RULE 172.00.03-001 - Adult Education Program Policies

RULE 172.00.03-001. Adult Education Program Policies

Subject: Effective and Efficient Evaluation Calculations

POLICY: To be considered effective and efficient, local adult education programs and literacy councils receiving adult education funds will be required to meet or exceed 80% of their negotiated core indicators of performance as mandated and defined in the Workforce Investment Act of 1998. Programs not meeting 80% of their negotiated core indicators of performance in the first year will be required to submit an improvement plan. The improvement plan will address each core indicator of performance that was not met and will include measurable objectives for correcting deficiencies during the following year. State program advisors will provide technical assistance to each program submitting an improvement plan and closely monitor programs during the year.

Programs that do not meet at least 80% of their negotiated core indicators of performance for a second consecutive year will be assigned a state technical assistance team to assist the program in addressing its deficiencies. The team members may include but not be limited to state and local staff, administrators, teachers and students. Quarterly progress reports will be submitted by the program being monitored to the Adult Education Section describing the progress being made to bring the program into compliance with core indicators. Programs not achieving 80% of their negotiated core indicators of performance for three consecutive years will be submitted to the State Board of Workforce Education and Career Opportunities for appropriate action prior to continuation of funding.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 mandates that all local adult education programs negotiate core indicators of performance annually with the Adult Education Section. Annual calculations of the effective and efficient status of each local program are necessary to ensure that local programs are achieving the negotiated core indicators of performance.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Service Delivery Area

POLICY: Adult education programs receiving state or federal funding for a designated service area or county are not to cross into counties or other designated service areas where there is an established adult education program without a written memorandum of understanding between the programs. The Adult Education Section, must approve this agreement.

INFORMATIONAL/RATIONALE: Funding for local adult education programs is based on census data for a designated area or county and the funds provided must be spent in the designated area or county for which the funds were provided. To ensure that each service area or county receives adequate adult education services and to avoid duplication, it is essential that each local program stay within its designated area.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Distribution of State Funds

POLICY: According to Arkansas Act 1509 of 2001, Section 32, all funds that become available for adult education shall first be distributed to those administrative units determined to be operating efficient and effective adult education programs, under criteria established by the State Board of Workforce Education and Career Opportunities, and shall be at the same level as expended by each unit in the base level year (hereafter referred to as base funding). The criteria shall include the relative efficiency of administration of the program in the counties served. For the purposes of this section, the term "literacy rate" shall be determined by the number of adults completing less than the twelfth grade as reported by the most recent decennial federal census. Except for special projects, 50% of the remaining monies shall be distributed based upon the literacy rate per county and 50% shall be distributed on the basis of the performance outcomes for the previous year, as established by the State Board of Workforce Education and Career Opportunities. Of the funds distributed based on literacy rate, no administrative unit shall receive funds for any county served above that county's literacy rate cap except for base funds received by efficient and effective units. Local administrative costs shall not exceed 10% of the total allocation. Unallocated funds will be redistributed based upon need as determined by the State Board of Workforce Education and Career Opportunities. Further, the State Board of Workforce Education and Career Opportunities shall give first consideration and priority in the distribution of monies set aside for special projects to counties receiving less funding by the formula.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: Procedures set forth in Arkansas Act 1509 of 2001, govern distribution of all state adult education funds.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Direct and Equitable

POLICY: Direct and equitable access to all federal funds will be provided to local educational agencies, community-based organizations of demonstrated effectiveness, volunteer literacy organizations of demonstrated effectiveness, institutions of higher education, public or private nonprofit agencies, libraries, and public housing authorities according to Section 203 (C) (5) of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: In order to provide direct and equitable access to all adult education federal funds provided under the Workforce Investment Act of 1998, the Adult Education Section shall award funds on the basis of competitive applications submitted by eligible recipients. Direct and equitable access includes:

(1) the right to submit applications directly to the state education agency (SEA) for those funds; and

(2) use by the SEA of a process for selecting recipients of those funds that gives each agency, institution, and organization a fair chance of receiving an award.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Correctional/Institutional Federal Funding

POLICY: Grants for correctional/ institutional education shall be awarded and used according to the guidelines as stated in the Workforce Investment Act of 1998.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: According to the Workforce Investment Act of 1998, not more than 8.25% of federal funds allotted to a state for adult education activities shall be used for corrections education and education for other institutionalized adults.

