The CNMI Office of Vocational Rehabilitation has set its state plan for fiscal year 2015, outlining four goals that aim to improve its services and outlines its priorities.
Those four goals are: (1) striving to deliver quality and timely services to applicants and consumers; (2) serving as an advocate for individuals with disabilities; (3) working closely with the Workforce Investment Agency; and (4) transitioning students with disabilities to employment or continued education.
OVR first goal will involve conducting staff performance evaluation on a semi-annual basis to maintain an effective program management system; doing presentations on Tinian and Rota; strengthening collaboration with disability stakeholders, including the Division of Public Health and Department of Labor; and ensuring that assistive technology is made available to individuals with disabilities.
Another part of their first goal is to create an “individualized plan for employment” that will maximize services for training, job search, and placement purposes, including outreach to the private sector.
OVR’s second goal includes increasing employer awareness of vocational rehabilitation programs and the “viability and benefits” of hiring qualified individuals with disabilities. This will involve conducting education activities among employers or businesses.
OVR aims to meet its second goal by working with the Office of the Governor and mayor’s offices, and partnering with agencies in community outreach.
OVR’s third goal includes cost share training with WIA to ensure continued collaboration for the integration of services.
“OVR will continue its efforts toward the development and implementation of memorandums of understanding with WIA and DOL,” the plan states.
The fourth goal for OVR seeks to transition at least 15 percent of the total number of seniors receiving special education services.
“OVR will continue with outreach activities, including its co-location practice at the five public high schools to increase visibility and accessibility, perform intakes, assist with applications, and conduct question-and-answer sessions,” the plan states.
OVR will also include the Public School System Special Education program and the Northern Marianas College for its outreach programs, including other disability stakeholder agencies to encourage individuals with disabilities interested in achieving employment, and include training programs for individuals with disabilities.
OVR also stated that in the course of fiscal year 2014, they will continue to meet regularly with PSS and NMC officials to review and monitor their interagency agreements and other necessary activities before fiscal year 2015.