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Pre-Employment Transitions Services Technical Assistance Center

Pre-Employment Transition Services Technical Assistance Center

Training Tomorrow’s Workforce

Background

In 2014 Vocational Rehabilitation and Blind Services was mandated by the Rehabilitation Services Administration to reserve 15% of its service budget to provide Pre-Employment Transition Services to students with disabilities in high school. As a result in 2015 Vocational Rehabilitation and Blind Services began a new initiative to contract with Montana school districts to provide Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS).   These 5 new services are job exploration counseling, work experience, counseling on post-secondary education, work readiness and self-advocacy.

To support this initiative VRBS has taken a further step to contract with the University of Montana Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities to form the Pre-Employment Transitions Technical Assistance Center (Pre-ETS TAC). 

Mission

We (the Pre-ETS TAC) support Vocational Rehabilitation and Blind Services and school staff to provide quality pre-employment transition services to students with disabilities. We facilitate system change by researching and sharing innovative ideas, providing technical assistance, and helping to forge collaborations focused on competitive integrated employment.

What will the Pre-ETS TAC offer?

The Pre-ETS TAC team has staff and consultants available to schools and VR offices across the state of Montana.  Each region of the state has a primary contact person from the Pre-ETS TAC team who will serve as the geographic contact or lead for the particular region (see map below). These Project Coordinators will have regular communication with schools and VR offices in their region and work with them to identify needed resources, materials, training and information to implement quality Pre-ETS services for students. 

Examples of services available:

  • Survey of transition service needs
  • Assistance preparing a Pre-ETS Contract Work Plan
  • Specific staff training in job development, customized employment, the Discovery Process, etc
  • Development of products and resources to assist schools and VRBS staff
  • Guides for specific purposes (ie Work-Based Learning, Transition Planning, etc)

The Pre-ETS TAC will develop resources, products, and trainings in response to local, regional and state need.  Information will be disseminated electronically through a listserv; training will be delivered by webinars, online communities of practice, at state conferences, and on-site in local communities.  Varying levels of assistance can be accessed through the Pre-ETS TAC to meet the needs of Vocational Rehabilitation and schools. 

Universal Assistance consists of information and resources created or shared by the Pre-ETS TAC upon request such as through a phone call or email, or information shared with a large group such as disseminating a fact sheet through the listserv or providing a training session to a large group through a webinar.

Targeted Assistance would be distinguished by the length of interaction with recipients of the information and the depth of the information shared.  Examples might include an on-line community of practice around a topic such as Employer Engagement, or a three-day on-site training on Job Coaching skills.

Intensive Technical Assistance would include working with a school multiple days, on-site and long distance, to enhance one or more of their Pre-ETS services through training and technical assistance. A goal for the assistance would be specified and a plan developed between the Pre-ETS TAC, school, and VR counselor supervisor and VR counselor, to achieve the goal. (In order for your school to receive this level of technical assistance you must have an established contract with VRBS around Pre-ETS).

Access to Resources

The Pre-ETS Technical Assistance Center has many resources available to assist VRBS and school personnel.  Some of these can be found on the Rural Institute website: Rural Institute website.

They also offer regular resource announcements (ie webinars, transition updates, publications, etc) via a listserv.  If you interested in adding your name to the Pre-ETS listserv use our online form, or contact Kim Brown, Project Coordinator, kim.brown@mso.umt.edu.

How to Contact

Contact Ellen Condon, Pre-ETS TAC Director, for more information at (406)243-4134, ellen.condon@mso.umt.edu; or the geographic lead in your region.

Pre-Employment Transition Services Technical Assistance Center Contacts