide strategy, but rather must be built around the local and regional economic realities.

Response statement: SBVI commits to the following activities to address the possibility of underservice in rural counties:

1) SBVI will work with SBVI district office staff to identify specific areas of underservice in South Dakota; concentrating on specific service needs in rural communities and feasible models of service response for those needs to blind and visually impaired consumers.

2) SBVI will work with the larger Workforce system of partners to use the system of resources to meet service needs in rural areas.

3) SBVI will continue to collaborate with the current Community Rehabilitation Program system of services to create new models of service to address needs for rural services.

4) SBVI will utilize the increasing access to technology in rural areas to further the provision of basic VR services and assistive technology to blind and visually impaired consumers in rural counties.

f) Interagency Service Collaboration: Frequently, responders described impediments and subsequent needs that called for actions outside the SBVI/VR scope of services. When this occurred, responders suggested turning to interagency collaboration and cooperation to tackle the broad systems issues that called for responses outside the VR scope. In response to this range of needs, SBVI is developing a goal and strategies to insure that partner agencies, as well as SBVI consumers are aware of the specific and unique services that are provided by SBVI staff.

g) Assistive Technology: Assistive Technology was described as a possible means by which both language barriers and services in some rural communities could be partially bridged. SBVI staff and their Board have a specific interest in ensuring that that the agency staff are well trained and positioned to offer assistance both to their consumers, and to other agency partners and employers.

Response statement:

1) Explore augmentative communication devices with Dakotalink as potential methods to bridge communications;

2) Utilize existing technology in SBVI to reach into the most rural communities that may be determined to be underserved.

3) The Needs Of Individuals With Disabilities Who Are Served Through Other Components Of The Statewide Workforce Investment System.

South Dakota has a comprehensive and coordinated public and private statewide workforce investment system. There is a partnership of agencies and employer resources under the guidance of the South Dakota Workforce Development Council. Public vocational rehabilitation is represented on the State Workforce Council and the Executive Director of State Workforce Council is a member of the Board of SBVI (SRC). In addition to the methods of identifying needs described elsewhere in this attachment, SBVI personnel partner with the state workforce system on local workforce boards, and by attending and presenting at statewide workforce conferences.

Public vocational rehabilitation analyzes employment trends and labor market demands as an agency represented on the South Dakota Career Council. Annually, SBVI participates with WIA on follow-up studies as to placements, retention, and wages. All of these initiatives allow SBVI to guide services and resources in higher demand job areas as well as fields that will provide good wages and careers for individuals with blindness and visual impairments.

A significant need for individuals who are served through the workforce investment system is the coordination of services and funding with the vocational rehabilitation programs. Because of this need, the South Dakota public vocational rehabilitation programs and the Department of Labor issued a joint memorandum to the Vocational Rehabilitation offices, One-Stop Career Centers, and the Career Learning Centers. This memorandum addresses the confusion regarding the level of services available when funded through the WIA.

In the South Dakota CSNA the SBVI staff survey indicated a high level of satisfaction with the current Work Force Partners system of services. Any needs appeared to be localized in certain communities and will be addressed through SBVI representatives and workforce teams at the local level.

In a Key Informant Interview with Bill Molseed, the South Dakota Work Force Investment Administrator, two recommendations stood out for the Work Force System. Mr. Molseed expressed his support of the services that offer formal certification of readiness to work to help persons with disabilities access to entry level work (i.e. National Career Readiness Scale). He also strongly encouraged and supported broad efforts of public education that would help employers and the public understand the productive capacity of individuals with disabilities.

Response Statement: SBVI is developing a goal to ensure a strong statewide community SBVI presence and partnerships with business, service providers, schools and service organizations. This will involve specific outreach and education efforts with strategies to support those efforts. SBVI will also utilize opportunities for public education through Central Office staff as well as local offices to promote the public’s understanding of the capability of persons with blindness and visual impairments.

4) Assessment of the need to establish, develop or improve Community Rehabilitation Programs

The CSNA surveys and forums gave evidence that the public and SBVI staff are looking for additional, enhanced resources to serve their clients through the provider world (Community Rehabilitation Programs). The data indicates that there is a staff perception that some change is needed in the provider service configuration to continue to effectively serve blind and visually impaired consumers. This involves primarily specific training for CRP staff regarding blindness and visual impairment. The various responses to needs identified for the Community Rehabilitation programs are not collected in one dedicated goal but rather distributed throughout the SBVI goals and strategies contained in attachment 4.11 (c).

