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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 2

Acknowledgements

CESBA wishes to acknowledge the invaluable contributions of those involved in


this project. Thank you for your time and efforts and for the innovative results that
will make such a difference for learners in clearing the pathway to seamless
transition between LBS and Adult Credit.

Brenda B King
Executive Director, CESBA

contributors

project developer/writer jane barber

writer donna ellis

research and development charlotte parliament

susan lefebvre

christine hendrie

lorraine cheshire

susan verret

dalia taylor

cover design david baker

printer print3

This project was made possible by funding from the


Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities

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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 3

CLEARING THE PATHWAY: Effecting Seamless Transitions


from LBS to Credit

Table of Contents

Introduction 04

Research Findings and Recommendations 05

Part 1: In this Together - Creating Partnerships 08

Part 2: LBS to Credit - Creating a Transition Strategy 20

The Transition Planning Team 20

The Plan in Writing 25

The Process in Operation 39

Part 3: Fully Prepared - Creating Transition Programs 42

RESOURCES 70

APPENDIX 84

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INTRODUCTION
In 2008, CESBA received funding from the Ministry of Training,
Colleges and Universities to provide practical support in the way
of strategies and resources to school boards and LBS programs to
increase accessibility to Adult Credit programming for learners
with goals to achieve an Ontario Secondary School Diploma.
Through former Pathways projects, Crossing the Bridge:
Seamless Transition from LBS to Adult Credit (2006-2007),and
Strategic Partners and Pathways to Academic Upgrading (2008-
2009) and as part of the Learner Skills Attainment Framework
Development Initiative, CESBA‟s project teams had already
produced a map outlining a Partners and Pathways System for
successful learner transitions from LBS to Adult Credit. With this
next step, CESBA‟s goal was to do more to help school boards
close the gap between LBS and Credit and ensure that learners
on an academic pathway have every chance of success. To
achieve this goal, strategies and resources are required on three
fronts:

 Bringing together two diverse school board cultures to form


a co-operative partnership i.e. the Adult Credit Program of
the Ministry of Education (EDU) and the Literacy and
Basic Skills (LBS) Program of the Ministry of Training,
Colleges and Universities (MTCU)

 Creating and implementing a transition strategy between


LBS and Credit programs

 Developing innovative programming with task-based


curriculum to adequately prepare LBS learners for success
in Credit.

If the measures outlined in this report are adopted, the anticipated


results and benefits to learners who have goals that include an
OSSD include the following:

 a system with the necessary infrastructure and processes


in place to ensure learners moving to Credit do not fall
between the cracks.

 an approach to training that targets key components of


successful transition and gives learners some experience
with activities that are typical of Adult Credit programs.

 greater ability on the part of learners to communicate


clearly when talking to others about their skills and abilities.

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 increased numbers of learners who transition successfully


from LBS to Credit fully prepared to complete a PLAR
assessment and to be awarded up to 16 Credits.

 better learner retention in Credit programs because more


learners will be better-prepared to meet the demands of
the program.

 increased numbers of learners achieving an OSSD and


moving on to meaningful employment, apprenticeship
training or post-secondary school studies.

A Solid Research Base

The strategies and resources recommended in Clearing the


Pathway are the result of extensive research in the field. Targeted
research was conducted through different TCU-funded projects
including Crossing the Bridge: Seamless Transition from LBS to
Adult Credit- Part 1 (2007-2008), The Learner Skills Attainment
Framework Development Initiative (2007-2008), and Strategic
Partners and Pathways to Academic Upgrading in LBS (2007-
2008). A 2008-2009 initiative from the Ministry of Education, the
Literacy Capacity Building Project contributed greatly to research
findings from the Adult Credit perspective. Throughout the course
of these research projects, over 300 educators including LBS
managers and practitioners, teachers in Adult Credit, and
principals, vice-principals and administrators of Adult and
Continuing Education Departments provided information and
expertise on issues related to transitions and learner success.
Summarized below are some key recommendations and findings
that came from that research:

Recommendations for MTCU and EDU

 Promote and support partnership initiatives between LBS


and Adult Credit for the purpose of strengthening the Adult
Credit pathway to employment success. For example,
provide combined professional development training for
Credit teachers and LBS practitioners together.

 Explore the possibilities of a common assessment


partnership initiative between TCU and EDU bringing
together the PLAR for Mature Students assessment and
the OALC framework for assessment of Reading Text,
Document Use and Numeracy

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 Increase accessibility for Adult Credit teachers to research


and field development resources affecting transitions
between LBS and Adult Credit.

 Where possible, align the Adult Credit Pathway key


competencies and curriculum guidelines to the framework
of the OSSC.

 Embed practices within departments of continuing


education that are informed by the factors of success and
failure as identified through this consultation process.

 Support increased promotion of LBS programs and


services within the Adult Credit system.

 Consider policy to mandate LBS participation in the PLAR


for Mature Students process.

 Consider mechanisms that support adult students success


such as a Credit recovery program, for example

 Provide professional development training on PLAR for


LBS Managers and practitioners

Recommendations for Adult and Continuing Education


Departments

 Whenever possible, advocate for Adult Learning Centres


where LBS and Adult Secondary School Credit programs
can be co-located

 Encourage Continuing Education Principals, Vice


Principals and/or Site Coordinators to initiate coordinated
transition-planning between LBS and Credit

 Provide opportunities for an information exchange between


stakeholders in Adult Credit and LBS so that mutual
understanding and appreciation of the different academic
environments and cultures can prosper

 Develop a Readiness for Success checklist that can guide


learner preparation for Credit

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 Formalize a transition strategy for learners moving from


LBS to Adult Credit based on a partnership between LBS
and Credit where key stakeholders support PLAR
preparation, concurrent training, and transition policies and
procedures with
o common forms and documents
o referral protocols
o appointment-setting for LBS intake
o exit/entry assessment
o PLAR procedures

 Coordinate the learners‟ exit dates and transitions to Credit


with the registration and intake dates scheduled by Credit
to avoid time lapses between leaving one program and
beginning the next.

No question, the field agrees; transition success between LBS and


Adult Credit is tied to accessibility, and accessibility is tied to
communication. Consensus is clear on the very great need for an
organized approach to bridging the gap between LBS and Credit
for learners who have academic goals that include an OSSD.
Recommendations arising from all research initiatives point to the
need for three things:

 A partnership and good working relationships between


LBS and Adult Credit staff members based on open
communication, mutual respect and proper knowledge and
understanding of both programs

 A written, LBS to Credit transition strategy for the Cont. Ed.


Department that benefits the learners first and foremost, is
practical and fully supported by all stakeholders

 Adequate programming and preparation for LBS learners


so they can enter the transition process with confidence

The following three sections address each of these three needs


and hopefully, will make a difference in clearing the pathway from
LBS to Credit.

PART 1 - In This Together: Creating a Partnership

PART 2 - LBS to Credit: Creating a Transitions Strategy

PART 3 - Fully Prepared: Creating a Transitions Program

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PART 1 - In This Together: Creating a Partnership

Content:
Obstacles and difficulties associated with successful learner
transitions from LBS to Credit are well-documented. Unfortunately,
in some Cont. Ed. departments, a disabling disconnect between
the LBS and Adult Credit programs lies at the root. (Appendix B)

Despite their considerable differences, however, LBS and Adult


Credit programs have much in common - ideally, a similar
commitment to adult education, a passion to see learners
succeed; programs designed to help students achieve their goals
and a professional dedication to quality. What‟s curious is the fact
that those things look so very different in the two contexts. They
look so different in fact that sometimes educators in one setting
question their existence in the other. What separates the two
programs and in some cases, feeds a critical, “they‟re not-like-us”
way of seeing, are differences that are rooted in separate
education cultures.

In these kinds of situations, an intervention may be called for on


the part of the Cont. Ed. Principal, Vice-Principal or Site-
Coordinator, to bring these two programs together to forge a
partnership for the benefit of learners who need a pathway clear of
obstruction from LBS to Adult Credit.

For information and advice on developing partnerships, we go to


Donna Ellis who, in 2008, published Creating Adult and
Continuing Education Partnerships – a Toolkit for Joint Ventures,
an exceptional resource by someone who is, without question, an
authority on the topic.

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Interview between CESBA and Donna Ellis

While the CESBA resource entitled, Creating Adult and Continuing Education Partnerships: A
Toolkit for Joint Ventures, was written to support the creation of community partnerships, the
concepts apply equally to partnerships among departments and sites within Adult and
Continuing Education. If seamless transitions for learners out of LBS programs into Adult Credit
programs are to be achieved, a healthy partnership between the LBS program and those
involved in delivering adult Credit programs is essential. At the request of CESBA, I am happy
to respond to some specific questions in order to highlight the importance of this particular
partnership and how it might work….
Donna Ellis, author of Creating Adult and Continuing Education
Partnerships: A Toolkit for Joint Ventures

Research over the past few years


shows that partnerships between
LBS and Adult Credit can make a In a sentence – they need to know
difference in successful transitions everything about partnerships!
for learners moving from LBS to
Credit. What do principals and
boards need to know about One of the primary functions of
partnerships? Administration is to set the tone and
direction for their programs. If LBS and
Credit staff are to make seamless
transitions for learners a priority, then they
need to be partners in achieving that goal.
Sometimes because teachers see a need, and are inspired to
create ways and means to make things happen for the benefit of
their learners, amazing partnerships are created. More often,
however, I think the Administrators must take the initiative to
develop, support and nurture these partnerships.

A partnership, in essence, involves working together in whatever


way that makes sense. In the current context, it means creating
paths so that learners can move from LBS to Credit programs
without obstacles.

Administrators and Program Managers need to know how to foster


successful partnerships. They need to know what makes a
partnership work and sometimes, why they fail. They need to
appreciate the complexity of partnerships and create the time
required to forge positive relationships. They need to appreciate
that partnerships have a “life cycle” and that they change and
develop over time.

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There is very little to be lost and everything to be


What are some of the gained when developing what I will refer to as an
risks and the benefits of “in-house” partnership, i.e. a partnership within
partnerships? the jurisdiction of Adult and Continuing
Education. All successful partnerships must
create “win-win” scenarios. A partnership
between LBS and Credit allows the learner to
move smoothly out of LBS programs into Credit studies without
experiencing any set-backs, without any loss of time, without
hoops to jump through and without discouragement. The learner
is the big “winner” when a LBS/Credit partnership exists.

The staff involved in an LBS/Credit partnership benefit too. When


the LBS staff works together with Credit staff in partnership, all
individuals grow professionally. Each group develops a greater
appreciation of the curriculum challenges of the other. Each has a
greater investment in fostering the success of the learner. Each
begins to understand the elements that can be built into their own
programs that will encourage and sustain success for the learner
in transition.

There are advantages for the Administrator, too. As staff work


together over time, the “them” and “us” mentality that sometimes
exists begins to fade. Staffs begin to move outside the concerns
of their own “program silos” and begin to take ownership of a
“larger vision” for Adult & Continuing Education.

There are really no risks associated with fostering an “in-house”


partnership. I suppose the worst case scenario would be that the
staff perceive it as just “one more thing to do” and don‟t buy into
the concept. If this were to happen, I think it would be a reflection
of the lack leadership on the part of the Administrator. Perhaps
the concept was not well explained. Perhaps the wrong
individuals were invited to the table to work together. Perhaps
inadequate time was made available to develop the kind of trust
needed to make the partnership successful. As long as the
administration understands the dynamics of creating a successful
partnership the risks are reduced or eliminated, leaving only the
benefits for all involved.

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What do principals/boards need


to think about as they consider
partnerships? Research indicates that effective partnerships
involve a number of factors:

 Win-win situations for all stakeholders


 Clear goals
 Commitment to the project
 Structured relationships
 Trust and open communication
 Meaningful interactions
 Process for resolving differences

Understanding these factors of success are key to helping staff


create successful partnerships.

It is critical that “right” people are invited to the planning table.


Thought needs to be given to which individual staff members are
most likely to embrace the opportunity of being involved in the
development of a new partnership. Which staff members
demonstrate the leadership that will be necessary to get their
colleagues to commit to this new partnership? Which staff
members have positive working relationships that can be fostered
within both LBS and Credit programs? Which staff members work
most effectively with others? Who are the individuals on staff with
the best problem solving skills and who demonstrate their ability to
“think outside the box”? Who on staff are the innovators?

Another important consideration is how the time necessary to the


development of a positive partnership will be made available.
What creative timetabling will be required? How can the
investment of time (and all other resources, for that matter) best
be utilized?

Once the partnership is developed, what will the role of the


administration be? What additional supports will the partnership
need? How will all staff eventually be involved in the partnership?
What will be needed to sustain the partnership over time?

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The best indication of readiness for


What indicators show that LBS and partnership would be innovations
Credit are ready or not ready to introduced by teachers on staff as a
enter into a partnership? means to assist learner transitions from
LBS to Credit programs. Attempts at
finding solutions imply recognition of the
need to work together, and indicates the
desire to partner in a more formal way, already exists. The
“spark” for successful partnering already exists; the role of the
Administration is to “fan” that spark into a flame.

There can be many indications that a need for partnership is clear


but the staff, either LBS staff or Credit staff, or both, is not ready.
If similar kinds of problems occur frequently and repeatedly as
learners transition from LBS to Credit, then the existing process is
not working and/or there is no will on the part of staff to make it
work.

The clearest indication of the lack of readiness to partner on the


part of staff is the sustained „them” and „us‟ mentality. In my
experience, this is born out of lack of understanding and lack of
trust – both challenges for successful partnership.

In some Boards, often smaller ones, this divisiveness doesn‟t exist


because, in those settings, there is a limited number of staff and
by necessity, teachers work in close proximity. In other Boards,
staffs indicate they are ready to partner because they have been
doing it in informal ways for years. They may not even see the
need because they don‟t recognize that they are already
partnering.

However, among larger staffs, particularly post-amalgamation,


LBS staff and Credit staff may not even “live” in the same
buildings. Or they may share an address, but live in “program
silos” and consequently, quite literally, not know each others
names. They don‟t speak to each other; they have little
understanding of the others‟ program; they certainly don‟t trust
each other professionally. Membership in different unions and
details of collective agreements reinforce this “separatist”
mentality.

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Whether ready or not ready, it falls to the Administration to create


the atmosphere where partnerships can be created.

What kind of groundwork is necessary In my view, the second question provides the
to prepare for a successful partnership answer to the first. What groundwork is
between LBS and Credit? What can necessary? Principals must increase
principals do to increase understanding understanding and promote mutual respect
and promote mutual respect between between LBS staff and Credit staff.
LBS and Credit programs before
introducing the idea of partnership?

How do Principals foster respect and


understanding? Personally, I think both develop more or less
naturally and in due course as the two staffs get to know each
other. Left to their own devises, they may never do this unless
opportunities are created that allow and encourage it to happen.

In the Creating Adult and Continuing Education Partnerships


toolkit, I wrote about the importance of honouring different
“corporate cultures”. Recognize that programs, over time, have
developed unique “corporate cultures” too.

Regular joint staff meetings are crucial – even if only for some
staff meetings or some portion of all staff meetings. Creating
professional development appropriate to both programs further
fosters this growth.

It may be worthwhile to engage all staff in some strategic planning


exercises that focus energies on the “big picture” issues that
always impact Adult & Continuing Education. A Strengths,
Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis of LBS
and Credit programs may be helpful. Through this process staff
may come to realize that far more unites them than divides them.

Another strategy for Principals may be to do a “pair/share” not


unlike what happens in classrooms with learners. Have each pair
complete a classroom visit in the other‟s classroom. (Provide
structure for this activity so that the observations remain focused.)
This activity can become the basis of ground breaking discussion
about the issues facing learners transitioning from LBS to Credit.

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Keep in mind that there may well be a perception of an imbalance


of “power” between the two groups. Deal with this perception with
openness and empathy.

