January 7, 2016 Notes from the Director

Dear Colleagues —

The Department of Labor, in coordination with the Departments of Education, Health and Human Services, Agriculture, and Housing and Urban Development, is soliciting comments concerning a collection of data that will be used for Unified and Combined State Plans under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). The WIOA Unified and Combined State Plan Requirements is a consolidated information collection that would implement sections 102 and 103 of WIOA (P.L. 113-128). WIOA requires that, no later than March 3, 2016, each State, at a minimum, submit a Unified State Plan as a condition of receiving funds for core programs subject to the Unified State Plan requirements. In the alternative, States may submit a Combined State Plan as a condition of receiving funds under certain named programs subject to the Combined State Plan provisions. See 29 U.S.C. §§ 3112 and 3113.. The Unified or Combined State Plan requirements are designed to improve service integration and ensure that the publicly-funded workforce system provides a range of employment, education, training, and related services and supports to help all jobseekers secure good jobs while providing businesses with the skilled workers they need to compete in the global economy. To that end, the Unified or Combined State Plan would describe how the State will develop and implement a unified, integrated service delivery system rather than discuss the State’s approach to operating each program individually.

As required by the Paperwork Reduction Act, we are seeking comment through January 22, 2016 on the proposed WIOA State Plan information collection request (ICR). A copy of the Federal Register Notice for this collection, proposed ICR and supplement, and supporting statement may be accessed at www.doleta.gov/wioa or directly at http://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=201512-
1205-001
. The Departments published an earlier version of this ICR for a 60-day comment period that closed on October 5, 2015. The Departments responded to comments received during the 60-day comment period and are re-publishing the ICR for a final 30-day comment period as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act. This comment period is open for 30 days and closes on January 22, 2016. Any comments not received through the process outlined in the Federal Register will not be considered.

Best —
Sharon Lee Miller
Director, Division of Academic and Technical Education

December 17, 2015 Notes from the Director

Dear Colleagues —

On behalf of the entire Division of Academic and Technical Education (DATE), please accept our warm wishes for a joyful and restful holiday!

Best —
Sharon Lee Miller
Director, Division of Academic and Technical Education

December 9, 2015 Notes from the Director

Dear Colleagues —

On behalf of the U.S. Departments of Transportation, Education, and Labor, we are pleased to invite representatives from the transportation industry, workforce boards and job centers, community colleges, technical education initiatives, apprenticeship programs, and others to join a National Virtual Forum entitled “Jobs in Transportation: Aligning Skills Training with Job Demand.” The forum will be held on Wednesday, December 16, 2015, from 1:00-2:30 pm (EST). During the forum, participants will discuss strategies to align skills training with transportation job demand, as well as learn about new tools and resources available to help advance transportation career pathways at the state and local levels. Space is limited, so please RSVP as soon as possible (see the Calendar event on the PCRN homepage).

Also, we remind you of the approaching December 31, 2015, deadline for submission of your State’s Consolidated Annual Report (CAR). If you have any questions about your submission, please contact your Regional Accountability Specialist (RAS) or Sharon Head at Sharon.Head@ed.gov.

Happy Holidays—
Sharon Lee Miller
Director, Division of Academic and Technical Education

November 25, 2015 Notes from the Director

Dear Colleagues —

On behalf of the Division of Academic and Technical Education, please accept our best wishes for a happy Thanksgiving! We hope you enjoy a restful and joyful holiday with your family and friends!

Best —
Sharon Lee Miller
Director, Division of Academic and Technical Education

October 22, 2015 Notes from the Director

Dear Colleagues —

Today, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Career, Technical, and Adult Education Johan Uvin, issued a letter of clarification and encouragement (PDF, 1.03 MB) to further assist you in preparing for a timely and robust implementation of Title II of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, Pub. L. 113-128 (WIOA) and to clarify the participation of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006, Pub. L. 109-270 (Perkins IV) in combined state planning efforts.

In his letter, Johan indicates that it has been great to receive informal reports and reactions on social media that show that most of you are involved in your states with developing comprehensive talent development strategies as part of unified or combined state planning efforts.  To this end, Johan provides steps that individual partners, as well as partners together, can take now to develop combined plans that include Perkins.

