Notification and Guidance for Requirements of Section 118 of Perkins III

Program Memorandum--OVAE/DVTE--FY 99-3

Date: December 3, 1998
To: State Directors of Vocational - Technical Education
State Directors of Community, Technical and Junior Colleges
State Tech-Prep Coordinators
State Career Development Supervisors
From: Patricia W. McNeil
Assistant Secretary for Vocational and Adult Education
Subject: Notification and Guidance for Requirements of Section 118 of Perkins III

This memorandum provides guidance related to implementation of Section 118 of the Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Technical Education Act of 1998 (Perkins III).

Section 118 emphasizes the interest by Congress in continuing to address the career guidance and information needs of students, parents, teachers, counselors, and administrators. It also signals a clear intent for the Department of Education to play a key role in promoting the use of career information and training by students, parents, counselors, teachers, administrators, and others to use more effectively such information in support of career-related planning and preparation. In keeping with that intent, Section 118 authorizes the Secretary of Education to designate a national entity to carry out activities to provide information and training to support career guidance and academic counseling programs and promote improved career and education decision-making.

Section 118 also stipulates that States wishing to receive a grant must designate a State entity to carry out the provisions of this section. Specifically, the law calls for the eligible agency [that receives the Federal vocational grant] and the Governor to jointly select the entity in the state. The entity so designated is required to work closely with the agency made responsible under the Workforce Investment Act, Section 309, for labor market information and employment statistics.

Once identified, the State entity will be eligible to receive that State's portion of approximately $7,650,000 [85% of the $9 million Fiscal Year 1999 appropriation]. The amount to be received will be determined by formula. Even though the level of these grants is small, the impact can be significant.

Consistent with the Department's plans to work with States to implement Perkins III beginning on July 1, 1999, the Department is notifying governors and eligible agencies of the opportunities and responsibilities under the subject Section. To allow the Department to make separate grants under this Section by July 1, 1999, States will need to submit their plans by May 15. We anticipate that grant guidelines and application procedures will be issued no later than April 2. To meet this deadline we are requesting that States also select an entity by April 2.

Selection of the State entity is entirely a State decision. You should review the options available to you. As you are aware, States will not be beginning from scratch, since many of the functions outlined in Section 118 have in the past been carried out by State Occupational Information Coordinating Committees (SOICCs). The conference report on Perkins III specifically notes that SOICCs may be considered by the State as the possible entity, along with any other agency that the governor and eligible agency wish to consider.

A joint letter from the governor and eligible agency designating the entity will be required. We will send additional guidance to you in early January, including the information that should be included in a letter designating the State entity. However, we encourage each State to immediately initiate the process through which the State entity will be selected.

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Last Modified: 09/15/2004