I provided the answer for this question in answer


What makes or breaks an to the first question. Research indicates that
effective partnership? effective partnerships are based on a number of
factors:

 Win-win situations for all stakeholders


 Clear goals
 Commitment to the project
 Structured relationships
 Trust and open communication
 Meaningful interactions
 Process for resolving differences

In my research, I saw nothing indicating a ranking of these factors


as indicators of success. I do have an opinion, though, based on
my personal experience with partnerships. Speaking personally, I
think that mutual trust and open communication are the most
critical factors of success. If trust and honesty are the basis for
the partnership then all the challenges that face the partnership
can be negotiated.

This is a difficult question. I pointed out in


What is the role of the principal in the partnership resource document that there
forging and maintaining a is no “one size fits all” formula for
partnership between LBS and partnerships. Similarly, I don‟t think there is
Credit? a “one size fits all” answer to the role for
Principals in fostering and maintaining
partnerships.

Certainly, I believe that the Principal sets the tone for the
organization as a whole. The Principal must foster the opportunity
for partnership development. In some instances, he/she may
need to ordain that a partnership will happen, but long before it
comes to this, the climate must be created. How that happens
depends very much on leadership style and the working
relationship that the Principal has with his/her staff.

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It also depends on the culture of the particular Adult and


Continuing Education organization. Each Principal will have to
develop a path toward partnership that is appropriate for his/her
particular organization.

In chapter 2 of the CESBA Partnership resource document, I


discussed the importance of knowing “who/what you are” before
embarking into partnership. I think the role of the Principal comes
down to how well he/she knows his/her staff and the resultant
understanding of the most effective way to motivate staff.

Absolutely! Every interaction has “rules”.


Is it necessary to set ground rules Quite often the rules are understood and
for the partnership – and if so, what unwritten. If the partnership between LBS
are some suggestions and and Credit programs is to be successful the
examples? “rules of engagement” or expectations need
to be discussed openly. The process of
working out the details of the partnership is
more important than the details themselves.
In devoting time to this step in the formation of the partnership,
relationships are clarified and roles are established. Most
importantly trust begins to develop.

This stage of partnership development need not be as formal as


the creation of a “Partnership Agreement” but perhaps a “Plan of
Action” would be in order. It might include such topics as what
needs to be done, who is responsible to do it, and what are the
timelines for completion. Certainly it is important to establish
goals for the partnership; otherwise there is no mechanism for
determining if the partnership has been successful. (“If you don‟t
know where you are going; it doesn‟t much matter which path you
take.”) The CESBA Partnership resource document includes
suggestions for writing effective partnership goals.

What are the keys to


Certainly it is essential to keep the partnership
maintaining a healthy working
“healthy” once it is established. Again, one
relationship?
research source indicates that the key to
partnership “health” involves the following:

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 Partners can demonstrate real results through


collaboration
 Common interest supersedes partner interests
 Partners use “we” when talking about partner interests
 Partners are mutually accountable for tasks and outcomes
 Partners share responsibilities and rewards
 Partners strive to develop and maintain trust
 Partners are willing to change what they do and how they
do it
 Partners seek to improve how the partnership performs

I have to repeat that I think the key is trust and open


communication. If these two qualities are present in the working
relationship, it is bound to remain on course and healthy.

Conducting partnership meetings is no different


that conducting any other kind of meeting. With
What tips can you give for the partnership meetings it is essential that they
conducting effective remain productive. Nothing derails momentum
partnership meetings? faster than the feeling that you are wasting your
time!

The CESBA resource document outlines the topic of effective


meetings in more detail but in brief:

 Prepare and circulate the agenda in advance


 Start the meeting on time
 Establish the end time for the meeting at the beginning of
the meeting
 Establish that someone will keep brief notes so that any
staff absent from the meeting can be brought up to speed
prior to the next meeting
 Ensure that everyone has a chance to be heard
 If there are issues on the agenda that are likely to be
contentious, then have a plan for handling that before the
meeting begins
 If an issue becomes unexpectedly contentious, table the
item for the next meeting so that everyone has a chance to
think about it before the discussion proceeds
 Recap at the end of the meeting outlining any items that
require action before the next meeting and reinforce who
has the responsibility for that task
 End the meeting at the predetermined time

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Certainly this is true. Partnerships generally


have been compared to a marriage and like
While tensions and conflicts marriage, have their “ups and downs”. Another
are a fact of life in any frequent analogy for partnerships is likening
relationship, are there conflicts them to a journey. No journey is without its
between LBS and Credit that “potholes and detours”. Regardless, the most
can be anticipated and effective way of averting problems is to
averted? What advice can you acknowledge that conflicts will arise and to
give about that? develop mechanisms for addressing the
challenges before they begin to influence the
partnership in a negative way.

One of the sources quoted in CESBA resource document


summaries common partnership conflicts as follows:

Types of Conflict Sources of Conflict

Communication Conflict Misunderstanding, assumptions, lack of


information, misinformation, differences in
language

Structural Conflict Poor processes, inappropriate structures or


systems, time constraints

Relational Conflict Stereotypes, fear, distorted perceptions,


unrealistic expectations, use of power,
gender differences, personal conflicts

Interest Conflict Differences in needs, interests and


preferences

Value Conflict Opposing beliefs, views, values, or


philosophies

The challenges of partnerships often centre on differing corporate


cultures, leadership, power, competition and resources. Although
any of these issues could present challenges, specifically for
Credit and LBS partnerships, I think the greatest challenges may
arise from issues of “turf”, and perceived inequity in power. There
may also be differences in underlying philosophical approaches to
the two programs which should be clarified before this becomes a
contentious issue.

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Regardless of the source, conflict needs to be managed in such a


way that it doesn‟t permanently damage the working relationship.
Conflict is most damaging when it is not dealt with openly. Where
this is the case, there is no mechanism or process for addressing
it. It never gets resolved and therefore it has an increasingly
damaging effect of the partnership.

The first step toward resolving any conflict is to bring the issue out
into the open at a partnership meeting. At all costs, avoid the
“parking lot discussions”, where issues are aired in the wrong
forum, further compounding the problem.

Not enough can be said about the value of having already


established a conflict resolution process in the early development
phase of the partnership. If a process already exists, then the
conflict can be addressed by simply working through the steps
toward resolution. At that point, the value of developing trust,
mutual respect and open communication in those early meetings
of the partnership pays big dividends.

Conflict resolution always requires empathy and diplomacy. The


goal of the conflict resolution process is to allow the partnering to
move forward in a positive way without allowing the conflict to
become “personal”. Treat the conflict seriously but try to keep the
process “light”. Maintaining a sense of humour can go a long way
toward solving problems. After the conflict is resolved, recognize
that there needs to be a „recovery time”, so that the partners can
feel secure again, both with the partnership and with each other.

Some final comments…

Strengthening LBS and Credit programs through partnership is an


exciting venture. It creates synergy that goes beyond what either
program can achieve in isolation.

Remember to celebrate the partnership because that creates


positive energy, which in turn recharges everyone involved. Make
sure you include the learners in the celebration, because they are
the ultimate beneficiaries of the partnership.

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Build “check points” into the partnership. Pause to reflect on the


success of the partnership and to consider how you can further
enhance smooth transitions for learners leaving LBS and moving
into Credit programs. Ideal partnerships create a loop which
comes full circle and then moves on to even “bigger and better
things”.

No longer ask, “Should we be working together?” but rather “What


is the most effective way to work together?” When you begin to
contemplate how a LBS and Credit partnership might work, I urge
you to review the CESBA resource, Creating Adult & Continuing
Education Partnerships: A Toolkit for Joint Ventures. It contains
much more detail than I have shared here, as well as profiles of
partnerships that may inspire you to break down walls and replace
them with bridges to transition learners from LBS programs to
Credit programs.

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PART 2: LBS to CREDIT – Creating a Transition Strategy

Target Audience: Principals and Program Coordinators and


Managers in School Board Continuing Education Departments

Purpose: Strategies for developing and implementing a transition


plan for Continuing Education Departments to facilitate smooth
transition between LBS and Adult Credit

We know from educators in both LBS and in Adult Credit that


successful transitions for learners can be achieved through a
coordinated, organized transition strategy that works for everyone
involved. As Ellis pointed out, in most places, it will probably be
the responsibility of the Principal or Site Coordinator to recognize
the value and set the plan in motion. What‟s required for a
“coordinated, organized transition strategy”? Three things

 A transition planning team


 A plan in writing
 An accepted/applied process

Obviously, no one size fits all. Flexibility is needed to fit various


models of adult education - large school boards, small boards,
classroom delivery, independent learning, mixed delivery,
continuous intake or semester intake etc. This section provides
some guiding principles, ideas from the field and examples of
good practice for developing a transition strategy that can work in
any setting.

PART 1: A TRANSITION PLANNING TEAM


Bringing together the right people to form a transition planning
team is key. Principals will want to identify staff members with
particular skills and abilities for this kind of work. Here are some
possible criteria:

Ideally, the transition team should include

 2-4 members
 representatives from both LBS and Adult Credit programs
(possibly including the LBSS Manager)
 members who have, or are given authority to make
decisions
 members who work directly with learners either at the point
of exit from LBS or entry into Credit

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Team members should be people who

 are client-focused, collaborative, flexible and open-minded


 have the necessary time and energy to devote to transition
planning and other transition support activities
 are invested in successful learner transitions and learner
success
 have experience with the current system and awareness of
the issues
 are process-and detail-oriented
 have the ability to inspire and motivate others

How do you find those people?

Principals need occasions to see staffs together in action. From


the previous section on partnerships, we already know about the
need and value of informal partnerships between LBS and Adult
Credit, and we are aware that good working relationships can
grow out of regular encounters where information is exchanged,
knowledge and understanding has opportunity to grow and trust
can begin to take root.

At a CESBA Conference workshop, Principals and Site-Coordinators discussed LBS to Credit


transitions. The following strategies were shared as proven practices that help bring LBS and Adult
Credit programs closer together:

 Common staff meetings


 Integrated administration offices
 Intermingled classrooms
 In-service sessions for LBS and Credit to explain to each other what their programs are like,
e.g. expectations and requirements of learners, supports given plus rationale
 Professional development training and shared projects or shared responsibilities to foster
mutual understanding and respect
 A staff person who looks after a task on behalf of both LBS and Credit such as a guidance
counsellor of academic coach

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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 22

The added value for Principals, in organizing combined LBS and


Credit staff meetings and in-service events, is the opportunity to
see how well individual staff members interact with one another.

Here are two ideas for activities that call for combined staff
engagement.

With a large staff, getting everyone together is usually


problematic. If that‟s your situation, you might try this.

Strategy #1
Bring together LBS and Adult Credit staff in smaller groups
according to similar roles and responsibilities. The stated purpose
would be to exchange information in order to identify effective
practices and/or create a solution for a particular problem. For
example, your could bring together

 LBS Managers with Adult Credit Program Leads: to


talk about the courses and programs they offer; to
identify areas where Credit learners run into difficulties
and look for ways that LBS can help e.g. 1) increase
instructional support for the problem areas while
learners are still in LBS and 2) make additional support
available to Credit students who are at-risk for
dropping out

 LBS assessors with Adult Credit intake assessors: to


develop a common understanding of assessment tools
and practices; to provide information on PLAR; to
identify disconnects or problems related to process
and smooth transitions for learners

 LBS practitioners with Adult Credit teachers: to talk


about the programs and courses they offer; exchange
information about performance expectations and
performance measurement; to share resources; to
exchange ideas on instructional strategies; to discuss
particular learners

 LBS receptionists and Adult Credit receptionists: to


exchange or confirm program information; to
develop/coordinate effective information and referral
processes; to create common forms for information
and referral

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 23

In smaller boards or in departments with fewer staff members,


some roles and responsibilities are often rolled into one.
Except where geographic distances are a factor, fewer people
on staff generally makes it easier for everyone to come
together. If that is your situation, you might try this:

Strategy #2
Early in the school year, orchestrate an in-service event for staff
that includes everyone involved in LBS or Adult Credit in any way.
Following introductions that include a brief description of roles and
responsibilities, i.e. who does what and who looks after what for
LBS and for Adult Credit, form groups according to common tasks
and responsibilities. Ensure that each group has representatives
from both LBS and Credit. Assign each group a task to do or a
question to answer that relates to adult education. Here are a few
ideas:

Possible Discussion Questions:

 What are the key barriers our learners face in moving


successfully from LBS to Credit?
 Why are these barriers there, and what can we do about
them?
 What processes are really effective for our (LBS or Credit)
information and referral practices? (for our intake? for our
promotion and outreach? for our…)
 What do our particular learners need for success? What
more can we do to help?
 What do SSC teachers expect from students starting their
courses? (it might be different for different courses)
 What‟s the difference between our (LBS and Credit) adult
learning environments?
 What‟s the rationale and what are the benefits of our two
different ways of working with adult learners?
 How does the LBS exit assessment connect with or
overlap with, or measure up with Credit intake
assessment? Are adjustments called for? What, why and
for whom?
 How does PLAR work?

Possible Tasks:

 Design or provide information for a promotional flyer that


could serve both programs
 Discuss options for LBS to include PLAR preparation as
part of their Credit Prep programming to help shoulder the
burden of the PLAR process

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 24

 Discuss the merits of an exchange field trip activity where


LBS learners approaching transition can attend Adult
Credit courses for a few days to learn about the new
environment and Credit students can come to LBS to make
a presentation or to get some tutoring support for a
particular skill gap
 Discuss the benefits and drawbacks of providing
concurrent training i.e. a course/unit of study that both LBS
and Credit students would attend as part of a strategy
supporting successful transitions
 Evaluate a process that is currently in operation that
affects one or both programs
 Compare processes, tools and methods used for similar
services, for example, information and referral, intake
procedures, initial assessments

Allow a good hour for discussion and work, then invite groups to
share their results with the larger group. If appropriate, and if time
permits, brainstorm to recommend courses of action. Sharing
results with the larger group when the tasks and questions do not
necessarily affect other people‟s work is never a waste of time
because

 learning more about the challenges and successes of


others and working to find solutions for common
challenges can contribute to a stronger sense of team
 Managers and program leads have opportunity to hear
about issues from a different perspective
 new perspectives give rise to innovative ideas and
combined perspectives can lead to creative solutions
 stories about similar work challenges can be encouraging
and motivating
 small but possibly significant inefficiencies sometimes
surface that otherwise may have gone unnoticed
 people can give and receive proper acknowledgement for
good work accomplished

While combined staff activities are beneficial in and of themselves,


the value added for Principals, as mentioned before, is the
opportunity to observe how individuals from LBS and Adult Credit
interact and work together….or not. Through combined staff
meetings and activities, Principals will quite quickly identify people
who have the qualities they are looking for in an effective
transition team member. Conversely, they will quickly recognize
individuals who seem to have a natural inclination towards
creating road blocks at every turn.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 25

By observing the staffs in action, the Principal will know who


already cares about learner transitions and has collaborative skills
as well as problem-solving capabilities for transition planning.
With this knowledge, the Principal or Site-Coordinator can extend
an invitation to 2-4 key individuals to serve as members of a
transition planning team. Principals and LBS Managers can
expect to stay involved at least at the beginning to provide
information and guidance where needed.

PART 2: A WRITTEN PLAN


The primary task and responsibility for the transition team is the
creation of a complete and well-organized, easy to follow,
transition strategy document. Some Boards report effective
transition processes despite the absence of a written document;
however, transition strategies that are down in writing support
continued good practice throughout any staff changes that may
occur. They also are useful in demonstrating consistent practice
and fairness to all at times when decisions are questioned. A
written document, even for relatively small programs, is the
invaluable repository of agreed upon roles and responsibilities,
and a guide to successful transitions for adult learners. The
document contains important program information about both LBS
and Credit, and provides a written record of established policies,
procedures and processes and clarifies roles and responsibilities.
It is the plan that LBS and Credit staff (and learners) agree to
follow. The plan is not set in stone; it should be reviewed on a
regular basis so that changes can be made when called for.

