Florida PYs 2020-2023 Published Approved

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j. 3. Include an assessment of the needs of individuals with disabilities for transition career services and pre-employment transition services, and the extent to which such services are coordinated with transition services provided under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

Current Narrative:

The CSNA made several recommendations related to the needs of individuals with disabilities for transition career service and pre-employment transition services.

1. VR should develop a program in partnership with secondary and postsecondary schools throughout Florida that ensures that students with disabilities that will be pursuing postsecondary education get connected to the Disabled Student Services programs at the colleges prior to the first day of college classes. This will ensure that any reasonable accommodation needs are met prior to the start of course work and will maximize the potential for student success.

2. VR should recruit pre-employment transition services providers that will provide training in self-advocacy to help address the apparent shortage of these services. In addition, VR should consider partnering with the Centers for Independent Living in Florida as a way to address this service gap.

3. VR is encouraged to consult with the Youth Technical Assistance Center (Y-TAC) to develop an intensive technical assistance agreement aimed at improving services to Juvenile Justice and Foster Care Youth. The Y-TAC can help VR conduct process mapping of the Juvenile Justice and Foster Care systems and develop procedures that facilitate access to VR services for these youth. The Y-TAC may be able to help VR establish partnerships with the Title I Youth programs to help increase services to out-of-school youth in Florida.

4. Continue to develop opportunities for work experiences in the community, but also consider the impact of time-limited experiences on participants. Create a supportive pathway for students that may want permanent employment.

5. VR should work with schools to identify and refer students receiving services under a 504 plan and encourage schools to refer these students to VR earlier than their senior year.

6. Examine strategies to enhance parent involvement in the planning and delivery of transition services. VR may wish to consult with the PROMISE programs in California and Wisconsin to identify successful family engagement strategies. Information about the California PROMISE program can be found here: https://www.capromise.org/. Information about the Wisconsin PROMISE program can be found here: https://promisewi.com/.

7. VR should actively recruit pre-employment transition services providers that can communicate using sign language and that have experience working with deaf individuals. In addition, VR should identify peer mentors for the youth with deafness that will help them develop self-advocacy skills and help them develop high expectations.

VR is pursuing technical assistance to address these recommendations through a variety of initiatives, including major revisions to our fee-for-service model, expanding opportunities for school districts to be providers of pre-employment transition services, and streamlining the case management process for students who are potentially eligible