The primary needs identified that relate to the South Dakota Community Rehabilitation Programs were:

a) Pre-Placement: In the CRP dimension of service provision, there was commentary on the impediments to employment presented by the lack of skills necessary to attract the positive attention of an employer; both interpersonal and occupational. The CSNA needs assessment results indicated a growing need to assist blind and visually impaired consumers with skills and supports necessary for successful daily living, money management, personal, and work relationships. These adult life management skills, including soft skills in work settings, undermine the effectiveness of VR programming. To address this emergent rehabilitation need a new goal has been introduced into the SBVI State Plan. The new goal will be to ensure that SBVI consumers receive services that allow them to maximize their ability to communicate, interact and perform to their potential in employment settings.

b) Life Transitions Skills: Unlike Pre-placement Training, the needs in this category would not be focused on job site/employer/public relations skills, but more on adult competencies of daily living. This category also emerged as a need and was often connected to the CRP program planning dimension. The needs tended to be expressed in terms of daily living competencies such as budgeting, maintaining housing, some references to medical management and occasionally personal relationships. There appeared to be a sense that daily living skill instability in the personal lives of consumers was making it increasingly hard for counselors and CRP providers to provide VR services. The surveys of unsuccessful consumers revealed that many individuals simply weren’t ready for work related services until they were able to master daily living skills and stabilize their medical issues.

Response Statement: SBVI intends to focus on providing training to raise awareness and understanding of blindness and visual impairments and related functional limitations; coordinate vocational rehabilitation services with the Special Education system; increase and strengthen transition services for students with blindness who are exploring their employment future; and expand and maintain transition services that have demonstrated effectiveness (Project Skills, Project Search, Youth Leadership Forum, Catch the Wave). SBVI has a real resource in their Rehabilitation Center for the Blind (SDRC) in Sioux Falls. Services at SDRC will be prioritized to address specific services and training in blindness related issues.

c) Job Placement/Coaching: Because of turnover and sometimes a minimal recruiting pool for potential job coaches in rural communities, issues of under trained job coaches were brought up as impediments to employment. This is particularly true regarding services for the blind and visually impaired. There were also concerns from both staff and consumers regarding low pay for job placement providers, which creates turnover in these positions.

Goals and Strategies

Findings from the statewide needs assessment and a number of other activities are utilized to identify goals and strategies to improve services. Goals and priorities are addressed in attachment 4.11(c)(1) through a number of activities planned with input elicited from the Board of SBVI, consumers of services and other partners in vocational rehabilitation. Strategies are addressed attachment 4.11(d). In addition to the statewide needs assessment, the following activities are instrumental in developing appropriate state goals and priorities and strategies for use of Title I funds in innovation and expansion activities:

• Consumer Satisfaction Surveys;

• Public Meetings;

• Focus Groups;

• Case file reviews;

• Conferences and Seminars;

• Board Strategic Planning Sessions;

• Surveys of staff;

• Input from consumer organizations;

• Agency data

The results reported for the state wide needs assessment for this state plan submission have been analyzed and goals/strategies developed with the full input of the Board of SBVI to address identified needs. Future state plan updates will address results from activities that provide information pertinent to goals and priorities and strategies to address innovation and expansion activities. Collaboration between the State Workforce Investment Council, Board of Vocational Rehabilitation, Board of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired, Statewide Independent Living Council and other entities in the workforce, education and social service systems will occur to ensure continuity of policies and procedures for service provision.

This screen was last updated on Jun 3 2011 10:20AM by Eric Weiss

Attachment 4.11(b) Annual Estimates

Annual Estimates

During FY 2014, the Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBVI) estimates that the following outcomes will be accomplished based on data from prior years and service projections:

1) Title I, Part B Vocational Rehabilitation – A total of 605 eligible consumers will be served at a case service cost of $1,674,640.

2) Title VI Part B Supported Employment – A total of 5 eligible consumers will be served at a case service cost of $6,000.

Estimate of the Number of Individuals Eligible for Services

According to the US Census Bureau’s 2009 American Community Survey, the total population of South Dakota between 18 and 64 years of age is 489,603. Approximately 44,659 of those individuals have a disability, and 4,999 of those individuals are blind or visually impaired.

