Kansas Telework Program
The Assistive Technology for Kansans project (ATK), coordinated by the University of Kansas at Parsons, operates a Telework financial loan program for the purchase of assistive technology devices and services necessary for employment by distance. Funding for this program is available through the Rehabilitation Services Administration Access to Telework Fund Program (CFDA 84.235T).
The Kansas Telework Program is directed by persons with disabilities and will provide the financial guarantee necessary for personal financing of devices such as computer hardware and software, adapted peripherals, hearing and vision aids, and other devices necessary for work. The establishment of a Telework program provides a financial mechanism to develop employment opportunities and to support persons with disabilities in purchasing assistive technology devices and services needed to work from a remote site or at a Telework center.
The Telework program recognizes that increased access to assistive technology can reduce or eliminate barriers to employment such as inadequate transportation, fatigue, and inaccessible work environments. The Kansas Telework program will consider a full range of financing options including: a low-interest loan fund, a revolving loan fund, a loan guarantee or insurance program, an interest buy-down program, and a program operated by a partnership among private entities for the purchase, lease, or other acquisition of AT devices or AT services.
Dissemination and Outreach efforts for the Telework program will include public service announcements, media campaigns, informational booths at state and regional meetings, direct mailings, articles in newsletters, and presentations made to disability and non-disability groups. Information gained from operating the Telework pilot programs will be made available through these efforts. Employers, potential employers, assistive technology providers, and Durable Medical Equipment vendors will be involved in media outreach efforts and will be included in public awareness efforts.
Data regarding applicant characteristics, device selection, impact of access to technology, and employment outcomes will be collected and shared with the national database. Information and outcomes will be shared with policymakers.
U. S. Department of Education
Jeanette Graue, SKIL - Parsons