California has the opportunity to rethink and redesign an educational system to establish linkages for students across the California Department of Education and the California Community College Chancellor’s Office adult education systems that provide adults with the academic and career skills needed to enhance student success. To that end, the Legislature and Governor have put in place two unprecedented indicators of California’s commitment to improve adult education.
AB86 provides the opportunity for developing the statewide collaboration and regional approach needed to maximize the state’s return on its investment in adult education. It provides focused priorities and a new regional design for the California Department of Education and the California Community College Chancellor’s Office adult education programs based on the state’s critical educational and workforce needs.
AB86 outlines expectations and as well as planning and implementation requirements to establish the regional consortia for the provision of adult education in all areas of the state. Grant funds will assist adult education consortia to accomplish each of the following outcomes:
- An evaluation of current levels and types of adult education programs within its region, including education for adults in correctional facilities; credit, noncredit, and enhanced noncredit adult education coursework; and programs funded through Title II of the federal Workforce Investment Act, known as the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act (Public Law 05-220);
- An evaluation of current needs for adult education programs within its region;
- Plans for parties that make up the consortium to integrate their existing programs and create seamless transitions into postsecondary education or the workforce.
- Plans to address the gaps identified pursuant to the first two bullets above;
- Plans to employ approaches proven to accelerate a student’s progress toward his or her academic or career goals, such as contextualized basic skills and career technical education, and other joint programming strategies between adult education and career technical education;
- Plans to collaborate in the provision of ongoing professional development opportunities for faculty and other staff to help them achieve greater program integration and improve student outcomes; and,
- Plans to leverage existing regional structures, including, but not necessarily limited to, local workforce investment areas.
All of the objectives are addressed in the Regional Comprehensive Plan developed and submitted by each consortium.