Local program operators will be charged with the responsibility of designing, developing, and implementing instructional programs. Various activities will be undertaken which will be designed to include--but not be limited to--basic education, special education programs, and English literacy programs according to the Workforce Investment Act of 1998.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Tuition, Fees, and Other Charges

POLICY: Adults enrolled in adult education programs will not be charged tuition or fees. Adults enrolled in adult basic education will not be required to purchase any books or any other materials needed for participation in the program.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 requires that states develop program strategies for populations that include low-income students, individuals with disabilities, single parents and displaced homemakers, and individuals with multiple barriers to educational enhancement including individuals with limited English proficiency.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Purchase/Disposal of Equipment

POLICY: Equipment can be purchased by local adult education programs with either federal or state adult education funds disbursed by the Adult Education Section. Prior to purchasing any equipment with adult education funds, written approval must be secured from the Adult Education Section. The local education agency (LEA) will only use the equipment for the purpose(s) for which it is acquired or for other allowable adult education use.

Once equipment is purchased, inventory procedures as stated in the most current revision of Form ABE-2, are to be followed by local programs. Since the inventory record is of a permanent nature, numbering should continue consecutively, year after year, rather than starting a new series each year. All equipment that is purchased with adult education funds will remain the property of the state Adult Education Section.

Equipment inventories should be updated as equipment is purchased and submitted to the Adult Education Section at the end of the program year.

Inventory must be disposed of using the Adult Education-Inventory Transfer/Disposal Form. Procedures for inventory transfer/disposal are noted on the form.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: Programs must have authorization to purchase equipment as needed. In order to track location and use of equipment purchased with adult education funds, proper inventory procedures must be followed.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Program Evaluations

POLICY: The Adult Education Section, will evaluate annually the effectiveness of adult education programs and literacy councils based on the negotiated core indicators of performance as mandated by the Workforce Investment Act of 1998. Evaluative data will be provided through the Adult Education Section management information system to verify that the negotiated core indicators of performance are being achieved.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 mandates that all eligible entities receiving federal adult education funds be evaluated annually for effectiveness in achieving the negotiated core indicators of performance. Evaluation results will be used by the Adult Education Section to assist local providers in improving recruitment, marketing, program operation, staff development, and student outcomes.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Recruitment/Retention

POLICY: Each local adult education program will develop and implement a recruitment/retention activity plan.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: According to the Workforce Investment Act of 1998, a special effort will be made to recruit and serve low-income students, individuals with disabilities, single parents, displaced homemakers, and individuals with multiple barriers to educational enhancement including those with limited English proficiency. As required by the Workforce Investment Act of 1998, recruitment/retention activities will include - but not be limited to - a close working relationship with other agencies serving persons eligible for adult education services and efficient utilization of local media. Student retention can be enhanced by follow-up on absenteeism.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Enrollment Policy: Minimum Age Adult Education

POLICY: Adult Education reserves the right to serve only adults 18 years of age or older or limit the number of participants below the age of 18. Under special circumstances, persons 16 years of age or older may be enrolled in adult education programs in accordance with Arkansas Act 1659 of 2001.

Public schools shall not release a student making application to the school district for a waiver until the adult education program agrees in writing to serve that student. If an adult education program elects to serve 16 and/or 17-year-old students, a local school district may grant a waiver of attendance requirement to any student age 16 or 17 to enroll in an adult education program only after all of the following requirements have been met:

1) The student makes formal application to the school district for a waiver to enroll in an adult education program;

2) After formal application and prior to any further action on the application, the student shall be administered either a Test for Adult Basic Education (TABE) or a General Educational Development (GED) practice test under standardized testing conditions by a designated K-12 public school official other than adult education personnel;

3) If administered the TABE test (Level A, Forms 7 & 8, Complete Battery), the student shall score 8.5 or above on all sections. If administered the GED practice test, the student must score a minimum of 450 on each section and a minimum composite score of 490;