The number of individuals eligible for services in the Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired has ranged from 152 to 233 over the past several years. SBVI expects to serve 610 consumers with 180 individuals found eligible in FY 2014. Of these, SBVI expects that 5 consumers will be in supported employment with 3 employment outcomes anticipated.

Estimate and Cost of Services for Eligible Individuals

The SBVI vocational rehabilitation program is currently able to serve all eligible individuals. The table shows an estimate of the number of individuals to be served and the estimated cost of services for FY 2014 based on current data.

Projected Costs, Service Goals, and Outcomes

October 1, 2013 to September 30, 2014

Estimated To Be Served, Estimated Successfully Rehabilitated, Projected Costs

Served under an IPE on or before Oct 1st: 430, 85, $1,176,448

Determined Eligible: 180, 34, $504,192

TOTAL: 610, 121, $1,680,640

State Unified Plan

To assist the Statewide Workforce System in developing the needs determination section of the State Unified Plan, SBVI provides all partners the statewide estimates of individuals who are eligible for vocational rehabilitation services and supported employment services and the costs for services provided as planning and programming data as part of Attachment 4.11(b) of the SBVI state plan update. These annual estimates are reported to the State Workforce Development Council as part of partner planning for addressing service needs statewide to include services to individuals with disabilities. Public vocational rehabilitation is represented on statewide workgroups that address service delivery and capacity among workforce partners.

Category Title I or Title VI Estimated Funds Estimated Number to be Served Average Cost of Services
Vocational Rehabilitation Title I $1,674,640 605 $2,768
Supported Employment Title VI $6,000 5 $1,200
Totals   $1,680,640 610 $2,755

This screen was last updated on Jun 24 2013 9:51AM by Eric Weiss

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.

State Goals and Priorities

The South Dakota Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBVI) mission is to provide individualized rehabilitation services that result in optimal employment and independent living outcomes for citizens who are blind or visually impaired. To accomplish this mission, the Board of SBVI (State Rehabilitation Council) and the Division of SBVI jointly developed the goals listed below. Information from the comprehensive statewide needs assessment was used in the development of these goals.

1. Improve the earnings, benefits, and career advancement for consumers served by SBVI.

2. Develop outreach methods so that referral sources, employers, and citizens who are blind or visually impaired are aware of the unique services provided by SBVI.

3. Ensure that Vocational Rehabilitation consumers receive services that allow for informed choice and help them to improve their ability to communicate, interact, and perform to their potential in their community.

4. Strengthen the agency’s ability to provide quality services to the ever-changing minority populations that exist in South Dakota.

5. Provide quality transition services to eligible students that facilitate the students’ movement from school to post-secondary education and/or employment and results in successful employment.

This screen was last updated on Jun 3 2011 10:22AM by Eric Weiss

Attachment 4.11(c)(3) Order of Selection

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

This agency is not implementing an Order of Selection.

This screen has never been updated.

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.

Goals and Plans for Distribution of Title VI, Part B Funds

The South Dakota Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBVI) is committed to ensuring that rehabilitation services are made available on a statewide basis to individuals with the most significant disabilities who have not traditionally been competitively employed or for whom competitive employment has been interrupted or intermittent. These services are available through the Supported Employment Program.

South Dakota SBVI’s annual allotment of Title VI-B funds is $6,000. Over 95% of the Title VI-B funds are spent for consumer services with less than 5% of Title VI-B funds spent for administrative costs. Supported employment funds are not expended until individuals with the most significant disabilities have been determined eligible for the 110 Vocational Rehabilitation Program. Expenditures exceeding the Title VI-B allotment are covered with funds from the 110 Program.

Goal

During FFY 2014, SBVI’s goal is to serve 5 eligible consumers using the allotted Title VI Part B Supported Employment funds. The Division will continue to expend over 95% of the Title VI-B funds on direct services for supported employment consumers. Supported employment funds will be authorized to providers of the consumer’s choice. The amount of funds authorized will be based upon the individual’s needs, type of placement, hours, and type of employment.

During the next fiscal year, the Division plans to distribute the Title VI-B funds through the fee for service system. This allows consumers who have greater needs to receive the level of services necessary to help them obtain supported employment services. This system will help promote the employment of individuals with the most severe disabilities.

