- Program-Specific Requirements for Vocational Rehabilitation (Combined or General)
The Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Services Portion of the Unified or Combined State Plan  must include the following descriptions and estimates, as required by section 101(a) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended by title IV of WIOA:
 Sec. 102(b)(2)(D)(iii) of WIOA
p. 2. A. Identify the strategies that contributed to the achievement of the goals
Indiana has established three goals for its SE program.
Goal 1: Ensure that individuals receiving supported employment services have achieved stabilization, or their highest level of independence on the job, prior to VR case closure. VR Employment Service revisions implemented in July 2015 increased focus on stabilization and increased access to supported employment services for VR participants. It is anticipated that greater long-term retention will result from these changes, for individuals receiving supported employment services.
Measure: Begin collecting wage and hour information for individuals receiving supported employment services and obtain baseline data by October 2016. Individuals who are MSD will achieve at least a 5% increase in average hourly wage from FFY16 to FFY18.
Outcome: Achieved. Employment data including wage and weekly hours worked is collected and shared through the VR employment service evaluation reports. Baseline data was obtained and an initial summary report was completed and posted on the VR website in November, 2016. Baseline data included average hourly wages for individuals with a most significant disability of $7.97. Average hourly wages improved by 12% with average hourly wages for individuals with a most significant disability of $8.94 in 2018. Data has continued to be updated and shared in subsequent VR employment service evaluation reports, with the most recent report completed May, 2019.
Goal 2: VR Supported Employment providers will increase knowledge and skills on the provision of supported employment services, including greater understanding and focus on development of natural supports, job readiness training techniques, customized employment, and strategies for achieving stabilization on the job.
Measure: BRS will invest in training for supported employment providers including classroom-based, web-based, and hands-on workshops that focus on job coaching and job readiness training techniques. BRS will examine strategies for improvement of community rehabilitation providers to ensure capacity to carry out increased expectations under the new model, such as provision of funding for Establishment projects. At least 500 individuals will attend training annually, beginning in FFY16.
Outcome: Achieved: BRS, in partnership with Indiana University, offered ample training opportunities to VR providers throughout 2016 - 2019, including a refresher on employment services, employment specialist training, supported employment and advanced supported employment, discovery, customized employment, and additional training topics. Hundreds of individuals participate in webinars and in-person trainings annually, including employment specialist training, benefits counseling, and employment services refresher training. As an example, in March/April 2016, approximately 350 Community Rehabilitation Program (CRP) staff attended a half-day refresher training on the revised VR employment service model, including training regarding supported employment services, with similar participation in another refresher training in April, 2019. On average, approximately 150 employment service provider staff participate in employment specialist training annually, and another 150-200 participate in social security work incentives and benefits counseling training annually. Additionally, up to 400 staff participate in the ‘Shared Solutions’ training blog annually.
Goal 3: VR will increase the provision of supported employment to individuals with a most significant disability, through increased education and training to VR and CRP staff.
Measure: Increased provision of supported employment services by employment services providers receiving funding through Establishment projects. VR will achieve a 30% increase in the provision of supported employment services from FFY16 to FFY18.
Outcome: Achieved. In review of outcomes of providers receiving funding through Establishment projects, the number of individuals receiving supported employment services or on-the-job supports more than tripled during the first two years of the project, with a baseline of 774 individuals receiving these services prior to the start of the project, and 2,671 receiving these services at the end of year two of the project. The average number of hours of supported employment of on-the-job supports received increased by more than 40% during the same timeframe, with 16 hours on average at baseline and 23 hours on average after completion of year two of the project.