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News, Views, and Clues

July, 2003

small line  Senate Reauthorization Update, July 1, 2003
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New Fiscal Year--New Leadership, July 9, 2003
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Content Standards Institute, July 11, 2003
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Senate WIA Update, July 31, 2003


News, Views, and Clues

July 1, 2003

Senate Reauthorization Update

I  wanted to catch you up on the ever-changing timetable in the Senate.  As of today, the Senate plans NO hearing on WIA Title II, the adult education section.  What was not too long ago a plan for slow and interactive deliberations is now a plan to start writing the bill when folks return from the July 4th holiday with a complete bill out of the Senate before the August recess. 

The most talked about reason for the change of pace is the concern about the rising unemployment rates and the need to show a rapid response by getting the workforce and employment legislation developed and signed. 

Some of my colleagues still believe that plate is too full to get the bill out this year.  Welfare, Head Start, and IDEA are all in process.  Continuing resolution may still be an option. 

The National Coalition for Literacy has developed a draft bill, based on the 1998 WIA Title II, Adult Education and Family Literacy Act.  From that base, the draft integrates provisions from 1) our "bottom lines" 2) HR 1261, 3) the Department's Blueprint for adult education and literacy, and 4) the Coalition's Omnibus Literacy Concept Paper.  I have attached a copy of the draft, the errata regarding two minor changes, and a rational for each of the recommendations.  Copies have been delivered to the Senate HELP Committee staff.

I will keep you posted as the legislation progresses.  Nothing is certain.  Everything is subject to change. 

Keep up the good work.  Let me know when we can help.


News, Views, and Clues

July 9, 2003

New Fiscal Year--New Leadership 

Policy Activities and Colleagues 

As we announced earlier, Lynn Selmser became our new Policy Analyst effective July 1.  In her former job on Congressman Goodling's staff and the House Education and Workforce Committee, she played a major role in writing WIA and has worked on adult education and literacy issues on the Hill for years.  Since her retirement, Lynn has been working with us as our Policy Consultant.  We are truly fortunate to have her join us in a leadership role.  Garrett Murphy will stay on as our Policy Consultant.  Lynn and Garrett basically just switched roles. 

Consortium Chair, Randy Whitfield, has appointed Patricia Bennett, Maryland State Director, to chair our Policy Committee.  Patricia has been successful working with her state legislature and brings an understanding of the policy process to this important leadership role.  She replaces Roberta Pawloski from Connecticut who retired in June.

Professional Development Activities and Colleagues

Randy has also appointed Linda Warner, Indiana State Director, to chair our Professional Development Committee.  Due to constraints on out-of-state travel and the likelihood of USDOE calling a fall meeting if the WIA passes, the Executive Committee decided not to hold our Fall National Training Institute.  As we discussed in Portland, those professional development funds will be devoted developing resources for your  website a  Kathi Polis, former West Virginia State Director and now adult education consultant, will work part-time with us to "populate our web site."  We have accumulated a variety of valuable state-level resources, but we have not had the time, funds, or staff to publish them on the website.  The framework, built around the State Director's Program Self Assessment, is on the website at  The goal of this project is to have resources in each category accessible with the click of a mouse.  Kathi and Linda will be contacting you as the Professional Development Committee begins that work this summer

Phone Numbers and Contact Information

Attached is the new contact list for Consortium and Council staff, consultants, and the policy leadership.  This list is provided to Congressional staff so they will know who to call, and I thought it would be a handy reference for you.  NOTE that Garrett’s phone number has changed.  The entire executive committee list is on our web site at  Feel free to contact any of the Council and Consortium leadership whenever we can be of assistance.

We have a number of exciting policy and professional development activities in our plan of work.  If you would like to contribute, please contact Randy Whitfield, Chair, or any of the staff or committee chairs.

 Keep up the good work.  Let me know when we can help.


News, Views, and Clues

July 11, 2003

Content Standards Institute 

The NIFL EFF staff has developed considerable expertise in creating content standards.  That expertise relates to the EFF standards as well as helping states develop their own standards.  Below is an announcement of their upcoming institute here in Washington designed to help states explore options. 

 “Have you or a team from your state registered for the EFF Institute on Standards-Based Instruction and Assessment in Reading and Math on August 25-27 in Washington, DC?  If not, this is a reminder that the deadline for the reduced registration fee and the block of sleeping rooms is July 25.   

The institute will include helpful information on standards-based instruction and assessment as well as the variety of tools, technical assistance, and training that EFF has developed to assist states in standards-based reform.  If you do not presently have content standards in your state, one session that you might find particularly helpful is called "System Implementation Strategies: Getting Started with Standards-Based Instruction."  A tentative agenda of that session is attached for your review.

The institute will feature excellent presenters on standards-based reform including Regie Stites of SRI and Eva Baker, professor at the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies and co-director of the National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards, and Student Testing (CRESST).  Dr. Baker's research is focused on the integration of instruction and measurement, including design and empirical validation of principles for developing instructional systems. 

To register and to find additional hotel information, go to --note the hotel, registration, and other information buttons on the top bar.  If you have any questions, feel free to contact Kathi Polis at or 304-773-5111.”

 Keep up the good work.  Let me know when we can help.

 News, Views, and Clues

July 31, 2003 

Senate WIA Update 

The Senate staff members have been hard at work on the WIA legislation.  Here is where they stand as of today. 

Adult Education: 

The Senate Staff members actually began working on the adult education portion of the bill with a meeting at noon yesterday.  They are working from the Coalition’s bill and the House Bill, both of which we sent you earlier. 

We have gotten a number of inquiries from various staff members about issues and alternatives.  They want to ensure that revised provisions do not fix one issue only to create others.  August 1, tomorrow, begins the August recess, so Senators will be home and the staff will continue to work on the bill interspersing vacation time.  Their plans are to have an adult education bill done the first of September with mark up of the entire bill mid-September.  As soon as a Senate draft is complete, we will forward it to you.

Title I: 

Attached is the DRAFT of the Senate Title I bill.  The final will probably be different, of course, but this first draft will give you an indication of where they are going.  Lynn will be analyzing it but if you see any issues please contact Pat Bennett, Policy Chair, at, me or Lynn, with your insights.

Remember, everything is subject to change.  This slice of life is merely that.

Keep up the good work.  Let me know when we can help.


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