Specifically, for LBS and Adult Credit staff the Transition Plan

 clarifies roles and responsibilities of LBS and of Credit in


the transition process
 describes how LBS and Credit will coordinate learner
transition
 answers questions about timelines,
 describes policies, procedures and administrative activities
that support learner transitions
 provides information on LBS exit and Credit entry
assessment tools and methods
 outlines a communication strategy
 explains PLAR and the PLAR assessment process
 identifies available resources that support learner transition

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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 26

To begin, the new transition planning team will discuss and decide
to take on a number of specific tasks and responsibilities. These
will vary depending on size and location of the LBS and Adult
Credit programs, but here are a few tasks the team might
consider:

 create a Transition Plan for the department that supports


successful transitions for adult learners moving from LBS
to Adult Credit
 develop accompanying in-house policies for transitions
 create the transition plan document
 create and carry out a communication strategy to share the
plan with all stakeholders
 provide in-service training on transition planning and
processes for teachers
 provide ongoing advice and problem-solving assistance to
teachers
 establish links with community-based LBS agencies that
might have students transitioning into Adult Credit
 lead the Transition Plan implementation at the beginning to
get things started on the right foot
 put together a collection of transition resource materials,
forms and tools
 develop protocols with LBS Managers and their
counterpart in Credit that support effective communication
and cooperation throughout the transition process

Once the tasks are identified and prioritized, the real work
begins and moves forward through a number of stages
including

1. Information-Gathering
2. Design
3. Development
4. Piloting
5. Implementation

1. Information-Gathering Stage

The information-gathering stage lays important groundwork for the


work that is to come. Members of the team must be on common
ground starting with a good understanding of each others‟
programs and processes as well as all the issues large and small
that stand in the way of successful transitions for learners. Initially
then, the transitions team will meet to exchange general
information on program delivery and program expectations and to
bring to the table for discussion, particular issues related to
learner transition.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 27

There will come a time to talk about successes and efficiencies


but that will come later. In the beginning, the team will focus on
problems related to learner transition in order to identify what
changes and/or additional supports and services are needed. In
addition to the questions listed earlier, these kinds of questions
can kick start initial discussion:

 What do you do in LBS? What is the LBS program like?


What are LBS learners like?
 How many LBS learners have goals to get their OSSD?
 How many actually move on to Credit programs?
 What are Adult Credit courses like? What are the students
like?
 What is the drop-out rate and what are the reasons for it?
 Should we survey teachers and learners?
 How does LBS determine when a learner is ready for Adult
Credit?
 What do you expect in the way of proficiency on entry into
Credit?
 What do learners find so hard about transitioning into
Credit?
 What‟s the process you follow for intake into Credit?
 What‟s the PLAR process and when does that happen?
 What tools and methods do you use for assessing learner
performance in LBS/in Credit?
 What are demonstrations?

As discussions unfold, a number of “red flags” will pop up


naturally, signalling issues that require attention. Red flag issues
will surface from problems that affect successful transitions for
learners. As the problems surface, it will be important to determine
which problems can be addressed by an effective transitions
strategy and which problems cannot. It might even be useful and
efficient in the long run to sort the problems as they surface by
category. Here‟s one way of doing that:

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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 28

Personal problems Program problems Process problems


 substance abuse  not ready  wrong place/wrong time,
 learning disabilities academically  missed appointments,
 low self-esteem  lack of self-  missing documentation;
 negative attitude management and  too much time between LBS
 child care issues self-direction skills exit and Credit entry
 transportation  poor attendance registration,
problems habits  incorrect information,
 poor health  poor organization  mistaken or unrealistic
 anxiety and/or skills expectations,
depression  poor time  incorrect assumptions,
management  unclear assessment data,
 confusion about who does what
 increased workload
 delays in processing PLAR files
 delays in procuring transcripts

Clearly, while a learner‟s personal problems affect transition


success, they are beyond the purview of the transition team.
Program problems require a closer look because LBS and Credit
do have the power to effect change at the program level that will
have an impact on transition success. Ultimately, however, those
too are beyond the scope of the transition team mandate. Process
problems, on the other hand, lie squarely in the lap of the
transition team for creative solutions. Here are the kinds of
specific process-related questions a transition team might discuss:

 What complaints do we hear from learners about “getting


into Credit”?
 What complaints do we hear from Credit and LBS staff
about learner transitions?
 Should we survey teachers and learners?
 What supports are needed?
 How could the transition process be made flexible enough
to accommodate differences in LBS exit/Credit intake
policy?
 How can transition planning be coordinated with other
individualized planning processes such as the learner‟s
training plan?
 How can transition planning be coordinated with other LBS
programs outside the school board?
 How could/should the transition process be monitored and
improved?

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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 29

 What is the communication/preparation strategy for


teachers and students re: the transition-planning process?
 How can other stakeholders be identified and kept in the
loop about an individual student‟s transition?
 How can information-gathering be streamlined to meet the
data collection needs of LBS and of Credit without
unnecessary duplication?
 How can the transition process be mapped out so that the
learner is ready and everything is in place when the time
comes to move from LBS to Credit?
 What are the key components of a smooth and successful
transition into Credit?
 What‟s the most efficient way of documenting agreements
made between LBS and Credit re: the transition planning
strategy?

2. The Design Stage

Following comprehensive information-gathering, the team is ready


to talk about what goes into the plan and what the document will
look like. This is the design stage. It can be approached in a
number of ways.

One way is to start with a generic model and modify it to suit


particular needs. The benefit of this approach is that the
organization is done for you therefore saving some time. Here is
one example of a generic model.

A second and perhaps a more effective way is to map out the


information that should be included in the plan based on the
specific needs of your situation. The benefits of this approach are
1) the end product will be customized specifically to fit for your
situation and 2) by working through the process, each member of
the transition team will have a very clear and common
understanding of the issues.

Here‟s how that approach can be carried out:

 On sticky notes (post-its), write down all the questions,


complaints, issues and challenges related to transitions
that have surfaced through the information-gathering
process, one per note. There may be 50 or more and
there may be quite a lot of overlap. That‟s OK; write down

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 30

everything anyway – nit-picky details as well as broad-


issue statements or questions.

 Sort the sticky notes according to similarities and identify


each group by creating a descriptive title. For example,
issues and complaints such as these:

 Prospective students come in too early or too late for


registration and intake
 Clients forget to bring the necessary information
 Clients are worried they will make mistakes filling
out the forms
 Learners worry about questions they will be
asked
 Learners fail to identify themselves as former
LBSS students
 Learners miss appointments

can be grouped together under the heading, Intake


Processes

 Re-arrange the groups now to represent a logical ordering


of the information. There‟s no right or wrong order here –
just go with what the team thinks will make the best sense
to LBS and Credit readers. The team now has a big-picture
overview of a transition plan with some details
accompanying each part.

 Take a closer look at each small grouping of sticky notes


one at a time to determine what might be missing and what
additional information belongs there. Write sticky notes for
those ideas and add them to the others. At the end, the
team will have produced a detailed outline for a transition
plan document that is based on their unique situation and
will address their specific needs.

It‟s a good idea for the team to be as consultative as possible throughout all the phases of
the work, getting feedback from others on possible solutions as often as possible. It doesn‟t
have to be a formal feedback process – a lot can be gained through simple conversations in
the lunchroom, on the phone or on the fly. “Can I quickly run an idea by you?” or “By the way,
about the problem of …..we‟re thinking about …. Does that sound like it has some
possibilities? Anything you would caution us about? …”

We recommend you circulate the draft Table of Contents or proposed transition plan outline
among key stakeholders for additions and deletions. Provide a reasonable window of
opportunity for others to respond and move on based on the information you receive within
that timeframe. Do not feel obligated to wait until you hear back from everyone.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 31

3. The Development Stage

Now comes the hardest and most time-consuming part - the work
of writing to each item in the TOC. In the development stage, the
transition team will discuss the particular transition challenges
faced by learners and staff and seek solutions that will satisfy
everyone involved. At this time, they will identify specific
constraints - any practices or processes that cannot be changed
for some reason. They will also identify current practices and
processes related to transitions that are efficient and effective.
They will ask questions like, “Are these processes and practices
effective for everyone involved or just one party?” Things that
work for some may present barriers for others; so, a discussion
will have to take place about who benefits from what. Naturally
practices and processes that are good for all must remain. Be
sure the good protocols become explicit within the plan; don‟t
assume everyone knows about them so therefore they will
continue.

It can be a daunting job, so here are a couple of strategies:

Strategy #1:
Consider making the development of protocols and processes a
collaborative exercise. Principals can help by organizing a
combined program staff in-service workshop for this purpose. This
will engage everyone in the real issues of transition and, even if
you don‟t end up with everything you need for the transition plan
document, you will have a considerable amount of information and
some good ideas to make the job easier.

Strategy 2:
If someone on the team is willing and eager or has the skills to
write the first draft, the other team members can help out by
sharing in the development of strategies for particular stages of
the transition process.

What follows are some very brief notes that might help stimulate
ideas when the transition team comes to writing particular
sections.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 32

Re: In-house Policies for Transitions

In-house policies are informal and limited simply for the benefit of
a particular group of interested parties. They are not the same as
and do not carry the weight of board policies so therefore they do
not have to go through the more rigorous board policy-making
process. In-house policies related to adult learner transitions help
establish consistency in how transition processes are managed
and carried out. They clarify expectations for everyone involved
and act as safeguards that ensure fairness for learners.

Re: Roles and Responsibilities

The transition plan should define roles and responsibilities with


regard to transition planning for all stakeholders including:

 Transition team
 Principal or Site Coordinator
 LBS Manager, practitioners, assessors
 Adult Credit intake assessor, teacher
 LBS learner

Here are some thoughts on the role of the Principal (Vice-


Principal, or Site-Coordinator) and the adult learner that might
help the transition team when they come to describing those roles
and responsibilities.

The Principal’s Role

The degree of involvement of the principal in the development and


implementation of a transition strategy can vary greatly board to
board. While the ongoing support of the principal is an essential
component, the Principal‟s role will change over time as teachers
and practitioners develop capacity for managing seamless
transitions. At the beginning, the principal might monitor the
implementation of the transition strategy and provide support on
an as-needed basis. Some examples of monitoring activities
include the following:

 occasionally meet with the transition team during the


development of the transition plan
 read the written transition plan agreement
 meet with the transition team and appropriate staff to
discuss implementation of the activities described in the
plan

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 33

 obtain information informally from students on their


transition experience – what helped – what more did they
need
 establish a plan and set a time for evaluating the transition
strategy
 support combined staff meetings
 assign some responsibilities for regular monitoring to
transition team
 develop, or help develop a plan for monitoring success

The Adult Learner’s Role

The student‟s personal commitment to the transition plan is vitally


important to its success. Even if the best transition processes and
practices are in place, they are of no benefit if the learner does not
follow though. A student‟s commitment to the plan to move on to
Adult Credit can be strengthened through involvement in his or her
own transition planning. Through the development of an
individualized training plan in LBS, the learner has already begun
to assume responsibility for identifying goals and following the
steps needed to achieve those goals. Active involvement in
transition planning with an LBS practitioner or assessor can also
assist the student in developing self-advocacy skills that will be
beneficial in Adult Credit.

For LBS learners, a Transition Plan

 reflects realistic goals that are likely to be achievable by


the student, given appropriate supports
 identifies actual opportunities and resources that are likely
to be available in Adult Credit
 defines the actions that are necessary for the student to
take in preparation for entrance into Adult Credit i.e.
outlines the outcomes the learner needs to demonstrate
 explains PLAR and the PLAR assessment process
 clarifies the roles and responsibilities of the student and
others in the transition process

Here are some strategies that engage the student in transition


planning:

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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 34

 Well before the point of transition – even up to a year or more before, meet with the learner
to introduce and discuss a personal transition strategy. Review the learner‟s goals and the
progress the learner has made. Determine the learner‟s commitment to the original goal –
whether or not the learner still plans to go on to Adult Credit
 Talk about Adult Credit programming – what the learning environment is like, kinds of
assignments and activities that are typical in Credit courses. Give an information-gathering
assignment that requires the learner to collect specific information about Adult Credit
 Provide opportunity for the learner to visit a local Adult Credit program and audit classes
over several days
 With the learner, map out a training plan to prepare the learner for successful transition on
a specific target date. Include tasks such as typical Credit-type assignments- class
presentations, essays, research reports, note-taking from textbook, note-taking from
lectures etc.
 Have the learner begin a portfolio collection of information including assessment results
and Adult Credit research
 Provide information on PLAR and increase the academic focus of training to prepare the
learner for PLAR assessment

Re: Transition Processes and Protocols

In many situations, to make the transition from LBS into Adult


Credit the learner must attend a number of different appointments
with a number of different people for a number of different
purposes. If things don‟t go smoothly, it can be a very confusing
experience. It‟s discouraging for learners if they wait in line only to
discover they are in the wrong place, don‟t have the right
information with them, turn up for appointments out of order and
don‟t know the purpose of appointments. Developing protocols
with input from both LBS and Adult Credit people can make
transitions for learners a lot easier. Good protocols streamline the
transition process and make things simple and clear. Good
protocols provide an ordered sequence of steps to follow so that
the learner gets to the right place at the right time with the right
information in hand.

Protocols support consistency and impose order which is


especially important at peak times when many adults from LBS
and from other places are registering for Adult Credit at the same
time. They also help reduce the margin of error. Every situation is
different, so naturally, protocols vary place to place.

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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 35

To choose protocols that work best, transition teams can ask two
questions:

 What works really well so far?


 Where do learners encounter problems?

Answers to these questions point to the specific protocols and


processes needed to support smooth transitions. Processes will
address these kinds of questions:

 What happens first and what happens next?


 Where do you go first and where do you go next?
 Who do you see first and who do you see next?
 What do you need to know and what do you need to bring
with you?
 How can the learner be sure he or she is doing everything
right and in the right order?

Forms that combine LBS exit information with Credit intake


information can save a lot of time when processing many
applicants. Agreed upon exit assessment tools and methods are
also highly effective efficiency measures saving learners from
being reassessed on entry into Credit. Naturally, for this to work,
both LBS and Adult Credit people must have a common
understanding of the tools and agree on assessment results and
interpretations.

Re: Resources

Maintaining a bank of transition-planning resource materials,


including common forms and tools is a good idea and does not
have to take a lot of time and effort. Really, a few files in a
designated spot can suffice. The important thing is ensuring easy
accessibility to the proper documents and forms.

New processes may require new supports in the way of forms and
instructions for using them. Flag the need for new forms at the
same time as new processes and protocols are drafted. Call for an
in-service workshop for combined LBS and Credit staff to create
or modify existing forms. This will help familiarize staff with new
processes, ensure the accuracy of any LBS or Credit-related
information and ensure the needs of the learner are met from both
perspectives.

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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 36

Re: Ongoing Assistance

In view of the many changes that typically take place in continuing


education departments, it‟s a good idea to have a “go to” person
or persons who are the “experts” on LBS to Credit transitions and
can provide information or assistance with particular cases and
situations. Members of the transition planning team may decide
among themselves who this person will be and put a plan in place
for sharing the responsibility in the future.

Notes re: Links with Other LBS Organizations

Community-based programs also serve adults who have goals to


get their OSSD. Making connections with Managers of these
programs can pave the way to a regular flow of students into Adult
Credit. Inviting stakeholders from Community-based agencies to
participate in or provide feedback on transition protocols and
strategies can strengthen relationships and ensure that policies
and procedures work for both sides. One approach is for the LBS
Manager to announce the development of a new transition
strategy by their board at a meeting of the local Literacy Service
Providers (LSP) asking for time on the agenda to obtain input and
feedback from partnering LBS agencies. The earlier the better for
“outside” stakeholders to be involved in the development of a
transition strategy. They may bring some good ideas forward that
might otherwise be overlooked when the planning is carried out all
in-house.

Re: Implementation

The implementation section of the Transition Plan includes details


on the transition plan roll out. It includes information on the
following:

 a communication strategy for all stakeholders involved in


learner transitions including
o orientation for learners
o professional development training for teachers and
practitioners,
 available support and assistance when needed
 transition tools and resources
 ongoing monitoring and evaluation of transition processes

Communication Strategy

The communication strategy is an important section in the


transition plan document because it describes how all the policies

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 37

and procedures related to learner transitions will be


communicated to learners and to those responsible for making
transition happen. It describes when and how learners will learn
about what‟s involved in moving from LBS to Adult Credit and
when and how teachers and practitioners will learn about
expected processes and protocols. Communication events for
learners and for teachers should be organized for the same time
each year or each term and be a regular part of the school
calendar.

