October 20, 2018
USCIS Now Testing With Digital Tablets
Applicants taking the naturalization interview with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will now use a digital tablet during the English reading and writing tests. This is in addition to the portions of the test where tablets have already been in use: signing or verifying parts of an individual's application. As of October 1, 2018, applicants will now use a stylus on a digital tablet instead of paper. Paper copies will continue to be used on a case-by-case basis.

What has not changed? The content of the naturalization test has not changed, nor have the eligibility requirements for citizenship. The civics portion of the test will continue to be given verbally and will not use the tablet.

During the reading portion of the test, the applicant will be asked to read aloud from a sentence shown on the tablet. During the writing portion of the test, the tablet will appear as a blank piece of lined paper, and the applicant will be asked to write a sentence on it using the stylus.

To make this new digital process go smoothly, Immigration Services Officers (ISOs) will give careful instructions to applicants on how to use the tablets to take the tests.

Also, an upcoming webinar can help adult educators understand the recent changes to federal immigration policies. On Tuesday, October 23, at 2-3 p.m., COABE has organized a free webinar titled Navigating the Changing Immigration Policy Landscape: What Adult Educators Need to Know . Topics will include Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), Temporary Protected Status (TPS), refugee resettlement, and the public charge. An expert in trauma-informed education will also discuss how you can create a safe and welcoming classroom for these students, whose lives may seem chaotic. Learn more and register online.
Teaching Tips and Resources
Workplace Essential Skills Online
KET Education, the developers of the FastForward online curriculum, is working on Soft Skills for Workplace Essential Skills Online. This curriculum will cover topics such as communication, teamwork, professionalism, and ethics. They are also developing courses for IT, transportation, and construction. This newsletter will feature the announcement when these useful modules are released.
Edutopia: Improving Reading Skills Through Talking
A recent article from Edutopia, Improving Reading Skills Through Talking , presents a teaching strategy for improving reading comprehension that can work well in the adult education classroom. It involves partnering with another student and making observations prior to reading. Then, after reading the text, the partners collaborate and discuss a series of questions to dig deeper into the reading and understand it. They then record a summary of that discussion which can easily be studied in the future. Digesting a text this way walks students through the process of understanding the text in order to explicitly build that skill.
STEM Articles From ReadWorks.org
Finding quality reading material that gets students thinking about science can be a challenge. ReadWorks.org has many articles that address the topics of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math). Explore the list, and begin to further break down the listed materials into categories that you wish to teach and emphasize in your classroom. Many articles come with audio, vocabulary words, comprehension questions, and reading level information.
Checking in With Students
You probably naturally check in with your students, using informal interactions to see how they are doing. Edutopia recently shared an article titled Connections Go a Long Way for Students With Trauma that explores that natural instinct of teachers. Though our adult education students are not children anymore, they once were, and their experiences formed who they are today. They continue to face struggles and even traumatic events. By practicing those check-ins or "resiliency touch points," we can both show our students that we care and help them.
Professional Development Opportunities
NCTN Conference Schedule Available
The full catalog of sessions at the upcoming National College Transition Network Conference is now available . If you have plans to go to the conference on November 12-14, in Cambridge, Mass., you can preview the selection of over 65 different sessions that you can attend, as well as view pre-conference opportunities and keynote speakers.
PWDA Employment, Training, and Education Conference
The PA Workforce Development Association ( PWDA ) will hold its 35th Annual Employment, Training, and Education Conference in Hershey, Pa., on May 8-10, 2019. Registration will become available in early 2019.
Submit Proposals for PAACE by November 2
The deadline for submitting presentation proposals for the upcoming conference of the Pennsylvania Association of Adult Continuing Education (PAACE) has been extended to November 2. If you have an idea to share with the statewide adult education community, write it up and submit it online!
Webinar: Adult Learning Strategies at Community Colleges
Adult learners are all unique, and that is true at the college level as well. A WorkforceGPS webinar titled Adult Learning Strategies at Community Colleges will examine three community colleges that have used a variety of strategies to support the specific needs of adult learners. It will be held at 4-5 p.m., on Wednesday, October 24, 2018. Learn more and register online.
State and National Adult Education News
Data Inventory Tool
If your agency is using data for program improvement or sharing data with partners, consider using the Data Inventory Tool found at the PA Adult Ed Resources webpage. This document is in a chart format and has columns to record agency-wide data collection activities and the purpose of the data collected. Program staff can use the chart to analyze the usefulness of each data piece that is being collected within the agency. For additional assistance with using the tool, contact KayLynn ( klh267@psu.edu ) or Chrissie ( cok5111@psu.edu ).
$25,000,000 Added to National Adult Education Budget
The president has signed the FY19 Labor-HHS Bill. This bill includes the budget for adult education at the federal level, and the amount budgeted for our field has been raised $25 million above past amounts. Specifically, the budget line for Adult Education and Family Literacy State Grants went from $616,955,000 in FY18 to $641,955,000 in FY19, an increase of about 4 percent. Learn more .
Apprenticeship Summit: Symposium Summary
On September 25 and 26, Chrissie Klinger, from the Workforce Development Project, attended the Pennsylvania Inaugural Apprenticeship Summit. Approximately 380 employers, educators, training providers, workforce development system staff, and community and economic development staff gathered in Harrisburg, Pa., to learn about best practices and innovative ideas related to the “learn while you earn” model of progressing through career pathways. Participants also heard about collaborative efforts among various departments and agencies and the shared vision of both pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship programs in Pennsylvania.  Read more...
Grants and Scholarships
Walmart Foundation Grants
Funded by the Walmart Foundation, Walmart's Community Grant Program awards grants to non-profit organizations through local Walmart stores, Sam's Clubs, and logistics facilities.These grants are designed to support work in the areas of community, sustainability, and career opportunity. Vocational training for low-income individuals and families is a highlighted focus area, as well as tutoring and after-school enrichment. Awards range from $250 to $5,000. Learn more and apply. Applications are due December 31, 2018. Thank you to PAACE for sharing this opportunity.
PSU Family Literacy Certificate Scholarships for Spring 2019
There are a limited number of scholarships available to people enrolled in PSU's Family Literacy Certificate program. The Spring 2019 course for this certificate program is  Interactive Literacy and Parent Involvement: Supporting Academic Success  (ADTED 459). The scholarship includes 25 percent off tuition for the first three courses and 50 percent off the fourth course, for a total discount of $3,200 off the cost of the certificate. Learn more online .
Job Posting
The job postings below are for adult basic education programs that are funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and, at least in part, by WIOA Title II funds. They can also be found on the paadultedresources.org website. To post a job, please email the job advertisement to  lbailey@tiu11.org
PA Adult Education Resources
Upcoming State and National Conferences
State and National Newsletters
Listed below are state and national organizations' newsletters that may be of interest to you. To receive the most recent editions by email, please subscribe directly to the newsletter. 

COABE Journal, Coalition on Adult Basic Education. Features national information, resources, and initiatives for adult basic education.

OCTAE Connection, U.S. Department of Education, Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education. Features news and resources for adult basic, career, and technical education.

World Education/U.S. Features resources and information from World Education projects including The Change Agent, College for Adults, E-Learning, LINCS Region 1 Professional Development Center, National College Transition Network, and many others.  

Families Learning: News of the Week, National Center for Families Learning.
Features information and resources for family literacy, early childhood education, and parent education.  

GED® In Session, GED Testing Service®. Features news and information related to the GED® test.

Workforce GPS, Workforce3 One. Features career pathways and workforce development information.