The budget for the U.S. Department of Labor for Fiscal Year 2010 includes a total of $45 million to support and study transitional jobs. This paper describes the origins of the transitional jobs models that are operating today, reviews the evidence on the effectiveness of this approach and other subsidized employment models, and offers some suggestions regarding the next steps for program design and research. The paper was produced for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services by MDRC as part of the Enhanced Services for the Hard-to-Employ project, which includes two random assignment evaluations of transitional jobs programs. Transitional jobs programs provide temporary, wage-paying jobs, support services, and job placement help to individuals who have difficulty getting and holding jobs in the regular labor market. Although recent evaluation results have raised doubts about whether TJ programs, as currently designed, are an effective way to improve participants’ long-term employment prospects, the studies have also confirmed that TJ programs can be operated at scale, can create useful work opportunities for very disadvantaged people, and can lead to critical indirect impacts such as reducing recidivism among former prisoners. Thus, in drawing lessons from the recent results, the paper argues that it may be important to think more broadly about the goals of TJ programs while simultaneously testing new strategies that may produce better long-term employment outcomes.
Improving the skills, knowledge, and credential attainment of American workers is an urgent priority. Labor market forecasts point to significant skills shortages looming in the future, despite high unemployment. If left unaddressed, these shortages could slow the process of economic recovery and reduce our competitiveness in the global economy. Career pathway systems offer an effective approach to meeting these challenges. Through better alignment of education, training, and employment services among public agencies, they hold the promise of increasing the number of workers in the U.S. who gain the industry-recognized and academic credentials they need to work in the most in-demand occupations. This new toolkit, released this week by the Employment and Training Administration, will provide a roadmap for States and local areas interested in applying the career pathway approach to solving pressing workforce challenges.
The U.S. Congressional Research Service (CRS) has issued Offender Reentry: Correctional Statistics, Reintegration into the Community, and Recidivism, an extremely useful overview for employment and training programs assisting ex-offenders. TO SEE IT, CLICK "DOWNLOAD NOW" ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THIS SCREEN.
WIOA lists ex-offenders as one of the categories of “individuals with a barrier to employment” targeted for assistance. As most inmates are rearrested within 5 years of their release, reintegration assistance — including employment-related help — is essential.
Reintegration assistance seeks to both improve the prospects of ex-offenders and to minimize recidivism. The latest U.S. Bureau of Justice Statutes study found that 76.6 percent of prisoners released were rearrested within 5 years, with the majority (43.4) being rearrested within the first year of release. This suggests the importance of assistance within that first year, to reduce recidivism.
The literature on what works best for ex-offenders is unfortunately sparse, but has been collected in the What Works in Reentry Clearinghouse, with separate sections on employment and education. Few studies meet the level of rigor the Clearinghouse requires, and those for employment and training showed mixed results: the only two projects found to reduce recidivism had no employment impacts, and conversely one project that increased employment didn’t reduce recidivism. Among education projects, postsecondary education had the best impact in reducing recidivism, adult basic education showing results not as positive, vocational education had mixed results, and high school equivalency projects had no recidivism effects.
The report also includes a good overview of Federal ex-offender programs, by Federal Department, plus a detailed summary of the Second Chance Act that funds many of these programs.
Key Alternate Workforce Data Sources
Federal research and evaluation Web sites are the best source of information on what works in employment, training and education programs and projects, which are published principally by the U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Department of Education, and the U.S. Government Accountability Office.
We have compiled the most important sources of such data in one place, with special attention to two U.S. Employment and Training (ETA) sites, the Workforce System Strategies repository and its Office of Policy Development and Research Research Publication Database.
TO SEE IT, CLICK "DOWNLOAD NOW" ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THIS SCREEN.
The U.S. National Center for Education Statistics has just issued its 2 leading annual publications, the Digest of Education Statistics and the Condition of Education.
In its second follow-up of the 2009 class of ninth graders, NCES found that 89 percent graduated on time in 2013, and another 3 percent acquired a high school equivalency certificate. Some 4 percent had dropped out, and an identical percentage remained in high school, presumably due to repeating a grade.
Tired of being the last to know? One simple trick to staying on top of announcements, information, research and data is to make the news come to you. Many organizations have instant, daily, weekly, and sometimes monthly updates. We've assembled the links to key employment, education, and social policy-related sites that you can use to sign up for these alerts.
