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What's New in RSA

ED and DOL Revise WIOA Negotiations and Sanctions Guidance

On May 10, 2023, ED and DOL issued a revision to the joint policy guidance outlining the WIOA performance accountability system’s negotiations and sanctions processes; RSA reissued TAC-20-02: Negotiations and Sanctions for the WIOA Core Programs. This joint policy guidance rescinds and replaces the joint policy guidance published on February 6, 2020. Through this revised guidance, the Departments: 

  • Revise their approach to using the statistical adjustment model for the purpose of assessing state performance;
  • Clarify the implementation of potential financial sanctions for consecutive performance failures occurring across multiple State Plan periods; and
  • Clarify that states can be sanctioned up to 10 percent of the Governor’s Reserve Allotment if there is consecutive performance failure and a failure to report for the same program year.

The joint policy guidance also continues to delineate the process for negotiating levels of performance and explains the two instances in which a state may be sanctioned.  ED and DOL are coordinating joint technical assistance to further explain these revisions; RSA will announce its availability in the near future. Please contact your RSA State Liaison with any questions.

(May 10, 2023)

Senate Confirms OSERS Assistant Secretary

On May 10, 2023, the Senate confirmed Glenna Wright-Gallo as Assistant Secretary for the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS). Secretary Cardona issued the following statement:

“I am thrilled that Glenna Wright-Gallo, a lifelong educator and accomplished special education leader, has been successfully confirmed as the Department of Education’s new assistant secretary for special education and rehabilitative services. Ms. Wright-Gallo has spent decades supporting students with disabilities and their families both in the classroom and as an administrative leader in the Utah and Washington public education systems. Her commitment to meeting the needs of the special education community and strong track record of improving outcomes are exactly what we need at this critical moment in our recovery from the pandemic, and I look to working with her to raise the bar for students with disabilities and their families.”

RSA is a component of OSERS within the U.S. Department of Education. The mission of OSERS is to improve early childhood, educational, and employment outcomes and raise expectations for all people with disabilities, their families, their communities, and the nation. 

(May 10, 2023)

RSA Reissues Guidance related to State Rehabilitation Council Membership

On April 13, 2023, RSA reissued TAC-23-02: Federal Requirements Governing the Composition and Membership of, and Appointments to, the State Rehabilitation Councils. Through this guidance, RSA reissued guidance from TAC 12-01, addressed a technical change related to the membership of the representative of the American Indian Vocational Rehabilitation Services projects, and clarified the appointment of, and term limits for, the director of VR agencies. State Rehabilitation Councils are vital components of the VR  system. In addition to reviewing, evaluating and advising VR agencies, they ensure that the voice of the community of stakeholders is heard as agencies develop and implement their policies and procedures. 

(April 13, 2023)

OSEP Announces New Transition Initiative

On April 11, 2023, RSA's partners at the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) announced a kickoff event for a new transition initiative, Expect, Engage, Empower: Successful Transitions for All, virtually on May 10, 2023 at 1:00PM Eastern. 

Improving how we address transition services for youth with disabilities and their families is a critical need that will only be improved through prioritized and collaborative efforts. As young adults prepare to move from school to postsecondary education, community living, and competitive integrated employment, effective transition planning can help them become independent, productive adults. This initiative is an opportunity to bring together various stakeholders to explore potential strategies and innovative approaches to address transition for children and youth with disabilities. Additional updates will be posted at Expect, Engage, Empower: Successful Transition for AllPlease register for the kickoff event here

(April 11, 2023)

RSA Issues NIA for Disability Innovation Fund: Pathways to Partnerships

On April 5, 2023, RSA issued a notice inviting applications for the Disability Innovation Fund: Pathways to Partnerships Innovative Model Demonstration Project - Assistance Listing Number 84.421E. On April 20, 2023, RSA shared this video announcement to accompany the notice. On May 23, 2023, RSA extended the application deadline to July 7, 2023 through this Federal Register Notice

More information is available at Pathways to Partnerships

The Pathways to Partnership program is the largest discretionary grant administered by RSA, with an estimated $224 million available to fund multiple innovative model demonstration projects administered through partnerships among VR agencies, state or local education agencies, and CILs focused on the creation of systemic approaches to improve access to pre-employment transition services for students with disabilities. As young people with disabilities move through the school system, many do not have exposure to self-advocacy training, careers, and independent living opportunities. This historical funding opportunity advances a key goal of the Biden-Harris Administration to pave a clear and robust path to independent living and competitive integrated employment as young people with disabilities transition from high school to postsecondary endeavors.