State Unified Plan

As per the "Vision and Goals" section of the State Unified Plan, this attachment to the SBVI Vocational Rehabilitation state plan details SBVI’s goals and plans for the distribution of supported employment funds. These goals and plans specifically deal with the accomplishment of the vision and goals statement in the South Dakota Unified Plan.

Public vocational rehabilitation is a full partner in the development and implementation of the South Dakota career center system. This attachment details goals and plans for public vocational rehabilitation in achieving objectives for consumers served under Title IV of the Workforce Investment Act and outlines the provision of necessary supports and training to all individuals with disabilities served by this State Unified Plan who are not consumers of vocational rehabilitation. The DSU extends expertise at the state and local level to workforce partners and the Workforce Development Council in issues related to supported employment to include natural supports and identification of long term supports.

This screen was last updated on Aug 20 2013 3:12PM by Eric Weiss

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.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

State Strategies

The South Dakota Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBVI) has partnered with the Board of SBVI (State Rehabilitation Council) to develop the agency strategies listed below.

1. Improve the earnings, benefits, and career advancement for consumers served by SBVI.

Strategies:

1.1: Increase utilization of South Dakota Rehabilitation Center For the Blind to improve skills of consumers served, including alternative techniques and vocational services.

1.2: Improve the quality of job development services to SBVI consumers by providing specialty training on blindness and visual impairments to providers.

1.3: Increase the use of SSI/ SSDI benefits specialists services and training to assist individuals with significant disabilities to manage their benefits.

1.4: Provide annual training in areas of need that are specific to blindness or visual impairment including assistive technology.

1.5: Exceed performance levels established for the Performance Indicators under Evaluation Standard 1- Employment Outcomes (established in 34 CFR Sec. 361.84(c)(1) of the Federal Regulations).

2. Develop outreach methods so that referral sources, employers, and citizens who are blind or visually impaired are aware of the unique services provided by SBVI.

Strategies:

2.1: Design and disseminate outreach materials and participate in activities that target employers to educate them on the capabilities of people who are blind or visually impaired.

2.2: Annually conduct two or more activities that promote services for citizens with vision loss including those from minority backgrounds.

2.3: Provide annual training and materials for staff to train them to market services to targeted audiences.

2.4: Annually review and update outreach materials and procedures that staff use to promote services to referral sources, employers and other entities.

3. Ensure that Vocational Rehabilitation consumers receive services that allow for informed choice and help them to improve their ability to communicate, interact, and perform to their potential in their community.

Strategies:

3.1: Develop assistive technology training resources to improve accessibility for individuals who are blind or visually impaired, including those with most significant disabilities.

3.2: Increase the provision of independent living and social skills training when necessary to VR consumers to ensure that they have the skills necessary to obtain employment.

3.3 Promote access to programs and services in the statewide workforce investment system.

4. Strengthen the agency’s ability to provide quality services to the ever-changing minority populations that exist in South Dakota.

Strategies:

4.1: Maintain regular contact with Native American Nations and minority service agencies to increase awareness of services that are available.

4.2: Collaborate with tribal VR programs to ensure that all eligible individuals are served in an effective and efficient manner on reservations and Tribal lands.

4.3: Provide bi-annual training to agency staff to provide tools for meeting the cultural and linguistic needs of culturally diverse populations.

5. Provide quality transition services to eligible students that facilitate the students’ movement from school to post-secondary education and/or employment and results in successful employment.

Strategies:

5.1: Continue transition activities and services, such as Project Skills, Project Search, the Youth Leadership Forum, and SBVI Transition Week, that provide students with valuable experience and skills needed to move from school to employment.

5.2: Develop additional mentoring opportunities for students who are blind or visually impaired.

5.3: Collaborate with the SD School for the Blind and Visually Impaired and the SBVI Transition Specialist to provide statewide education to teachers, students and family members about services available to students through SBVI.

Future Utilization of Innovation and Expansion Funds

Section 101 (a)(18) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended requires the State Vocational Rehabilitation Agency to reserve and use a portion of the funds for the development and implementation of innovative approaches to expand and improve the provision of vocational rehabilitation services to individuals with disabilities, with an emphasis on services to individuals with the most signifcant disabilities; and to support the funding of the State Rehabilitation Council (Board of SBVI).

The Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired has reserved funds for utilization in innovation and expansion activities. These funds will be used for the following activities:

• Support the costs of the Board of SBVI. This includes staff costs, accommodations and other direct costs involved in Board activities.

• Support initiatives approved by the Board of SBVI to expand and improve the provision of vocational rehabilitation services to individuals with disabilities, particularly individuals with the most significant disabilities, consistent with the findings of the statewide assessment and goals and priorities of the State.

• Areas of emphasis include the provision of assistive technology services and devices, improving community rehabilitation programs, and optimizing employment opportunities and outcomes for individuals served by SBVI.

 

This screen was last updated on Jul 21 2011 4:31PM by Eric Weiss

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

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

Evaluation and Reports of Progress

Progress in Accomplishing Strategies and Goals

This attachment of the State Plan provides a summary of accomplishments in completing the Strategies and Goals as identified in the previous state plan submission, Attachments 4.11(c)(1) and 4.11(d). Progress in Accomplishing Strategies and Goals

This attachment of the State Plan provides a summary of accomplishments in completing the Strategies and Goals as identified in the previous state plan submission, Attachments 4.11(c)(1) and 4.11(d). All goals were achieved in FY 2012, and all strategies contributed to achieving the goals that are outlined. There were no factors that impeded the achievement of goals.

1. Improve the earnings, benefits, and career advancement for consumers served by SBVI.

Strategy 1.1: Increase utilization of South Dakota Rehabilitation Center for the Blind to improve skills of consumers served, including alternative techniques and vocational services.

• In comparing FY 2012 to FY 2011, utilization was nearly identical. 234 students attended training in FY 2012 as compared to 235 in FY 2011.

Strategy 1.2: Improve the quality of job development services to SBVI consumers by providing specialty training on blindness and visual impairments to providers.

• 2012: CTAT Employment Specialist Training was offered in RC on April 17-19, 2012. “How to work with people who are blind or VI” was a topic.

Strategy 1.3: Increase the use of SSI/ SSDI benefits specialist services and training to assist individuals with significant disabilities to manage their benefits.

• Benefits specialist services were provided to 14 consumers in FY 2012. A benefits specialist will be included in a future VR counselor staff meeting in order to further promote the services that are offered.

Strategy 1.4: Provide annual training in areas of need that are specific to blindness or visual impairment including assistive technology (AT).

• Summer, 2012: A consultant provided training to SDRC staff on AT.

• September, 2012: Additional one-on-one training was provided to SBVI staff with visual impairments on Microsoft Office products and JAWS.

Strategy 1.5: Exceed performance levels established for the Performance Indicators under Evaluation Standard 1- Employment Outcomes (established in 34 CFR Sec. 361.84(c)(1) of the Federal Regulations).

• SBVI exceeded performance levels set for all six Standard 1 Performance Indicators in FY 2012.

2. Develop outreach methods so that referral sources, employers, and citizens who are blind or visually impaired are aware of the unique services provided by SBVI.

Strategy 2.1: Design and disseminate outreach materials and participate in activities that target employers to educate them on the capabilities of people who are blind or visually impaired.

• In FY 2012, staff developed additional referral methods to facilitate outreach to employers in all areas of the state.

Strategy 2.2: Annually conduct two or more activities that promote services for citizens with vision loss including those from minority backgrounds.

• SBVI co-sponsored the FY 2012 Fall Conference (Oct 16-18, 2012) entitled “Oyate Ki Kawita Upi”- The People Coming Together. This conference featured a number of presentations on coordination and services for Native Americans with disabilities.

• SBVI organized and co-sponsored a disability summit on the Lower Brule Indian Reservation on April 26, 2012. This event included entities involved in disability services on and off the reservation.

Strategy 2.3: Provide annual training and materials for staff to train them to market services to targeted audiences.

• Videoconference training was conducted for staff that included tips and strategies for using the outreach materials that were developed as a result of the marketing campaign.

Strategy 2.4: Annually review and update outreach materials and procedures that staff use to promote services to referral sources, employers and other entities.

• A desk reference was developed for staff in FY 2012 that included a list of available materials and distribution strategies that were based on past experiences, input from the board, and research conducted during the outreach campaign.

3. Ensure that Vocational Rehabilitation consumers receive services that allow for informed choice and help them to improve their ability to communicate, interact, and perform to their potential in their community.

