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When to take a VR application for students who are eligible for Pre-Employment Transition Services

Categorized In: Pre-Employment Transition Services - Taking A VR Application

Approved Date: September 09, 2019

Owner: Brigid Griffin

The Vocational Rehabilitation Federal Register outlines the following in relation to students applying for VR services:  “The earlier a student is placed on a waitlist, the sooner his or her turn will open up in the State’s order in the event a State is on an order of selection”. 

Students typically begin their relationship with Nebraska VR in  pre- employment transition services under a potentially eligible category with a signed Pre-Employment Consent and Release form. When a student is within two years of graduating/exiting school, potentially eligible students must be provided with information about the VR employment program. Students and parents/authorized representatives should be given the opportunity for informed choice about the option to apply or not apply for VR services.

In the interests of providing continuity of services to students who are already participating in Pre-Employment Transition Services and are anticipated to need individualized services that promote the movement from school to post school activities, it is important to discuss the option to apply for VR services. The discussion should address whether the student will require individualized services in order to meet employment goals.

Discussion points to include when meeting with the student and parent/authorized representative: 

•    Provide the student and parent/authorized representative an overview of VR Services to include Order of Selection (OOS) priority groups, waiting list, how eligibility and priority groups are determined and what that means for the client regarding services in each group. 
•    The OOS Factsheet may be provided to recipients and applicants, parents/authorized representatives, schools, agencies and/or organizations to assist with the understanding of the Order of Selection.
•    Address the student’s work/work based learning experiences (if any) and how the impairment has been an impediment to employment by assessing reasons for jobs ending  and themes and/or repeated issues for getting, keeping or preparing for employment. 
•    Discuss the student’s needs and identify appropriate community resources.


Questions to be considered with the student and authorized representative:

•    Are there anticipated needs beyond Pre-Employment Transition Services?
•    Is there an interest in employment after high school?
•    What will it take for the student to become employed?
•    What VR services are necessary to help the student become employed?
•    What supports will be helpful?

Scenarios:

STUDENT scenario A: A is a 17 year old student who had a specific learning disability in reading. He is planning to attend a community college to acquire an associate degree in auto mechanics. In a discussion about a potential application for VR services, it is important to discuss OOS, anticipated priority group placement and the waitlist as important factors for the student to consider regarding an application. It is best practice to advise the student that he can access VR support through Pre-Employment Transition Services while he is in an accredited school program earning a recognized credential through the age of 21. Active encouragement to make a VR application would not be helpful to the student at this time, given that the student is not anticipated to need VR services other than pre-employment transition services as well as current situation with the waitlist. However, an application cannot be denied in the event the person chooses to apply. Consider referral to other agencies that may be able to provide services.


STUDENT scenario B: B is a 19 year old student who intends to use high school educational services through the age of 21. She is interested in employment after high school graduation, has applied for DD services and has been found eligible. Based on her community employment exposure, the student is likely to require supported employment to be successful in her future employment. In a discussion about a potential application for VR services, it is best practice to discuss OOS, anticipated priority group placement and the waitlist as important factors for the student to consider regarding an application (reference OOS chapter: https://webforms.nebraska.gov/program_manual_chapters/463 ). The student and her family should be advised that in order to access more individualized VR services such as supports for the delivery of pre-employment transition services that cannot be accessed in pre-employment transition services (e.g. the purchase of assistive technology) and supported employment in the future, she will need an IPE, which will necessitate coming off the waitlist. 

 

Guidance for Students with the Most Significant Barriers
 
 
STUDENT Scenario C: Parent/authorized representative requests VR application for their student who is NOT YET referred for pre-employment transition services. The VR Specialist is concerned about the student being unable to benefit due to the significance of their disability and being determined ineligible if they apply at this time, which would result in the student not being able to receive pre-employment transition services. 

➢ Refer to Section 511 Decision Tree for direction on interest in work and eligibility
 
• Encourage pre-employment transition services opportunity as a gateway to VR:  Pre-employment transition services is the typical first step allowing time and opportunity for VR to collaborate with the school in a coordinated effort to explore and introduce work activity exposure through the provision of 5 required services to the greatest extent possible:
 
(1) job exploration counseling;
(2) work-based learning experiences;
(3) counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or post-secondary educational programs at institutions of higher education;
(4) workplace readiness training to develop social skills and independent living;
 and,
(5) instruction in self-advocacy, which may include peer mentoring

Other pre-employment transition services  students could benefit from to make them a more successful VR applicant in the future: 
• Access to Transition Summer Programs- if appropriate and available in his/her community (requires PreETS referral)
• Access to Benefits Workshops

 

Questions to be considered with the student and authorized representative:

•    Are there anticipated needs beyond Pre-Employment Transition Services?
•    Is there an interest in employment after high school?
•    What will it take for the student to become employed?
•    What VR services are necessary to help the student become employed?
•    What supports will be helpful?

 
Next Steps
• A parent/authorized representative continues to insist on a VR application after the Specialist’s recommendation for pre-employment transition services. In alignment with informed choice, provide a VR application.
• After providing information on pre-employment transition services and their correlation with increasing employability skills, complete a Refusal of Pre-Employment Transition Services (While still in High School) form: https://webforms.nebraska.gov/assets/vr_forms/262/original/PreETS_Refusal_Participate.pdf?1539871314

 
STUDENT Scenario D: Parent requests VR application for their student receiving pre-employment transition services. The VR Specialist is concerned that the student will be found ineligible for VR services and that this will result in a Section 511 closure, due to lack of employability skills at this time.
 
Note: For this population of students, it is best practice to delay the application for VR services until the student is within two months of graduation so that the student can fully avail of pre-employment transition services. Opportunity for observation, current documentation, and records are readily available. If student is found ineligible, all pre-employment transition services will be terminated.
 
➢ Refer to Section 511 Decision Tree for direction on interest in work and eligibility: https://webforms.nebraska.gov/assets/vr_forms/364/original/511_Decision_Tree.pdf?1554837066
 
• Provide all 5 Pre-ETS services to the greatest extent possible and document detailed efforts.
• Gather all available work-related documentation from school, student, and family.
• Collect all current educational, medical, and psychological information available.
• If student has not yet had an opportunity to attempt work activities outside the classroom, this must be offered. If offer is declined, document in task note.
 
Examples of Community-Based Opportunities with all supports in place:
• Business Tour combined with Info Interview
• Job Shadow
• Working Job Shadow
• Work experience- school arranged
• Work Based Learning Experience- VR arranged
• Transition Summer Programs
• Community Work Assessment- requires VR Application and prerequisites. Reference CWA- Community Work Assessment chapter
In order to determine eligibility for VR Services and priority group, an assessment must be conducted in the most integrated setting possible, consistent with the individual’s needs and informed choice. Reference Section 511- Disability too significant to benefit from services chapter: https://webforms.nebraska.gov/program_manual_chapters/553

Where to find information about Projected Post School Employment Outcome for Students

 

 


Approved Date
April 30, 2019 Show this Archived Version


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