(April 5, 2023)

Joint Webinar on WIOA Co-Enrollment

On March 28, 2023, RSA and its Federal partners delivered a technical assistance webinar: Co-Enrollment Across WIOA Core Programs: Requirements, Promising Practices, and Resources

WIOA requires States to report the number of participants who are enrolled in more than one core program in their annual performance reports. This webinar reviewed the data collection and performance reporting requirements under WIOA and shared best practices, from States, to collect and report co-enrollment of participants across the six core programs. A recording of the webinar is available on WorkforceGPS

(March 3, 2023)

RSA Publishes VR Program Guidance regarding Sources of Match

On February 27, 2023, RSA issued TAC 23-01: Allowable Sources of Non-Federal Share for the State VR Services Program. This guidance promotes a better understanding of the various allowable sources of non-Federal match available under the VR program. With this improved knowledge and understanding of available sources of match, VR agencies should be able to maximize the expenditure of available Federal funds to increase competitive integrated employment and supported employment outcomes and self-sufficiency for individuals with disabilities participating in the VR program, thereby minimizing the amount of Federal VR funds left unspent each year.

(February 27, 2023)

RSA Publishes MTAG and Announces Monitoring Reviews

On January 17, 2023, RSA published the FFY 2023 Monitoring and Technical Assistance Guide (MTAG). The MTAG is also available at FFY 2023 VR Program Monitoring. RSA updated the MTAG in collaboration with six VR agency directors and leaders representing CSAVR and NCSAB. The MTAG is intended to serve as a resource and planning guide for VR agencies and RSA State Teams to assist in the preparation for and conduct of monitoring and technical assistance activities in both program and fiscal performance focus areas. The goal of monitoring and technical assistance is to support VR agencies in maximizing the use of VR program funds and fostering continuous improvement in competitive integrated employment outcomes achieved by individuals with disabilities, taking into account the unique circumstances and needs of each VR agency.

In FFY 2023, RSA will monitor the following 12 agencies through the conduct of on-site and off-site reviews: Arkansas-G, Florida-B, Georgia-C, Indiana-C, Louisiana-C, Nevada-C, North Carolina-G, Ohio-C, Oklahoma-C, Puerto Rico-C, Tennessee-C, and Texas-C. 

(January 17, 2023)

New VR Program Data Dashboards

Since PY 2017, RSA has shared Case Service Report (RSA-911) data dashboards with State VR agencies to support quality assurance, improve data quality, and foster data-driven decision making in the VR program. RSA is pleased to announce that we have partnered with the VRTAC-QM and RehabData Workgroup to redesign the data dashboards for PY 2022. The new tools include not only more data, but historical data and enhanced metrics for all State VR agencies in a single accessible Excel workbook that RSA will update each quarter. 

On December 19, 2022, RSA and the VRTAC-QM provided a demonstration of the data dashboards during a live webinar. A recording of the webinar is available at the VRTAC-QM

(January 13, 2023)

NCSAB Fall 2022 Conference

The theme of NCSAB's Fall 2022 Conference is "The Power of Connection and Collaboration." On November 2, 2022, OSERS Acting Assistant Secretary Katy Neas delivered a keynote and RSA leaders presented fiscal and performance data along with updates related to RSA programs, including the State VR Services Program. Please view RSA's presentation titled, RSA Financial Update & WIOA Performance Accountability and VR Program Data Collection and ReportingPerformance data is available in this Accessible Excel file

(November 2, 2022)