Strategy 3.1: Develop assistive technology training resources to improve accessibility for individuals who are blind or visually impaired, including those with most significant disabilities.

• In FY 2012 SBVI partnered with other service providers to apply for a grant under the Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program in South Dakota. This program will provide assistive technology to South Dakota citizens who have a combination of significant vision and hearing loss.

Strategy 3.2: Increase the provision of independent living and social skills training when necessary to VR consumers to ensure that they have the skills necessary to obtain employment.

• Out of the 48 VR consumers that responded to the VR consumer satisfaction survey, 42 responded that services helped them to live more independently at home and in the community.

Strategy 3.3: Promote access to programs and services in the statewide workforce investment system.

• SBVI supports the South Dakota Disability Employment Initiative (SD DEI), a Department of Labor and Regulation initiative that works with providers, employers and youth to improve coordination and collaboration among employment and training programs, across multiple service delivery systems, at state and local levels, to build effective community partnerships that leverage public and private resources to better serve individuals with disabilities and improve their employment outcomes. The goal of the South Dakota DEI is to improve the education, training, and employment opportunities and outcomes of young adults, ages 18-24, with disabilities who are unemployed, underemployed, and/or receiving Social Security disability benefits.

Strategy 3.4: Serve at least 5 individuals in Supported Employment to ensure services are comprehensive and have long term supports.

• Training provided on supported employment strategies and person centered planning led to counselors providing supported employment services and identifying long terms supports for 12 SBVI consumers in FY 2012.

4. Strengthen the agency’s ability to provide quality services to the ever-changing minority populations that exist in South Dakota.

Strategy 4.1: Maintain regular contact with Native American Nations and minority service agencies to increase awareness of services that are available.

• In FY 2012 SBVI joined the Division of Rehabilitation Services and the Directors of the Native American Vocational Rehabilitation Programs in meetings designed to continue the positive strides that have been made over the past years in coordinating services and promoting the employment of Native American citizens who are blind or visually impaired.

Strategy 4.2: Collaborate with tribal VR programs to ensure that all eligible individuals are served in an effective and efficient manner on reservations and Tribal lands.

• SBVI staff utilize the cooperative agreements that are in place with Native American Vocational Rehabilitation Programs as a guide when coordinating services on reservations and tribal lands.

Strategy 4.3: Provide bi-annual training to agency staff to provide tools for meeting the cultural and linguistic needs of culturally diverse populations.

• 2012: Fall Conference (Oct 16-18, 2012) entitled “Oyate Ki Kawita Upi”- The People Coming Together. This conference featured a number of presentations on coordination and services for Native Americans with disabilities.

5. Provide quality transition services to eligible students that facilitate the students’ movement from school to post-secondary education and/or employment and results in successful employment.

Strategy 5.1: Continue transition activities and services, such as Project Skills, Project Search, the Youth Leadership Forum, and SBVI Transition Week, which provide students with valuable experience and skills needed to move from school to employment.

• 22 total clients participated in FY 2012 transition activities. This was comparable to the number that participated in similar events in FY 2011 (24).

Strategy 5.2: Develop additional mentoring opportunities for students who are blind or visually impaired.

• SBVI is working with the National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision (NRTC) at Mississippi State University to offer mentoring opportunities to students in South Dakota who will be graduating from college.

Strategy 5.3: Collaborate with the SD School for the Blind and Visually Impaired and the SBVI Transition Specialist to provide statewide education to teachers, students and family members about services available to students through SBVI.

• SBVI has increased administrative supervision and worked with the transition specialist to ensure that enhanced VR services are being provided to SBVI consumers. In addition, SBVI has entered into an agreement with the Transition Services Liaison Project to conduct additional outreach and education for students with disabilities.

 

Supported Employment: Goals and Performance

SBVI is committed to ensuring that rehabilitation services are made available on a statewide basis to individuals with the most significant disabilities who have not traditionally been competitively employed or for whom competitive employment has been interrupted or intermittent. Supported employment funds are authorized to providers of the consumer’s choice. The amount of funds authorized is based upon the individual’s needs, type of placement, hours, and type of employment.

