Department of Education Launches the Educational Quality through Innovative Partnerships (EQUIP) Experiment to Provide Low-Income Students with Access to New Models of Education and Training

In mid-October, the Obama Administration announced a new pilot program to accelerate and evaluate innovation through partnerships between colleges and universities and non-traditional providers of education in order to equip more Americans with the skills, knowledge, and training they need for the jobs of today and tomorrow.

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To be considered for participation in the EQUIP initiative, postsecondary institutions must submit a letter of interest to the Department of Education, following the procedures outlined in the Federal Register notice. To receive priority consideration, letters of interest must be received no later than December 14, 2015 per the DoE guidelines. Read here to learn more.

Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Public Workforce Information and Planning Meetings

WIOAThe State of Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development will be hosting information and planning meetings open to the public. Preview the proposed agenda here. The meetings will be held from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM as scheduled below:

Tuesday, November 3, 2015
1:00 – 4:00 PM
Centennial Hall Convention Center
Ballroom 2
101 Egan Drive
Juneau, Alaska 99801

Thursday, November 5, 2015
1:00 – 4:00 PM
University of Alaska
Butrovich Building
Board of Regents Conference Room 109
910 Yukon Drive
Fairbanks, Alaska 99701

Wednesday, November 18, 2015
1:00 – 4:00 PM
William A Egan Civic & Convention Center
Lower Level located in Summit Hall
555 West 5th Avenue
Anchorage, Alaska 99501

Eligible Training Provider List New Policies and Procedures Out for Public Comment

The Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Division of Employment and Training Services, is soliciting public comments on the draft Eligible Training Provider and Program List (ETPL) policy,  procedural guide and applications.

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) replaced the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA) on July 1, 2015.  WIOA requires States to establish eligibility criteria, policy and procedures for initial  and continued eligibility for training providers and their programs to be included on the State’s ETPL.

WIOA emphasizes informed consumer choice, job-driven training, training provider performance and continuous improvement in performance achievement and accountability.  A primary means WIOA employs to achieve these goals is through the ETPL.  The ETPL is designed to gather and display useful information on training providers, their services, and the quality of their programs.  It is a key piece of the State one-stop system and it must be made available to the public and specifically to individuals seeking information on training programs to be funded under WIOA title I-B programs.

Comments on the draft ETPL policy, procedures and applications are due to the Division by 5:00 pm, September 15th and should be emailed to Shawna Harper, Program Coordinator II, at shawna.harper@alaska.gov.

For more details and to download all related documents, please visit https://aws.state.ak.us/OnlinePublicNotices/Notices/View.aspx?id=177915.

LAW E-Alert: America’s College Promise Bills Introduced in the House and Senate

ACCT Latest Action in Washington

July 8, 2015 – Today, Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA) announced they will introduce legislation in the House and Senate on the Administration’s America’s College Promise proposal. The bills, which have been endorsed by ACCT, are largely similar to the President’s initial proposal at a cost of $80 billion over 10 years. ACCT has created a fact sheet on the America’s College Promise Act of 2015, which may be viewed here: http://bit.ly/1CpCOSj.

ACCT encourages community college leaders to support these bills, and contact their Members of Congress requesting support: http://bit.ly/1JPw9U8.

Additionally, ACCT has sent the following letters of support to both Senator Baldwin and Ranking Member Scott: http://bit.ly/1Hhj3Ib.

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The U.S. Department of Education will soon release a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for a new income-driven repayment plan, Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE). The proposed rules also expand the circumstances under which an institution may challenge or appeal a draft or official cohort default rate calculation based on the institution’s participation rate index (PRI), make it easier for FFEL loan holders to identify borrowers’ active duty military status, clarify guaranty agencies’ responsibilities related to loan rehabilitation and active duty servicemembers’ interest rates, and extend the definition of “qualifying payments” for the PSLF program to included Department of Defense lump payments. The NPRM will soon be available via the federal register. Comments are due 30 days after the NPRM is published. ACCT has prepared the following fact sheet based on an embargoed copy of the NPRM: http://bit.ly/1Cp4JBB.

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Please encourage your fellow trustees, presidents and colleagues to stay up to date about legislation that affects their community colleges by joining the Latest Action in Washington (LAW) E-Alert and Capitol Connection E-Newsletter network. To join, simply e-mail publicpolicy@acct.org with LAW Alert in the subject of the e-mail. For more community college news from inside the beltway, follow us on Twitter (twitter.com/CCTrustees) or like us Facebook (facebook.com/CCTrustees).

Contact us with any questions or concerns about public policy and ACCT’s advocacy on behalf of two-year colleges and two-year college trustees. ACCT’s Latest Action in Washington alerts are sent to interested ACCT members to keep you up to date on important legislative activities that impact community colleges. If you no longer wish to receive ACCT’s Latest Action in Washington alerts or Capitol Connection, reply to this email with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line.

For more information about ACCT’s advocacy services, visit acct.org/advocacy

WIOA and Career and Technical Education

The enactment of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), which goes into effect on July 1, 2015,
provides new opportunities for the workforce system and Career and Technical Education (CTE) to work together.
Whether a state creates a “Combined Plan” that includes WIOA and the State Plan for Perkins, or a state writes a
“Unified Plan,”1 the state should consider how these programs can best work together to prepare individuals for
careers that meet employer skill needs. This paper outlines some key areas where alignment can occur.