FYI, the Institute on Community Integration Staff Newsletter

October 2012

ICI Receives $4.2 Million for Four Projects

The Institute on Community Integration (ICI) has received over $4.2 million in new funding for four projects that build on earlier work at ICI and which, like many of the 70-plus projects already at the Institute, reach across the lifespan. The newly-funded projects are:

  • Making a Map: Finding My Way Back (MAP). ICI, in partnership with Ramsey County Community Corrections, Amicus Inc., St. Paul Public Schools, Twin Cities metropolitan area postsecondary programs, and the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, is launching this comprehensive, evidence-based project to support juvenile offenders with disabilities transitioning from juvenile justice facilities into secondary and postsecondary education, employment, and community programs. The project, which begins in January 2013, is funded by a four-year, $1.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education. David R. Johnson (, 612-624-1062) is project director and Jean Ness (, 612-625-5322) is co-director.

  • Partnership in Wellness: A Training Curriculum for Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. Focusing on adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities who require ongoing daily supports, have limited readings skills, and would benefit from learning about improved nutrition and activity, Partnership in Wellness is delivering a research-based, universally-designed, health promotion curriculum that addresses the unique learning needs of this population. The project, which has begun in October 2012, is funded by a three-year, $600,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Education. Pat Salmi (, 612-625-9700) is co-Principal Investigator and is directing the project.

  • Consequential Validity Related to the AZELLA Kindergarten Placement Test. The goal of this study is to determine (a) whether AZELLA, a placement test meant to determine the level of English proficiency of Arizona kindergarteners whose primary language is not English, is accurately placing students into the appropriate English as a Second Language class; and (b) whether the intended outcome of the placement test – getting students targeted for English instruction to efficiently move out of structured immersion classes – is being met. This project, which began in August 2012, is funded by a one-year, $285,000 contract from the Arizona Department of Education. Laurene Christensen (, 612-624-5832) is project director.

  • National Residential Information Systems Project and Policy Studies (RISP). For nearly 30 years, this University of Minnesota-based project has gathered, maintained, and analyzed national and state-by-state data on publicly-funded residential and in-home supports for people with disabilities. Funding for the ongoing project was renewed in September 2012 with a five-year, $1.75 million cooperative agreement from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families. Sherri Larson (, 612-624-6024) is project director.

“These projects illustrate the incredible diversity and depth of the work we do at ICI,” says director David R. Johnson. “We continue to build on the strengths of ICI staff, and of our internal and external partners, as we work to improve community services and supports for people with disabilities, and those at-risk, locally and throughout the country.”