Re: Monitoring and Evaluation

Ongoing monitoring and evaluation of transition operations is


important for many obvious reasons; however, experience tells us
that once a plan has been activated, monitoring and evaluation is
often forgotten. For that reason, a monitoring plan must be in
writing and in the plan along with established timelines and
monitoring activities.

A monitoring plan might include details like these:

 monitoring will occur at least once during the year and


more frequently where appropriate
 monitoring will occur early enough to allow for changes to
be made if needed;
 monitoring will involve gathering information from learners
whenever this is possible and reasonable
 monitoring methods may include phone calls or face-to-
face conversations with a sampling of key stakeholders
including learners, assessors, teachers
 monitoring may involve a tracking process for a designated
period of time to assess whether the transition plan is
unfolding as it should.
 a check list of questions will guide the monitoring process
and a record of monitoring dates and results will be kept.

4. The Piloting Stage

Once the draft Transition Plan document has been written, and
before going to print, the transition team will want to get feedback
from those who will be expected to support and implement the
plan. Key stakeholders will of course include the following:

 the Principal, the VP or Site-Coordinator


 the LBS Manager

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 38

 the Adult Credit guidance counselor or LBS Manager


counterpart
 Adult Credit assessors or intake people
 LBS assessors

and, if possible

 LBS and Credit receptionists or first point of contact people


 LBS and Credit teachers

Feedback from learners will be important but probably not at this


first review of the draft plan.

Here are a few tips about piloting the transition plan document:

 Give advance notice to all stakeholders when you are


approaching the final stages of writing the draft document
and piloting is about to commence. Suggest an estimated
amount of time required to read and provide feedback.
This allows people to plan ahead

 Allow a reasonable amount of time for people to read the


document and provide feedback

 Look for the most efficient ways to gather feedback


information. Try out Survey Monkey perhaps

 If you have a large Cont. Ed. Department, you may decide


to pilot in stages or groups e.g.

o first viewing by the Principal, VP or Site-


Coordinator to ensure high level consistency.
o second round for Program Managers and their
counterparts in Adult Credit. This allows you to
identify any difficulties at the program level
o third viewing for assessors and teachers directly
involved with learners in the daily activity
supporting learner transitions

 Limit yourself to a few key questions. The document is only


a guide after all and will undergo revisions from time to
time as needed. It doesn‟t have to be perfect, which is a
good thing because it won‟t be perfect the first time around
anyway. Decide on four or five important things you want
to know and ask about those. For example:

o Is the information about your program current,


accurate and complete? If no, please comment.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 39

o Do the processes described seem simple,


reasonable and efficient to you? If no, please
explain.
o Are you aware of any learner transition problems
that have not been addressed? If yes, please give
details.
o Is there anything you would like to add or change?
If yes, please elaborate.

Remember we are not evaluating the effectiveness of the


transition strategy, only getting feedback on the first draft of the
plan.

PART 3: A PROCESS IN OPERATION


When the transition plan document is finally written including the
sections on implementation and ongoing monitoring and
evaluation, the plan is ready at last to be put into action.

Stage 5: Implementation

It‟s a busy but exciting part of the job for transition team members
– exciting because it‟s the proof-is-in-the-pudding stage that tests
the plan against anticipated results. A good launch approach may
include a combined staff reception and in-service event to hand
out copies of the document to everyone and to provide an
orientation to changes in the way things will be done. If a lot of
changes are required you may decide to create an implementation
schedule to allow for change over time. Support in the way of
professional development training could be announced at this time
and training should be arranged first for those most directly
involved with learners at transition – i.e. LBS teachers, LBS and
Credit assessors and Credit intake staff.

Providing In-Service and Learner Orientation

Providing an annual, in-service orientation session for all LBS and


Credit staff involved in transition processes is a good thing. It
ensures that everyone is still on the same page and circumvents
problems arising from forgetfulness or misinformation. Here are a
few ideas for specific in-service orientation sessions:

 to share vital new information


 to exchange information on current programs, services

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 40

 to share information related to new opportunities or new


operating constraints
 to review transition management
 to report on transition successes and challenges
 to increase capacity for meeting the needs of students in
transition.

Some boards provide two orientation sessions for students every


year. The focus is on pertinent information for learners in either
initial or final stages of transition planning. This approach helps to
eliminate the need to explain the transition process individually to
each student. By offering the orientation sessions to all students,
Boards have reported positive results in increased confidence in
the OSSD as an achievable goal, increased motivation to
persevere on the Adult Credit pathway and increased interest and
attention paid to day-to-day training.

The specific goals of the initial orientation session(s) are:

 to help participants understand the purpose and value of a


transition plan
 to raise awareness of the processes to be followed
 to encourage and motivate learners to fully commit to their
transition pathway

The goals of the final orientation session(s) are:

 to provide detailed information about available services


and supports in the Credit program
 to introduce transitioning students to the new learning
environment and to some of the people they will meet
during the transition process
 to provide information about PLAR
 to ensure that all the necessary preparation has taken
place and the learner is ready

While it‟s true that a coordinated, well-organized transition


strategy makes a big difference in moving learners on into Credit
successfully, it cannot promise transition success. Ultimately, it is
the preparation and readiness of the learners themselves that can
determine whether or not the learner will transition successfully
and continue on to attain their academic goals. The following
section provides information and support for designing
programming to ensure transition success.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 41

Comments from three reviewers:

This [section] is useful and very helpful! The framework can be applied to other initiatives… I
found myself taking pieces out for some work I am doing with staff.

Overall, the content is very thorough and brings together many essential considerations.
[There is an] ongoing need to balance the desire for implementing new ideas with the limited
resources available to Cont. Ed. organizations. In our programs, we found that the essential
components to a successful implementation were developing effective, collaborative
partnerships between key personnel from the LBS and Credit programs, along with the
ongoing support of managers, including the principal.

We did not …organize any formal workshops or joint PD days. These would have required
extra resources that we did not have. So, while it is helpful to provide guidelines for these
components of a transition strategy, it might also be helpful to indicate that they are not
absolutely essential. Cont. Ed. managers who are concerned with budget constraints can rest
assured that implementing a transition[strategy] from LBS to Credit can be done without
incurring extra costs.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading your systematic document!! It ... gives you a variety of options
and viewpoints. I think it is a great ‘how to’ document – makes it very easy to implement a
strategy.
.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 42

PART 3 LBS to Credit – Creating a Transitions Program

Target Audience: LBS Program Managers and Administrators in


School Board Continuing Education Departments

Focus: Developing transition programs to prepare learners for


smooth transitions between LBS and Adult Credit

Transition Programming

As one result of the current economic downturn and increased


interest in the OSSD as a door of entry to employment, LBS
programs are focusing intently on what is needed to ensure
learners are successful not only in crossing the bridge to Adult
Credit but also in achieving success once they get there. LBS
agencies are looking more intently at Credit programming
because it stands to reason that the more LBS practitioners know
about what students do in Adult Credit programs, the better able
they are to offer the right kind of training for transition success.

1) What we learned from the research… about what it takes


for success in Credit:

In 2008-2009, the Ministry of Education-funded project, Literacy


Capacity Building Project, organized five regional focus group
events with teachers of Adult Secondary School Credit programs
across Ontario. The purpose was two-fold: 1) to update teachers
on the new adult literacy initiatives of the Learning Ministries, and
2) to hear what teachers have to say about learner success in
Adult Credit.

One question for discussion was: “What do learners need to know,


do and be in order to be successful in Adult Credit?” For LBS
Managers, this a high stakes question because, clearly, the
answers could shape effective programming for learners on the
Adult Credit Pathway. Here‟s what transpired:

As the segue to specific factors affecting success and failure in


Credit, the teachers shared about challenges associated with
working with adult learners.

Common challenges across the province

 Academic-related issues
o Missing the basics of reading, writing and math

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 43

o Too broad a range of academic skills and ability in


one class
o Learning disabilities
o Weak thinking skills
o Inadequate learning strategies
o Inability to adjust to different learning environments
o Inability to adjust to different instructional
approaches
o Poor record of attendance
 Personal/social issues
o Substance abuse – addictions, alcohol
o Poor social skills
o Low self-esteem/lack of confidence
o Mental health issues, effects of medication
o Negative attitudes, anger, resentment
 Situational or circumstantial issues
o Family life and relationship issues
o Financial pressure
o Competing priorities – EI / EMP
o Competing responsibilities – family, job, school
o Transportation difficulties
o Child care or elder care responsibilities

No surprises there for LBS.

As discussions continued, the following information surfaced. For


the sake of clarity, it has been organized by category according to
things people need to know, to do and to be in order to be
successful.

TO KNOW… Early success in Adult Credit is associated with the


students’ knowledge and understanding of the following:

 Personal or self knowledge:


o a personal learning goal - why they are there
o awareness of own strengths and weaknesses
o knowledge of self – what works and what does not
in a learning situation
o realistic expectations – what they can commit to
o preferred learning style

 Knowledge of the Adult Credit learning environment


o How things work –
 the vocabulary of an academic learning
environment
 the organization of learning in Adult Credit
 how marks are generated and what the
expectations are

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 44

 how prior learning fits with the new


curriculum
 need for records of past achievements /
transcripts
 the registration process including
assessment tests where applicable
 where to access information / assistance
 PLAR – requirements and process
 the transition process from LBS to Credit
 what materials are required, such as
pencils, paper, etc.
 how the Adult Credit program differs from
LBS
 where to go to get help when needed

 Program knowledge
o knowing the vocabulary of a learning environment
o which, courses will take you where (you want to go)
o what, prerequisites, and what learning skills are
required
o expectations related to:
 performance and participation in Adult
Credit programming
 course outline, course content
 due-dates

TO DO… Early success in Adult Credit is associated with


competency in the following areas of performance:

Foundation Skills (i.e. component or academic in nature such as


basic reading, writing, math and oral communication)

 Reading

o Read and explain sentence construction


o Read and explain short reading passages
o Read and provide short question and answer
responses
o Read and provide longer paragraph responses
demonstrating engagement with ideas in the text
o Read and follow instructions
o Read and make inferences from the text
o Read and predict outcomes
o Read and identify the main idea
o Read and understand information from a variety of
sources

 Working with Math


o Demonstrate ability in math at the grade 8
curriculum level
o Demonstrate number sense

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 45

o Perform basic calculations; add, subtract, multiply,


divide
o Perform calculations using fractions, metrics,
o Solve equations,
o Make conversions
o Work with basic algebra, factors, integers
o Use problem-solving strategies (2-step)

 Communication both Oral and Written


o Speak clearly
o Use proper English in speaking and in writing
o Express ideas and opinions
o Write sentences using proper sentence structure
o Write paragraphs
o Present to others
o Spell

 Using Technology
o Use a variety of computer and technology skills
 Keyboarding
 Basic word-processing
 PowerPoint
 Basic Internet search techniques
 Use a calculator

Research Skills

 Access information from a variety of sources


 Use library, media, internet, and primary resources
 Track own progress
 Prioritize information by importance
 Locate and assess information
 Analyze and synthesize information

Soft Skills, Thinking Skills, People Skills

 Use critical thinking skills


 Make wise decisions
 Have strategies to solve a wide range of problems
 Make arrangements to meet needs – child care,
transportation etc. Have a Plan B
 Advocate for self
 Prioritize, organize and manage tasks
 Manage time
 Cope with change
 Exercise basic social skills (i.e. wait one‟s turn, speak
politely, follow class code of conduct, change attitude of
doing what I want, when I want )
 Make positive social connections
 Show respect for others
 Offer and receive constructive criticism

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 46

 Use strategies for handling stress

Learning Strategies (i.e. the supports and mechanics of learning;


metacognitive strategies)

 Set goals
 Stay in the program
 Attend regularly
 Have strategies for
o Finding what you need
o Assessing the value of information found
o Reading and understanding instructions
o Identifying the task (getting the question)
o Breaking tasks down into smaller chunks
o Following through, completing tasks and meeting
deadlines
o Organization of material on a page / in a notebook
o Working with directed instruction
o Working and learning independently
o Working with others
o Preparing for tests
o Using documents
o Transferring skills from one task to another
o Monitoring and tracking own progress
o Seeking help

TO BE - Early success in Adult Credit is associated with the


following attitudes, values, qualities, perspectives and behaviours.

 Persistence
 Confidence to have a voice
 Willingness to learn and to be accountable
 Motivation
 Commitment to work and to effort
 Respect for the program, the process, the environment and for
authority
 Ability to set aside personal issues that interfere with school
commitment
 Self-discipline; in control of self
 Self-directed
 Positive attitude
 Focused
 Open-minded to new learning, new ways of doing things, new
ideas
 Mature
 Sober

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 47

2) What we learned from research…about the point of


transition

An important conversation that takes place between LBS and


Adult Credit is about identifying and agreeing upon the point of
transition. When are learners really ready to move on to Credit?
Comparisons between the LBS Learning Outcomes and LBS
Level Descriptions and the descriptions of expectations in the
Ontario Curriculum reveal significant correspondence at these
points:

 Learning outcomes in Communications at LBS level 3-to-4


correspond to expectations (i.e. outcomes) of entry level
courses described in the Ontario Secondary School
Curriculum

 Learning outcomes in Numeracy at LBS level 4 correspond


to expectations of Grade 9/10 math and science courses
as described in the Ontario Curriculum.

 Demonstrated learning outcomes in Communications and


Numeracy at LBS Level 3 are adequate to prepare
learners for allocated Credits through the PLAR for Mature
Students assessment process.

LBS Level 3/4 as an appropriate transition point is confirmed by


practice as research shows most LBS learners move into Adult
Credit after completing LBS Level 3 or 4. Although the point of
readiness for transition seems clear on paper and many learners
take the big step at that point, research shows us that too many
still become casualties, unprepared for the challenges they
encounter.

 Too many leave LBS against the advice of their instructors,


trying to get into the Credit program before they are ready
 Too many, on leaving LBS, are unsuccessful in gaining
entry into Credit and are too ashamed to come back for
further help
 Too many who do gain entry meet with early failure in the
Credit courses
 Too many experiencing failure in Credit do not come
looking for further assistance

To respond, many LBS programs are introducing designated Pre-


Credit, Credit-Prep or Transition Readiness kinds of programs that
offer targeted training for academic upgrading.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 48

Some are also experimenting with creative innovations involving


concurrent training involving LBS and Credit to bridge the gap.

The notion of concurrent training finds support in the very


successful Dual Credit strategy now implemented by many
school boards. Dual Credits allows students nearing secondary
school graduation to begin taking some college courses on the
college campus.

For more information, see APPENDIX B: Dual Credits

Here are some thoughts on partnerships for concurrent training


initiatives:

Partnerships can be forged between LBS and Credit programs

 to offer concurrent programming so that adults can earn


Credits when they have the necessary skills while
continuing in LBS to develop other skills that are weaker.

 to create opportunities for learners in Credit to receive


instructional support through LBS on a part-time basis -
additional help when faced with academic challenges in
Credit. –learners with learning disabilities, for example,
may benefit from this strategy. It can parallel the secondary
school credit recovery strategy, etc.

 so that PLAR preparation and OLT preparation can be


embedded in LBS curricula

 to allow LBS exit assessments to take the form of the


PLAR tests and the Grade 10 Ontario Literacy Course. The
Grade 10 Literacy course could be offered at the LBS level
as an Independent Study Course.

Some crucial questions that must be addressed include

 Who thinks who should do what?


 Who signs off on Credits and what‟s the procedure?
 Who delivers training for GLS10? Who marks the GLS10?
 Who marks the PLAR assessment?
 Where does the funding for independent study courses
come from?

