The WINTAC has created a list of resources to help VR programs that are operating by distance and providing services remotely during the COVID-19 crisis. We will be building on these resources daily, so please check back frequently. Click to access the COVID-19 Resources. Click to access the Resources on Distance Service Delivery.
Click the topics below to go to the section:
- AJC Cross Partner Service Alignment
- Career Pathways
- Job Seeker Services
- Business Service Practices
- Financial Literacy
- Partnership Plus
- WIOA Implementation
AJC Cross Partner Service Alignment
Your WIOA Program Partners
In the vision of customer service outlined in WIOA and in the guidance in RSA TACs 15-01 and 17-02, the diverse expertise of multiple programs is identified as being important to a responsive seamless system available through a “one-stop” or American Job Center. Core and Required Program Partners are identified as being necessary to support the full inclusion of all job seekers in this system, as well as leaving local leadership the flexibility in adding other services. A description of those Core, Required and possible Other partners are identified in this WIOA Program Partners List.
Template to assist in Identifying Program Partners in Your Local Area
Most programs providing core and required services in your local area are recognized by agency or program names that are different than the funding stream names listed in the WIOA Program Partners List. The best way for staff to learn about the services and expertise available through each program is to meet with each of the program representatives and share this information directly. An additional tool that may be helpful to local areas is the Partnership Profile Template.
Integration Continuum Self-Assessment
Rate your agency’s level of service integration -- Isolation, Communication, Coordination, Collaboration or Integration -- with the Integration Continuum Self-Assessment. WINTAC has developed the Self-Assessment to help you determine where you are today on the Continuum and where you would like to be. There are three ways to use the assessment: agency self-evaluation, facilitated collaborative self-assessment or self-assessment through the use of a facilitator’s guide.
Click this link for more information about the three ways to use the Continuum.
Without a tangible definition for "Service Integration" in the American Job Center, the WINTAC team set out to meet with State and local leadership in Iowa, Kentucky and Virginia. The mission was to determine how integration was defined in each of the three states. Below is a link to four videos. One is a composite of the three visits; and there are shorter videos that reflect the specific service integration strategies in Creston, Iowa; Covington, Kentucky; and Woodbridge, Virginia. These videos and the accompanying report, which includes the team’s findings and recommendations for each site and more, were designed for a target audience of service leadership and counselors/staff.
"Finding Workforce Service Integration" is brought you by WINTAC.
Agreements - There are several types of agreements that support effective partnership in WIOA implementation:
- Agreements with Education Agencies
Agreements with Local Workforce Development Boards
- Contributors from the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education provide us with "Sample MOU and Infrastructure Costs Tool Kit."
- Examples of agreements from states used to support discussions facilitated by CSAVR, WINTAC staff have developed "The WDB MOU and Outline."
- References from the Regulations important to the development of MOUs between Local WDB’s and Partner agencies are identified in "Guidance from WIOA in development."
- An example of State Level guidance to facilitate WDB MOU development can be found in the New Jersey WIOA MOU Presentation.
Infrastructure Funding Agreements (IFA) and other Cost Sharing Agreements.
The IFA is relevant to the physical center operation, and “other cost sharing” agreements are established to cover those other costs partner agencies agree are necessary to demonstrate their contributions to career and other services in American Job Center operation.
- RSA TAC 17-03 provides guidance to SVRAs in establishing IFA and Other or Additional Cost Sharing Agreements with Local WDBs and Partner agencies
- Related Regulations Regulations Related to IFA Agreements for IFAs and Other Cost Sharing Agreements
- Resources on the GPS ION Site – A three-part webinar series (4/26/17 to 6/28/17) jointly presented by our Federal partner agencies
Sharing American Job Center Costs Using “Customer Count”: One Approach to Cost Allocation Under WIOA
- The use of square footage and FTEs as a basis for a local funding mechanism to support cost sharing in American Job Centers is common across the country. Joint guidance in RSA 17-03 “IFA and Cost Sharing” (corresponds to OCTAE 17-3 and TEGL17-16), issued January 18, 2017, includes examples in which other methods might be considered for certain kinds of costs (Attachment 1). In Sharing American Job Center Costs Using “Customer Count”: One Approach to Cost Allocation Under WIOA, the WINTAC and the RSA, in consultation with the OCTAE and the ETA, present an example of programs adopting “Customer Count” as a method for the allocation of costs related to career services available in an AJC.
