OVAE Connection -- September 12, 2012
Archived Information

OVAE Unveils Newly Redesigned LINCS Website

OVAE has just re-launched the newly redesigned LINC website, to coincide with Adult Education and Family Literacy Week. “We are excited to share this new site to help inform, involve, and inspire the adult education community,” said OVAE Assistant Secretary Brenda Dann-Messier. “Our nation’s adult educators are playing an invaluable role in helping many thousands of Americans access greater educational and economy opportunity.”

The new site features a redesigned look and enhanced functionality to provide a collection of evidence-based online resources for adult educators. A key feature is the LINCS Community, with16 topic area groups. It allows for real-time discussions with peers, a professional learning community with specific topic area groups, and additional professional development materials. These virtual communities are among the site’s most exciting changes, allowing for on-demand professional development, and topic-specific networking. Educators now have an opportunity to come together and build on their collective experience, to share and obtain real-time answers to questions from their peers, and to receive the latest information, news, and events.

“The LINCS Community will enable educators and program administrators to inspire learners in their classrooms on a daily basis,” stated Heidi Silver-Pacuilla, Division for Adult Education and Literacy. “We want adult educators to use LINCS to find new ideas, stay informed on the latest research and events, and most importantly, get involved in the discussions.”

We encourage you to get involved in the conversations in the LINCS Community, get informed with the latest tools and techniques, and get inspired by the new information and ideas! For more information on the re-designed site, please contact Mary Jo Maralit, in OVAE, at

Education Drives America Bus Tour Begins

“Education Drives America,” the third annual bus tour featuring U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and senior leaders of the Department, will push the message that Education drives America as communities across the nation mark the return to school of our nation’s students. The bus tour will begin in California’s Silicon Valley and conclude in Washington, D. C. Additional stops include: Sacramento, Calif.; Reno, and Elko, Nev.; Salt Lake City, Utah; Rock Springs, Rawlins, and Cheyenne, Wyo.; Denver and Limon, Colo.; Topeka and Emporia, Kan.; Kansas City, Columbia, and St. Louis, Mo.; Mount Vernon, Ill.; Evansville, Ind.; Lexington, Ky.; Charleston and McDowell County, W.Va.; and Roanoke and Richmond, Va.

“America’s future is directly linked to the quality of education that we provide our children, young people and adults,” Duncan said in August when announcing the tour. “It is the key to a vibrant middle class, strong national security, and our global economic competitiveness.”

“In the past three years, I’ve traveled to 47 states, visited hundreds of schools and met with thousands of teachers, parents and students who are finding new and innovative ways to teach and learn,” Duncan said. “This bus tour is an opportunity to highlight what’s working and create momentum for education reforms that improve the lives of all students.”

OVAE Assistant Secretary Brenda Dann-Messier and other senior department officials will play a major role in tour events. On Monday, Sept. 10, and Tuesday, Sept. 11, Dann-Messier was in Las Vegas where she toured local adult, career, and technical education programs and held roundtable discussions on disconnected youths, adult education, and career pathways. She also toured Western Nevada College in Carson City, Nev., and engaged in a discussion with students and faculty on adult literacy and language programs.

Today, Sept. 12, Dann-Messier is scheduled to tour Truckee Meadows Community College in Reno where she will host a roundtable discussion on adult education and career pathways.

On Thursday, Sept. 13, and Friday, Sept. 14, she is scheduled to visit Rock Springs and Rawlins, Wyo., to highlight education successes and lead community discussions about school reform, college affordability and completion, and the connection between education and jobs. On Sept. 13, she is scheduled to visit Rock Springs High School, where she is scheduled to tour a training center and host a roundtable discussion on career academies with students, faculty, staff, and business partners.

Also on Sept. 13, Dann-Messier is scheduled to visit Western Wyoming Community College to participate in a roundtable discussion with faculty, staff, and students.

