To assist people with disabilities to obtain and maintain employment.
- Provide individualized services to enable people with disabilities to secure employment.
|Mission Results||Core Services|
|A: Result - Alaskans with disabilities enter employment and become more economically self-sufficient.|
Target #1: Equal prior year's number of employed individuals exiting the Vocational Rehabilitation program.
Vocational Rehabilitation Program Participants Employed (did not achieve the target of previous year's employed participants)
Analysis of results and challenges: In order to be considered a successful closure when exiting the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR), an individual must obtain competitive integrated employment and maintain that employment for a minimum of 90 days. The number of individuals who maintained competitive integrated employment decreased in FY2017 due to significant changes in Federal Common Performance Measures (CPMs) as outlined in the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Because the new CPMs rate a state’s success based upon employment status and median wages at second quarter after exit and employment status at fourth quarter after exit, DVR has placed more emphasis on the quality and appropriateness of the employment rather than the number of individuals exiting the program. Although the number of individuals successfully closed has decreased, the quality and retention of an individual’s employment is expected to increase.
Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS), as required by WIOA, are to assist students with disabilities in preparing for the transition from secondary school into the workforce and/or post-secondary opportunities. Pre-ETS includes: (1) job exploration counseling; (2) work based learning experiences; (3) counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs at institutions of higher education; (4) workplace readiness training and independent living; and (5) instruction in self-advocacy and peer mentoring. These services require 15 percent of DVR’s federal award, these students are not expected to apply for DVR services successful employed case closures (a primary measurement of this target), it is anticipated these services will better prepare students for DVR services in the future. DVR was able to provide 802 students with disabilities with Pre-ETS in FY2018.
|A1: Core Service - Provide individualized services to enable people with disabilities to secure employment.|
Target #1: 95 percent of eligibility determinations made within 60 days.
Percent of Vocational Rehabilitation Program Eligibility Determinations Made within 60 Days of Application (did not achieve the target of 95 percent)
Analysis of results and challenges: Determining the eligibility of an individual with a disability for vocational rehabilitation services within 60 days of application is required by federal regulation, but also represents good, responsive customer service. The determination of eligibility is the point at which counselors and individuals can begin vocational rehabilitation planning and the employment goal.
Target #2: 85 percent of the Individualized Plans for Employment are developed within 90 days.
Percent of Individualized Plans for Employment that are Developed within 90 days (did not achieve the target of 85 percent)
Analysis of results and challenges: The implementation of the Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) is a milestone in the vocational rehabilitation (VR) process. The IPE is an agreement between the individual and the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) which outlines the employment goal, the rehabilitation services DVR will provide, as well as the individual’s responsibilities throughout the process. Timely development of the IPE keeps the individual engaged in the VR process, which results in higher participation rates. Thoughtful and well-developed IPE’s increase the likelihood of successful employment outcomes.
The Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act of 2014 requires IPEs to be developed within 90 days, unless the individual agrees to an extension. This change continues to be a challenge for DVR due to the prior time-frame of 180 days.
Target #3: 56 percent or more of Individualized Plans for Employment are successfully completed with individuals exiting the vocational rehabilitation program employed.
Percent of Completed Individualized Plans for Employment Resulting in Employment (did not achieve target of 56 percent)
Analysis of results and challenges: This measure speaks to the efficiency and effectiveness of the Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) process. An Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) is considered successfully completed when an individual receives the necessary rehabilitation services identified on the IPE, is able to obtain employment, and the employment is maintained for 90 days.
IPEs are extremely comprehensive and must be developed thoughtfully in conjunction with the individual or their representative. The IPE delineates the employment goal, the type of rehabilitation services required to reach the employment goal, the estimated costs of those services, who will provide the services, and the length of time anticipated for the individual to complete the plan. Successful plan implementation requires the expertise of qualified vocational rehabilitation counselors; active involvement by the individual; labor market research; and consideration of the individual's strengths, resources priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice. In the state of Alaska, the labor market, unemployment rate, access to healthcare, and overall economic trends can drastically affect this rate.
While this percentage continues to drop, many factors have impacted this target. Because IPEs are required to be developed within 90 days of eligibility, engagement in the VR process is imperative and includes intensive involvement from both the VR counselor and the individual. If regular contact with DVR is not maintained, an individual’s case is often closed prior to IPE development due to lack of contact or participation. This process has directly impacted the achievement of this target.
Current as of August 8, 2019