Workforce Development Subcommittee
February 27, 2008
Sandra McBrayer, Advisory Committee Chair
Kathie Scott, California Department of Education (CDE) liaison to the Subcommittee
Sandra McBrayer, Subcommittee Chair (the Chair) opened the meeting at 1:10 p.m.
Introduction of Members
All members introduced themselves.
Approval of Minutes from the August 28, 2007 meeting – Action
The members approved the minutes from the August 28, 2007, meeting with one change. The minutes will be edited to reflect that Mary Hoshiko was absent.
The Chair introduced Kathie Scott, the CDE consultant liaison to the Advisory Committee, who was recommended to and approved by the State Board of Education. The Chair noted that Kathie Scott has worked for many years at the CDE and she has worked in the After School Policy and Evaluation Office for several years.
The Chair provided an update about the partnership with the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation. The partnership, known as The Building Links and Ladders: Developing the Afterschool Workforce, focuses on developing and promoting programs that incorporate after school employment as preparation for careers in education, youth development, and public service. This partnership links after school programs and community colleges to build employment opportunities and career pathways. One of the purposes is to recruit youth and young adults who are eligible under the Workforce Investment Act to work in after school programs. This partnership is a one semester bridge program where participants are provided math and English remediation, youth development, and other specific after school skills and education. It is intended that in the second semester, participants will remain enrolled in the community college, continuing their education, and work in local after school programs.
This is a competitive process done through a state request for applications.
California School-Age Consortium Presentation
Rebecca Goldberg, California School-Age Consortium (CalSAC) Project Director, provided the Workforce Development Subcommittee (WDS) with an overview of CalSAC workforce development initiatives and job fairs.
Through a statewide network of initiatives CalSAC uses a communications approach to develop resources for the after school, and child development workforce, and the field. CalSAC has been in existence since 1982 and provides various types of support and training centered on workforce development. CalSAC focuses on communicating with the after school field, the higher education community, and others regarding workforce development. CalSAC collaborates with a number of organizations statewide.
Ms. Goldberg emphasized there is a workforce crisis in California. “Baby boomers” are retiring from skilled professions, creating a need for workers with a bachelor’s or higher college degree. There will be an acute shortage of workers in the health care profession. It is estimated that approximately 100,000 teachers will retire in the next decade. There is always a need for after school workers due to a high turnover rate. The shortage of after school workers has been exasperated by the increase in After School Education and Safety (ASES) funding. These new programs created approximately 12,000 new after school jobs. The number of workers in after school programs is more than police officers and fire fighters combined.
The after school industry offers plentiful employment opportunities which are, part-time and include competitive pay for entry level jobs. Jobs are available in almost every neighborhood and school. College students can work around their school schedules during after school hours. In addition, after school employers hire many young adults and employers love to hire from their community. CalSAC offers programs that provide the community with a great chance to learn life and job skills. Workers in after school programs communicate with students, parents, and school officials. After school programs offer meaningful work that is competitive with other part-time jobs. It’s a great chance for after school workers to be a role model for students.
Ms. Goldberg talked about CalSAC’s general philosophy and how they inform the field of available employment opportunities. CalSAC attempts to find new sources of workers and tries to develop the strength and experience of new workers. CalSAC provides general life and job skills training and mentoring relevant to employment in after school programs. This is done through organizing local employers and higher education institutions so there is a pool of employers willing to hire after school workers.
Ms. Goldberg discussed several current CalSAC initiatives/models. The first model started in Contra Costa County several years ago. It was CalSAC’s first effort to reach out to the workforce system through the Workforce Investment Boards (WIBs) and local colleges. This model focused on foster and out-of-school youths. Specifically, CalSAC provided new worker recruitment and screening. In the Contra Costa County model, workers are put in a bridge program to improve their academic skills to the community college level. Recruits receive career counseling and skills improvement. When ready, they enter a community college. While they are in college, they are matched with an after school program.
Ms. Goldberg explained the after school component was an add-on to the original project. Therefore, there was an issue with screening workers that were eligible to work in after school programs. CalSAC hoped more students could have been recruited. Setting up the communication system with all involved partners was a challenge. In addition, working with the WIBs was new. Learning how systems come together was a critical component of planning. It was important to consider the needs, worker eligibility, and program size. It is critical to consider from the beginning who you are recruiting and what they need to be successful.
The Chair asked Ms. Goldberg what CalSAC did for follow-up with the after school employers to find out what the students did not know that CalSAC wished they would have taught them.
Ms. Goldberg reported that the individuals that entered the program and were working in after school programs were often better trained than their co-workers and sometimes better trained than their supervisors. When their course work was done, they possessed excellent communication skills.
