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Intersection Newsletter masthead.
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Intersection: Navigating the Road to Work

Volume 12, Number 8
August 2015

Welcome to Intersection: Navigating the Road to Work, the electronic newsletter of the National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth (NCWD/Youth). The newsletter and the NCWD/Youth website offer information to improve programs and services for all youth and especially youth with disabilities.

IMPORTANT: In order to ensure the delivery of our publication to your inbox, please add our e-mail address, intersection@ncwd-youth.info, to your address book and/or whitelist.

NCWD/Youth Releases Inclusive Volunteering Paper Featured in Federal “Dear Colleague” Letter

On July 27, 2015, NCWD/Youth released Fostering Inclusive Volunteering and Service Learning, a guide for youth service professionals and others interested in facilitating youth engagement in volunteer activities. It describes how youth benefit from volunteering, different types of volunteer opportunities, and ways to assist youth to prepare for, access, and learn from their experiences. For all individuals to access and benefit from volunteering, the widespread practice of inclusion is key. An inclusive service environment actively fosters the engagement of all youth, including youth with disabilities, those involved in the foster care or juvenile justice systems, and other disconnected youth. The guide also provides relevant resources and tools that can enhance and foster successful outcomes.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy worked with the Corporation for National and Community Service to issue a joint “Dear Colleague” letter that features this new guide and reiterates the importance of inclusion on the 25th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

NCWD/Youth Presents at Arizona’s Annual Transition Conference

On August 24-26, 2015, NCWD/Youth presented at Arizona’s Transition Conference, which was themed Connecting for Success: Shared Expectations, Responsibilities, and Outcomes. NCWD/Youth presented on the following topics:

Full PowerPoint presentations and additional NCWD/Youth resources are available on the Arizona Transition Conference website.

NCWD/Youth Host Organization Seeks Applicants for Career-Focused Initiative for Court-Involved Youth

The Institute for Educational Leadership's Center for Workforce Development (IEL/CWD), which houses NCWD/Youth, was awarded a "Face Forward 3 Intermediary" Grant from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration (FOA-ETA-15-04; CFDA: 17.270) to implement the Right Turn Career-Focused Transition Initiative (Right Turn). IEL is accepting applicants interested in improving their work with court-involved youth through better connections to career information, education, and their community. Participating sites will use the Right Turn Career-Focused model to provide education and training, occupational training in demand industries, industry-recognized credentials, and workforce development activities to 100 youth with involvement in the juvenile justice system, ages 14 to 24, per year. Sites will receive a research-based career development model, practical strategies, implementation materials, and technical assistance from experts in juvenile justice, mentoring, disability, and career development, as well as $350,000 per year to implement the Right Turn model.

Right Turn will adapt NCWD/Youth’s Guideposts for Success for Transition Age Youth Involved in the Juvenile Corrections System, the Individualized Career Development Plan, implementation strategies of the five existing Right Turn sites, and lessons learned from the existing Ready to Achieve Mentoring Program, which provides opportunities to youth who have been involved in the juvenile justice system, but are returning to and currently residing in Face Forward communities. IEL/CWD will work with four local sub-grantees in at least two states.

Applications are due September 14, 2015.

Community Schools National Forum Accepting Workshop Proposals

The Coalition for Community Schools, housed at the Institute for Educational Leadership, together with the Albuquerque/Bernalillo Community Schools Partnership, will convene diverse stakeholders for the 2016 Community Schools National Forum. This year's theme, Rising Together – Learning across Family, School, and Community, underscores that only by working together and focusing on learning will all children thrive. It recognizes the rapid growth of community schools – schools with deep, results-focused relationships with community partners. The Coalition for Community Schools is currently accepting workshop applications from educators, families, and community partners that highlight the focus of learning in community schools, connect participants with a network of supportive peers, and strengthen emerging state networks. Workshop applications are due October 9, 2015.

U.S. DOL Seeks Nominations for Workforce Information Advisory Council

The U.S. Department of Labor is seeking nominations for members for the newly created Workforce Information Advisory Council that is being established as required by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). The 14-member council will provide recommendations to the Secretary of Labor to address the evaluation and improvement of federal and state workforce and labor market information systems, and how the department and the states will cooperate in the management of those systems. Nominations must be received by October 6, 2015.