Note: Such minimum test scores shall not be required of any student who is subject to the attendance requirement of this policy but was not enrolled in any school district during the previous school year;

4) The student and the student's parents, guardians, or persons in loco parentis meet with the school counselor to discuss academic options open to the student;

5) The school district determines that the student is a proper candidate for enrollment in adult education, contingent upon approval by the appropriate adult education program;

6) The adult education program reviews the student's school and testing records and agrees to admit the student into the program;

7) The adult education program shall report attendance of all 16 and 17 year old enrollees to the sending school district on at least a monthly basis;

8) The adult education program shall require for continued enrollment a minimum of 20 hours per week of class attendance and instruction. A minimum of 10 hours of attendance per week shall be required for any student who is employed for 30 hours or more each week;

9) The student, the student's parents, guardians, or persons in loco parentis, and the administrative head of the adult education program agree in writing that the student will attend the requisite number of hours per week and maintain appropriate conduct as outlined in the local adult education program student handbook;

10) In the event that a more appropriate assessment test or testing and assessment mechanism shall be developed to determine a reasonable level of competency for success at the adult education level, that test or mechanism shall be substituted, with the approval of the Adult Education Section, for the tests required in this policy;

11) If the student does not attend class as mandated in this policy or make reasonable progress toward the completion of the adult education curriculum, the student shall re-enroll in the public schools within five days from the date the student is released from the adult education program.

Note: The above requirements shall not apply to students enrolled in a private, parochial, or home school in the state.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 specifies that individuals who have attained 16 years of age and who are beyond the age of compulsory school attendance may enroll in adult education programs. The ages established for compulsory school attendance by Arkansas Act 292 of 1991 are ages five through seventeen, both inclusive. This Act allows, after certain provisions have been met, for persons age 16 or 17 to enroll in adult education programs.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Enrollment Policy: Minimum Age Adult Education Private, Parochial or Home School

POLICY: Adult education reserves the right to serve only adults 18 years of age or older or limit the number of participants below the age of 18. Under special circumstances, persons 16 years of age or older may be enrolled in adult education programs in accordance with Arkansas Act 1659 of 2001.

Students age 16 or 17, enrolled in a private, parochial or home school, who desire to enroll in an adult education program shall meet the following requirements:

1) Students shall apply for enrollment to the adult education program;

2) A student enrolled in a private or parochial school shall provide a letter from the principal or administrator of the private or parochial school to verify enrollment;

3) A student who is home schooled shall provide a notarized copy of the notice of intent to home school that was provided to the superintendent of the local school district as required by & 6-15-503;

4) The student and the student's parents, guardians, or persons in loco parentis shall meet with the appropriate staff of the adult education program to discuss academic option open to the student;

5) The adult education program administrators shall review the student's school and testing records prior to allowing admission to an adult education program;

6) The adult education program shall require, for continued enrollment, a minimum of 20 hours per week of class attendance and instruction. A minimum of 10 hours of attendance per week shall be required for any student who is employed for 30 hours or more each week;

7) The student, the student's parents, guardians, or persons in loco parentis, and the administrative head of the adult education program agree in writing that the student will attend the requisite number of hours per week and maintain appropriate conduct as outlined in the local adult education program student handbook;

8) In the event a student does not attend class as mandated in this policy or make reasonable progress toward the completion of the adult education curriculum, the student shall re-enroll in either a public, private, parochial or home school within five days from the date the student is released from the adult education program;

9) If a home school student is accepted into an adult education program, the student's parent, guardian or person standing in loco parentis shall send written notification to the local public school superintendent of their intent to participate in the adult education program.