- Agreements with State Medicaid, DD, and Mental Health Agencies - Developed by Bobby Silverstein, in partnership with CSAVR and the LEAD Center
Agreements with American Indian Vocational Rehabilitation Services
- State VR agencies are required to enter into a formal cooperative agreement with each American Indian Vocational Rehabilitation Services grant recipient in the State that receives funds from RSA. This language in the Rehab Act describes what is required for these agreements.
Data Sharing Agreements
- This Toolkit was developed by WINTAC staff with input from RSA and through discussions with state representatives facilitated by CSAVR.
- This joint guidance by the U.S. Departments of Labor and Education is a resource to provide information to assist State agencies (including Vocational Rehabilitation agencies and Workforce Development agencies), educational agencies and institutions, and service providers in performance reporting and evaluation requirements under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).
- Partnership Plus Agreements - State Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies can enhance the capacity of long-term supports for workers with disabilities through their partnership with Employment Networks participating in the Ticket to Work Program.
Integrated Resource Teams
- An Integrated Resource Team (IRT) is used effectively in many Virginia AJCs as a structure for sharing customers in Career Pathway activity. The use of this practice is on the rise in many states.
Career pathways are a series of connected education and training strategies and support services that enable individuals to achieve skill gains and secure industry relevant certifications. Following a Career Pathway leads to employment within an occupational area and advancement to higher levels of future education and employment in that area.
WIOA supports job-driven approaches in career pathway systems and programs to equip youth and adults with disabilities (including individuals with significant disabilities) with the skills, competencies, and credentials necessary to help them obtain in-demand jobs, increase earnings, and advance their careers.
The career pathways approach complements other strategies under WIOA by focusing on:
- developing partnerships and collaboration across multiple service delivery systems;
- blending and braiding of funds to leverage resources;
- providing flexible opportunities and access to training and employment of persons, including low-income youth and adults with disabilities and other multiple challenges to employment; and
- creating systemic change.
Are you ready for a Career Pathways Approach with WIOA Implementation?
WINTAC has developed this review to help your agency determine where it is positioned with regard to providing career counseling and rehabilitation services within a Career Pathways structure. This checklist includes a broad-range perspective that supports agencies in providing services for the people (and industries) they serve. Numerous resources are also included.
Additional Resources available to State VR Agencies and their partner programs in implementing WIOA include:
WIOA Guidance related to Career Pathways is outlined in this overview developed by WINTAC
Career Pathways: Catalog of Toolkits is an online directory of free resources available for planning a Career Pathways initiative. These toolkits provide clear action steps for starting a Career Pathways initiative and help different sectors – education, workforce, human services, industry, and policy – learn to communicate with each other about their resources and priorities.
USDOL Career Pathways Toolkit: This is the revised DOLETA Career Pathways Toolkit that aligns with the new vision, definition, and requirements of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). It also reflects major advancements and emerging promising practices in the field over the past five years.
WINTAC Career Pathways Community Practice: Join the CoP to share and learn from other SVRAs, gain access to valuable resources, ask questions, share ideas and view the archived meetings covering a myriad of Career Pathways related topics.
Clasp Career Pathways:Highlights from 2018 convening of state education and workforce development leaders, national organizations, advocates, funders, and federal agency staff sharing perspectives on four current and critical areas of career pathway work: Career Pathways & Guided Pathways; Career Pathway Research; Ability to Benefit; and Equity in Career Pathways.
LINCS - Building Career Pathways Systems for Education, Training, and Employment: This brief discusses the implementation of career pathways under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and considerations for state adult education staff in developing career pathways systems to support individuals in their pursuit of education and employment.
