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Paul V. Sherlock Center on Disabilities, 600 Mount Pleasant Avenue, Rhode Island College, Providence, RI 02908, 401-456-8072

SME Training Series Module Descriptions

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Module 1: Foundations in Community Employment Services and Supports

From Institutions to Employment First!This session is both a lesson in history and exploration of the values that are influencing current and future employment policies and practices for people with developmental and/or intellectual disabilities (DD/ID). By participating in this session you will learn about the evolution of employment and community access for individuals with DD/ID. You will gain an understanding of employment service models, as well as, knowledge of supported employment values, principles, competencies, and ethical guidelines. In addition, this session will include an overview of related legislation and policy, including the impact of the RI DOJ Consent Decree on service delivery. You will also leave the session with an increased awareness of why employment is important to individuals with DD/ID, funding sources and local and national resources.

Module 2: Work Incentives to Support Employment and Retention

The impact of earnings on benefits is often seen as a barrier to employment and there are many myths that prevent individuals from choosing work. Fortunately, there are many work incentives in place to support an individual to become employed and improve their financial wellbeing. Understanding these work incentives will help you to encourage job seekers and others to consider work. By attending the session you will gain an understanding of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), the differences between the two programs, and program specific work incentives such as Ticket to Work, expedited reinstatement, impairment related work incentives (IRWE), continued Medicaid eligibility (1619b), Medicaid buy-In; and PASS, and others. You will leave the session with knowledge of earnings reporting tools, as well as local and national resources.

Module 3: Vocational Assessment I - Getting to Know the Job Seeker

By participating in this session you will learn strength-based approaches to creating individualized career plans for individuals with significant developmental and intellectual disabilities. The session will introduce you to a variety of best practice assessment techniques and their applications, including how to use themes and interests of the individual to guide vocational and career planning. You will learn how functional occupational information (functional skills and abilities), as well as community based experiences, help inform career decision-making. You will leave with a career profile template and knowledge on how to facilitate a strength-based vocational assessment.

Module 4: Vocational Assessment II- Person-Centered Employment Planning Process

A best practice strategy for employment success is to understand an individual's goals, perceived challenges, and supports (current and anticipated). This session will introduce you to person-centered employment planning approaches; specifically how to engage an individual's network using "Making Action Plans (MAP)". You will learn MAP components and facilitation techniques, ways to support the individual to own and participate in the process, how to incorporate information into a career profile, and how to develop a 30-day Action Plan. This session will also address strategies to involve an individual's professional and natural supports in the employment process.

Module 5: Vocational Assessment III - Strategies for Community Exploration and Individualized Job Search Planning

Research tells us that one aspect to increasing the likelihood for paid employment is having a variety of career exploration experiences. By participating in this session you will learn strategies for meaningful community exploration (community participation, informational interviews, job shadowing, situational assessments, etc.) for the purpose of vocational exploration and discovery. You will gain an understanding of the process for capturing relevant information, integrating the information into the career profile, and using the information to develop an employment goal. This session will reinforce the purpose of the 30-day Action Plan, strategies to support achievement of the initial employment plan, and plans to support retention success.

Module 6: Employment Law, Americans with Disability Act (ADA), and Disability Disclosure

It is important for employment professionals to have a good understanding of basic worker rights and related Department of Labor (DOL) employment laws (wage and hour regulations) as they help individuals towards employment. By participating in this session you will learn the basics of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the ADA Amendments Act (ADAAA) specific to Title 1- Employment. You will gain an understanding of the pros and cons to disclosing a disability during the job search process, and the relationship between disclosure and job accommodation. The session addresses the process for supporting decision-making regarding disclosure, the importance of informed consent in the disclosure process, reporting discrimination, and national and local resources.

Module 7: Job Development I - Job Search Practices to Support Meaningful Employment

There is more to job development then simply creating a resume and looking online for job openings. By participating in this session you will learn effective job search practices with an emphasis on the strategies found to be most effective for individuals with DD/ID. You will be introduced to Rhode Island labor market information and learn how it can influence the job search process. You will learn to develop an organized, individualized, marketing approach to job development. The session will address the importance of business relationships and partnerships, networking strategies for exploration and employment opportunities, and a process for employer outreach.

Module 8: Job Development II - Employer Assessment and Individualized Approach to a Job Match

A job developer has two customers, the job seeker AND the employer. By participating in this session you will learn the important role a job developer plays in cultivating employer relationships that can lead to employment success. You will learn how to conduct a business survey and job analysis, and how to use those tools to identify opportunities for customized employment. You will also learn effective strategies for presenting job candidates to potential employers. You will leave the session with a template for job analysis and business survey and ideas for marketing resources.

Module 9: Job Development III - Employer Relationships and Negotiations

Getting to Yes! By participating in this session you will learn techniques that help build employer relationships. Participants will learn strategies for initiating employer contact, developing your opening line, managing an appointment to achieve your meeting goal, promoting a job seeker, and techniques for overcoming common employer objections. Participants will learn strategies for closing the deal and follow-up. You will leave with an employer presentation template and talking points to overcome employer objections.

Module 10: Job Retention and Coaching l - Foundations in Job Retention Success

Successful job retention is multi-faceted. It involving varying levels of off-site and on-site support including, transportation, activities of daily living (ADLs), teaching job tasks, and helping workers to interact with coworkers. By participating in this session you will learn strategies to support the first days on the job and how to engage supervisors, coworkers and others (family, residential supports, etc.) to provide natural supports. The session includes an overview of job coaching practices, and strategies for fading and building long term supports. You will leave with a basic understanding of accommodations and how to use them to support an individual to be successful at work.

Module 11: Job Retention and Coaching II - Teaching the Job - Task Analysis and Systematic Instruction

Research indicates that task analysis is an effective strategy for accommodation, support, and retention planning. By participating in this session you will learn how to develop a task analysis and how to use that information to create an individualized training plan. You will leave the session with knowledge of systematic instruction training techniques and how to monitor skill development through data.

Module 12: Job Retention and Coaching III- Fading Support, Quality Services and Career Development

Success occurs when a person can maintain employment and experience career advancement through increased hours, expanded job tasks, pay increases, or promotion. By participating in this session you will learn how to support job retention and career development through the use of job accommodations, effective fading strategies, and a plan for providing long-term supports. This session will also provide you with an understanding of quality supported employment service indicators and review methods for obtaining and monitoring services.

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