WIOA Advisory Committee Issues Draft Interim Report

At its August 10, 2015 meeting, the Advisory Committee on Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Individuals with Disabilities concurred with finalizing its draft Interim Report and its preliminary recommendations. The purpose of this draft Interim Report is to summarize the Committee's progress, along with interim findings and preliminary recommendations. Formed as a key provision of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, the Committee is exploring the use and oversight of 14(c) certificates allowed under the Fair Labor Standards Act, along with ways to increase competitive integrated employment opportunities for individuals with significant disabilities. The Interim Report is due to be submitted to the Secretary of Labor and Congress by September 15, 2015. The next meeting of the Advisory Committee is tentatively scheduled for October 14-15, 2015.

Federal Government Requests Comments on WIOA State Plan

The U.S. Departments of Labor, Education, Health and Human Services, Agriculture, and Housing and Urban Development are soliciting comments concerning a collection of data that will be used for unified and combined state plans under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). The Unified or Combined State Plan requirements are designed to improve service integration and ensure that the publicly-funded workforce system provides a range of employment, education, training, and related services and supports. This coordination aims to help all jobseekers secure good jobs while providing businesses with the skilled workers they need to compete in the global economy. To that end, submission of a Unified State Plan would describe how the State will develop and implement its required workforce development activities through an integrated service delivery system rather than operating each program individually. To instead submit a Combined State Plan, would allow States to include these required activities along with how they intend to work with optional partners like TANF. Comments may be submitted until October 5, 2015. Technical assistance materials are available.

U.S. DOL & HHS Issue Guidance on Health Care and Job Training for Youth with Disabilities

The U.S. Departments of Labor (DOL) and Health and Human Services (HHS) have issued a “Dear Colleague” letter for youth service providers, state and local agencies, and policymakers. The letter offers guidance to ensure that young people with disabilities or chronic health conditions receive health care transition and job training services under the Affordable Care Act and Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).

U.S. DOJ & HHS Issue Technical Assistance for Child Welfare Systems

On August 10, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division together with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Civil Rights and Administration for Children and Families issued joint technical assistance about the applicability of Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act to the administration of child welfare programs, activities, and services. This technical assistance includes a cover letter to stakeholders and an explanatory document that contains a question and answer section. This technical assistance is intended to help child welfare agencies and family courts understand their obligations under Federal law to ensure that parents and prospective parents with disabilities receive equal treatment and equal access to parenting opportunities.

Looking Ahead: September is Attendance Awareness Month and Workforce Development Month!

NCWD/Youth is proud to be a collaborative partner for Attendance Awareness Month (AAM) 2015 this September. Organized by Attendance Works (AW), AAM is meant to spotlight the impact of student attendance on academic success. According to AW, missing just 10% of the school year in the early grades can leave many students struggling throughout elementary school. Further, by 6th grade, missing that much school is strongly linked to course failure and eventually dropping out of high school. Attendance Works has a wide array of attendance-related resources available.

The National Association of Workforce Development Professionals (NAWDP) designated September as National Workforce Development Month (NWDM) to honor all those individual professionals who play such a vital role in our nation's economic recovery efforts. NAWDP hopes that NWDM will strike a responsive chord and bring support from political leadership, businesses, educational agencies, economic development organizations, labor unions, and customers who continue to benefit from our services across the country. NCWD/Youth will be celebrating by sharing our workforce developmental publications and resources.

NCWD/Youth Blog Posts

NCWD/Youth’s blog features current and relevant information related to the Guideposts for SuccessYouth Development and LeadershipInnovative StrategiesProfessional Development, and more!

Important Information

If you know of others who might be interested in the newsletter and the work of NCWD/Youth, they can sign up online. All comments, inquiries, and suggestions for transition related resources and tools should be sent to newsletter@ncwd-youth.info.

This document was developed by the National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth, funded by a grant/contract/cooperative agreement from the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy (Number #OD-23804-12-75-4-11). The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the position or policy of the U.S. Department of Labor. Nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply the endorsement by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Note: There are no copyright restrictions on this document. However, please credit the source and support of Federal funds when copying all or part of this document.

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