Request For Proposals: 

Incompass Michigan DSP Career Pathway 

Proposals will be accepted until: 4:00 P.M. ET on April 15, 2020 

The deadline for proposal submission has been extended – proposals will now be accepted until May 15, 2020.

Questions submitted by March 20, and accompanying answers, have been posted to the bottom of this page.  Incompass Michigan will accept additional questions seeking further clarity until 4:00 PM ET on April 10, 2020 and will post accompanying answers to this page on a regular basis until that time.  The Q & A process will be complete, with all questions and answers posted, on April 15.


Incompass Michigan is an association of comprehensive human service providers working together to achieve inclusive communities. 



Incompass Michigan is seeking proposals for the development of a competency-based training program designed to prepare individuals who have the desire and ambition to provide quality services as a Direct Support Professional (DSP), working with individuals with disabilities in home and community based settings.   



  1. Curriculum of sufficient depth to be valued across multiple sectors of service provision, specific to the service delivery environment in Michigan. 
  1. Curriculum that will enhance the quality of residential and non-residential services to individuals with disabilities. 
  1. Curriculum that will increase the likelihood of successful service outcomes and promote meaningful connections to community.  



Quality curriculum and assessment development that can be easily delivered to potential or current DSPs at an economical cost. We are seeking to establish a training experience promoting a career pathway within the direct care workforce, leading to a recognized credential.  

Proposals may be submitted for one or more curriculum level 

An overview of the suggested outline for the acquired curriculum is noted below with necessary competencies and skills that the curriculum should deliver and assess. Each of these competenciemay be broken down into lessons not to exceed one hour in length.  

The acquired curriculum must include a summary chart identifying: 

Competency and Related Skill 
(as identified below, 
ie: 1. a.) 
Related Course(s), Lesson(s), or Module(s)  Measurable Objectives for the Skill  Assessment Method 


Course outlines webinars and content should be provided in a format that will easily translate to Incompass Michigan’s LMS or a standalone training platform. 

DSP Level 1 Curriculum 

Curriculum to include the following four competencies and related skills. 

  1. Crisis Prevention, Intervention and Resolution Techniques (NADSP #10) 
  1. Identify crisis, defuse the situation, evaluate and determine an intervention strategy and contact necessary supports. 
  1. Monitor crisis situations, discuss the incident with authorized staff and participant(s), adjust supports and the environment, and comply with regulations for reporting. 
  1. Safety (CMS #5) 
  1. Demonstrate the ability to identify, prevent, and report situations of abuse, exploitation, and neglect according to laws and agency rules. 
  1. Recognize signs of abuse and neglect, including the inappropriate use of restraints, and works to prevent them. 
  1. Maintain the safety of an individual in the case of an emergency. 
  1. Support individuals to be safe and learn to be safe in the community. 
  1. Use universal precautions and give first aid as needed in an emergency. 
  1. Person Centered Practices (NADSP #14) 
  1. Support individuals in alignment with their person centered plan. 
  1. Modify support programs and interventions to ensure they are person centered. 
  1. Challenge co-workers and supervisors to use person centered practices. 
  1. Understand person centered planning techniques.  
  1. Assist individuals in developing person centered plans. 
  1. Vocational, Educational & Career Support: knowledgeable about the career and education related concerns of the participant and able to mobilize the resources and support necessary to assist the participant to reach their goals. (NADSP #9) 
  1. Health and Wellness (NADSP #15) 
  1. Administer medications accurately and in accordance with agency policy and procedures. 
  1. Observe and implement appropriate actions to promote healthy living and to prevent illness and accidents. 
  1. Use appropriate first aid/safety procedures when responding to emergencies. 
  1. Assist individuals in scheduling, keeping, and following through on all health appointments. 
  1. Assist individuals in completing personal care (e.g., hygiene and grooming) activities. 
  1. Assist with identifying, securing and using needed adaptive equipment and therapies (e.g., physical, occupational, speech, respiratory, psychological). 
  1. Assist individuals in implementing health and medical treatments. 
  1. Assist individuals to take an active role in their health care decisions. 


DSP Level 2 Curriculum 

Curriculum to include the following four competencies and related skills. 

