Continuing our Journey

by   |   Thu, Aug 27th, 2015

I can still remember well the day when my son left home for college. In the days prior to his big move, I would give myself periodic pep talks. I would encourage myself by repeating phrases like, "Kellie, you can do this" or "He is just going to college – we will still see him all the time." When I really felt the emotions coming, I would try to think about how much cleaner his room would be after he goes to school! Alas, despite my feeble attempts, the day my son left for college I became a teary blubbering mess! Sometimes, regardless of preparation, change is still hard.

As you are well aware, the County Board system in Ohio is undergoing a redesign process. As superintendent in Guernsey County, we experienced some difficult moments along our redesign journey, but, at the end of the day, it is essential to remember that County Boards will continue to support individuals with developmental disabilities and their families. In today's blog post, I would to take a moment to help reassure individuals and families as TuscBDD navigates the redesign process.

I would first like to reiterate that the TuscBDD Workshop will remain open. Individuals served in this facility will continue to have access to meaningful activities and will continue to be served by TuscBDD employees. I would like to be very clear regarding the fact that employees in the workshop, such as department specialists, are TuscBDD employees and they will continue to serve individuals at this facility. It is important to differentiate TuscBDD from Starlight Enterprises Inc. (SEI). As part of the current arrangement, SEI procures contracts with local businesses for piecework assembly as well as serving as the payroll agent for individuals engaged in vocational opportunities at the workshop.

I would also like to emphasize the fact that the Starlight School will continue to operate. As we navigate the redesign process, changes may occur, but TuscBDD is not looking to close this facility. We are currently meeting with a team of educators in Tuscarawas County to discuss ways of better supporting local school districts.

Also, it is essential to remember that TuscBDD will continue to support all service providers in this county. Examples of service providers in Tuscarawas County include: Horizon's, Stepping Stones, SEI and etc. County Boards provide funding for these providers (County Boards pay the Medicaid Match for individuals with Medicaid waivers; approximately 40% of costs regardless of where they receive services). This is an essential support which strengthens service and support opportunities in this county.

In the coming weeks, our Service Facilitation Specialists will be scheduling meetings with all individuals and families on their caseloads. We look forward to the opportunity to answer questions you may have. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to reach out to us for more information at 330-339-9573!

Thanks for your time!


Thu, Aug 27th, 2015