OTAC & TIMAC Applications Now Open
OTAN's two popular academies, the Online Teaching Academy (OTAC) and the Technology Integration Mentor Academy (TIMAC) are opening their doors to teacher candidates for 12 spots each for the 2012-13 school year. These year-long professional development projects support adult education agency efforts to implement the effective use of technology and online instructional delivery with the goal of improving student learning outcomes.
OTAC was initiated in 2010 to meet the growing need for professional development to implement online and blended instruction. TIMAC is entering its ninth year and continues to focus on integrating technology into classroom instruction.
Education, Health and Human Services, and Labor Release Joint Career Pathways Letter
The Departments of Education, Health and Human Services, and Labor released on April 4, 2012, a ground-breaking letter (pdf) to their many stakeholders, highlighting the agencies' unified commitment to promote the use of career pathways approaches. The term "career pathways" refers to a promising strategy to help adults acquire marketable skills and industry-recognized credentials through the well-executed alignment of education, training and employment, and human and social services among public agencies and with employers, and linking them to labor market trends and employer needs. The joint effort serves as an important model to the field and provides what are held to be the essential components of a career pathways approach. The letter is an opportune vehicle to open doors for state and local efforts currently underway or being planned. The departments encourage stakeholders to use and further disseminate it.
The education and training strategies and support services that are aligned with career pathways enable individuals to secure industry recognized certification and obtain employment within an occupational area, as well as to advance to higher levels of future education and employment within that area. The departments encourage states to line up their resources to support integrated service delivery across federal and state funding streams, and ensure that interested agencies and partners—whether focused on education, workforce development, or human and social services—are fully aware of this joint commitment for improved collaboration and coordination across programs and funding sources.
Update on WIA Reauthorization
The Workforce Investment Act (WIA), which authorizes federal funding for adult education among other things, was enacted in 1998. It has been continued every year since then, but always with the hope that one of these years it will be reauthorized by congress with updated approaches and requirements for adult education programs, as there have been many changes in the field and in society since 1998.
On March 20, U.S. Representatives John Tierney, George Miller, and Ruben Hinojosa introduced a House Democratic bill (HR4227) (www), the Workforce Investment Act of 2012, to reform and reauthorize the Workforce Investment Act of 1998. This bill takes the bipartisan Senate WIA Draft as its starting point. There is also a Republican version, the Workforce Investment Improvement Act of 2012 (HR4297) (www) introduced on March 29 by Rep. Foxx on behalf of Reps. McKeon and Heck. Rep. Foxx chairs the Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce.
The Senate version of the bill, the Adult Education and Economic Growth (AEEG) Act of 2012 (S. 2117) (www), was introduced by Senator Webb on February 16. The Senate bill focuses on workforce development and incentivizes the use of technology to increase access to adult education programs. Each bill will progress through the committee system, and once each house passes their version there will be a conference committee to resolve the differences, so the process is just beginning for this year.
At the same time, the federal budget must be approved, with a designation of funding for adult education which is separate from the reauthorization process, so that adult education will receive continued funding under the current legislation if the reauthorizing legislation does not pass. Currently adult education is designated to receive a slightly lower amount of funding than in the current year.
In this issue
Find and register for training throughout California and conferences throughout the USA at the California Adult Education and Professional Development Web site (www).
OTAN offers free online and face-to-face workshops to adult educators and staff throughout California. Workshops are planned to fit a wide variety of skill levels! Find out more at www.otan.us/training.
Find and register for workshops at the California Adult Education and Professional Development Web site. (www)
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