  1. Evaluation and Observation (NADSP #3) 
  1. The competent DSP initiates or assists in the initiation of an assessment process by gathering information (e.g., participant’s self-assessment and history, prior records, test results, additional evaluation) and informing the participant about what to expect throughout the assessment process. 
  1. The competent DSP conducts or arranges for assessments to determine the needs, preferences, and capabilities of the participants using appropriate assessment tools and strategies, reviewing the process for inconsistencies, and making corrections as necessary. 
  1. The competent DSP discusses findings and recommendations with the participant in a clear and understandable manner, following up on results and reevaluating the findings as necessary 
  1. Communication (NADSP #2) 
  1. Use effective, sensitive communication skills to build rapport and channels of communication by recognizing and adapting to the range of participant communication styles. 
  1. Have knowledge of and use modes of communication that are appropriate to the communication needs of participants. 
  1. Learn and use terminology appropriately, explaining as necessary to ensure participant understanding. 
  1. Professionalism and Ethics (CMS #6) 
  1. Follow relevant laws, regulations and be guided by ethical standards when doing work tasks. 
  1. Support individual in a collaborative manner and maintains professional boundaries. 
  1. Show professionalism by being on time, dressing appropriately for the job, and being responsible in all work tasks. 
  1. Seek to reduce personal stress and increase wellness. 
  1. Respect the individual and his or her family’s right to privacy, respect, and dignity. 
  1. Maintain confidentiality in all spoken and written communication, and follow the rules in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. 
  1. Community Inclusion and Networking (NADSP #4) 
  1. Help to identify the needs of the participant for community supports, work with the participant’s informal support system, and assist with, or initiate identified community connections. 
  1. The competent DSP researches, develops, and maintains information on community and other resources relevant to the needs of participants. 
  1. The competent DSP ensures participant access to needed and available community resources coordinating supports across agencies. 
  1. The competent DSP participates in outreach to potential participants. 
  1. Building and Maintaining Friendships and Relationships: support the participant in the development of friendships and other relationships. (NADSP #13) 


DSP Level 3 Curriculum 

Curriculum to include the following four competencies and related skills. 

  1. Empowerment (NADSP #1) and Advocacy (NADSP #8) 
  1. Assists and support the participant to develop strategies, make informed choices, follow through on responsibilities, and take risks. 
  1. Promotes participant partnership in the design of support services, consulting the person and involving him or her in the support process. 
  1. Provide opportunities for the participant to be a self-advocate by increasing awareness of self-advocacy methods and techniques, encouraging and assisting the participant to speak on his or her own behalf, and providing information on peer support and self-advocacy groups. 
  1. Provide information about human, legal, civil rights and other resources, facilitate access to such information and assist the participant to use information for self-advocacy and decision making about living, work, and social relationships.  
  1. Identify advocacy issues by gathering information, reviewing and analyzing all aspects of the issue. 
  1. Have current knowledge of laws, services, and community resources to assist and educate participants to secure needed supports. 
  1. Facilitate, assist, and/or represent the participant when there are barriers to his or her service needs and lobbies decision-makers when appropriate to overcome barriers to services. 
  1. Interact with and educate community members and organizations (e.g., employer, landlord, civic organization) when relevant to participant’s needs or services. 
  1. Community Living Skills and Supports (NADSP #6) 
  1. Assist the participant to meet his or her physical (e.g., health, grooming, toileting, eating) and personal management needs (e.g., human development, human sexuality), by teaching skills, providing supports, and building on individual strengths and capabilities. 
  1. Assist the participant with household management (e.g., meal prep, laundry, cleaning, decorating) and with transportation needs to maximize his or her skills, abilities and independence. 
  1. Assist with identifying, securing and using needed equipment (e.g., adaptive equipment) and therapies (e.g., physical, occupational and communication). 
  1. Support the participant in the development of friendships and other relationships. 
  1. Assist the participant to recruit and train service providers as needed. 
  1. Education, Training, and Self-Development (NADSP #7) 
  1. Complete required training education/certification, continue professional development, and keep abreast of relevant resources and information. 
  1. Educate participants, co-workers and community members about issues by providing information and support and facilitating training. 
  1. Facilitation of Services: knowledgeable about a range of participatory planning techniques and skilled in implementing plans in a collaborative and expeditious manner. (NADSP #5) 
  1. Organizational Participation: familiar with the mission and practices of the support organization and participates in the life of the organization. (NADSP #11) 
  1. Documentation: awareness of the requirements for documentation in an organization and able to manage requirements efficiently. (NADSP #12) 
  1. Cultural Competence (CMS #11) 
  1. Provide or access services that fit with the individuals’ culture or preferences. 
  1. Seek to learn about different cultures to provide better support and services. 
  1. Recognize own biases and don’t let them interfere in work relationships. 
  1. Respect the cultural needs and preferences of each individual. 
  1. Assist the individual to find social, learning and recreational opportunities valued in his or her culture. 



The solicitation process will be open to respondents that are highly qualified to perform the services required, providing curriculum in one or more of the above curriculum levels. 