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 49

Example #1: The BOLD program of Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic DSB


LBS BOLD – Bridging on Learner Development

BOLD is a 5-week transition support program offered by LBS for learners who are in the PLAR
Credit course. The purpose is to provide supplementary one-to-one or small-group instructional
support as learners prepare for the PLAR assessment tests. Students attend PLAR classes in
the morning and BOLD classes in the afternoon. BOLD instructors do not help with homework
but provide additional tutoring on subject areas students find difficult. Once LBS students are
considered ready by their LBS instructor (at LBS level 3+), they are recommended to BOLD. An
interview is arranged with a Credit guidance counsellor and the student is enrolled in the PLAR
course which we call, ‘Second Chance’.

For our learners, BOLD has made a huge difference. There is increased confidence in seeing
Credit as an achievable goal; motivation to get into Credit has increased; students report
decreased anxiety about the PLAR tests, and there has been a 98% success rate in the number
of learners exiting from LBS to Credit. We expect to see increased numbers of learners
graduating with an OSSD. Program effectiveness statistics have increased in relation to Status
at exit: further education/training. To date, we have surpassed Provincial School Board ’08-‘ 09
year end statistics for moving students into further education/training.

In 2009, 33 students went through BOLD. Only 3 did not complete the course, all for personal
reasons. BOLD was launched in March, 2008. This year, at the November, 2009 graduation, 5
former LBS students received Ontario Secondary School Diplomas.

The primary resource used in BOLD is the PLAR Course developed by Tom Kurtin and
available from Lambton-Kent DSB. The course contains 20 lessons: 5 English, 5 Math, 5
Science and 5 History/Geography = PLAR readiness. This course can be offered as a Credit
course and leads to readiness for PLAR testing.

Another good resource with lesson plans, instructional content, learning activities and
demonstrations related to transition to Credit is Breaking the Barriers developed by CESBA and
available as a PDF file on the CESBA website. Scroll down the list of completed projects.

Christine Hendrie, LBS Manager, HWCDSB


Good strategy!
Best practice!
LBS dropout rate is lower when the goal is
clearly attainable. Courses that provide Keeping stats on attendance in LBS can
support to PLAR lead to stronger goal prove to the principal or senior
completion stats – up 79% at HWCDSB administrator that a student is a good risk
for credit – less chance of dropping out

Ahaa moment!

Transition curriculum may become stand alone


course for second career people – prep for ACE

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 50

Example #2: The Literacy and Essential Skills (LES) program of Simcoe County DSB

Overview of SCDSB LES Program setting:

 6 Learning Centres + CNCC (correctional centre)


 Approximately 800 learners in 2008/2009 school year

(approximate numbers)

Learners Learners Exiting Training/Education at Exit Employed at Exit

800 500 280 (56%) 120 (25%)

 All LBS classrooms are in the same building as the Learning Centre Credit classes,
sharing most resources, reception, and student lounges, etc.
 LBS school year and day schedule coincide with the ‘Credit’ schedule (start time,
nutrition break, and end time) and school calendar – including PD days, etc.
 LBS instructors share resources, etc. with ’Credit teachers’, and participate in Learning
Centre activities, PD days, and staff meetings
 All Learning Centres have a Learning Centre Program Coordinator on site – doubling as
‘Guidance’
 LBS Manager, Learning Centre Program Coordinators and Admin (Principal, and 3 Vice
Principals) meet regularly to discuss all programming at the Centres – promising
practices / new programs / issues / stats etc.
 Referral process is informal due to proximity of Credit program

Previous Transition Challenges:

 Students wanting to stay in LBS – not confident enough to move to Credit


 Student retention – students would ‘graduate’ from LBS – but would not register for
Credit – would ‘disappear’
 Instructors not clear on Credit course expectations
 Exit assessments not indicative of skills required for Credit courses and levels (college /
university prep or workplace)
 No guidance counseling for LBS students
 Students / Teachers / Instructors not having a mutual sense of belonging to the Learning
Centre – having an ‘us and them’ mentality
 LBS class seen as a ‘step down’ from Credits instead of a stepping stone

Transition Process:

 Instructor and student regularly update training plan with demonstrations, checklists and
goal setting. This initiates discussion of next steps
 Ongoing demonstrations, checklists and exit assessments match with skills required for
Credit classes
 School year schedule precipitates discussion – instructor provides students with dates of
the new term for Credits as well as registration forms

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 51

 Instructor gives brief description of the Credit courses that are offered each term and
provides registration forms
 Instructor speaks with each student individually to determine readiness – looking at:
academics, confidence and self-management

Transition Readiness:

 Instructor and student discuss long term goals after Grade 12 – college, apprenticeship,
employment, university, self employment, etc. to determine level of Credit courses
required
 Instructor and student review the Communication (reading and writing) and Math
checklists to determine skill achievement and readiness for the level of Credit course
required
 Some students work on PLAR booklets/preparation – and based on their PLAR work –
instructors can identify readiness
 Some instructors show Credit teachers an example of a students’ work to determine
readiness for a particular course

Transition Preparation:

 Discuss Credit class expectations (assignments, due dates, attendance, self


management, time management, etc.)
 Practice / mirror Credit class expectations – give assignments with due dates and similar
style assignments (assessments with rubrics), practice with quizzes and tests – study
habits, test writing, etc.
 Provide students with some Credit class activities / textbooks and sample assignments
 Invite Credit teachers into the LBS class to discuss their success tips for success in
Credits
 Provide opportunity for LBS students to sit in on a Credit class
 Offer ‘after school’ assistance to students who go into Credit classes but still need some
‘transition’ assistance
 Students have opportunity to be in 1 Credit class and 1 period of LBS concurrently

Current Challenges:

 Ensuring common understanding among Credit teachers and instructors of both


programs
 Encouraging students to ‘make the move’ to Credits– students get comfortable in LBS
 Conversely, some students want to make the move too quickly – they see the Credit
students throughout the centre and want to go to Credit even though they are not ready
– sometimes to be with friends – or just to be out of the ‘upgrading’ class
 Time – finding time to have individual discussions with students, and with Credit
teachers to determine readiness – and time for following up with Credit teachers
regarding a student’s progress in Credit
Charlotte Parliament, LBS Manager

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 52

Insights from the Field

 Adult Education Centres, where LBS programs are co-


located with Adult Secondary School Credit Programs,
provide the optimum environment for seamless transition
to Adult Credit.

 Learner transitions are more successful where LBS and


Adult Credit have a combined transition strategy and work
cooperatively together.

 Concurrent training of entry level Credit courses (e.g.


General Learning Strategies -GLS10, and the Ontario
Literacy Course) with LBS learners approaching transition
to adult Credit is a strategy with proven success.
For notes explaining PLAR,
see APPENDIX C  LBS training that provides for full orientation to and
preparation for the PLAR for Mature Students process
produces transition success.

Distinguishing Features of a Transition Program

Despite many different approaches to Credit-Prep or Transition-


Prep programming, there are a number of similarities in these
kinds of programs. For example, they all

 provide a program with a single, specific focus and purpose –


preparation for Credit
 have the pre-Credit learners working together in a group
 identify specific tasks or activities required of Credit students
and provide explicit instruction and practice for doing those
tasks
 identify academic applications of reading, writing and
numeracy in particular, and concentrate on those skills
 provide experience for the learners in Credit-type instructional
approaches including lectures with note-taking and group
projects
 spend time on learning strategies
 focus on building confidence and capacity for self-direction

3) What we learned from the research…about components of


transition

Another way to think about transitions from LBS to Adult Credit


can be found in the research on components of transition. Shared
first during the Learner Skills Attainment Framework Development
Initiative following research conducted by the College Sector and
modified further in 2009 by Adult Credit teachers in regional focus
groups, these key components are related to successful

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 53

transitions. Adults require a certain level of competence with


regard to each of these in order to succeed.

 Realistic, achievable goals and expectations


 Adequate academic foundation to support learning at the
new level
 Ability to use academic skills to solve everyday problems
 Commitment to the goal and to the work involved
 Abilities for decision-making, problem-solving, working with
others and dealing with change
 Ability to use technology for information and
communication
 Adaptability to different kinds of learning environments
 Personal learning strategies (acquire, store, express
information)

Clearly the research from many sources and the field examples of
good practice have some interesting and notable overlap with
regard to theoretical foundations, values, perceptions and key
concepts. This shows that school board LBS programs that offer
training that is targeted and transition-oriented are in line with 21st
century adult learning. Adults in these kinds of programs who are
heading to Credit are receiving excellent preparation.

Developing a Transition-Prep Program – Where do you start?

To offer some assistance on transition-oriented program design


and development, the Pathways developer called together a team
of six LBS Managers and Adult Credit teachers. Starting with the
research and sharing from their own years of experience in Adult
Ed. and transition-prep programming, the team discussed what
would provide the greatest benefit for practitioners designing Pre-
Credit programs. They decided to develop a resource that would
help practitioners make decisions about 1) the focus of the
program and 2) specific instructional content. Ideas for learning
activities and instructional strategies could come later. Since one
size does not fit all, it would be essential that the resource allow
for maximum flexibility and choice.

The goal was to produce a resource that would

 assist with program planning and day-to-day instruction


 target specific needs of learners preparing for Credit
 make life easier for practitioners
 not be proscriptive but provide a range of options
 be a see-at-a-glance tool, and simple to use
 use a task-based approach consistent with the new
Ontario Adult Literacy Curriculum

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 54

NOTES on a Task-Based Approach - Consistent with the New


Adult Literacy Curriculum

Over the next few years, as the literacy field begins to implement
a new Ontario Adult Literacy Curriculum framework, programs will
begin using a task-based approach to training. This is a very
positive shift consistent with the principles of adult learning and
more responsive to the characteristics of adults. Primarily, adults
are doers. They are task-oriented. It is characteristic for adults to
be focused on what must be done in the day. Learners on an
Adult Credit pathway, invariably ask, “What do you have to do
when you get into Credit?” Literacy training that focuses on tasks
first, then, is very appealing.

In order to plan a task-based and transition-oriented curriculum for


a Credit-prep program, practitioners will want to look at the tasks a
person might expect to encounter during the first few weeks or
months of an Adult Secondary School Credit Program. By looking
at tasks that are typical for adult students in a secondary school
learning environment, practitioners can pick out a few that might
serve as reliable indicators of readiness for Credit in their
situation. Those tasks could be identified as goal tasks or
transition tasks. Preparing learners to perform those tasks
successfully becomes the goal of the program and the focus of
day-to-day activity.

This is not a new concept. LBS programs have always followed an


approach to program planning that is goal-directed and learner-
centred. The difference here is, in a targeted program, all of the
participants have the same goal. Having identified “successful
transition to Credit” as the overarching goal, and having a good
understanding of what learners will have to do, once in Credit,
Successful transition to
practitioners are in a good position to plan relevant and necessary
Credit is not merely a
training.
matter of getting learners
safely across the threshold Here are some typical tasks associated with transitions to Credit:
but ensuring that they can
become well established in  Registering for Credit – gathering together the necessary
a new learning documents, filling in forms
environment and are  Completing a PLAR assessment - including 5 written tests
prepared to be successful  Using schedules and timetables (for classes, assignments,
once they get there. tests and exams)
 Organizing information
 Scheduling appointments
 Participating in interviews with teachers and guidance
counselors or instructional coaches
 Note-taking – from lectures, textbooks, resources
 Finding and using information
 Studying

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 55

 Working on a group project


 Managing time and prioritizing work
 Reading and writing lengthy text
 Attending classes regularly and on time

These tasks are all quite typical. Successful transition to Credit


demands ability on the part of the learner to perform these tasks,
and others like them, successfully. Successful transition to Credit
is not merely a matter of getting learners safely across the
threshold but ensuring that they can become well established in a
new learning environment and are prepared to be successful once
they get there.

More Notes about the New Ontario Adult Literacy Curriculum

At this point in time, the OALC is not ready for implementation in


the field. Only parts have been released so far, but enough is
known so that agencies who wish to do so can bring some
program elements into alignment even at this early date. The
Credit-Prep program planning resource provided in this document
will be consistent with the new Ontario Adult Literacy Curriculum
(OALC) due in part to its very clear learner-centred, goal-directed
and transition-oriented approach. Here is what we do know about
the OALC and the parts of the Transition-Prep program planning
tool that relate to it.

The new Ontario Adult Literacy Curriculum that will be ready


for implementation in 2011 is a competency-based
curriculum framework. Competencies identify the
comprehensive areas of learning that adults need in order to
be successful in whatever destination they choose after LBS
whether it is Employment, Adult Secondary School Credit,
Post-Secondary Studies, Apprenticeship, or Personal,
Social and Civic Participation. Competencies work with
other competencies in the performance of real life activities.

Competencies can also be described as broad instructional


goals. They are content and context-free which means they
are broad enough to be applicable to all learners in all
pathways, and in all learner streams and sectors.

The OALC identifies six competencies that represent what


adults need to know, to do and to be in order to be
successful.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 56

The six competencies are:

 Communicate ideas and information


 Find and Use information
 Use numeracy and think in quantitative terms
 Use technology
 Be self-directed
 Work cooperatively with others

Associated with each competency are groups of tasks which,


when combined, embody that particular competency. For
example,

Task groups associated with the competency Communicate ideas


and information are

 Write continuous text


 Create lists and tables
 Create visual representations
 Complete documents
 Engage in interactions
 Express oneself creatively

The task groups associated with the competency Find and use
information are

 Read continuous teat


 Extract information from signs, labels, lists, tables and
forms
 Interpret visual representations
 Extract information from films, broadcasts, lectures and
observations
 Conduct research

Transition-Prep programs can be designed based on key tasks


that are related to an overarching transition goal. This would work
for any learner pathway. Larger tasks can be broken down into
smaller tasks that represent chunks of learning. Smaller chunks of
learning can involve explicit instruction and practices related to
component skills. Sound familiar? It‟s not unlike what LBS
programs already do with demonstrations. Here‟s an example:

 Overarching goal = Successful Transition to Adult Credit

 One broad-based transition task might be…Complete the


PLAR Assessment Process

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 57

 Smaller chunks of learning for that task might involve


explicit instruction and learning activities in each of the
PLAR test areas i.e. Reading, Writing, Math, Science and
History

Time allotments given to each chunk of learning will vary program


to program depending on factors such as these:

 the overall length of the program (transition-prep programs


vary between 3-18 months)
 number of program hours (25 hours a week? 10 hours?
4?)
 the learners‟ pace of learning
 the size of the gap – more time required for areas that are
weak
 numbers of learners in the program
 modifications required for special needs of learners

Identifying Credit-Prep Curriculum Units of Study

Taking all the research findings into account i.e. all the factors for
success in Credit, the Pathways team identified several broad
areas of learning and selected number of headings as organizers
for program planning including the following:

 Diploma Requirements
 Credit Course Expectations
 Learning to Learn for Academic Success
 Creating a Support System
 Personal Management
 Qualities for Success
 Use of Technology
 Doing Research
 Working With Others

For each area, they identified some possible transition tasks. Here
are just a few examples.

Re: Diploma Requirements

Create a portfolio containing key information and


necessary documentation for successful admissions
process into Adult Credit program

Re: Credit Course Expectations

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 58

After auditing a Credit class, develop a timetable/class


schedule similar to a Credit class schedule, but based on
the „Credit -Prep class currently attending.

Re: Learning to Learn for Academic Success

Work with a partner and prepare a presentation on


effective study skills for success in adult Credit (or note-
taking/meta cognitive strategies etc)

Re: Creating a Support System

Create a personal network file (address book/diagram) with


important contact information and roles people have within
your support system

The following charts provide ideas as starting points for program


planning, but first, please note the following:

 The program planning charts provide support for Credit-


Prep programming that is in addition to the acquisition of
necessary academic skills. For checklists of academic
skills required at entry to Credit, see APPENDIX D
 Broad-based tasks can act as possible transition tasks that
learners learn to accomplish on their own.
 Associated topics, activities and instructional content can
be re-framed as smaller tasks that are parts of the larger
transition task
 Competencies and task groups identified in the chart help
situate academic pathway-specific tasks within the OALC
framework
 Tasks that adults do usually require more than one
competency; however, there is usually one primary
competency in play. To say it another way, competencies
are found in combination within single tasks.