Last year, the Employment and Training Administration (ETA) and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) launched a partnership to encourage collaborations between the public workforce system and public libraries at the state and local levels. Joint activities include sharing of data, information and other resources and an upcoming Webinar highlighting workforce-library partnerships. This flyer provides an accessible graphic representation for the partnership and can be used for handouts at events or other dissemination purposes.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Competency Model Clearinghouse is an online resource that provides validated industry competency models and tools that can be used as the basis of educational programs and curricula for a variety of industry sectors. The industry models support education and workforce development efforts serving as resources to identify employer skill needs in changing and emerging industries; provide business services that support human resource functions such as recruitment, selection, and performance evaluation; develop or evaluate a competency-based curriculum; identify credential requirements for certifications, or licensure; support career exploration and guidance.
An article on March 14 about for-profit schools and training programs and their effect on students' financial well-being and employment prospects.
This is a collection of resources created by WebJunction for library staff to help them serve job seekers.
The newly launched website www.worksc.org was created by the South Carolina State Library to assist libraries, government agencies and jobseekers find workforce-related resources. It exemplifies the various resources for use by library staff in providing services to job seekers.
This report, "Degrees for What Jobs?", published by the NGA Center for Best Practices, with support from Rutgers University John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development, discusses how a growing number of governors and state policymakers have come to recognize that higher education, including community colleges, four-year colleges and research universities, cannot help drive economic growth in their states unless the success of colleges and universities is linked to the needs of the marketplace.
The U.S. Department of Education has released a new College Completion Tool Kit to help governors boost college graduation rates. The guide proposes strategies for governors including goal setting, performance based funding, aligning high school standards with college entrance and placement standards, data driven decision making and targeting adults who already have some college, but no degree. The guide highlights governors and states that have made structural and policy changes to K-12 and postsecondary education and identifies the federal funding sources for the work.
The March issue of the Association of Career and Technical Education's (ACTE) Techniques magazine is dedicated entirely to Apprenticeship. The publication features an article from Employment and Training Administration Assistant Secretary Jane Oates and Office of Apprenticeship Administrator John Ladd entitled, "50,000 Reasons Why Apprenticeship Works! “ Other articles examine nontraditional apprenticeship occupations and how community colleges are involved in the world of apprenticeship training.
Gateway Technical College & Kenosha County Job Center will discuss collaborations designed to train today's dislocated worker.
How can an offender survive today's economy? The Iowa Workforce Development and the Iowa Department of Corrections will discuss proven methods to prepare offenders for the transition from incarceration to employment.
Tough economic times? Why not create your own job?: Project GATE II, IMPAQ International and the LLC, Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education showcase best practices and lessons learned from various entrepreneurial efforts.
Innovations in the expansion of opportunities for the mature jobseeker: Mature Services, Inc., SCSEP and Easter Seals will discuss several new pathways for improving opportunities for the mature worker during these tough economic times.
The $250 million in Reemployment Services Grants provided through the Recovery Act have generated a host of creative and innovative approaches to helping the unemployed. In particular, we have learned a great deal over the last year about how assessment tools can strengthen reemployment services. Personality assessments, work values assessments, skills transferability assessments/tools, interest assessments, educational assessments, occupational skills assessments, work readiness assessments and the list goes on and on. All of these types of assessments and more increase the workforce system’s ability to match job seekers and employers. If you are still looking for ways to invest your ARRA RES funds, we want to help you learn about which instruments are the most effective by connecting you with your workforce system colleagues who can give you unbiased, first-hand feedback on their experience with specific products. If you are interested in purchasing a particular assessment instrument or tool and would like to see if there is a workforce system colleague that is using the instrument you are interested in, please contact our resident expert on assessment tools: Lauren Fairley-Wright Workforce Analyst USDOL – ETA – Office of Workforce Investment email@example.com
In my career with the workforce development system, I have time and again seen that our mission relies critically on making connections. At the most fundamental level, we connect individuals with career assistance and employment opportunities. We are also connecting workers, job seekers and employers with other community resources to ensure that we are meeting the complex and varied needs of our customers. In this light, I am especially pleased at the opportunity to use this Community of Practice to share an exciting partnership ETA is developing with the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). Library professionals are expert at facilitating access to and helping people make sense of new information, and I know that our system can benefit enormously from engaging them in meaningful and concrete ways. We have summarized the different aspects of our partnership, from sharing information about our electronic tools to the July 19 Webinar highlighting promising state and local examples of workforce-library collaboration, in the newly issued Training and Employment Notice No. 50-09, “Encouraging Partnerships between the Workforce Investment System and Public Libraries to Meet Career and Employment Needs.” I hope that after you read the TEN, you will be inspired to engage your local library and find out if there are logical areas where its resources complement yours. After all, this is what we do best as workforce developers—leveraging assets from multiple sources to make a difference in the lives of people, whether they walk in the door of our One-Stop Career Center, use our electronic tools, or maybe even turn to their community library.