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Workforce Development Resources

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Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) Resources

WIOA is designed to strengthen and improve our nation's public workforce system and help get Americans, including youth and those with significant barriers to employment, into high-quality jobs and careers and help employers hire and retain skilled workers.

OSERS Technical Assistance Centers

The US Department of Education Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) oversees a number of Technical Assistance Centers designed to help with vocational rehabilitation and the effective implementation of WIOA.

  • Job–Driven Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center (JDVRTAC)
    Improves the ability of state vocational rehabilitation agencies to work with employers and providers of training to ensure equal access to and greater opportunities for individuals with disabilities to engage in competitive employment or training.
  • National Transition Center on Transition (NTACT)
    Assists state education agencies, local education agencies, state vocational rehabilitation agencies and other vocational rehabilitation service providers to implement evidence-based and promising practices to ensure students with disabilities stay in school, progress in school, and graduate with knowledge, skills, and supports needed to succeed in postsecondary education and employment.
  • Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center – Targeted Communities (VRTAC–TC)
    Provides technical assistance and training to upgrade and increase the competency, skills, and knowledge of vocational rehabilitation counselors and other professionals to assist economically disadvantaged individuals with disabilities to achieve competitive integrated employment outcomes.
  • Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center for Youth with Disabilities (VRTAC–Y)
    Provides technical assistance to state vocational rehabilitation agencies to improve services to and outcomes of: (1) students with disabilities, as defined in section 7(37) of the Rehabilitation Act, who are in school and who are not receiving services under the IDEA; and (2) youth with disabilities, as defined in section 7(42) of the Rehabilitation Act, who are no longer in school and who are not employed, including dropouts.
  • Workforce Innovation Technical Assistance Center (WINTAC)
    Provides training and technical assistance to state vocational rehabilitation agencies, including agency staff and related rehabilitation professionals and service providers, to help them develop the skills and processes needed to meet the new statutory requirements imposed by WIOA 2014.

OSERS Demonstration Projects

The US Department of Education Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) runs a number of demonstration projects that focus on specific issues to increase access to competitive integrated employment for individuals with disabilities.

  • Automated Personalization Computing Project (APCP)
    Increases access to information and communication technologies through automatic personalization of needed assistive technology. The projects are designed to promote state vocational rehabilitation agency partnerships in the development of and the use of career pathways to help individuals with disabilities eligible for vocational rehabilitation services.

PEAT Resources

The Partnership on Employment & Accessible Technology (PEAT) promotes the employment, retention, and career advancement of people with disabilities through the development, adoption, and promotion of accessible technology.

  • PEATWorks.org, a central hub for accessible technology-related tools and resources, including the latest PEAT research on the accessibility of online job applications and other eRecruiting technologies.  PEATworks content is designed to help employers and the technology industry adopt and promote accessible technology as part of everyday business practices, for the benefit of all employers and workers.
  • PEATTalks, a new virtual speaker series showcasing organizations and individuals whose work is advancing accessible technology in the workplace. Held the third Thursday of every month at 2:00 p.m. ET, PEATTalks are energetic and interactive discussions highlighting a spectrum of exciting work. Featured speakers deliver a 15-minute talk and then field questions from attendees.
  • TechCheck, a powerful but simple tool to help employers assess their technology accessibility practices and find tools to help improve them. TechCheck can help employers gauge the current state of their accessible technology policies, the goals they want to reach, and what steps they can take to reach them. TechCheck is intended for U.S. employers of all types — public or private, large or small.
  • The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) has launched TalentWorks, a free tool that helps employers and human resources professionals ensure that online job applications and other recruitment tools are accessible for jobseekers with disabilities. Created by ODEP’s Partnership on Employment & Accessible Technology, TalentWorks offers employers tip sheets on making online job applications, digital interviews, pre-employment tests and resume upload programs accessible. Top accessibility issues include websites with complex navigation, timeout restrictions, a lack of video captioning, and applications that can't be navigated with keystrokes and required using a mouse. An introductory webinar on TalentWorks may also be helpful.

Section 503 Resources

The newly amended Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act establishes benchmark employment goals for federal contractors and sub-contractors to employ a certain percentage of workers with disabilities.

Employment

Work performed for compensation, at location, and with opportunities for advancement similar to those who are not individuals with disabilities.

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Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS)

Supports programs and research that help educate and improve lives of individuals with disabilities, and provides for rehabilitation.

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Local Education Agency (LEA)

Agency legally authorized to provide administrative control or direction of publically funded schools.

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Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)

Federal law governing rights of children with disabilities to receive free and appropriate public education in least restrictive environment.

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Technology

Equipment or system where principal function is creation, conversion, duplication, control, display, interchange, transmission, reception, or broadcast of data.

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Accessible Technology

Technology that can be used by people with a wide range of abilities and disabilities. Incorporates the principles of universal design.

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Accessibility

Access for all people, including people with disabilities, to web environments.

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