Partnerships in Employment is a national transition systems change project whose purpose is to identify, develop, and promote policies and practices to improve transition, post-secondary and competitive employment outcomes for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Eight states, Alaska, California, Iowa, Mississippi, Missouri, New York, Tennessee and Wisconsin are involved in the Partnerships initiative. They are intricately involved with their state education, vocational rehabilitation and developmental disabilities agencies, individuals with intellectual disabilities, families, educators, and service providers to affect changes within and across state systems.
The Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI) and the National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services (NASDDDS) are partners in operating the Technical Assistance Center for the Partnerships Project. Technical assistance is guided by the High Performing States Framework, which is drawn from over 20 years of research conducted by ICI on state systems change. The elements of this framework include: Interagency Collaboration, Leadership, Values, Operating Policy and Goals, Financing, Training and Technical Assistance, Service Innovations, and Outcome Data.
Statewide mandated transition partners’ mission, goals, and operating policies emphasize employment and postsecondary education as the preferred outcomes for youth and young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Local and state-level administrators within state agencies and stakeholder organizations are champions for employment.
Funding mechanisms and contracts with providers emphasize employment for transition-age youth and young adults as the preferred outcome.
There is a sustained and significant investment in training and technical assistance to support statewide goals regarding the transition from school to employment.
There is a shared statewide interagency responsibility and authority for coordinating transition services. Includes examples of memoranda of understanding drafted from various states
State agencies work to create opportunities for providers, youth and young adults, and families to make optimal use of the resources available for transition to employment.
Statewide interagency data-collection systems are used as a strategic planning tool to further the goal of increasing employment for transition-age youth and young adults.