Practitioners can

 continue to use their preferred resources


 continue to use a variety of instructional approaches
including direct instruction, distance learning, blended
learning, presentations, small group work, independent
learning etc.
 plan to use all or only some of these “units”
 re-order the units in any way

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 59

 select just a few or many of the tasks and instructional


topics in a unit
 vary the sizes of the units according to the needs of the
learners i.e. just a few tasks/topics for one unit but
maybe most of the tasks/topics for another
 add other units and tasks/topics not included here

In addition to the program planning charts is a second set of


charts that provide specific direction for finding good
instructional content and learning activities related to the tasks
and topics in each unit. While, it is impossible to identify all the
great resources available, these charts name a few familiar
and a few possibly unfamiliar resources that have become
favourites in some programs. Look for these in the
RESOURCE section. It‟s a good start.

CESBA: 2009
TASK-BASED TRANSITION-PREP PROGRAM PLANNING
Unit Title Possible Transition Tasks for Key Competencies and Task Groups Associated Tasks, Topics and
the Adult Credit Pathway Instructional Content

Diploma Create a portfolio containing Find and Use Information Conduct research on each of the following:
Requirements key information and necessary  Conduct research  OSSD requirements – the basics
documentation for successful  Read continuous text  What is a “Credit”?
admissions process into Adult  Extract information from  What are the Credit destinations?
Credit program forms  Admissions to Credit -the process
 Extract information from  Transfer to registration and PLAR application
Create a one-page reference lectures also Grade 11-12
chart showing what is needed  Required documents for admission
in the way of documents and  Course codes and transcripts
check off list as items are  Bursaries/scholarships/financial
collected assistance/social assistance
 OSR, OSN, transcript
Work with a group to create a
 ESL Credits vs first language Credits
glossary of important terms
 Needed pre-requisites for next step after
and references used in Adult
Credit
Credit
 GED/OSSD/ACE – chart (TOWES/PDQ)
Work Cooperatively with Others
Meet and be introduced to Credit staff

Attend presentations: on the PLAR process; on


expectations in Credit
 Glossary – vocabulary development to talk
about world of Adult Credit

CLEARING THE PATHWAY 61

Unit Title Possible Transition Tasks for Key Competencies and Task Groups Associated Tasks, Topics and
the Adult Credit Pathway Instructional Content

Credit Course Interview a Credit teacher (or Communicate Ideas and information  Timetable periods/scheduling
Expectations Credit student) and gather  Write continuous text  Organizing learning in Adult Credit
information on what to expect  Engage in interactions  P&P/student handbook (eg. retaking tests/)
as a student in an Adult Credit  Express oneself creatively  Understanding the Adult Credit culture
class.  Rules of class participation
 Attendance and punctuality
Prepare and share a report (do Find and Use Information  Marks/grading/ weighting
a presentation) on what to  Extract information from lists,  Materials required when attending class
expect in Adult Credit tables, and forms  Identify differences between LBS and Credit
 Read continuous text
Audit an Adult Credit program  Extract information from
for (3) days and write what you lectures
learned or observed about
each of the following:
 Credit students
 Teachers
 Homework
 Textbooks
 Note-taking
 Class participation
 Materials students need
 The difference between LBS
and Credit

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 62

Unit Title Possible Transition Tasks for Key Competencies and Task Groups Associated Tasks, Topics and
the Adult Credit Pathway Instructional Content

Learning to Complete an online learning Find and Use Information Conduct research on research methods
Learn for style inventory and write a  Research Complete a PLAR Course
Academic journal reflection on your  Read continuous text Prepare class notes on the following
Success strengths and challenges as a  Extract information from  Study Skills/habits
student. forms  Skimming and Scanning
 Tips for note-taking
Work with a partner and Communicate ideas and information  Memory skills
prepare a presentation on  Write continuous text  Test preparation/reading and understanding
effective study skills for success  Create lists and tables instructions/test anxiety/timed tests
in Adult Credit (or note-  Complete documents  Working with directed instruction
taking/meta cognitive  Rubrics – what they are; how they work
strategies etc)  Learning – acquire, store and access
information
Complete a PLAR preparation  Listening skills
course. Work cooperatively with others  Organization/time management
 Problem-solving
Attend an Adult Credit course
 Critical thinking
and take notes from the
 Reading speed
lecture.
 Learning theory
 Learning styles/ personality dimensions
 Organizing your learning (binders, calendars,
files
 Strategies – right brain; left brain/colour
coding;
 Meeting deadlines

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 63

Unit Title Possible Transition Tasks for Key Competencies and Task Groups Associated Tasks, Topics and
the Adult Credit Pathway Instructional Content

Creating a Create a personal network file Communicate ideas and information Participate in a discussion on the following:
support (address book/diagram)with  Write continuous text  What is a support network?
system/network important contact information  Engage in interactions  Having a Plan “B”
and roles people have within  Peer /family/friends support system (How
your support system are your friends and family going to make
Be self-directed space for you to reach your goals?)
 Creating a study group
 Community resources/services/EO

Unit Title Possible Transition Tasks for Key Competencies and Task Groups Associated Tasks, Topics and
the Adult Credit Pathway Instructional Content

Self awareness / Keep a journal with reflections Communicate ideas and information Use a number of tools for Self-assessment
self-direction and insights about yourself  Write continuous text Participate in discussions about the following: or
with regard to managing time,  Engage in interactions Do Internet research on the following:
stress, finances, relationships  Time management –(create time
and health Be self-directed management chart) Use a calendar
Find and Use information  Self advocacy (finding a voice)
Create a realistic budget for  Read continuous text  Stress management
yourself for the next year  Extract information from  Financial management
forms  Personal wellness
 Reading non-verbal cues
Use technology  Goal-setting
Use numbers and think in quantitative Create electronic spreadsheet for
terms  Financial management

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 64

Unit Title Possible Transition Tasks for Key Competencies and Task Groups Associated Tasks, Topics and
the Adult Credit Pathway Instructional Content

Qualities for Do a presentation involving Find and Use information Listen to a lecture, see a presentation, watch a
Success skit or role playing to teach the  Read continuous text video, participate in a group discussion, do role-
importance of proper attitudes  Extract information from playing on the following:
for learning forms  Attitude
 Extract information from  Problem-solving
Create and a set of notes for lectures, films,  Diversity
others to accompany the demonstrations, observations  Adaptability to different learning
presentation Communicate ideas and information environments
 Write continuous text  Listening
 Engage in interactions  Persistence and commitment
 Personal appearance/hygiene

Unit Title Possible Transition Tasks for Key Competencies and Task Groups Associated Tasks, Topics and
the Adult Credit Pathway Instructional Content

Use Technology Work with another student to Use Technology  Basic mechanics - keyboarding
prepare a simple presentation  Word processing
on a topic of interest but all Work cooperatively with others  PowerPoint
research and communication  Excel
must be carried out by means Communicate Ideas and Information  Calculator
of technology  Write continuous text  Internet research
 Engage in interactions  Memory sticks
Create electronic files on “how  Express oneself creatively
to use...”(each of the listed
computer applications)

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 65

Unit Title Possible Transition Tasks for Key Competencies and Task Groups Associated Tasks, Topics and
the Adult Credit Pathway Instructional Content
Take notes from a lecture, an article, a textbook on
Doing Research Complete a short research Find and Use Information each of the following:
project documenting the  Research  Using secondary resources
process you followed and the  Read continuous text  Using a library – Internet
resources you used.  Extract information from  Extracting salient points for various purposes
forms  Summarizing
 Assessing materials for appropriate content

Unit Title Possible Transition Tasks for Key Competencies and Task Groups Associated Tasks, Topics and
the Adult Credit Pathway Instructional Content

Working with Work with a partner or with a Engage/Work with Others  Conflict resolution
Others group on a project; keep a  Effective listening
journal about your experience Self-Direct; Act Autonomously  Expressing yourself
and what you learned about  Listening
working with others  Participating as a group member
 Leading a group
Participate in discussion  Roles and responsibilities in a group
activities, put together a skit,  Managing in a group project
do an online assessment on  Networking
each/any of the following: (see
 Asking for assistance
list far right)
 Self-advocacy
 Understanding personality types
 Cultural sensitivity

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 66

During the regional discussions with Adult Credit teachers a


number of good ideas surfaced incidentally. Here are some of
their tips for practitioners delivering Credit-Prep programs

 Become familiar with the expectations of the Grade 9-10


Ontario Curriculum and/or typical first year courses and
textbooks in Adult Credit

 Connect with someone in Adult Credit in order to access


up-to-date inside information about Credit programs and
expectations

 Help learners set realistic, achievable goals and prepare


for appropriate Adult Credit courses by providing accurate
information and regular and honest assessment feedback

 Foster the ability to generalize academic skills for


performing various goal-related tasks through explicit
teaching of, and drawing attention to, embedded skills in
academic tasks and activities

 Encourage sustained commitment to the goal by


acknowledging and celebrating learner success. Keep the
learner focused on the goal in various means such as
motivational posters and frequent, explicit references to
“When you‟re in Credit...”

 Foster self-direction including independence and


interdependence through explicit instruction and practicing
step-by-step approaches to problem-solving

 Help learners develop personal learning strategies


(acquire, store, express information) through preferred
learning style inventories, strategies that strengthen
various learning styles and tried and true best practices for
learning

 Provide opportunities for learners to develop familiarity with


the next learning environment

 Provide explicit instruction on the next learning


environment and help the learner develop strategies for
particular challenges

 Model teaching approaches that Adult Credit teachers use

 Assign homework and introduce activities that are similar


to the kinds of assignments the learner will encounter in
Credit

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 67

 Quicken the pace of daily work and provide explicit


instruction on listening strategies

 Debrief on a regular basis to see if the learners are


keeping up

 Incorporate performance expectations from Adult Credit to


shape LBS training as learners heading to Credit approach
the end of their programs

 Help learners search for and identify viable supports that


will help the learner through the program

 Promote facility with technology through explicit instruction


and increased use of computers for a wide range of
purposes in the LBS program

 Provide a complete transition package and orientation to


the admissions process including information on dates,
locations, directions, times, contact person etc.

Getting the Ball Rolling

There are some practical ideas to help get new Credit-Prep


programs off on the right foot. While learners will invariably learn
about the new program from various sources, holding an
information session held well in advance of the start date is highly
recommended. An information session introduces learners to a
more formal process and allows them to get the facts they need to
make an informed decision about participating.

The key messages to convey about the program at that time are

 It‟s thorough
 It‟s organized
 it‟s demanding
 It‟s respectful
 It‟s enjoyable
 it‟s effective
 It‟s rewarding
(Source: Breaking the Barriers)

Information that includes statistics on the numbers of learners who


transition successfully to Credit following the prep program is
always motivating.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 68

Important program information can be provided at that time.


 The purpose and goals of the program
 Program timelines and timetable
 Materials and supplies
 Assignments
 Marking schemes
 Expectations and procedures
See APPENDIX E for sample handouts

Some programs may wish to use a Credit-Prep Application


Questionnaire as a tool to help learners decide if this is the right
time for them to take such a course. The questionnaire will guide
learners to consider issues related to work, family, children,
health, money, distance and transportation before applying. This
kind of self-screening is valuable because it helps learners see the
importance placed on such a decision and ensures that learners
who do apply have considered many of the factors which
otherwise may be barriers to successful completion of the course.

See APPENDIX F for sample questionnaire

Other tips for promoting the transitions program include

 posters, flyers and bulletins in abundance

 public announcements in days preceding the information


session and program registrations

 in-person invitations to class groups

 reminders for practitioners of date, time and place of the


information session

 information session held during regularly scheduled


program hours

 Inclusions of learners at lower levels too so they can begin


to consider academic goals for themselves

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 69

SUMMARY:

Key supports that make a positive impact on learner transition


include:

 Co-location of LBS and Adult Credit programs


 Adequate understanding of LBS assessment data on
behalf of Adult Credit staff
 Adequate understanding of the Adult Credit environment,
available courses and M-PLAR assessment on behalf of
LBS staff.
 Common understanding of and respect for different
approaches to adult learning on behalf of both Credit and
LBS
 A spirit of collaboration to ensure seamless transition for
learners
 Adequate academic preparation including
1. Some exposure to Credit-style instructional
approaches
2. Explicit instruction on learning strategies
3. Some guidance for and experience with
independent learning courses and distance learning
 Motivational and inspirational component ion training
 Encouragement to enhance learner commitment to goals
 Orientation to intake assessment procedures, forms,
location, transportation and contact information, etc.
 Effective use of PLAR opportunities with proper
preparation

Conclusions:

 Concurrent training of entry level Credit courses (e.g.


General Learning Strategies -GLS10, and the Ontario
Literacy Course) with LBS learners approaching transition
to adult Credit is a strategy with proven success.
 LBS training that provides for full orientation to and
preparation for the PLAR for Mature Students process
produces transition success.
 Adult Education Centres, where LBS are co-located with
Adult Secondary School Credit Programs, provide the
optimum environment for seamless transition to Adult
Credit.
 Learner transitions are more successful where LBS and
Adult Credit have a combined transition strategy and work
cooperatively together.
 Learners are more engaged, more motivated and more
successful when the training is made relevant focusing on
what learners need to know, do and be in order to be
successful

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 70

RESOURCES

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 71

Often practitioners have concerns about instructional content. They know Study Skills are important, for example, but what are those
study skills exactly? The Pathways team identified a number of effective resources that have become practitioner favourites. Some
are quite familiar some may be new. This resource is just to provide a starting point. Resources in the charts below included the
following:

The YWCA Discovering Life Skills Series: (referred to as DLS)


1) YWCA Toronto, Building Groups & Warm Ups – Discovering Life Skills / new Volume 1, YWCA Toronto, 1997, ISBN 1-895625-08-4
2) YWCA Toronto, YWCA Toronto - Discovering Life Skills / Volume 2, YWCA Toronto, 1999, ISBN 0-919313-10-6
3) YWCA Toronto, YWCA Toronto - Discovering Life Skills / Volume 3, YWCA Toronto, 1998, ISBN 1-895625-05-X
4) YWCA Toronto, Special Needs Groups - Discovering Life Skills / Volume 4, YWCA Toronto, 2006, ISBN 1-89562506-08
5) YWCA Toronto, YWCA Toronto - Discovering Life Skills / Volume 5, YWCA Toronto, 1998, ISBN 1-895625-03-3
6) YWCA Toronto, Communicating Assertively - Discovering Life Skills / Volume 6, YWCA Toronto, 2006, ISBN 1-895625-04-1
7) YWCA Toronto, Teaching Employment Groups - Discovering Life Skills / Volume 7, YWCA Toronto, 2006, ISBN 1-895625-16-5
8) YWCA Toronto, Employability for Youth - Discovering Life Skills / Volume 8, YWCA Toronto, 2000, ISBN 1-895625-07-6
9) YWCA Toronto, Employability for People with Disabilities - Discovering Life Skills / Volume 9, YWCA Toronto, 2006, ISBN 1-895625-17-3

The Learning Strategies GSL10 course from the Ottawa Carleton District School Board

The Lambton-Kent DSB MPLAR Course on CD available for shipping and handling fee from Lambton Kent DSB

VOICE: Ottawa-Carleton DSB Continuing Education: by Nora Connolly.

The Steck-Vaughn series, StartSmart Connnecting Learning to Life - Study Skills ISBN 0-7398-6020-8

Teaching Learning Strategies and Study Skills, ISBN 0-205-33513-6 Allyn & Bacon, 2002

Conquering Test Writing Anxiety, Ellen Long, Irwin Publishing Ltd., 2000

A Dream That Walks, Myrna Hanna ISBN0-9695863-6-1 Garlic Press, 2000

Learning Strategies for School, Home and Work ISBN O-206-33513-67

Breaking the Barriers CESBA a unit-by-unit guide to a Pre-Credit program; http://www.cesba.com/pdf/breaking_barriers.pdf

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 72

RESOURCES: These tables correspond to the program planning tables and provide a starting point for finding good instructional
content. Three columns on the right indicate purpose– to increase knowledge, develop skills or influence behaviours .

