YTP Quarterly Report 09/30/09 - 1
YOUTH Training, Technical Assistance and Evaluation
TRANSITION We’d like to highlight two special events from this
On July 21 and 22, the YTP TA team participated in a
two day planning retreat that included Clayton Rees
from OVRS and Jackie Burr from ODE. The purpose
of the retreat was to review the current status of the
Technical program and formalize our training and TA plans for
Assistance the 2009/2010 school year.
On September 1st, we officially launched the
Team Quarterly updated version of the YTP evaluation database.
Summer 2009 1. Statewide and Regional Trainings. This quarter the
Technical Assistance team prepared materials and coordinated a
series of contract meetings for all YTP sites in the network. The
contract meetings included an overview of YTP services, an
July 1, 2009 – September introduction and update on new and existing performance
30, 2009 benchmarks, and support for operating under order of selection.
Peter FitzGerald also co-presented with Clayton Rees, a session
on "Serving Youth with Disabilities Under Order of Selection" at
the Annual OVRS In-Service on September 1st and 2nd
2. Technical Assistance Site Visits. From July 1 through
Marcus Poppen and
September 30th, we conducted 19 technical assistance site
Lauren Lindstrom visits and meetings, serving 137 transition personnel, school
staff, VR staff, and other stakeholders. All site visits were
documented and written TA reports were submitted to OVRS.
University of Oregon The highest priority issues that the sites identified this quarter
were: (1) reviewing new YTP Contracts; (2) working through
Order of Selection; (3) recruiting younger participants (4)
strategies for effective service delivery and building strong
community connections; (5) support and problem solving with
the revised database system.
3. Evaluation Activities. This quarter represented a substantial
biennial update to the YTP Database, resulting in subsequent
trainings and technical assistance for those who enter data and
utilize reports. Initially, a beta version of the database was
developed and improved through many rounds of extensive
testing on its accuracy, functionality, and design. With the launch
of the live version, additional complications were found and
changes were made as feedback was collected from Technical
Assistance Providers and Transition Specialists. Updates to the
YTP Quarterly Report 09/30/09 - 2
database included tracking a youth's grade in school at their time of application, order of
selection status and the provision of information and referral services to those who are in
delayed status and updating the way we collect race and ethnicity data to follow the
national guidelines set by the U.S. Department of Education, and the collection of
Functional Limitations as determined by a student's OVRS counselor.
Progress on Key Issues/Priorities
1. Collaboration with VR Administration. The YTP TA team continues to collaborate
with VR state and local administrators in the development and management of this
project. At the July 2009 planning retreat we discussed some of the critical issues
facing OVRS that impact YTP service delivery including: a) recommendations and
restrictions from the RSA audit, b) state and local procedures for order of selection,
c) delayed status requirements, and d) provision of information and referral
services. We are also working with VR administration to help VR counselors
understand and implement the new requirements for serving younger students
within the YTP model.
2. Coordination with Other Transition Programs/Initiatives. Our TA team
participates in a number of other transition activities statewide. Jeri Dickinson is a
member of the ACCESS project team, and participates in regular management
meetings and site visits to schools who are implementing the ACCESS project. Peter
FitzGerald attends monthly meetings with Disability Service Provider Networking
and East County Transition Coordinators, and is involved with the Electronic
Transition Portfolio Project.
Michael Johnson has been working closely with Project R.E.A.D.Y. (Research on
Employment for Adjudicated Youth) grant which focuses on improving
employability social skills for incarcerated youth. This is a three year research
project that seeks to revise the W.A.G.E.S. (Working At Gaining Employment Skills)
curriculum, so that it can be effectively implemented in short term and long term
correctional facilities. The goal of the project is to improve employment outcomes in
the community for students who are leaving correctional facilities. Mike Johnson
serves as a consultant on this project, working directly with a design team from
three states, Oregon, Maryland, and New Mexico. Mike is the primary author for the
W.A.G.E.S curriculum and will oversee the fidelity of instruction in short term and
long term facilities in each state.
3. Diversity. Our team is committed to recruiting and retaining youth with disabilities
from diverse backgrounds, as well as providing high quality and culturally
appropriate transition services. This quarter our efforts focused primarily around
understanding and evaluating outcomes for diverse youth served by the YTP. In July
2009, we reviewed outcome data for the entire 2007-2009 biennium, focusing on
post school outcomes for youth of color, young women, and youth from low income
families. We know from national transition studies that these groups are more
likely to experience poorer education, employment and post school engagement
YTP Quarterly Report 09/30/09 - 3
outcomes. Although there are still some differences across groups, we also found
some very positive outcomes for diverse youth in YTP including:
95% high school completion rate for youth of color served in YTP
At program exit, YTP youth from low income families were working an
average of 31 hours per week with an average wage of $9.17 per hour
In addition, this quarter we updated the YTP data collection procedures to mirror
the new state and federal Department of Education guidelines for gathering
information on race and ethnicity. Transition Specialists will now answer a two part
question about each youth served to provide more accurate and comprehensive
data about both race and ethnicity. This change will allow us to compare YTP
outcomes with state and national data.
4. Technology. During this quarter, we continually updated and posted new
information on the YTP web site. Developed in consultation with Todd Thomlinson
and Brian Gilday from Aha Consulting, the site serves as a home page for all YTP
training, technical assistance, and evaluation materials. The initial response to the
web site has been very positive. According to Google analytics, from July 1st to
September 30th, there have been:
a. 3,869 visits, which averages to 32 visits per day
b. People view an average of 4 pages a visit and spend an average of 4 minutes
on the site. Many use the site as a portal to the secure data entry site.
c. 32% of the visitors view the homepage as the page most frequently visited.
d. Looking at statistics on return visitors, 5.7% of visitors have come back
between 9-14 times; 5.6% between 15-25 times; 6.6% between 26-50 times;
12.1% between 51-100; and 1% of visitors have visited the site more than
e. 45.1% of visitors have gotten to the site directly (i.e. they typed the address
into their browser); 48.7% have used search engines to find the site; and
6.2% have been referred by other sites.
5. Coordinated Referral and Planning. TA providers have worked to clearly
understand the barriers and limitations that were brought on by Order of Selection
and the RSA audit (Transition Specialists can only work with applicants).
Consultation about how sites should proceed with referring younger students was
also a focus. Our efforts around developing coordinated planning materials were
limited due to the number of students who were placed in delayed status.