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PA Bulletin, Doc. No. 00-529



Availability of Workforce Investment Act, Title II, Section 223 Funds for State Leadership Activities for the Period July 1, 2000--June 30, 2001

[30 Pa.B. 1659]

   These services are designed to strengthen the Pennsylvania Adult Literacy and Basic Education programs operated by the Department of Education (Department) Bureau of Adult Basic and Literacy Education (Bureau) by providing Statewide support for leadership activities in Title II of the Workforce Investment Act described in the Unified State Plan 1999-2005.

   I.  Authorization

   A.  Title II of The Workforce Investment Act of 1998, The Adult Education and Family Literacy Act, provides funds to local eligible provider agencies through the Department for the establishment of adult education and family literacy programs that will:

   1.  assist adults to become literate and obtain the knowledge and skills necessary for employment and self-sufficiency;

   2.  assist adults who are parents to obtain the educational skills necessary to become full partners in the educational development of their children, and;

   3.  assist adults in the completion of a secondary school education.

   B.  Eligible applicants include local education agencies and public or private nonprofit agencies, organizations and institutions. A for-profit agency is eligible to participate in the program only if it is part of a consortium with a local education agency or other eligible sponsor, with the nonprofit agency acting as fiscal agent. A for-profit organization must also have the capability and capacity to augment significantly the adult education services of such a consortium.

   Consistent with the purpose of the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act, for Program Year 1999-2000, the Department will give primary consideration to programs for the educationally disadvantaged.

   The Federal share of a grant will be 75% of the total cost of the program. The applicant must provide 25% match of the total cost of the program. The local match may be in kind. Other Federal funds may not be used for the local match unless specifically identified as eligible for use as matching funds.

   C.  Restrictions placed upon the Department by the United States Department of Education on the administration of the grant include:

   1.  Not more than 12.5% of the State's allotment shall be used for State Leadership Activities.

   2.  Not more than 5% of a local applicant's grant may be used for administrative costs, unless a higher percent is approved in advance by the Bureau of Adult Basic and Literacy Education, Department of Education.

   Letter of Intent due: April 21, 2000

   Application due: May 26, 2000

   Note: The Bureau reserves the right to consider proposals received after the deadlines and, if appropriate, to approve them if and when funds become available.

   II.  Application Procedures and Program Guidelines. A Letter of Intent is due at the Bureau April 21, 2000. The Letter of Intent should state the Priority number and a one sentence description of the project proposed. (No faxes will be accepted.) Applications for State Leadership funds must be completed online and submitted on the e-grant website at to the Bureau of Adult Basic and Literacy Education, Department of Education. Instructions and the Application Guidelines are available on ABLEsite at and on the e-grant sites.

   III.  Funds for State Leadership Activities are made available under Section 222(a)(2) for one or more of the following activities:

   1.  The establishment or operation of professional development programs to improve the quality of instruction provided under local activities required under Section 231(b).

   2.  The provision of technical assistance to eligible providers of adult education and literacy activities.

   3.  The provision of technology assistance, including staff training, to eligible providers of adult education and literacy activities to enable the eligible providers to improve the quality of these activities.

   4.  The support of State or regional networks of literacy resource centers.

   5.  The monitoring and evaluation of the quality of, and improvement in, adult education and literacy activities.

   6.  Incentives for program coordination and integration and performance awards.

   7.  Developing and disseminating curricula.

   8.  Other activities of Statewide significance that promote the purpose of this title.

   9.  Coordination with existing support services, such as transportation, child care, and other assistance designed to increase rates of enrollment in, and successful completion of, adult education and literacy activities, to adults enrolled in such activities.

   10.  Integration of literacy instruction and occupational skill training and promoting linkages with employers.

   11.  Linkages with postsecondary educational institutions.

Priorities State Leadership 2000-2001

   1.  Communications for Professional Development (Axis): Management of a project to provide for the design and/or publication of newsletters, reports, handbooks and brochures as needed by adult education providers in the Commonwealth. The project will direct and provide systematic communication and coordination between the Bureau and professional development service providers and adult basic and literacy education providers. The project will also include support for online and worldwide web communications.

