Thank you for the concerns you’ve expressed and the actions you have taken related to the 2017 graduates. Yesterday afternoon the Board of Supervisors heard a presentation from the Community Services Board that lays out a plan for 2017 and beyond. I’ve updated our action alert to reflect these changes, and I’ll summarize below.
Here is a link from yesterday, but the one of relevance is on pages 9-28. 2-21-17 BOS HHHS Committee presentations
Proposal from Fairfax: The CSB has proposed using a reserve fund to cover “the vast majority or all” of the 2017 grads with ID and DD and those who may seek funding who have graduated in the past. They have further proposed that in 2018 and beyond, the CSB no longer plan to fund all of our graduates. Instead, a small amount of funding would be allocated to the grads. If someone without Waiver needed supports, they would need to demonstrate “exceptional hardship” to get County support dollars. They have proposed using Priority One on the Waiver Waiting List as a starting place to determine “exceptional hardship.”
What Does This Mean: The 2017 grads are still not guaranteed funding. It seems very likely at this point they will be funded by in large by the reserve fund, but that is not a promise. Continue to share the action alert, email or call your County Supervisor, come to Town Halls, and join us on April 5th at the budget hearing to show support for our grads.
If your loved one is graduating in 2018 and beyond, at this point it seems highly unlikely they will receive supports for day and employment unless the person has a Disability Waiver at the time of graduation. Only people who can show that not having these services would cause exceptional hardship will be considered for funding, and even that was not guaranteed in the proposal. That means that starting next year, the vast majority of our graduates will end school to sit on the couch all day. More than ever, we need you to continue to share the action alert, email or call your County Supervisor, come to Town Halls, and join us on April 5th at the budget hearing to show support for our grads.
Please contact me at any point for help with what to write or how to understand this issue. Thank you all for your advocacy in these uncertain times.