Ms. Goldberg informed the Workforce Development Subcommittee (WDS) that project coaches come from the after school field. CalSAC asks for feedback regarding how they work with young adults, how they like their jobs, what happened on the job, how they cope with challenging situations, and how they could have better handled challenging situations. In addition, she stated there was not a place for students working in after school programs to receive all of the help they needed. Students needed direction about how to manage their schedules and other issues.
The project turned out to be a great way to retain students in the training program, to retain them on the job, and to transfer what they learned in the program to their job. It is crucial to communicate with the employers, and let them know what the students are working on. Ms. Goldberg stated this was complicated because of the management provided and the personalities of everyone involved.
The next model that Ms. Goldberg discussed was the San Francisco and Oakland AfterSchool Corps Model. CalSAC identified several youth employment agencies and other youth serving organizations in the area. One organization in San Francisco served over 1,400 high school students. The high school students worked in after school programs, and once they graduated, they could seek permanent employment in the program. Training was provided after work hours. CalSAC developed an employer network to recruit, interview, and hire workers.
Ms. Goldberg also discussed the Ukiah Workforce Project. This project targeted a large rural area. The project included a conglomeration of recruitment sources. Participants ranged from adults that might want to work in the after school industry to high school aged youth in ROP classes, young parents, alternative education students and continuation high school students. A major reason the project was needed in the Ukiah area is that there are limited jobs in the area, and it is relatively high cost area, so young adults end up leaving. The project serves from 25 to 30 people interested in full-time employment. Recruits receive training and work experience in after school programs. Once they graduate, recruits can work in an after school program. Minimum qualifications for recruits depends on the employment partner, however, potential employers are looking for young people who want to grow, and who are motivated to reach out to children. The project screens applicants for a criminal background and a history of drug abuse. CalSAC works closely with the local community college and hopes that students will progress to institutions of higher education.
Another CalSAC project is the Peninsula/South Bay project. The project includes
San Mateo, and Santa Clara Counties, although the approach of the project is different for each county. San Mateo County’s focus is on out-of-school youth who are provided a bridge program and a variety of career pathways. In Santa Clara County, the project focuses on a variety of recruitment sources, including high school students, foster youth, CalWorks, college students and JobCorps members. CalSAC is using private funding for this project from the David and Lucile Packard and S. H. Cowell Foundations.
The final project discussed was the Laney College Coaching model. This project was collaboratively created via an Introduction to Youth Development class at Laney College. Class graduates are provided with the opportunity to work in local after school programs. CalSAC worked with local employers to enroll workers in the class. Private funding is provided by the Stone Foundation. This project provides new youth workers, and job seekers an opportunity to take this class, and also job coaching. The project provides stipends for tuition and books. The project targets new workers at programs in Oakland for anyone who wants to take the class and work in after school programs.
Ms. Goldberg provided the WDS with a brief overview of the JobCorps program. JobCorps is the oldest and most heavily funded workforce development project in the country. Approximately 400-800 young people are involved in the program. There is a strict no drug and alcohol requirement and a background check. JobCorps provides job opportunities to individuals interested in after school jobs, coaching, and training. There are two campuses in the Bay Area: Treasure Island and San Jose. Participants learn transferable job skills, and the goal of the program is to assist participants become certificated in a career path for a long-term job. The program is open to select people who have a propensity for certain types of work. Projects are also located in San Diego and San Bernardino Counties.
Rebecca Goldberg told the WDS about job fairs. Job fairs offer a great chance for organizations to collaborate with employers, colleges, and after school programs to recruit workers. CalSAC also provides resources for organizations to arrange job fairs in Sacramento, Oakland, San Jose, Los Angeles, and San Diego. CalSAC hosted ten job fairs across California. Job fairs are designed to help programs market themselves and find new staff, encourage collaboration among employers, and provide a public relations opportunity within communities to advertise the number and availability of jobs. CalSAC has job fair chapters around the state. It is possible to host a job fair for as little as several thousand dollars. She stated that holding a job fair at a college is a great way to get students involved.
Ms. Goldberg also discussed the CalSAC job fair manual. The manual outlines timelines, describes job fair components, and shares lessons learned with potential job fair hosts. The manual includes a flyer that helps hosts identify sources of recruitment, pre-employment training, and general life and job skill training in after school programs.
A general discussion took place regarding the challenges of having systems come together and having different ideas of what planning is and the need for intensive planning on the model itself. Program size and needs assessments pose a real challenge. Before students are served it is important to do planning for the project to be successful.
More resources including a Career Center, free posting of services to employers, and job seeker search by county, job type, and job title, can be found at CalSAC (Outside Source).
Sandra McBrayer recommended that CalSAC present this information to the full Advisory Committee at their next meeting in April and to the Regional Leads at their next on-site meeting in May.
The WDS decided that several of the foundations with after school initiatives be invited to present at future WDS meetings.
The next WDS meeting will be on April 23, 2008, in Sacramento at 1:00 p.m.
There being no further business the Chair adjourned the meeting at 2:07 p.m.