Interagency Coordination and Management of Supports College/Career Connection Debra Hart University of Massachusetts, Boston
Hart College Career Connection 3 year model demonstration project funded by Office of Special Education Programs Created access to and participation in inclusive postsecondary education and employment options for students, age 18+, with significant disabilities such as mental retardation
Hart Core Elements of CCC Model Student Support Team (interagencyLEA, College, VR, DMR, One-stop Center) Orientation for students & family members Person-Centered Planning Create Menu of Flexible Services & Supports (resource mapping & alignment) Ongoing delivery of Services & Supports Evaluate Effectiveness
Hart Findings Interagency collaborative teams assisted students with significant disabilities, who have needs across multiple adult agencies, in gaining access to services and supports in postsecondary education and employment as they moved from secondary to postsecondary environments (e.g., adult agency meaningful participation at least one year prior to student exiting school).
Hart Resource mapping by interagency collaborative teams assisted students and families in "individualizing" services to more effectively meet the student's needs and preferences as well as address service gaps. Findings (Contd)
Hart For students with significant disabilities, participation in postsecondary education correlates positively with two employment variables, competitive and independent employment. Postsecondary education provides a way for young adults with mental retardation and other significant disabilities to increase their likelihood of gaining competitive employment. Findings (Contd)
Hart Implications Develop policies and related guidelines that support the participation of students with significant disabilities, age 18 -21, in inclusive postsecondary education and employment.
Hart Implications (Contd) Conduct further research on student outcomes, flexible cost-sharing strategies, and practices that create linkages from secondary to inclusive PSE and/or employment for all students including students with significant disabilities (interagency teams, resource mapping).
Hart Implications (Contd) Provide professional development for pre- service personnel preparation programs and in-service training for educators and rehabilitation professionals, on PSE options for students with significant disabilities that address access to academic curriculum through strategies such as Universal Design for Learning, differentiated instruction, and technology; role of family members, and self- determination skills.
Interagency Coordination and Management of Supports Teresa Whelley, Ed.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa Issues of Coordinating & Managing Supports and Services
Whelley Overview Coordination and management of supports and service is an issue for students with disabilities while they are –Preparing for postsecondary education –In attendance in postsecondary education –Moving from postsecondary education to employment
Whelley Overview- Student Perspective Students with disabilities in Postsecondary Education find support coordination a critical issue. Frustrated students long for a partnership among disability services on campus, university administration and the students themselves.
Whelley The Coordination Issue 1. Few partnerships that establish interagency cooperation at the state and local level - little coordination between secondary and postsecondary supports and services & adult service providers. 2. Uncoordinated mechanisms for information sharing, communication, and lack of coordination of services and supports across agencies and audiences.
Whelley Coordination Issues (Cont.) 3. Lack of resource mapping and alignment on state and local levels. 4. Lack of identification of service gaps and lack of development of resources to address them.
Whelley Family Role Families are partners with students, educational personnel and agencies in support and coordination of supports. In secondary school, parents are legal advocates. In postsecondary school, families are encouragers. During employment, families become supporters of young adults with disabilities.
Whelley Family Role (Cont.) Youth generally learn self-determination skills in relationships. Families can be the most pivotal of these relationships.
Whelley Implications There are duplications and waste in service provision. Student data collected by one agency or institution is not usually in a form that is readily useable by the receiving institution. Different terminology is used between secondary and postsecondary school - a major challenge to communication and coordination.
Whelley Implications (Cont.) Student needs must fit an existing array of services and the system's response is not individualized or flexible. Program needs are considered in a very fragmented way. Lack of service Lack of information to families about the postsecondary environment
Whelley Recommendations Streamline eligibility definitions at federal and state level. Create templates to coordinate resource mapping among the federal, state and local levels. Include cross-system service gap identification as part of resource mapping and alignment. Develop state and local interagency teams to address issues related to service coordination and support brokering for young adults.
Whelley Recommendations (Cont.) Develop a state level web-based clearinghouse that is accessible, with a searchable online database of information on resources, services, eligibility requirements. The New Freedom Initiative has language to reduce barriers for service to people with disabilities. It is recommended that this initiative be continued to state & local governments with pooled funds among agencies.
Interagency Coordination and Management of Supports NSF BRIDGES Project Peg Lamb, Ph.D. Holt Public Schools, Michigan
Lamb Project Goal Holt Public Schools in partnership with Lansing Community College is implementing a transition project funded by the National Science Foundation to create access to postsecondary education for students with disabilities with strong interests in careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
Lamb BRIDGES Model Components Establish linkages between local high schools, rehabilitation services, center for independent living, college disabilities personnel, and business. Create a Core Team of specialists to meet with students as needed to assist in problem solving their concerns about accommodations, self-advocacy, independence, and career decision-making.
Lamb BRIDGES Model (Contd) Secure a signed agreement from students to share information between service providers regarding their needs, supports, and accommodations. Develop a collaborative team of high school and college math/science teachers to develop accommodations for students with disabilities in their college classes.
Lamb BRIDGES Model (Contd) Implement a College Success Class focused on the development of self- determination, self-advocacy, and goal setting co-taught by a transition specialist and the college disabilities counselor.
Lamb Findings Service providers report they are better able to meet the needs of students and allocate their resources effectively through collaborative partnerships and information sharing. Nine of the twelve students completing College Success Class and follow-up meetings report the team effort has been instrumental in their continuation of postsecondary education.
Lamb Findings (Contd) All nine students reported that the continued support of the Core Team has increased their confidence and self-advocacy skills. Eight of nine students reported that participation in the Bridges project has helped them think about their future career and meet their goals.
Lamb Findings (Contd) Seven of nine students reported that their participation in the project has increased their responsibility and problem-solving ability.
Lamb Implications Interagency agreements and information sharing through collaboration between service providers in high schools, agencies, and college disabilities support centers are critical in Sustaining students with disabilities participation in postsecondary education. Closing gaps in services and supports Utilizing agency and institutional resources effectively and efficiently
Lamb Recommendation Develop local interagency partnerships to collaborate regarding student services and needs.
Lamb A Core Team of service providers established to provide on-going coordinated support can strengthen students' self-determination and career goals such that they continue their pursuit of postsecondary education and can attain high skilled employment. Implications
Lamb Recommendation Integrate pre-service training programs in special education and rehabilitation counseling to develop a common language, understanding of the laws that govern supports and services for people with disabilities, and the respective roles and responsibilities of service providers.
Lamb Recommendations (Contd) Integrate training on self-determination and career development into special education, rehabilitation and counseling pre-service programs. Develop joint in-service programs on self-determination and transition for special educators, rehabilitation counselors, and college disabilities service providers.