UNIT: Diploma Requirements

Item Location Purpose(s) and Outcome(s)


Key Content (Possible topics) Name of Resource Page Increasing Developing Adopting
Where can practitioners find this info? Numbers Knowledge Skills Behaviours
Basics to get the diploma Learning Strategies (GLS1O) 1-4 x
PLAR PRIMER Appendix
1-page reference chart showing what is needed and
check-off
Transfer to registration and PLAR application also Gr Learning Strategies (GLS1O) 79-90 x
11-12
Gather and order documents

Guidance counselor presentation(PLAR process)

What are the Credit streams

Course codes Course Descriptions and Prerequisites, Grades 9-12 all x

ESL Credits vs first language Credits


Needed pre-requisites for next step after Credit DLS-Volume8 – Choosing the Right Training – 45-53 x
Scams: What‟s the Real Deal? (2 activities)
Accessing information and assistance Guidance
counselor presentation on expectations
GED/OSSD/ACE – chart (TOWES/PDQ)

Glossary – vocabulary development to talk about world Learning Strategies (GLS1O) 1-7 x x
of adult Credit
Bursaries/scholarships/financial assistance/social
assistance

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 73

UNIT: Credit Course Expectations


Item Location Purpose(s)/Outcome(s)
Key Content (Possible topics) Name of Resource Page Increasing Developing Adopting
Where can practitioners find this info? Numbers Knowledge Skills Behaviours
Timetable periods/scheduling
Organizing learning in Adult Credit Breaking the Barriers 233-258 x x x
P&P/student handbook
(e.g. retaking tests/)
Understanding the Adult Credit culture
Rules of class participation
Attendance and punctuality DLS-Volume8 – Attendance 173-175 x -- x
DLS-Volume8 – On Time 176-177 -- -- x
Marks/grading/ weighting
Audit a Credit course
Chart showing differences between LBS and Credit
Materials required when attending class

UNIT: Learning to Learn for Academic Success

Item Location Purpose(s)/Outcome(s)


Key Content Name of Resource Page Increasi Developing Adopting
(Possible topics) Where can practitioners find this info? Numbers ng Skills Behaviours
Knowled
ge
Research methods SV Start Smart
a) Collecting Information- library, internet, other resources 32-39 x x
PLAR Courses Lambton-Kent DSB MPLAR Courses all x x
Study Skills/habits SV Start Smart a) Plan your studying 8-15 x x x

Teaching Learning Strategies and Study Skills, Strategies for planning study, habits and assessment 81 – 96 x x x

How To Study Mathematics Printout x x


a) http://tutorial.math/amar.edu/pdf (class discussion) 1-11

Supporting Math Students Printout


a) http://www.sbctc.ctc.edu/College/education/supporting_math_students_teresa_massey.pdf 3-14 x x x

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 74

(classroom/group/individual)
Skimming and Learning Strategies for School, Home and Work 63-67 x
Scanning
Steck Vaughn Start Smart Connecting Learning to Life, ISBN 0-7398-6017-8
Harcourt Company, 2003 www.steck-vaughn.com
a) Reading Strategies – Preview before and after reading 8 – 14, x x

Note-taking Steck-Vaughn StartSmart Connecting Learning to Life, Study Skills Study ISBN 0-7398-6020-8 Steck-
Vaughn Company, 2003
a) Taking notes (instructor directed, individual) 18-23 x x x

Steck-Vaughn Study Skills for Adults, Writing Reports ISBN 0-8114-2528-2


Steck-Vaughn Company, 1994
a) Taking Notes (instructor directed, classroom/individual) 12-15 x x
b) Developing an Outline from notes (instructor directed, classroom/individual) 16-19 x x

Teaching Learning Strategies and Study Skills ISBN 0-205-33513-6


Allyn & Bacon, 2002
a) Strategies for SQRW: survey, question, read, write (teacher directed) x
b) Stages, signal words/statements, style (teacher directed) x x

Breaking the Barriers 51-55 x x

Memory skills Steck-Vaughn Start SmartStudy Skills Connecting Learning to Life, Study Skills
ISBN 0-7398-6020-8
a) Tips to remember information 23–25 x x x

Learning Strategies for School, Home and Work ISBN O-206-33513-67 84-91 x x

Teaching Learning Strategies and Study Skills


a) Techniques for remembering information (teacher directed/class) 1 - 16 x x x

DLS-Volume4 – Assisting our Memory 153-155 x x

Breaking the Barriers 56-59 x x

Test preparation Learning Strategies (GLS1O) 64-75 x x


and test taking

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 75

Steck-Vaughn StartSmart Connection Learning to Life, Test Preparation Strategies, 8-13 x


a) Preparation for tests (instructor, class/individual) 16-32, 35- x
b) Different Types of Questions (instructor, class/individual) 40 x

Conquering Test Writing Anxiety 103-111 x x x

Teaching Learning Strategies and Study Skills- 97-124 x x


a) Preparing for and Taking Tests (teacher directed; class/individual)

Conquering Test Writing Anxiety, Ellen Long, Irwin Publishing Ltd., 2000 13–14, 15-
16 x
a) Assessing Your Test Writing Anxiety Level (teacher directed activities) 38–48 x x
49–53,
b) Strategies to Help you Learn Test Information (teacher directed activities, practice tests) 56–60, 62 x

54, 55, 68,


c) Test writing strategies (individual activities) –test writing errors, vocabulary, times test (fun activity), 69, 71, 73-
pacing activity 75
x x x
d) General Tips (teacher directed discussion and activity) 77–83, 89
109, x x
112–116,
e) Categories of tests (strategies, tips and activities) - multiple-choice tests, true/false, essay, terms 117–121, x x x
and phrases for essay questions 123

Breaking the Barriers - 60-63 x x

Working with DLS-Volume8 – 3 Minute Time Test 111-112 -- x --


directed instruction
Rubrics

Learning – acquire, http://www.umanitoba.ca/faculties/arts/economics/cameron/success.html


store and access a) Successful students, responsibilities, comparison between an A and a C student (class Printout x x x
information discussion)

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 76

Listening skills DLS-New Volume1 – Active Listening Skills 91-97 x x


DLS-New Volume1 – Asking for Clarification 98-100 x x
DLS-New Volume1 – Effective Attending/Listening Skills 101-105 x x
DLS-Volume3 - Developing Listening Skills 85-88 x x
DLS-Volume5 - Active Listening 58-61 x x
DLS-Volume5-Helpful and Harmful Listening Behaviours 62-65 x --
DLS-Volume7 – Becoming an Effective Listener 275-281 -- x
DLS-Volume8 – What‟s the Deal with Listening? 188-191 x x
DLS-Volume8 – Using Active Listening Skills 192-195 -- x

Organization/time DLS-Volume3 – Time Management 187-191 x x x


management DLS-Volume3 – Beating Procrastination 192-198 x -- x
DLS-Volume5 – Procrastination / Motivation 114-117 x -- x
DLS-Volume5 – Valuing our Time 184-192 x x x
DLS-Volume8 – Time Management 303-308 x -- --

http://www.nytimes.com/learning/teachers/lessons/2009040/wednesday.html?searchpv=learningl
essons printout x x x
a) #12 Keep It Clean, Making A Plan for Getting and Staying Organized (lesson plan)

Problem-solving Learning Strategies (GLS1O) 55-63 x x


DLS-Volume 3 - Creative Problem-Solving 98-106 x x --
DLS-Volume 5- Problem Solving: Overcoming the Blocks 103-108 x -- --
DLS-Volume 6 – Problem Ownership 231-236 x -- x
DLS-Volume 8 – A Problem in Search of a Solution 113-115 x -- --

Critical thinking Breaking the Barriers – Unit 3 65-104 x x


Reading speed
Learning theory Breaking the Barriers – Unit 4 129-193 x x
Learning styles/ personality Learning Strategies (GLS1O) 11-14 x x
dimensions
Learning Styles for School, Work and Home 17 – 20 x x

Organizing your learning


(binders, calendars, files
Strategies – right brain; left
brain/
Meeting deadlines

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 77

UNIT: Creating a Support System/Network


Item Location Purpose(s)/Outcome(s)
Key Content (Possible topics) Name of Resource Page Increasing Developing Adopting
Where can practitioners find this info? Numbers Knowledge Skills Behaviours
What is a support network?
Having a Plan “B”
Peer /family/friends support system (How are your friends
and family going to make space for you to reach your
goals?)
Creating a study group http://www.educationatlas.com/study- printout x x
groups.html (classroom)
Tips on effective learning in using a study group
Community resources/services/EO

UNIT: Personal Management

Item Location Purpose(s)/Outcome(s)


Key Content Name of Resource Page Increasing Developing Adopting
(Possible topics) Where can practitioners find this info? Numbers Knowledge Skills Behaviours
Self-assessment DLS-Volume5 – Recognizing our Strengths 144-146 -- x --
DLS-Volume7 – Identifying Transferable Skills and Uncovering Special Talents 65-73 x -- --
DLS-Volume8 – As I See It 240-242 -- -- x
DLS-Volume9 – Discovering your Emotional Intelligence 135-139 x -- --

Time management – Teaching Learning Strategies and Study Skills, Using time effectively (term calendar, weekly
(create time planner, daily planner) 84-90 x x x
management chart) DLS-Volume3 – Time Management 187-191 x x x
Use a calendar DLS-Volume3 – Beating Procrastination 192-198 x -- x
DLS-Volume5 – Procrastination / Motivation 114-117 x -- x
DLS-Volume5 – Valuing our Time 184-192 x x --
DLS-Volume8 – Time Management 303-308 70- x --
VOICE 71 x
Breaking the Barriers Unit 7 259-276 x x

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 78

Self advocacy DLS-Volume6 – Coach‟s Guide 1-46 x -- --


(finding a voice) DLS-Volume6 – Introductory Assertiveness Sessions (4 activities) 47-89 x x x
resources focused DLS-Volume6 – Building Blocks to Assertiveness (12 activities) 90-158 x x x
on assertiveness DLS-Volume6 – Assertiveness Training Techniques (22 activities) 159-283 x x x
exercises here and DLS-Volume6 – Strategies to Support Assertiveness (3 activities) 284-314 x x x
left the self- DLS-Volume8 – Assertiveness – Practicing the Skills 20-23 -- --
advocacy exercises DLS-Volume8 – Handling Discrimination Assertively (Same exercise as in Working with Others # 200-203 x x --
for Working with 11) 207-210 x x --
Others #11 DLS-Volume8 – Dealing with Incidents of Discrimination 52, 84-87 X
VOICE
Breaking the Barriers Unit 8 277-294 x x x

Stress management DLS-Volume3 – How Stress Affects us 147-155 x -- x


DLS-Volume3 – Stress Management – An Overview 162-168 x x x
DLS-Volume5 – Coping with Stress
DLS-Volume5 – One Answer to Stress… Relaxation 164-167 x x x
DLS-Volume9 – Stress Management 168-173 x x x
http://www.nytimes.com/learning/teachers/lessons/20020528tuesday.html?searchpv=learningless
ons p.179-188 x -- x
It‟s A Mad World (Cause and Effect of Anger and Effective Anger)
printout
Conquering Test Writing Anxiety x
a) Barriers to Concentration: Anxiety (Teacher directed exercise) 21 - 24

Financial DLS-Volume 3 – Money Management 62-65, & x x x


management 98 -106
DLS-Volume4 – Managing Money 106-113 x x x
DLS-Volume8 – Budgeting 102-107 -- x --
DLS-Volume9 – Financial Awareness 65 – 68 x x --

Personal wellness DLS-Volume4- The Importance of Play 123-125 -- -- x


DLS-Volume4- Leisure 126-127 x -- x
DLS-Volume4 – Good Eating Habits 140-143 x -- x
DLS-Volume4 – Thinking about Hope 165-168 x x --
DLS-Volume4 – Overcoming Depression 169-173 x -- --
DLS-volume4 – Understanding and Overcoming Shyness 174-181 x x x
DLS-Volume4 – Food Score Game 232-233 x -- --
DLS-Volume5 – Beyond the Blues 118-123 x x x
DLS-Volume5 – Finding Balance in our Lives 156-163 x x x
DLS-Volume5 – Nurturing Ourselves 175-180 x x x

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 79

DLS-Volume7 – Nurturing Yourself 152-154 -- -- x


VOICE 76 x
Reading non-verbal DLS-Volume4 – Non-Verbal Cues 54-57 x x --
cues DLS-Volume4 – Acting out Feelings 103-105 x x --
Goal-setting DLS-New Volume1 – From Here to There 52-57 x x --
DLS-Volume2 – Setting Realistic Goals 105-110 x x --
DLS-Volume2 – Examining Personal Goals 111-118 x x --
DLS-Volume2 – Successful Goal-Setting 119-124 x x --
DLS-Volume5 – Achieving our Goals 95-100 x x --
DLS-Volume7 – Goal Planning for Personal Success 127-134 -- x --
DLS-Volume7 – Paper Airplane and Flying Contest 135-136 x x --
DLS-Volume9 – Goals, Tasks and Action Plans 82-87 x x --
x
A Dream That Walks 4 – 42 x x

Streck-Vaughan StartSmart Connecting Learning to Life, Goal Setting Strategies 6 - 46 x x


VOICE 92, 179-183 x x
Breaking the Barriers 109-127 x x

Decision making DLS- New Volume1 – One Step at a Time 61-67 -- x --


(addition) DLS-Volume3 – Making Effective Decisions 55-61 x x --
Managing change DLS-Volume 3 – Handling Change .22-25 -- - x
(addition) DLS-Volume5 – Coping with Change 124-128 x -- x
DLS-Volume7 – The Challenge of Change 113-117 x -- --
DLS-Volume7 – Movies: Teaching us Lessons on Change 118-119 -- -- x
DLS-Volume7 – Strategies for Dealing with Change 120 x -- --
DLS-Volume7 – The Changes in my Life 121-122 -- -- x
DLS-Volume8 – Transitions 24-26 X -- x
DLS-Volume9 – Dealing with Change 69-74 -- x

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 80

UNIT: Qualities for Success


Item Location Purpose(s)/Outcome(s)
Key Content (Possible topics) Name of Resource Page Increasing Developing Adopting
Where can practitioners find this info? Numbers Knowledge Skills Behaviours
Attitude DLS-Volume2 – Striving for Excellence 152-157 x -- x

Problem-solving DLS-Volume 3 – Creative Problem-Solving 98-106 x x --


DLS-Volume5 – Problem Solving: Overcoming the Blocks 103-108 x --
DLS-Volume6 – Problem Ownership --
DLS-Volume8 – A Problem in Search of a Solution .231-236 x -- x
VOICE 113-115 x -- --

47 -- x
x
Diversity DLS-New Volume1 – Valuing Diversity 37-39 x -- x
DLS-Volume2 – Biases, Assumptions and Stereotypes 21-29 x -- x
DLS-Volume2 – Looking at the Cause of Prejudice
DLS-Volume4 – Disability Awareness 158-163 x -- x
DLS-Volume5 – Valuing our Differences
DLS-Volume8 – Learning to Value Diversity 78-80 x -- --
73-77 x x --
55-60 x -- --

Adaptability to different learning


environments
Listening DLS-New Volume1 – Active Listening Skills 91-97 x x --
DLS-New Volume1 – Asking for Clarification 98-100 x x --
DLS-New Volume1 – Effective Attending/Listening Skills 101-105 x x --
DLS-Volume3 – Developing Listening Skills 85-88 x x --
DLS-Volume5 – Active Listening 58-61 x x --
DLS-Volume5 – Helpful and Harmful Listening Behaviours 62-65 x -- --
DLS-Volume7 – Becoming an Effective Listener 275-281 -- x --
DLS-Volume8 – What‟s the Deal with Listening? 188-191 x x --
DLS-Volume8 – Using Active Listening Skills 192-195 -- x --
Persistence and commitment DLS-Volume4 – Risk-Taking 146-152 x -- x

Personal appearance/hygiene DLS-Volume9 – Looking Great 117 -124 x -- x

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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 81

Good communication (addition) DLS-Volume 2 – Communicating for Success 45-49 x -- x