   2.  Adult Education Newsletter: Provision of a general adult basic education newsletter to be published a minimum of six times at a length of eight pages or more to disseminate information in areas of interest to adult basic education practitioners nod program supporters in Pennsylvania. The areas may include but are not limited to professional development, program areas such as GED, ABE, ESL, Workplace, and Family Literacy and include adult education theory, best practices and awareness information. Applicant must establish an editorial review board and plan for a circulation of approximately 4,000 copies across the Commonwealth with distribution as requested by the Department.

   3.  Outstanding Adult Learners: Management of an event that includes the identification, selection and recognition of ten exemplary adult learners enrolled in adult basic and literacy education programs whose success stories focus on the role of adult basic education in their lives. Approximately 2,000 copies of a Success Stories booklet featuring past as well as current winners and their ABLE programs should be prepared, published and disseminated as requested by the Department. Promotional fliers featuring Success Stories students will be prepared and disseminated to winners' program providers. Applicant will coordinate with an identified ABLE Bureau staff person in the development of the project.

   4.  Outstanding Adult Practitioners: Management of an event to identify, select and honor outstanding adult education practitioners in the Commonwealth whose interaction with adult learners, colleagues and their programs is indicative of best practices in adult teaching and learning. Applicant will review the standards and performance indicators set forth by the Pennsylvania Adult Teachers Competencies project to use those criteria for the selection of Excellent Educators and Instructors in keeping with their recommendations for Expert practitioners. The applicant will coordinate with an identified Bureau staff person, a Project EQUAL representative and a PDC coordinator in the development and implementation of the project.

   5.  Implementation and Development of Core Area Training: Centralized management of a project to provide development and implementation of training in designated core content areas Statewide to adult basic and literacy education administrators and practitioners. The applicant will identify topics through an analysis of data, informal assessments, and an analysis of current core content vs. content requested. Applicant will coordinate the review and selection of training materials and methods in designated core content areas and work with lead trainers and modules authors to revise existing modules as necessary and appropriate and to customize ''advanced'' trainings. Applicant will identify and adopt or adapt additional modules and/or training pieces that complement the existing menu of professional development modules developed in previous training development projects; train new trainers and monitor and support existing trainers by training sessions, meetings, field observations and telephone and electronic contact. The applicant will include an evaluation component to evaluate the modules, trainers, trainer training and support system and to determine the impact of the core training. Applicant will work closely with the staff of ABLE and the regional professional development centers.

   6.  Review and Dissemination of Exemplary Projects: Management of a project to review current and past Section 353 and State Leadership special demonstration/experimental and professional development projects from Pennsylvania and from other states in designated topic areas to determine their significance and appropriateness for adoption/adaptation in Pennsylvania. The project should identify exemplary and innovative practices/approaches and provide for the Statewide dissemination of information through publication of the reviewed projects by a newsletter to be published a minimum of six times a year.

   7.  Support of Adult Education Professional Development: Administration, fiscal management and support of statewide adult basic education professional development activities and other Department activities to include provision for support of State Leadership requirements and initiatives under the Workforce Investment Act of 1998, support of various adult basic and literacy conference activities, support of Act 42 Council activities and provision of honoraria for presenters at State-sponsored activities.

   8.  Mini-Grants: These grants may be used to support State Leadership activities at the local level. For example, a mini-grant can be used to complement Statewide initiatives that impact at the local level such as implementing adult learner competencies into an agency's program, determining the impact of instructional programs on adult learners, or to assist an agency in integrating adult basic education and workforce development activities in the local area.

   Funds should not be used for direct instructional time but for time to research, design, plan and support the activities needed to carry out the goals of the project. Grants may not exceed $5,000.

   9.  Professional Development Institute for Learning Differences/Disabilities:

   Purpose: To provide a centralized training system for practitioners serving adults with learning differences/disabilities; to serve as an information clearinghouse for research and best practice in teaching adults with learning differences/disabilities; and to facilitate the coordination of services to individuals with learning differences/disabilities among State and local agencies.