Students age 16 or above, enrolled in a private, parochial or home school, who desire to take the General Education Development Tests shall meet the following requirements:

1) Students shall not be required to obtain permission or approval from any official in a public school district before being allowed to take the test;

2) A student enrolled in a private or parochial school shall provide a letter from the principal or administrator of the private or parochial school to verify enrollment;

3) A student enrolled in a home school shall provide a notarized copy of the notice of intent to home school provided to the superintendent of the local school district as required by & 6-15-503.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: This Act allows persons age 16 or 17 who are enrolled in private, parochial, or home school to enroll in adult education programs after certain provisions have been met.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Standardized Testing Instruments

POLICY: The following state-approved standardized tests will be utilized for pre-test, post-test, and continued student assessment for adult education students: Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE, Form 7-8); Basic English Skills Test (BEST, Oral Interview and Literacy Skills Test); and Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment System (CASAS, Life Skills Assessment). Other standardized testing instruments may be used with the written approval of the Deputy Director of Adult Education. Different forms of the same test will be used for the pre-test and the post-test. Local programs will assess and place all students into an educational functioning level (EFL) at a uniform time shortly after enrollment. In order to check for EFL advancement, students will be post-tested at the discretion of the instructor, but no later than after 40 hours of instruction.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 establishes accountability requirements that states develop outcome-based performance standards for adult education programs. The levels of performance will be expressed in an objective, quantifiable, and measurable form and will show the progress of the state toward continuously improving in performance.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Reporting of Student Data

POLICY: Any person meeting the minimum age and educational functioning level restrictions contained in the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 and the state compulsory attendance age requirements (Arkansas Act 1659 of 2001) may be reported as a participant in an adult education program provided that either federal or state adult education funds are used to support that individual's participation in the program.

Enrolled Students: An individual is considered enrolled in adult education upon completion of 12 hours of contact. Contact hours may include: time in class receiving instruction; time in a learning lab, such as a computer lab; time spent with a program-sponsored tutor; and time on assessment activities, including initial assessment and follow-up tests, such as post-tests.

Served Students: An individual is considered served by adult education when the individual has registered to participate in adult education activities and has received at least one contact hour of instruction as defined above.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: Accurate data must be accumulated and maintained by the Adult Education Section, which reflects the number of persons whose basic skills education is supported by either federal or state education funds. Local programs must report as a participant any eligible individual whose educational training is supported by adult education. The relationship between student participation in instruction and/or assessment activities and the expenditure of funds must be documented in compliance with state and federal audit requirements.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Salaries for Adult Education Personnel

POLICY: All full-time adult education personnel employed on the local level shall be paid a salary equivalent to the LEA salary scale.

Pay for part-time instructors is to be determined by the LEA but will not exceed $25.00 per hour with adult education funds.

Pay for part-time paraprofessionals with adult education funds will not exceed the following:

Paraprofessionals with a high school diploma/GED

maximum of $8.00 per hour

Paraprofessionals with an associate's degree

maximum of $9.00 per hour

Paraprofessionals with a bachelor's degree

maximum of $10.00 per hour

Program directors will have the flexibility of setting beginning hourly wage and a system of increasing increments.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: Since the Adult Education Section contracts with LEAs, it is essential that those employed on a full-time basis be paid a salary equivalent to the LEA salary scale. In order to attract and retain quality part-time education personnel, it is necessary to pay hourly salaries competitive with those paid to other part-time instructors and paraprofessionals in the LEAs based on education and experience.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Full-Time and Part-Time Paraprofessional Qualifications

POLICY: Part-time and full-time paraprofessionals must have a high school diploma, GED or the equivalent. Paraprofessionals may not teach a class unless they meet the qualifications of a full-time or part-time adult education teacher.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: In order for students to be provided instruction by certified personnel, paraprofessionals who do not have the qualifications of full-time or part-time teachers must not assume the role and responsibilities of a certified teacher.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

SUBJECT: Adult Education Director/Coordinator Qualifications

POLICY: All adult education directors/coordinators newly employed after April 18, 2003, and paid with adult education funds, must have a minimum of a master's degree in education, administration, or related field. If not already licensed in adult education, administrators must become licensed in adult education by the Arkansas Department of Education, Professional Licensure, within four years of the date of initial employment as an adult education administrator. It is preferable that the applicant has five years experience as a teacher and/or administrator.

