In an effort to identify and better serve the needs of adults with disabilities/difficulties, the Bureau of Health/Nutrition, Family Services and Adult Education supports and implements a formal Technical Assistance (TA) Model to assist Connecticut Adult Education personnel. As a planned process, the Technical Assistance Model utilizes a variety of strategies in a sequence of activities directed toward obtaining permanent positive results over a period of time. This cost-efficient and effective TA model continues to grow to meet the changing needs of adult service providers in Connecticut. It is a significant part of the State Department of Educationís commitment to expanding access to educational programs and services for adults with disabilities/difficulties.
Included within this Technical Assistance Model are two infrastructures to inform and implement changes in service delivery to adults with disabilities: the Disability Focus Group and the Disability Contact Person Model.
Disability Focus Group
The Disability Focus Group (DFG) is an interagency group that meets to inform the decisions and procedures implemented by the Bureau with regard to adults with disabilities. The mission of the Disability Focus Group is to encourage and support the efforts of adult education and literacy personnel to improve accessibility for individuals with disabilities to educational and training facilities, programs, services and employment opportunities. The DFG, in concert with the Adult Training and Development Network (ATDN), the Bureau's professional training and development arm, have developed disability policies/procedures and designed professional development trainings that target serving adults with disabilities within the adult education community. One notable professional development offering is the annual conference on serving adults with disabilities that has grown to draw regional participation. Policies and procedures have been developed for the Connecticut Competency System (CCS) pertaining to testing, accommodations and confidentiality and for the Connecticut Adult Reporting System (CARS) regarding disability data collection.
Disability Contact Person
The Disability Contact Person Model identifies an individual from all adult education providers who, as initial point of contact, is responsible for disseminating disability-related information to others in his/her program and to serve as a resource for the local community. Disability Contact Persons (DCPs) meet annually to identify current needs, share resources, network, and work through common student/client-scenarios.