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n. 2. B. How the State will leverage other public and private funds to increase resources for extended services and expanded supported employment opportunities for youth with the most significant disabilities.

Current Narrative:

VR provides Supported Employment (SE) services for VR participants with most significant disabilities (MSD), with Title I and Title VI-B funds. Participants are able to access SE services through Community Rehabilitation Programs (CRPs), which include Community Mental Health Centers (CMHCs) across the state.

VR implemented major revisions to VR employment services in July 2015, with a key objective to increase access to supported employment services. Prior to these revisions, VR purchased employment services primarily through a Results Based Funding (RBF) approach.  One significant revision that occurred is that SE services are no longer fully funded through employment milestones (or the previous RBF model).  Because many individuals with MSD will require SE services that extend beyond the employment milestone payments, SE services are funded in addition to the current core employment milestone payments.  VR funding for SE services is outlined in the Table below. (Please note that the complete employment service model, implemented July 2015, can be viewed at www.vrs.in.gov). For more specific information, please see section (q).

VR provided substantial training opportunities for both VR an CRP staff over the past four years, including face-to-face training, webinars, and written guidance such as FAQs and a comprehensive employment services manual. VR also entered into contracts with more than 40 CRPs to expand capacity to provide supported employment as well as staff training in this area, through Establishment projects. These projects began April, 2017 and will continue through March, 2021. Data collected through Establishment project providers indicates a significant increase in the provision of supported employment services as mentioned throughout the state plan.

VR continues to work collaboratively with the Bureau of Developmental Disabilities Services (BDDS), the Division of Mental Health and Addiction (DMHA), the Department of Education, IIDC, INARF, INAPSE, the Arc of Indiana, and other key stakeholders to improve competitive integrated employment opportunities for participants with the most significant disabilities through supported employment.  Interagency collaboration will aim to increase the quality of SE services, including customized employment, and ensure appropriate extended services are appropriately utilized when necessary for long-term supports.

VR provides work experiences or job-shadow opportunities to students and youth with disabilities who are eligible for VR services.  Furthermore, Project SEARCH provides students and youth with quality internship experiences in preparation for competitive employment.