By Mary Kay Rizzolo, CQL President and CEO
This year was an especially transformative time for CQL | The Council on Quality and Leadership. While every new year brings big developments for all of us, 2017 seems to stand out for CQL. We had a whole lot of highlights and some big changes in the past 12 months, including the reorganization of one of our most celebrated tools, a new way for agencies to analyze data, a gathering of nearly 400 CQL enthusiasts, and more! Here’s our look back at just some of the memorable moments of 2017, broken down by month.
January | Kicking Off The Year’s Capstones
While CQL’s e-Newsletter Capstone has been around for many years, 2017 featured some of the most in-depth and insightful articles we’ve ever published. The first edition of the year was distributed in January, and covered trends in HCBS waiver utilization. CQL continued releasing articles throughout the year. You can browse through the full listing of articles on our website, as well as sign up for the e-Newsletter.
February | Issues Affecting Human Services, By The Numbers
In February 2017, CQL began releasing numerous research briefs, data analysis reports, and journal articles that would be shared throughout the year. The first of these was an article detailing waiver funding for supported employment services. The other articles covered a variety of other issues such as:
March | Ongoing Professional Development, For Free
Starting with a webinar covering the HCBS Settings Rule in March, CQL conducted more than a dozen free webinars in 2017. In total, thousands of attendees participated in these events, learning about topics like the significance of reliability in using the Personal Outcome Measures® and the effect of 24/7 supports on the achievement of outcomes. You are able to access the full listing of CQL webinars, to watch recordings and download PowerPoint slides for free!
April | CQL Blooms With New Staff
The Spring season was one of growth for CQL’s executive leadership, beginning in April with the hiring of CQL’s Vice President of Finance and Administration, Trina Douglas. In June, CQL also welcomed a new Vice President of Accreditation and Training, Angela Rapp Kennedy. In addition to these staff, many full-time Quality Enhancement Specialists were added to the team throughout 2017. This includes Betsy Burns, Michael Clausen, Kendra Ellwanger, Christopher Fortune, Jennifer Quigley, and Elizabeth Sites. There are bios on our website sharing more information about all of CQL’s full-time staff.
May | A Better System For Data Analysis
CQL continually works to improve upon its own services, products, and offerings. When it comes to data management and analysis, this approach is no different. CQL upgraded its data system in 2017 to provide a more robust and user-friendly platform. In May, we launched the PORTAL Data System for reporting, tracking, analysis, and logging of data related to Personal Outcome Measures®, Basic Assurances®, and the Social Capital Index. PORTAL allows agencies to evaluate data at the individual or aggregate level, even comparing their organization’s data to national averages. The analytics capabilities offer the ability to break down data by support needs, service types, disability type, decision-making authority, specific residential settings, and many more.
June | Making The POM More Intuitive
The Personal Outcome Measures® (POM) are a powerful tool used by thousands throughout the world to learn about what really matters in people’s lives, through the exploration of 21 quality of life indicators. After conducting a validity analysis of the POM, CQL reorganized the 21 indicators under five new factors. This resulted in the release of a new Personal Outcome Measures® Manual, which for the first time in CQL’s history can be downloaded online for free.
July | Supported Decision-Making Policy, Procedure, And Practice
Through funding by the New York Developmental Disabilities Planning Council, CQL released a white paper about Supported Decision-Making (SDM) in July 2017. ‘Supported Decision-Making In The United States’ details policy, procedure, and practice approaches of SDM, by synthesizing published literature. It also looks at state-level efforts to implement SDM as a possible alternative to guardianship for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
August | Connections And Collaboration On Facebook
One of the benefits of partnering with CQL is becoming exposed to best practices that are taking place in other areas of the world, and being a part of a community of providers who are committed to highest level of quality for supports and services. To help nurture this environment of collaboration and connectedness, CQL created the Facebook E-Community in August 2017. This is a platform where members can share resources, ask questions, provide support, and identify solutions.
September | A Week Of Recognition
For the second year in a row, CQL has partnered with the National Alliance For Direct Support Professionals (NADSP) to profile DSPs who are using the Personal Outcome Measures® to help people achieve their individually-defined outcomes. During the 2017 DSP Recognition Week in September, we shared stories about devoted staff who supported people to choose where they live, be treated fairly, and realize their personal goals.
October | A CQL-Centric Gathering
From October 16-19 in the Indianapolis, IN, the ‘Crossroads of America,’ CQL held its 2017 CQL Conference themed Blueprint for Person-Centered Practices. This conference brought together nearly 400 attendees, 50 presenters, 5 keynote addresses, two panel discussions, and more than a dozen exhibitors. For four days, participants received practical and applicable information that they could use in their daily supports and services.
November | Certifiably Exciting
In an effort to improve the experience of those achieving CQL Certification as a Trainer or an Interviewer, changes were made to the renewal terms and requirements for maintaining certification. In November 2017, CQL conducted a presentation about the changes to the certification process, and what it means for people who have achieved or are looking to achieve CQL Trainer or CQL Interviewer Certification.
December | New Partnerships For A New Year
Throughout the year CQL announced partnerships that were established with various member organizations, which provide those members with discounts on core CQL services. In December 2017, one of these partnership involved a collaboration with the American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR) to provide members a savings on CQL Accreditation, Training, Certification, and Consultation. In addition to the partnership with ANCOR, CQL also has agreements with the New York Alliance for Inclusion and Innovation (formerly NYSACRA), and The Arc New York (formerly NYSARC).
Looking Ahead To 2018
As we look back at 2017, we also look ahead to the adventures in store for 2018. In the new year, CQL will continue its dedication to the definition, measurement, and improvement of personal quality of life in a world of dignity, opportunity, and community for all people. We hope that you join us in this journey!