Adult education directors/coordinators not paid with adult education funds must meet the local education agencies' personnel policies.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: In order for adult education programs to be operated effectively, it is necessary that administrators have the necessary experience and credentials.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Full-Time Adult Education Teacher Qualifications

POLICY: Full-time Adult Education teachers must hold a current Arkansas Department of Education teacher's license in Elementary, Secondary, or Adult Education. If teachers do not already have a license in Adult Education, they must obtain an Adult Education additional license within four years of the date of their initial employment as full-time teachers.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: In order for students to be provided instruction by qualified personnel, full-time teachers must have the appropriate professional teacher training and hold valid Arkansas Department of Education teaching licenses and credentials.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Part-Time Adult Education Teacher Qualifications

POLICY: Part-time Adult Education teachers must hold a current Arkansas Department of Education teacher's license in Elementary, Secondary, or Adult Education.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: In order for students to be provided instruction by qualified personnel, part-time teachers must have the appropriate professional teacher training and hold a current Arkansas Department of Education teaching license.

Arkansas Department of Workforce Education, Adult Education Section Policy Manual

Subject: Serving Adults With Student or Tourist Visas

POLICY: Nonimmigrant adults who enter the United States on either a Student Visa (F-1) or a Visitor Visa (B-1 for Business, or B-2 for Pleasure) may not be allowed to enroll in adult education or literacy programs that receive public funds from either federal or state tax dollars.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: According to Section 625 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996, students with F-1 visas may not study in publicly supported educational institutions unless they can reimburse the program the full cost of the services. Since Arkansas adult education and literacy programs may not charge for services, students cannot reimburse the programs and, therefore, may not enroll. According to United States Visa Services, adults who enter the country on a visitor visa are not eligible to study in any educational program or institution.

SPECIAL PROVISION: If a person enters the United States on a visitor visa and if that person is the relative of someone who is a permanent resident in the local program's community, then that person may enroll in adult education and literacy classes for the limited time of the person's visitor visa if there is space available in the classes.

Subject: Administrator/Paraprofessional Positions for Community Based Organizations

POLICY: Community based organizations (CBOs) may hire personnel using federal funds according to the following guidelines based on performance from the previous year.

Students served with federal funds

Possible combination of CBO personnel hours paid from federal funds per wee

00-40 students

up to 20 hours per week

41-80 students

up to 40 hours per week

81-120 students

up to 60 hours per week

121 students or more

up to 80 hours per week

Note Community Based Organizations may not use adult education funds to pay an employee or volunteer to teach or tutor.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: The Adult Education Section reached an agreement with the Arkansas Literacy Councils, Inc. to establish guidelines to provide administrative/paraprofessional assistance to CBOs. This policy is a reflection of that agreement.

Subject: Travel Policy

POLICY: Local programs funded with state or federal adult education funds must adhere to Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration guidelines when requesting travel reimbursement. This includes reimbursement for mileage, lodging, meals, etc. Late registration fees for conferences or workshops are not allowable.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: The travel policy for state agencies is mandated by the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration, and the Adult Education Section has adopted these guidelines for local grantees.

Subject: Workplace Waivers for Adult Education Teachers

POLICY: The Adult Education Section requirement that full-time and part-time adult education teachers hold a current teacher's license may be waived for adult education classes taught at a business or industry, when such classes are asked to be created for the employees of that business or industry. If the adult education program director is unable to find a licensed teacher for such classes, he/she may submit a written request for a workplace waiver for a non-licensed instructor to teach the classes. The non-licensed instructor should have sufficient qualifications and experience to teach the workplace classes successfully. The classes should be conducted at the work site, but if there is no space at the work site for such classes, then the classes may be held at an Adult Education site. If the classes end, or if the instructor with the workplace waiver is reassigned to another workplace class, the Adult Education Section should be informed of any changes in the teaching assignment. Waivers will be issued only for the current program year, and new waivers must be applied for each program year.

INFORMATION/RATIONALE: Since there is a shortage of licensed teachers in the state, and because of logistical difficulties finding licensed teachers to work in business and industry, the Adult Education Section may issue waivers for non-licensed instructors to teach workplace adult education classes requested by business and industry.

(4/7/2003)

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