May 1, 2010
Digest No. 24


Brenda Dann-Messier

Assistant Secretary of Education Brenda Dann-Messier to Deliver Summer Institute Keynote Address
Dedicated to expanding learning and career opportunities for low-income and low-literacy adults, Dr. Brenda Dann-Messier will address adult education and workforce practitioners on Friday, June 18 at the CASAS National Summer Institute in San Diego. As the newly confirmed (October 2009) head of the Office of Vocational and Adult Education, she will share her vision to provide job training and higher education so all adults can secure good-paying jobs and take care of their families.

Workplace Skills Certification System

Soft Skills Curriculum Introduced in Workforce Skills Certification System (WSCS) Pilot
Strengthening workplace-related soft skills and academic instruction, forging meaningful ties between adult education providers and business and industry, and creating pathways for students to seamlessly transition from adult education into the workforce — these are the pilot goals. To achieve these goals the 11 participating WSCS sites are implementing the Personal Qualities Development System (PQDS), a comprehensive curriculum that complements the online soft skills assessment component. Developed by Landmark Opportunities, Inc., the PQDS offers many valuable resources such as instructional guides, lesson plans, activity guides and handouts.


Distance Learning

Distance Education Growth Rate Doubles at Community Colleges
Distance learning enrollment at community colleges in 2008-09 grew 22 percent over the previous year, while the growth rate from 2006-07 to the following year was 11 percent, according to a report from the Instructional Technology Council. Most of the 226 colleges that responded to the survey cited the economic downturn as a reason for the growth. Read more in an article from the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Madera High School Goes Digital
Students at a new high school in Madera are issued laptops instead of textbooks, and can text or chat their teachers after school for help with an assignment. Read more (Sacramento Bee).


2010 Digest of Education Statistics
Recently published, this report from the National Center for Education Statistics contains a wealth of information on education at all levels, including the fact that between 1970 and 2009 the percentage of adults who have completed high school or more rose from 55 percent to 87 percent, and those with a bachelor's or higher degree rose from 11 percent to 30 percent. Read more in the Washington Post.

Professional Development


CALPRO Professional Development Workshops
On May 14th, the California Adult Literacy Professional Development Project (CALPRO) will conduct a field test of a new module for adult basic education (ABE) and adult secondary education (ASE) practitioners titled Integrating Workforce Skills in the ABE/ASE Classroom. Register online for this pilot workshop and other regionally offered face-to-face workshops.

In May CALPRO will offer an online workshop on Advising the Adult Learner: The Teacher’s Role. Register online for this two-part workshop, or for the May 21 online tour of CALPRO's Virtual Workroom for Multilevel ESL Instructors and companion electronic Professional Learning Community (e-PLC).


May Webinars on Technology Topics

Find more online and face-to-face professional development opportunities on the California Adult Education Training Calendar.


Delivering Listening Assessments via CASAS eTests®
In addition to hands-on laboratory sessions and User Group meetings, the CASAS National Summer Institute will offer a new CASAS eTests workshop covering the fine points of administering listening tests via this flexible application.  Register for the session on Saturday morning (June 19) and then come take a seat, put on some headphones and experience a computer-based listening test. You’ll also learn how to incorporate the practice tests with classroom instruction and other helpful tips.


Training-of-Trainers (ToT) Institute
CALPRO will conduct the Training-of-Trainers' (ToT) Institute June 29-30, 2010 in Sacramento. The purpose of the ToT Institute is to build professional development leadership in the adult education field and develop a cadre of certified trainers to facilitate workshops on CALPRO professional development modules. Nominations are due May 11, 2010. Select this link for additional information and the nomination form.

Did you know…

Some Tips on Organizing Your Time
No time for time management? Check out the article from The Chronicle of Higher Education that reviews several books on time management. Among other things, they recommend that "you must invest most of your time every week doing what you do best, and let others do what they do best." Use the 4-D formula for sorting through tasks: Dump it, Delegate It, Defer It, Do It. And if you want to read a hilarious article on time management from a "self-help dropout," try this one from Wired Magazine.

"Discovery consists of looking at the same thing as everyone else does and thinking something different."
—Albert Szent-Gyorgi

These items are for information only. CASAS, OTAN and CALPRO items are supported by CDE.