Evidence-based or best practice support for content will be valued.   

The ability to address program continuity, to develop more than one curriculum element, will be viewed favorably; as will the inclusion of multiple approaches to providing direct support based on the needs of the individual. 

Preference will be given to content that can be delivered online. 

Each submitted proposal should include: 

  • Detail of respondent’s qualifications and associated experience in relation to direct support services. 
  • Cost for curriculum and assessment development, as well as implementation support. 
  • Copyright statement of curriculum and assessment materials or licensing agreement. 
  • Description of engagements for other clients, involving services similar to those requested by this RFP and successfully performed by the respondent.  
  • Comparable project references of similar scope and size. 
  • Summary of how curriculum will align with the competency and skills noted for each curriculum level. 
  • Estimated timeline of deliverables. 

Incompass Michigan may accept or reject any proposal and reserves the right to negotiate further with respondents. Further, if Incompass Michigan accepts and approves a proposal, a Services Agreement will be submitted to the successful vendor. 

RFP Q&A Period: 

Questions regarding RFP should be sent in a PDF of MS Word document to with “RFP Questions” in the subject line of the email. Questions will be accepted until 4:00 P.M. ET on March 20, 2020. 

Responses to Questions:

Incompass Michigan DSP Career Pathway 

Responses to Submitted Questions 

1)      What is the timetable Incompass is looking at to achieve the deliverables mentioned? 

Incompass Michigan has not defined a firm timetable for deliverablesEach proposal should include an estimated timeline of deliverables. Incompass Michigan will consider the ability to deliver desired product in proposed timeline in the evaluation of RFPs. 

2)      What is the anticipated grant amount or a range for this project? 

This is a Request for Proposals for a contract of services, Incompass Michigan is not issuing grant funds. 

3)      Are you looking strictly for the development of the new curriculum or could some existing content be adapted for use? 

Incompass Michigan is open to new and/or existing curriculum that meets the standards of the Request for Proposals. 

4)      The proposal mentions digital delivery is preferred, are you looking to purchase the curriculum files to be housed on your LMS or looking for a vendor to house and deliver the content? 

Incompass Michigan is open to curriculum and assessment that can be housed on our internal LMS or a standalone training platform. 

5)      If you have a current LMS, what is the name of the system and the capabilities of housing content developed with Articulate 360? 

The Incompsass Michigan LMS is Knowledge Direct 7 by Digitec Interactive. Knowledge Direct is a state-of-the-art LMS that provides true mobile responsive design while meeting all SCORM standards (xAPI, 2004, 1.2) and will house content developed in Articulate 360. 

6)      Are you looking for content that meets the WCAG 2.1 requirements? 

  • Curriculum should contain  xAPI & SCORM conformant content, and be ADA 508, PCI (if hosted externally) & WCAG 2.1 Compliant 

7)      What type of assessments do you desire from on on-line curriculum reaching statewide (written -in person skills assessments, combination of both)? 

Incompass Michigan is open to various forms of assessment that support competency-based training and can be easily delivered to potential or current DSPs at an economical cost. 

8)      What are the end deliverables in regards to housing, supporting, maintaining curriculum? 

This will depend on if the curriculum is hosted on the Incompass Michigan LMS or a standalone training platform.   

9)      What type of training data is expected from the product/system? 

A tracking system to log each participant’s progress and to show what they have completed is desired along with Certificates of Completion 

10)   Are you expecting training and support for the system (initially upon launch-on-going)? 

Cost for curriculum and assessment development, as well as implementation support should be included in submitted proposals. 

11)   What are the thoughts around maintaining skills and competence? 

The Scope of Work identified in the Request for Proposal notes the desired training experience will promote a career pathway within the direct care workforce, leading to a recognized credential. Proposals may choose to include a plan for maintaining skills and competence. 

12)   Is there an estimated number of users currently? Most training products and estimates are based on an economy of scale. Understanding the scope will assist with determining overall pricing for startup and growth. 

An early estimate of the number of users is unknown, curriculum delivery should be flexible to grow with demand. Flexibility could reflect an economy of scale within the context of delivery. 

13)   Are the current outcomes set already or are they open to recommendations? 

Successful service outcomes should align with the desired curriculum competencies and related skills outlined in the Request for Proposals. 

14)  With regard to the RFP for a competency-based DSP training proposal, what is the maximum grant amount an organization may request?  

This is a Request for Proposals for a contract of services, Incompass Michigan is not issuing grant funds. 

15)  If accepted, would the grant be awarded to [applicant] so that we could develop curriculum that we could offer in a training program through our institution? 