   Background: Current research indicates that adult basic and literacy education programs are serving significant numbers of individuals who have learning differences/disabilities. Needs assessments conducted in Pennsylvania indicate that many adult education practitioners feel unprepared for the challenges presented by many of those adults. For several years, the Department of Education, Bureau of Adult Basic and Literacy Education has recognized the need to support adult education practitioners who are teaching adults with learning differences/disabilities in Bureau sponsored programs. The Bureau has provided centralized support for practitioners teaching adults with learning differences/disabilities by funding direct training with Pennsylvania experts through its Professional Development Centers. Pennsylvania has also supported local agency grants to develop instructional materials and techniques. Most recently, Pennsylvania has participated in efforts sponsored by the National Institute for Literacy to develop and disseminate a professional development ''toolkit.'' The Bureau desires to expand current activities by funding an ''institute'' or ''center'' that will focus efforts towards coordinating a uniform and systematic approach to providing professional development for practitioners teaching adults with learning differences/disabilities and improving the quality of services offered to this set of learners.

   Application Requirements: The applicant must describe how it will address the following program elements.

   1.  To provide a centralized training and technical assistance system to support Pennsylvania practitioners working with individuals with learning differences/disabilities.

   *  Develop uniform training products and processes to address the needs of Pennsylvania adult education practitioners in the areas of learning differences that reflect state of the art research and development efforts.

   *  Coordinate all existing activities related to the provision of training and technical assistance of practitioners teaching individuals with learning differences/disabilities.

   *  Develop and implement a train-the-trainer system, consistent with current adult education train-the-trainer efforts, to certify and credential trainers qualified to deliver established training systems.

   *  Develop and implement a system of technical assistance, including identification of best practices and peer networking.

   *  To coordinate the delivery of training with the Pennsylvania Adult Education Professional Development System, including its Professional Development Centers, State Literacy Resource Center, and Tutors for Literacy in the Commonwealth.

   2.  To serve as an information clearinghouse for research and best practice in teaching adults with learning differences/disabilities.

   *  Maintain expertise in the areas of adults with learning differences/disabilities for the purpose of identifying emerging best practices and research.

   *  Disseminate relevant and timely information related to special accommodations, research based instructional planning, screening and identification, legal issues, and other information related to serving individuals with learning differences/disabilities.

   *  Coordinate information collection and dissemination with the State Adult Literacy Resource Center.

   3.  To facilitate the coordination of services to individuals with learning disabilities among State and local agencies.

   *  To facilitate the leveraging of resources among State and local entities for the purpose of providing comprehensive services to individuals with learning differences/disabilities.

   *  To identify other State and local models of interagency coordination for individuals with learning differences/disabilities.

   *  To establish a working relationship with entities that serve individuals with learning differences/disabilities for the purpose of exchanging information and establishing interagency initiatives.

   *  Maintain a presence by representing Pennsylvania's efforts at National and State meetings, workshops and seminars.

   10.  Professional Development Institutes

   Purpose: To provide an opportunity for professional development in a specific area of adult basic and literacy education in an intensive format.

   Background: The Bureau of ABLE has supported the professional development of practitioners and administrators through the institute format for several years. The format allows for the consistency in the delivery of information and methodologies in a specific area and at varying levels of expertise. It also builds the collegiality of participants through shared experiences and encourages ongoing professional development after the institute has ended. The activities offered through the institute and follow-up trainings are guided by the Guiding Principles for Professional Development of Adult Education Practitioners.

   Program Goals:

   1.  Administrative and fiscal management and support of a project for Statewide adult basic education professional development through the provision of a professional development institute (topics listed as follows) to include the arrangements for physical accommodations for administrators, teachers, counselors and volunteers in adult basic education programs;

   2.  Delivery of information to participants that is relevant to the topic, research-based and representative of best practices that is provided by subject matter experts;

   3.  Development of strands on the institute topic for new and experienced practitioners;

   4.  Provision of follow-up training through the regional professional development centers and/or other activities;

   5.  Evaluation of the design and effectiveness of the training.

   Corrections Education
Teaching Math
Learning Differences/Disabilities


[Pa.B. Doc. No. 00-529. Filed for public inspection March 24, 2000, 9:00 a.m.]

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