Performance: in FY 2012 twelve SBVI consumers received supported employment services. Services included job placement, job coaching, employment follow along, and other services needed to support and maintain those consumers in their chosen employment in an integrated setting. Once supported employment funds are exhausted, Section 110 vocational rehabilitation funds are used to support individuals with the most significant disabilities to obtain and retain employment based on their individual needs.

Goal: During FFY 2014, SBVI’s goal is to serve 5 eligible consumers using the allotted Title VI Part B Supported Employment funds.

 

Federal Program Evaluation Standards

The federal government measures vocational rehabilitation agency performance in part by using 6 “Standard 1” performance indicators. A description of each indicator, its minimum performance level (in parentheses), and SBVI’s performance on each indicator is illustrated below. SBVI has exceeded all 6 of the Standard 1 indicators in the previous seven years (FY 2004-2011).

Standard 1: Employment Outcomes

1.1 The difference between the number of successful closures during the current performance period compared to the number of successful closures during the previous performance period.

1.2 The percentage of individuals exiting the program during the performance period who have achieved an employment outcome after receiving services.

1.3 The percentage of consumers who exit the VR program in competitive employment at or above the state minimum wage.

1.4 The percentage of those individuals who have significant disabilities who exit the VR program in competitive employment at or above the state minimum wage.

1.5 The ratio of the average hourly earnings of all individuals in competitive employment to the average hourly earnings of all employed individuals in the state.

1.6 The difference in the percentage of individuals at application versus closure who reported their income as the largest single source of support.

FY 2011 SBVI Performance on Standard 1 Performance Indicators

Indicator, Minimum Requirement, Division Performance

Standard 1: Employment Outcomes, Meet 4 of the 6 Indicators, 6 of the 6 Indicators were met

Indicator 1.1 214 228

Indicator 1.2 68.90% 76.51%

Indicator 1.3 35.40% 93.86%

Indicator 1.4 89.00% 100.00%

Indicator 1.5 0.59 0.698

Indicator 1.6 30.40% 35.05%

Standard 2: The ratio of the percent of individuals with a minority background to the percent of individuals without a minority background exiting the program who received VR services.

Indicator 2.1: Minority Background Service Rate- SBVI served less than 100 individuals from minority backgrounds so cannot apply the performance level of .80 prescribed by RSA. According to the 2010 Census, South Dakota’s minority (non-white) population was 14.1%. The largest minority group in South Dakota involves American Indians from nine South Dakota Reservations, making up approximately 9% (8.8% according to 2010 U.S. Census data) of the state’s total population. In FY 2012, 12.7% of SBVI closures were comprised of individuals of American Indian descent, and 19.9% of all closures reported were from a minority background, exceeding census data for minorities in the general population of the state. Efforts in FY 2012 included collaboration with the Directors of the Native American Vocational Rehabilitation Programs, utilization of the cooperative agreements that are in place with Native American Vocational Rehabilitation Programs as a guide when providing outreach, and partnering with a Tribal VR agency whenever possible to host public meetings.

 

State Unified Plan

The State Unified Plan requires partner agencies to describe actions that will be taken if performance falls short of expectations. The Rehabilitation Act provides remedies and plans for state agencies that do not achieve required performance standards. State Plan Attachment 4.11(e)(2) addresses Unified Plan requirements in their entirety. This attachment clearly demonstrates:

? The Division of SBVI’s descriptions as to achievement of all goals and strategies described in the FFY 2014 State Plan attachments 4.11(c)(1) and 4.11(d).

? That SBVI exceeds all standards and indicators in the Rehabilitation Act.

? There is an evaluation of progress implemented to improve the effectiveness of the vocational rehabilitation program.

? A Quality Assurance Plan is in place to address performance through a variety of activities on an ongoing basis.

Performance outcomes of both vocational rehabilitation programs in South Dakota (general and blind) are summarized for and discussed with the Workforce Development Council in addition to the state rehabilitation councils (Board of SBVI and Board of Vocational Rehabilitation).