Best —
Sharon Lee Miller
Director, Division of Academic and Technical Education

October 07, 2015 Notes from the Director

Dear Colleagues —

Today, the U.S. Department of Education launched the Reach Higher Career App Challenge (RHCAC or Challenge) to promote the development of mobile solutions that will help students navigate education and career options, while increasing the capacity of career counselors to assist students in planning for their futures. This Challenge supports First Lady Michele Obama’s Reach Higher Initiative to inspire every student in America to take charge of their future by pursuing their education beyond high school.

The Challenge calls upon educators, mobile application (app) developers, and other interested individuals to submit their concepts for mobile apps that:  (1) are focused on middle and high school students, (2) include integrated tools to assess user skills and interests, and (3) offer users accessible information on occupations, education options, credentials, and career-seeking skills through an individualized user experience.  The challenge carries a cash prize pool of $225,000 and over $240,000 in additional prizes.

The Federal Register notice, which includes the complete Challenge rules, is provided here. Submissions are due on or before December 7, 2015.  

Please share this information with your schools and networks to generate as much interest in and as many entries as possible.

Best —
Sharon Lee Miller
Director, Division of Academic and Technical Education

October 01, 2015 Notes from the Director

Dear Colleagues —

Today your State should have received its October 1, 2015, Perkins supplemental grant award for Program Year 2015-16, which began on July 1, 2015.  If you have any questions about this supplemental award, please contact Edward Smith, Chief of our Program Administration Branch, at Edward.Smith@ed.gov or 202-245-7602.

We also want to remind you about the upcoming October 15 deadline for States to submit nominations for the 2016 (inaugural) class of U. S. Presidential Scholars in Career and Technical Education.  Information and resources for the nomination process are available at http://cte.ed.gov/initiatives/cte-scholars.  Also, please contact me directly if you need further assistance at Sharon.Miller@ed.gov or 202-245-7846.

Finally, we hope you have registered and are getting geared up for a productive and exciting Data Quality Institute (DQI) on November 4-5, in Linthicum, MD (just outside of Baltimore).  For further information, please visit our registration page at http://cte.ed.gov/cal/data-quality-institute.  We look forward to seeing you next month!

Best —
Sharon Lee Miller
Director, Division of Academic and Technical Education

 

September 16, 2015 Notes from the Director

Dear Colleagues —

Our office is pleased to announce a new round of customized technical assistance to support the development and refinement of Perkins IV accountability systems.  States and discretionary grantees are eligible to apply.  Technical assistance will be provided through our contractors at RTI International.  Examples of the types of products that have been developed for states are available on the PCRN at:  http://cte.ed.gov/accountability/technical-assistance-to-states/

For logistical infomation about the submission of projects, please see the Announcement Letter (PDF, 430 KB). The deadline for submission is Friday, October 16, 2015. If you have questions about this opportunity, please contact John Haigh in our office at John.Haigh@ed.gov, or Sandra Staklis at RTI International at sstaklis@rti.org.

Best —
Sharon Lee Miller
Director, Division of Academic and Technical Education

September 1, 2015 Notes from the Director

Dear Colleagues —

I am pleased to announce that the Department announced today the availability of $1.9 million in discretionary grant funding for the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Reentry Education Program.  This program is designed to build on existing efforts to improve reentry outcomes for justice-involved youths, make CTE the education focus of their efforts, and build strong partnerships to implement a comprehensive, collaborative approach to improving education, employment, and other well-being outcomes for justice-involved youths. 

On any given day, more than 60,000 young people under age 21 are confined in juvenile justice facilities throughout the United States.  Youths involved in the juvenile justice system typically have a history of poor school attendance, grade retention, or disengagement from school due to academic failure and school disciplinary issues.  Many youths in the juvenile justice population have had little employment experience before confinement, and their employment challenges often intensify post release, with many struggling to find and keep jobs. The JJ Reentry Program is designed to tackle these issues and facilitate the successful reentry of these most vulnerable youth.

The Federal Register Notice Inviting Applications can be found here: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2015-08-31/pdf/2015-21533.pdf

We also invite you to a pre-application Webinar on September 9, 2015, at 3:30 pm EDT. View webinar details.

Finally, we encourage you to check for updated information on the program on the PCRN under National Activities, JJ Reentry Education Program.

Best —
Sharon Lee Miller
Director, Division of Academic and Technical Education

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