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Information for High School Staff

It is important for high school and Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VRS) staff to work together to ensure that students with disabilities can prepare for employment success. VRS has a counselor and Pre-ETS Representative assigned to every high school in Minnesota.

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) sets forth requirements to ensure students with disabilities gain skills and have experiences that lead to success in competitive integrated employment. These requirements fall under the categories of Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) and Limitations on the Use of Subminimum Wage.

Pre-Employment Transition Services

Vocational Rehabilitation Services, in collaboration with local educational agencies, must provide statewide access to Pre-Employment Transition Services for all students with disabilities who are between the ages of 14 through 21. Students with disabilities include those receiving special education services or that have a disability for the purpose of section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.

Pre-Employment Transition Services are the following five activities:

  • Job exploration counseling
  • Work-based learning experiences
  • Counseling on opportunities for enrollment in postsecondary education programs
  • Workplace readiness training
  • Instruction in self-advocacy

Additional Pre-ETS Resources

WIOA Limitations on the Use of Subminimum Wage

Subminimum wage (less than the federal minimum wage) is allowable when an employment or day service provider holds a special 14(c) certificate from the U.S. Department of Labor. Learn more.

E1MN-Youth

E1MN is a partnership between the Minnesota Departments of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), Education (MDE) and Human Services (DHS) to advance Employment First outcomes for youth and adults with disabilities. The state agency partnership evolved from Minnesota's Employment First policy adopted by the Olmstead sub-cabinet in 2014.

E1MN-Youth is focused on improving employment outcomes for transition-age youth (14 to 21).

Stay Up-to-Date

To get announcements related to supporting transition services, pre-employment transition services (Pre-ETS) and competitive integrated employment (CIE) outcomes for youth with disabilities, sign up for the E1MN-Youth Professionals mail list. Click to subscribe

The VR program receives 74.9 percent of its funding through a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. For federal fiscal year 2020, the total amount of grant funds is $42,740,250. The required state match for these funds is $11,514,652. The state of Minnesota has appropriated $14.3 million - 25.1 percent of the total - to exceed the matching requirement.

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