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EARLY REACH INITIATIVE Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text >

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Presentation on theme: "EARLY REACH INITIATIVE Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text >"— Presentation transcript:

1 EARLY REACH INITIATIVE Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text >

2 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Workshop Objectives 2. Learn more about the OVR Early Reach Initiative. 1. Understand why the OVR Early Reach Initiative was started. 4. What are your objectives for being here today…?

3 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text >...why didn't I learn to treat everything like it was the last time, my greatest regret is how much I believed in the future.” Jonathan Safran Foer Jonathan Safran Foer

4 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > “The future starts today, not tomorrow.” John Paul II

5 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > What do these companies have in common?

6 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text >

7 Early Reach Initiative

8 According to Publisher Jon Goldwater… “We want Riverdale to look like the world.” > Harper Lodge June 18 th 2014 Issue #656.

9 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Jewel Kats

10 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Welcome to the Future…

11 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > OVR is Ready… Are Youth with Disabilities Ready? Hershey “HEROS” Program

12 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > OVR is Ready… Ephrata 6/19/2014LGH- Summer InternSalad/Dessert WorkerFT$9.35Food Production Manheim Central 4/14/2014LGHHousekeeperFT$9.35Housekeeping Penn Manor 6/16/2014LGH- Horizon HealthcareWarehouse AssociatePT$8.00Warehouse Hempfield 4/28/2014LGHHousekeeperFT$10.35Housekeeping Conestoga Valley 5/1/2014Ruby Tuesday'sBusserPT$ tipsNA Ephrata 5/27/2014WalMartInventory AssociatePT$8.00NA Manheim Central 4/28/2014LGHHousekeeperFT$9.35Housekeeping * Project Search Lancaster General Hospital (LGH) * Jobs for All On the Job Training (Youth OJT) * Business Services Representatives

13 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > “ A coordinated set of activities for a child with a disability that is designed within a result-oriented process, that is focused on improving the academic and functional achievement of the child with a disability to facilitate the child’s movement from school to post-school activities, including post-secondary education, vocational education, integrated employment (including supported employment), continuing and adult education, adult services, independent living, or community participation.” (IDEA 2004) “A coordinated set of activities for a student, designed within an outcome-oriented process, that promotes movement from school to post-school activities, including post-secondary education, vocational training, integrated employment (including supported employment), continuing and adult education, adult services, independent living, or community participation.” (Rehabilitation Act Amendments 1998) Transition Definitions – The Rehabilitation Act and IDEA

14 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > “Where’s OVR during the transition years and the transition process?”

15 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Approximately 104,000 total students with an IEP in Pennsylvania between ages Approximately 430 OVR Counselors in Pennsylvania

16 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > OVR doesn’t have the staff and resources to go to all IEP meetings for all students with an IEP beginning at age 14. OVR “Transition Realities” Many students in transition, especially those who are 14 to 16 years old, don’t know what they want to be when they grow up and are not ready to discuss individualized vocational planning with OVR… not a good use of limited resources to have VR counselors going to IEP meetings for students beginning at age 14. When students do start working with OVR, anywhere between 17 through 21 years old, they often come to OVR ill-prepared to benefit from OVR and vocationally focused services.

17 Early Reach Initiative > Question: How could OVR resolve these conflicting “Realities” in serving transitioning youth… …without additional resources?

18 Early Reach Initiative

19 Click to add footer text > Answer: Develop an OVR Outreach Program, “Early Reach” to find youth earlier (14 – 16 years old) and their parents to discuss: OVR services and vocational planning What to expect from OVR and when to expect it.

20 Early Reach Coordinator Click to add footer text > In each of the 15 OVR District Offices

21 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Goal: Early Reach Coordinator in each of the 15 BVRS District Office Phase 1 – July 2013: Began with five district offices District OfficeEarly Reach Coordinator DuboisKimberly Golding HarrisburgStacy Shirk NorristownStephanie Shuler PhiladelphiaJill Grossberg Wilkes BarreMary Jane Saras

22 Early Reach Initiative > Goal : Early Reach Coordinator in each of the 15 BVRS District Office Phase 2 – January 2014: Added six district offices District OfficeEarly Reach Coordinator AllentownLaRonda Moorefield AltoonaHolly Stapleton ErieHillary Hubbell PittsburghSarah Vogel PittsburghMelissa Demchak WashingtonAmanda Smith YorkErin Lohr

23 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text >

24 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Goal: Early Reach Coordinator in each of the 15 BVRS District Office Phase 3 – Fall 2014: Add the final four district offices District OfficeEarly Reach Coordinator ReadingAndrea Merrick (August 18 th ) JohnstownJoni Henry (October 20 th ) New Castle Williamsport

25 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > The OVR Early Reach Initiative will include the following… “Start by doing what's necessary; then do what's possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” St. Francis of Assisi

26 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Group Outreach – The main focus… To provide outreach presentations to school personnel, community agencies, students and families to outline the services offered by OVR. To provide vocational consultative services to school personnel, agencies, students and families to leverage the variety of services offered during the school years to best prepare students for OVR and vocational goals. To provide consultation on the benefits of early career planning and the development of independent living skills.

27 Early Reach Initiative

28 Click to add footer text > Individual Outreach… To track youth with disabilities not yet ready for referral to OVR so they don’t “fall through the cracks”. To assist appropriate students in making application to OVR and to provide pre-eligibility services, as needed. To facilitate a VR counselor’s ability to determine a student’s eligibility for OVR services.

29 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > OVR Services Eligibility Early Reach Group Outreach Application Closed Successfully Employed Service Provision Early Reach Individual Outreach Early Reach Individual Referral to OVR Counselor

30 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > “Collaboration, it turns out, is not a gift from the gods but a skill that requires effort and practice.” Douglas B. Reeves, Douglas B. Reeves Transforming Professional Development Into Student Results

31 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Early Reach Coordinators will: Outreach Reach out purposefully – find youth with disabilities as early as age 14 and find their parents “where they are”, especially those who are most likely to be eligible for OVR services and may be under-identified and under-served. Reach out creatively - Early Reach is NOT only about interacting with schools and the education system. Outreach. Outreach. Outreach.

32 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Mary Jane Saras in action…

33 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Educate Tell youth and parents about OVR. Develop Clear Expectations. Tell them what to expect from OVR and when to expect it. Discuss “eligibility” vs. “entitlement” as youth “age out” of the education system and the childhood service delivery system. Early Reach Coordinators will:

34 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Stacy Shirk in action…

35 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > Consult. Inform youth about the kinds of competencies they will need in order to be more job-ready and benefit from VR services (i.e.. time management, note-taking, assistive technology, leadership skills, self-advocacy skills, personal hygiene, navigating the community, public transportation, etc.) Inform youth about their entitlement to general education and special education. Inform parents that their students in special education and general education should maximize their education entitlement so students are vocationally prepared and able to benefit from VR services. Consult on the availability of other community resources that provide services to youth and funding (especially Medicaid). Early Reach Coordinators will:

36 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text >

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38 Early Reach Initiative

39 Click to add footer text > Early Reach Coordinators will answer the question… “Where’s OVR?”

40 Early Reach Initiative Click to add footer text > By Being There!


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