Inclusive Career Pathways Desktop Guide: Information and Resources to Support Inclusive Programs and Services: Use this Inclusive Career Pathways Desktop Guide to locate the information and resources you need to support inclusive practices within the programs and services you are providing as part of your career pathways
The I-Best Model: The state of Washington's Integrated Basic Education and Skills Training (I-BEST) program is nationally recognized as an evidence-based instructional model that supports career pathways. In an I-BEST program, two instructors are paired in the classroom - one to teach professional/technical or academic content; the other to teach basic skills in reading, math, writing or English language - so students can move through school and into jobs faster.
Job Seeker Services
- The Basic Financial Assessment Tool is a tool that Career Counselors and other AJC staff can use in assessing a job seeker’s financial situation and awareness. The tool includes current guidance.
- Customized Employment
- An Integrated Resource Team (IRT)is used effectively in many Virginia AJCs as a structure for sharing customers in Career Pathway activity. The use of this practice is on the rise in many states.
- These Tool Kits may be useful to your agency in developing strategies to increase AJC customer service:
- Career Services – As stated in §361.420, each required partner must use a portion of funds available to provide applicable career services and work with state and local WDB’s to establish and maintain the one-stop delivery system. These regulations apply to Career Services in an American Job Center.
“Hello. Is Anybody Here?” A Support for Workforce Partners in Including Job Seekers that are Blind and Visually Impaired in AJC Services”
State Vocational Rehabilitation agencies focusing primarily on serving individuals who are blind or visually impaired are great resources to their Workforce partners, building their capacity to include those individuals in their services. Many of these agencies provide support to partner staff through training and discussion to increase their comfort and competency in this area. The Iowa Department for the Blind has developed this fun and educational training for their partner staff. WINTAC and the IDB team have collaborated to create a series of short videos and a facilitator’s guide so the training can be replicated elsewhere.
Business Service Practices
Summary of the WINTAC/JDVRTAC/CSAVR Community of Practice on Collaborative Business Engagement and Recommendations
WINTAC, JDVRTAC and CSAVR reviewed collaborative business service approaches in a variety of states and facilitated discussion with practitioners nationally. This summary reviews those practices, and includes recommendations to the field resulting from the Community dialogue.
Resources through the Job Driven Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center
Our friends and colleagues with the JDVRTAC offer tool kits and support in the following areas:
- Business Engagement
- Customized Training
- Employer Supports
- Labor Market Information
- An Analysis of the Legislation and Notice of Proposed Rule Making related to Financial Literacy in WIOA
The LEAD Center provides the following resources to support agencies in strategies designed to support individuals in improving their financial capability:
- Promoting Employment and Economic Advancement: A Toolkit for CILs and AJCs
- LEAD Releases New Toolkit to Promote Collaboration between Centers for Independent Living and American Job Centers
- Building Financial Capability: A Planning Guide for Integrated Services
- Enabling Financial Capability Along the Road to Financial Inclusion
As a core partner in each state’s WIOA implementation, the State Vocational Rehabilitation Agency is in an important role to provide leadership in making AJCs accessible and inclusive through opportunities to increase awareness and through involvement in establishing criteria for One-Stop certification in their states. These resources can support the SVRA in their leadership role:
Partnership Plus can expand a state's capacity to provide long-term supports resulting in an enhanced ability to address the dynamic and often complex needs of Social Security Disability Beneficiaries
WIOA Vision: Self Paced Training
In this WINTAC Self-Paced Training, review the vision of WIOA in terms of customer service, as well as areas in which the State Vocational Rehabilitation Agency emerges as a leader in every state in achieving this vision.
Click this link to view the WIOA Vison Self-Pace Training. (Transcript for WIOA Vision Self-Paced Training)
"Are You Ready for Integrated Services in the American Job Centers?"
Implementing WIOA according to its vision in the act and in RSA TAC 15-01 with regard to service alignment and integration with the other Core and Required partners is a multi-step process. From a customer service standpoint, the nature and impact of the services provided and received have as much to do with how state and local partners work together as the guidance for implementation itself. To support your agency in this process, WINTAC has created a checklist to assist with your ongoing review of this implementation.