The Request for Proposals seeks quality curriculum and assessment development that can be easily delivered to potential or current DSPs at an economical cost.  

16)  Could the training program that we develop align with all 3 levels of a Direct Support Professional program as outlined via NADSP?  

The Request for Proposal outlines how the desired Curriculum aligns with the NADSP core competencies. 

17)  Are in seat, online, and hybrid models allowed? 

The Request for Proposal notes that preference will be given to content that can be delivered online. 

18)  Would Incompass allow [applicant] to access their LMS to roll out the classes through [applicant], or do we need our own method of delivery? 

Incompass Michigan is open to curriculum and assessment that can be housed on our internal LMS or a standalone training platform. 

19)  What is the dollar limit in applying for the grant?   

This is a Request for Proposals for a contract of services, Incompass Michigan is not issuing grant funds. 

20)  Could you please define your prospective scope for utilizing existing online learning such as DirectCourse 

  • How many annual learners (excluding turnover) do you anticipate on the system?  

An early estimate of the number of users is unknown, curriculum delivery should be flexible to grow with demand. Flexibility could reflect an economy of scale within the context of delivery. 

  • How many learning administrators (people who can assign and require support from the vendor to do so) do you anticipate at a system wide level?  

This will depend on if the curriculum is hosted on the Incompass Michigan LMS or a standalone training platform. Incompass Michigan is prepared to be the sole admin support, supplying agencies with the needed reports, etc. Incompass Michigan would also be open to having each participating agency have an admin contact with access for their specific agency. Both would be considered 

21)   The DSP Career Pathway RFP states the need for training content for individuals working in home and community-based settings across multiple sectors, could you please clarify, are those sectors DD, mental Health, physical disabilities, aging, employment, other?  

The sectors include but are not limited to DD, mental health, physical disabilities, aging, and employment. 

22)   The DSP Career Pathway RFP mentions a recognized credential…. Are you seeking specifically curricula that aligns with and supports the NADSP DSP credential? If not, what specific credentials are important to Incompass Michigan?  

The Request for Proposal outlines how the desired Curriculum aligns with NADSP and CMS core competencies. The term recognized credential referencethe potential for establishing credentialing specific to Michigan. 

23)   Could you tell us which LMS you currently use?  

The Incompsass Michigan LMS is Knowledge Direct 7 by Digitec Interactive. Knowledge Direct is a state-of-the-art LMS that provides true mobile responsive design while meeting all SCORM standards (xAPI, 2004, 1.2) and will house content developed in Articulate 360. 

24)   When considering a standalone training platform, do you anticipate the provider agencies needing administrative access and support or would they be supported by InCompass Michigan?  

Either option will be consideredIncompass Michigan is prepared to support the provider agencies but separate admin access for the agencies is a preferred feature as well.  

25)   Once a proposal is selected, what are your initial goals, and could they be categorized into phases with desired timelines for completion?  

Incompass Michigan will work with the selected vendor to determine an appropriate Services Agreement with timelines.  

26)  What is the anticipated or ideal role of provider organizations? Will the providers need administrative access or will all assignments and management of the learners come from a centralized source (i.e., Incompass Michigan).  

Either option will be considered.  

27)  Is Incompass Michigan looking at a product to use just for their membership or opening up to other providers? Would they be looking to license per learner? By provider?  

The final curriculum may be made available to Incompass Michigan members as well as non-members. We are open to curriculum licensed per learner or per provider at an economical cost. 

28)  Will this be a one-year contract or, is there a possibility for a longer initial contract that enables incentivized renewal pricing (i.e., 3 or 5 year)? Is there a plan for managing the ongoing operation of this curriculum?  

Incompass Michigan is open to various options. This will depend on if the curriculum is hosted on the Incompass Michigan LMS or a standalone training platform.   

29)  Do you have an expected time frame for: 

  • Selecting a vendor and requesting a contract  
  • Internal contract review and signing  
  • Turnaround time for potential redlines in contract  
  • Desired roll out to providers

30)  Is ownership of the material something that is negotiable in the contract? Each submitted proposal should include a proposed copyright statement of curriculum and assessment materials or licensing agreement. 

Incompass Michigan is prepared to proceed with advancing a service agreement and related activities as soon as possible while understanding that COVID-19 may unintentionally impact any desired timelines. 


Proposals should be sent in a PDF or MS Word document to with “Response to RFP” in the subject line of the email. Proposals will be accepted until: 4:00 P.M. ET on April 15, 2020. 


For questions regarding this RFP, contact:  

Todd Culver, CEO 

Incompass Michigan 

417 Seymour Ave, Suite 5 – Lansing, MI 48933