On Sept. 14, Dann-Messier will lead a roundtable discussion with career and technical education faculty, staff, and students from Laramie County Community College (LCCC) and the Laramie County School District. Later that day, Dann-Messier, Under Secretary Martha Kanter, and Chief of Staff Joanne Weiss are scheduled to participate in a town hall meeting on education and the economy at LCCC.

The following week, on Sept. 19, U.S. Deputy Secretary of Education Tony Miller is scheduled to be joined by Sue Liu, special assistant for community colleges in OVAE, for a visit to Continental Tire in Mount Vernon, Ill., where they are scheduled to lead a roundtable discussion with representatives from the community and Rend Lake College, as well as business and education leaders focusing on partnerships that have been forged among community colleges, businesses, and industry and the connection between education and jobs. Earlier in the day, Liu is scheduled to visit Rend Lake College in Ina, Ill., where she is scheduled to meet with students, faculty, and staff to discuss ways to help students become college and career ready. She also is scheduled to lead a discussion with local school district superintendents about access and transition to college for K–12 students.

On the final day of the bus tour, Friday, Sept. 21, Dann-Messier is scheduled to lead a roundtable with students from Virginia Western Community College focusing on their postsecondary transition experiences and the academic supports that are crucial in assisting students to transition successfully from secondary to postsecondary education. Dann-Messier is scheduled to then join Secretary Duncan at a town hall on the Virginia Western Community College campus on college and career readiness.

Later on Sept. 21, the 2012 bus tour will culminate with a rally at the Department of Education in Washington, DC, where Secretary Duncan is scheduled to be joined by senior department officials. Secretary Duncan is scheduled to deliver a back-to-school address to inaugurate the 2012–2013 school year.

More specific details about the bus tour will be made available as the events draw closer. For live, up-to-the-minute updates from the road, follow the Education Drives America tour on Twitter using the hashtag, #edtour12 or visit the Department’s bus tour blog. To receive media advisories, press releases, notifications about posting to the blog, and other special updates during the tour, subscribe to the Department’s Education Drives America e-mail updates by clicking here.

Adult Education and Family Literacy Week Sept. 10–16, 2012

The National Coalition for Literacy (NCL) will hold its annual Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, Sept. 10–16, 2012. The National Adult Education and Family Literacy Week is designed to raise public awareness of adult education and family literacy, assist adult learners in need of literacy services, leverage local resources, and support increased access to adult education and family literacy programs. The week’s events provide an opportunity to elevate adult education and family literacy nationwide with policymakers, the media, and the community.

The NCL works to advance adult education, family literacy, and English language acquisition in the U.S. by increasing public awareness for the need to increase funding and programs; by promoting effective public policy; and, by serving as an authoritative resource on national adult education issues. Adult education supports our nation’s priorities: individuals with more education are more likely to get and keep jobs, lift themselves out of poverty, reduce healthcare costs and take better care of their families. Education also better equips adults to support their children’s education and break cycles of illiteracy and poverty; and, helping people attain the basic skills and training they need to reach their goals not only benefits them but also their families and the nation.

The national reach of Adult Education and Literacy Week is significant. It draws the attention and support of the Congress, federal agencies, state and local leaders, and stakeholders across the spectrum.

For the fourth consecutive year, a resolution was passed in the House recognizing the importance of adult education and family literacy and the need to support programs serving these individuals, and for the second consecutive year, the Senate also passed the resolution.

Mayor Vincent Gray proclaimed Sept. 10–16, 2012, as Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, in the District of Columbia. At the annual D.C. adult education agency professional development conference held during the week, OVAE Deputy Assistant Secretary Johan Uvin, and Adult Education and Literacy Division Director Cheryl Keenan offered keynote addresses covering OVAE priorities on college completion, career pathways, teacher effectiveness and high-quality instruction.

We encourage interested parties to visit the NCL website for more information on the coalition’s work, and Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, and to access their new adult education fact sheet.

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Last Modified: 09/14/2012