Utilization of Innovation and Expansion Funds – SBVI

The Rehabilitation Act requires that a portion of funds be reserved for innovation and expansion activities. The Division of SBVI works with the Board to prioritize these activities. The Board of SBVI utilizes the Division senior secretary for support of Board activities due to the limited resources available for personnel. Activities supported by the Board of SBVI in FY2012 were as follows:

• Costs associated w/ Board Member attendance at quarterly meetings;

• Public Meeting Promotion and Facilitation (to gather input on the need to expand services, especially for individuals with the most significant disabilities);

• Consumer Satisfaction Surveys;

• Joint activities with the Board of Vocational Rehabilitation and the Statewide Independent Living Council;

• National Disability Employment Awareness Month Activities;

• Workshop registration and travel expenses for Board Members attendance at agency training, RSA sponsored training, and consumer conventions;

• Workshop registration and travel expenses for consumers’ attendance at state conventions of consumer organizations; and

The Board Assistive Technology Advisory Committee made recommendations related to assistive technology devices and training for consumers that were implemented by the Division of SBVI.

Board members participate in prioritizing innovation and expansion activities which impact citizens who are blind or visually impaired. Board members provided guidance on questions and implementation of the consumer satisfaction surveys and the statewide needs assessments. The Board recommends targeted activities to promote capabilities of citizens with vision loss.

This screen was last updated on Aug 21 2013 3:34PM by Eric Weiss

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

Quality, Scope and Extent of Supported Employment Services

The Rehabilitation Act recognizes supported employment as a legitimate vocational rehabilitation outcome. The 1998 amendments to the Rehabilitation Act maintained many of the core components of the original supported employment regulations but made the program more effective and flexible in assisting persons with the most significant disabilities to successfully obtain and maintain competitive employment in integrated work settings. Supported employment services are a central link in the rehabilitation service delivery system in South Dakota.

Supported Employment Definition

The Act as amended defines supported employment as:

Competitive work in integrated work settings, or employment in integrated work settings in which individuals are working toward competitive work, consistent with the strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice of the individuals with the most significant disabilities for whom competitive employment:

a) has not traditionally occurred; or

b) has been interrupted or intermittent as a result of a significant disability; and

c) who, because of their nature and severity of their disability, need intensive supported employment services for the period, or extended services to perform such work;

d) This also includes transitional employment for persons with the most significant disabilities due to mental illness.

Quality of Supported Employment

Ensuring that quality supported employment services are being provided to individuals with the most significant disabilities in South Dakota is a priority for the Division of SBVI. Quality is measured by more than just the number of individuals who receive supported employment services. Quality also incorporates key values such as self-determinism, choice, person-centered supports, quality of life, and full inclusion.

The Division is committed to providing quality supported employment services to individuals with disabilities. Supported employment programs have been developed in all of the adjustment training centers and nine of eleven mental health centers in South Dakota. In addition, supported employment services are available through one school cooperative, Communication Services for the Deaf, and the South Dakota Rehabilitation Center for the Blind. These supported employment programs provide services through the use of individual placements, enclaves, and mobile work crews.

Extent of Supported Employment

The State Vocational Rehabilitation Agency provides time-limited services needed to support an individual in employment. The services provided to supported employment consumers who were successfully rehabilitated consist of:

1. Assessment

2. Counseling & Guidance

3. Job Finding

4. Job Placement

5. One-the-Job-Training

6. Assistive Technology

Vocational Rehabilitation can fund a maximum of 18 months of job coaching and follow-along services unless the Individual Plan for Employment (IPE) indicates that more than 18 months of services are necessary for the individual to achieve job stability prior to transitioning to extended services.

Prior to the purchase of supported employment services, the need for the services, the appropriate extended services and funding, and the appropriate agency agreeing to provide the services are established and identified on the IPE. The transition to the extended services (long term funding source) occurs when 18 months of job coaching and follow along services have been provided or earlier if the following three requirements are met:

1. The individual's employment is stable;

2. The individual has met the hourly goal of employment established in the IPE; and

3. The extended services are immediate without any interruption in the provision of the ongoing services to maintain employment.

If the IPE indicates that more than 18 months of services are necessary in order for the individual to achieve job stability, the time-limited services of job coaching and follow along can exceed 18 months. After the individual has transitioned to extended employment, the individual must maintain employment for at least 90 days before the consumer's case is a successful closure.

This screen was last updated on Jun 24 2009 5:42PM by Eric Weiss

System Information

System information

The following information is captured by the MIS.

Last updated on:08/21/2013 3:34 PM

Last updated by:sasdbweisse

Completed on: 08/22/2013 9:00 AM

Completed by: sasdbweisse

Approved on: 08/22/2013 9:09 AM

Approved by: rscoshellj