DLS-Volume 3 – Awareness in Communication 30-35 x x --
DLS-Volume 3 – Managing One and Two-Way Communication 36-39 x x --
DLS-Volume8 – Barriers to Communication 27-29 x -- --

UNIT: Use of Technology


Item Location Purpose(s)/Outcome(s)
Key Content (Possible topics) Name of Resource Page Increasing Developing Adopting
Where can practitioners find this info? Numbers Knowledge Skills Behaviours
Basic mechanics - keyboarding http://www.goodtyping.com/
a) Basic keyboarding skills; free registration, 27 online lessons Online x x
(develop keyboarding skills before trying the powertyping site)
http://powertyping.com/
a) Typing tests, practice, keyboard lessons, games online x x

Word processing http://www.gcflearnfree.org/ online x x


PowerPoint http://www.gcflearnfree.org/ online x x
Excel
Calculator
Internet research Breaking the Barriers 246-258 x x
Memory sticks

UNIT: Doing Research

Item Location Purpose(s)/Outcome(s)


Key Content (Possible topics) Name of Resource Page Increasing Developing Adopting
Where can practitioners find this info? Numbers Knowledge Skills Behaviours
Carry out Primary research

Use secondary resources


Use a library – Internet Steck-Vaughn StartSmart Connecting Learning to Life Study 29-34, 37 x x
Skills, ISBN 0-7398-6020-8, 2003

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 82

Breaking the Barriers 246-257 x x


Extracting salient points for various
purposes
Summarizing Lambton-Kent DSB MPLAR English Course, Lesson 4 38-42 x
Assess materials for appropriate content

UNIT: Working with others

Item Location Purpose(s)/Outcome(s)


Key Content (Possible topics) Name of Resource Page Increasing Developing Adopting
Where can practitioners find this info? Numbers Knowledge Skills Behaviours
Conflict resolution DLS – Volume 2 – Confronting Conflict 57-64 x x x
DLS – Volume 2 – Conflict and Communication 65-71 x x x
DLS-Volume5 – Conflict 66-68 x -- --
DLS-Volume5 – Conflict Resolution 69-72 x x --
DLS-Volume6 – Turning Conflict into Cooperation part 1 & 2 237-247 -- -- x
DLS-Volume7 – Conflict and Active Listening 82-284 -- -- x
DLS-Volume8 – Conflict: Can we T.A.L.K. – Conflict Resolution:
Be N.I.C.E. (2 activities) 30-39 -- x --
DLS-Volume8 – Conflict Within a Group 40-44 x x
Learning Strategies (GLS1O) 55-63 x x
x x
Effective listening DLS-New Volume1 – Active Listening Skills 91-97 x x --
Listening exercises same as in Qualities DLS-New Volume1 – Asking for Clarification 98-100 x x --
for Success #5 DLS-New Volume1 – Effective Attending/Listening Skills 101-105 x x --
DLS-Volume 3 – Developing Listening Skills 85-88 x x --
DLS-Volume5 – Active Listening 58-61 x x --
DLS-Volume5 – Helpful and Harmful Listening Behaviours 62-65 x -- --
DLS-Volume7 – Becoming an Effective Listener 275-281 -- x --
DLS-Volume8 – What‟s the Deal with Listening? 188-191 x x --
DLS-Volume8 – Using Active Listening Skills 192-195 -- x --
VOICE 136 -- x --
Expressing yourself DLS-Volume8 – Presentation Practice 146-150 -- x --
VOICE 144-145 x x

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 83

Participating as a group member DLS – New Volume 1 – Working Cooperatively 31 – 36 -- -- x


DLS-Volume5 – Helpful and Harmful Group Behaviours 46-50 x -- x
DLS-Volume8 – „T‟ Stands for Teamwork 109 -- x --
DLS-Volume8 – Building Community 137-414 -- -- x
DLS-Volume8 – Team Building: It Takes a Village 284-288 -- -- x
DLS-Volume8 – Team-Building Through Positive Participation – 289-302 x -- x
Team Dynamics: What Are „Dynamics‟ Anyway? (2 activities)
VOICE 134 -- x x
Breaking the Barriers Unit 8 296-303 x x

Leading a group DLS-Volume8 – Developing Leadership Skills – Our Changing 178-187 x -- --


World: Skills for the 21st Century (2 activities)
Roles and responsibilities in a group DLS-Volume8 – Team Building 101 142-145 -- -- x

Managing in a group project DLS-Volume7 – Making Decisions in Teams – Tower Building 291-292 -- -- x
VOICE 155
x
Networking
Asking for assistance
Self-advocacy DLS-Volume 5 – Criticism, The Great Inhibitor 42-45 x -- x
DLS-Volume7 – Confronting Harassment 296-302 x x --
DLS-Volume8 – Introduction to the Ontario Human Rights Code 198-199 x -- --
DLS-Volume8 – Handling Discrimination Assertively 200-203 x x --
DLS-Volume9 – Self Advocacy 88-97 x x --
VOICE 52, 84-87 -- -- x

Understanding personality types http://www.youthskills.llsc.on.ca x


Cultural sensitivity DLS-Volume 2 – Stereotyping 30-36 x -- x
DLS-Volume 2 – Defining Culture 53-56 x x x
DLS-Volume 2 – Cross-Cultural Communication 75-81 x -- x
DLS-Volume4 – Understanding Racism 334-38 x -- x
DLS-Volume5 – Valuing our Differences 73-77 x x --

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 84

APPENDIX

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 85

APPENDIX A

Different Environments; Different Cultures

LBS learners often face significant challenges as they move from one learning environment to
another. Adjustments are required when moving

 From small to large facility


 From small to large class size
 From one to several teachers
 From one-to-one to group instruction
 From considerable to little personal attention
 From many to a few familiar faces
 From considerable to considerably less direction
 From high to less individual support and instruction
 From the pace set by the learner to pace set by the teacher
 From ample to less time allowed to absorb new learning
 From some responsibility to full responsibility for learning
 From dependence upon instructor to self-reliance
 From flexible, to more structured programming
 From informal to more formal, get-down-to-business tone or atmosphere
 From personal to more impersonal relationship with the teacher
 From, familiar to unfamiliar kinds of learning materials
 From low to high expectations regarding homework
 From flexible to inflexible rules about regular attendance
 From group to more individualized work

Along with a new learning environment, learners also discover they have entered a new culture
as they begin their Secondary School education. There are corporate differences between the
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities and the Ministry of Education which surface in
subtle and not-so-subtle ways in School Board Adult and Continuing Education Departments.
Without careful management on the part of Administration, cultural differences can lead to
“us/them” rivalries and turf wars which affect department efficiency and ultimately learner
success. While reasons for the tension between the two cultures are difficult to explain, there is
no difficulty in describing the effects. In Boards where the cultures are in conflict, the working
environment is characterized by a general mistrust and lack of cooperation, a pecking order for
the photo copier, designated seating in the lunchroom, selected greetings in the hallways,
expressions of exasperation when shared tasks cannot be avoided, deliberate delays in
processing requests, gate-keeping when decisions are called for and exchanges of looks when
almost anyone speaks. Tensions between programs can even extend to services provided,
delayed or withheld from learners. That is serious. The odd thing is that most people have no
idea where these conflicts have come from; they are in fact, groundless. Administrators in
situations like this can effect change by creating the need for people to work together and by
modeling what is expected in the way of open communication and trust. Not easy but very
worthwhile.

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 86

APPENDIX B
Dual Credits:

The following notes were taken at a workshop describing the Dual Credit Initiative showing positive
results for secondary school students. This can act as a model for concurrent training between LBS and
Adult Credit.

With the Dual Credit program, Secondary School students earn ministry-approved optional credits (max.
4) towards their OSSD through college courses and apprenticeship in-school training

Guidelines:

 The target group is students facing the biggest challenges in graduating


 Entry into the dual credit program is guided by the Student Success Team
 All opportunities involve a secondary school teacher in a dedicated role
 School Boards and Colleges coordinate the exchange of academic progress information

Dual Credits is a model of partnerships and pathways to enhance learner success.

Need to better understand respective environments and look for more effective solutions and supports
to learners who are at risk for graduation.

Historically, school boards provided strong promotion to universities but little promotion of college.
Colleges were reporting greater numbers of applicants coming as mature students and coming after
university but fewer numbers coming from secondary school programs. Whole populations of
adolescent learners were being lost as early leavers from secondary school.

A proposal moved forward to increase understanding, build awareness of issues for both college and
credit programming, and create more opportunities for success.

As a result, there are now 16 teams i.e. partnerships between credit and college with funding for
forums, coordinated activities and creation of dual credit courses. Funding is also available to support
piloting of the programs – including tuition costs for learners, travel costs, and salary for designated
instructor to support learners in college environment

The Dual Credits initiative has the following features:

 Flexibility – different configurations in different places


 Learners in Credit programs can register for a dual credit program which allows them to work on
the college campus
 A designated teacher to help ensure success
 Options to specialize in a particular field of training
 Opportunities to get co-op experience as part of the course
 Can achieve a college credit if successful
 Awarded matching (dual) credits towards OSSD upon success

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 87

Results:

 Great success stories from learners


 College reports these learners are better-prepared for success in college
 Increased hope and self-esteem that a college education is possible
 Higher attendance rates and credit accumulation
 Learners report greater confidence and sense of achievement that they are working on a college
campus

Once you get a learner into a focus group course and they are engaged, you really have them – retention
is not an issue.

Seamless transition from secondary school to college is achieved.

Process:

Dual credit courses are developed collaboratively between college and credit people

The courses are 240 hours in length which meets the minimum 220 hours of study for Secondary School
Credit

Many pilots start as temporary codes that have since become ministry-approved and now have
permanent code status. These courses can appear as regular course options in SS calendars

Newsletter in January contains descriptions and codes of all current dual credit programs

Interested principals can contact colleges to explore possible partnership agreements and apply
together for dual credit funding support in annual calls for proposals.

Problem:

Learners who decide they want to go to university are discovering the universities will not recognize the
dual credit course as a required course for program entry. Learners must understand that dual credit
courses act as optional SSC courses – not as requisite courses.

CESBA is supporting a parallel initiative building bridges between Adult LBS programs and adult
continuing education Secondary School Credit programs. We can create similar purposes to address
similar problems to achieve similar objectives.

A parallel idea: LBS learners at “advanced standing” i.e. nearing transition point to adult credit or having
met the LBS learning outcomes for success at transition, can take credit/LBS combined course – taught
by LBS instructor, in LBS safe environment, - or in classrooms along with adult SS students with a Credit
teacher, to take a course that meets requirements of Adult Credit.

Passing grades can be kept on file (banked) and claimed as a credit on entry into Adult Credit
programming.

Just as ministry provides funding for college tuition in the SCWI, they could also be asked to provide
funding for PLAR assessment

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 88

APPENDIX C A PRIMER on PLAR


PLAR is the formal evaluation and credit-granting process whereby mature students may obtain
Ontario Secondary School credits for prior learning – the knowledge and skills that mature
students have acquired, in both formal and informal ways, outside secondary school

Who is a Mature student?


 Is at least 18 years old on or before December 31st of the school year
 Is enrolled in a secondary school credit program for the purpose of obtaining an OSSD
 Has been out of school for a period of at least one year before returning as an adult

Benefits of an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD)


 Required by many employers for employment or advancement
 Alternatives such as a GED are not always accepted by employers
 Individuals with college diplomas may be disadvantaged in terms of employment or
advancement

An Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) is Attainable


 Only a minimum number of courses may be required
 Maturity credits may be available
 PLAR for Mature Students is available

Understanding Ontario Secondary School Diploma Requirements

There are different diploma requirements


 Circular H.S.1
 27 credits
 OSIS
 30 credits
 OSS
 30 credits, Literacy Test or Literacy Course, Volunteer work

Which requirements apply?


 Depends on year of entry into an Ontario secondary school
 Depends on the route the student wants to take
 Which is in the best interest of the student?

Maturity Credits vs PLAR


 Some students have the option of being able to earn up to 12 Maturity Credits
 With the PLAR process students can gain up to 26 credit through an assessment,
equivalency and/or challenge process
 Which is in the best interest of the student?

PLAR for Mature Students


 Includes three processes:
 “Individual assessment/equivalency” for grade 9 and10
 “equivalency” for Grade 11 and 12
 “challenge” for Grade 11 and 12

The First 16 credits: Grade 9/10 equivalency process


 Student completes registration application

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CLEARING THE PATHWAY 89

 Counsellor determines eligibility

When students must write Individual Assessments the following occurs:


 Samples of Assessments and testing dates are provided to the student
 The student then writes the Assessments
 Assessments are pass or fail.

There are 4 assessments that are written:


 English
 Science
 Math
 History/Geography (may be deferred for newcomers to Canada)
 Up to 4 credits may be granted for each successful assessment

If the student has failed the assessments the following options exist:
 The student takes the courses.
 The student re-writes the assessment after a reasonable amount of time has passed.

Equivalency
 In some cases students have already obtained some Ontario grade 9 and 10 credits
 In some cases students bring in school records from other jurisdictions and equivalency
credits will be granted.
 If there are fewer than 16 Grade 9 and 10 credits earned or granted through the
equivalency process students will be referred to the assessment process.

The NEXT 10 Credits – Three possibiities


 Student applies for Grade 11/12 Equivalency process
 Student applies for the Grade 11/12 Challenge process
 Student takes desired courses

Grade 11/12 Equivalency Process


 Senior Credit Equivalency Application is submitted to office with all supporting
documents
 Certificates
 Transcripts
 Documents
 Formal evidence of learning
 Decision is made to grant or not grant equivalency
 Options for Student if equivalency is not granted:
 Provide further evidence and re-submit application
 Take the courses.
 Re: Credits granted
 10 Credits may be granted
 This is the maximum number of Equivalency and/or Challenge credits
combined that can be granted.
 Fewer than 10 may be granted.
 To bring the max to 10 the student must take the course.

Grade 11-12 Challenge Process – What is it?


 Process for obtaining senior credits, whereby a mature student‟s prior learning is
assessed through a variety of assessment strategies, including formal tests

CESBA: 2009
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 90

(written work and practical demonstrations) valued at 70%, and other


assessment strategies, valued at 30%
 Standards of achievement must be the same as the standards for credits granted
to students who have taken the course

What is the process for a Challenge?


 Student must be registered in a credit course
 GWL3O is a recommended course
 A challenge application form is submitted
 Evidence that the mature students has a reasonable chance of being successful
in a challenge
 The student will complete the challenge assessment

If not successful, the student will be able to challenge for credit a second time, if they
can provide reasonable evidence to the principal that they are likely to be successful
after having benefited from additional study and experience during the interval.

The Final Four Credits


 The final 4 credits must be earned and should include:
 Grade 11 and 12 English
 Grade 11 or 12 Math
 one other compulsory credit
 A student with 26 or more credits MUST earn their remaining credits to obtain an
OSSD
 In addition: the student must complete the number of community service hours, as
determined by the principal and the OSSLT or OSSC.

Source: GECDSB and the WECDSB PowerPoint Presentation. Karen Sklash

CESBA: 2009
APPENDIX D LES Reading and Writing Assessment Checklist
Fill this out with your instructor. See how much you’ve accomplished! You will need to complete some demonstrations
and file them in your portfolio.

Updated
on:
READING Updated
on:
WRITING
Level 1 Level 1
________ ________
________  recognizes common symbols ________  copies from text
________  recognizes sight words ________  uses capital letters
________  decodes common words using phonics ________  uses basic phonetic spelling
________  scans simple text for familiar words ________  uses „ed‟, „ing‟, „s‟ endings
________  reads 2-3 sentences ________  simple sentences
 retells story  uses basic punctuation
Level 2 Level 2
________  uses phonics and word parts to decode ________  writes on topic
________  reads a short text (2-3 paragraphs) to find simple ________  capitalizes proper nouns
________ information ________  uses paragraph form
________  identifies main idea ________  self corrects
________  makes inferences, expresses opinion ________  good basic grasp of punctuation, spelling, grammar,
________  follows simple written instructions (correct verb tense, subject verb agreement)

Level 3 Level 3
________  reads short essay to identify topic and purpose ________  compound sentences
________  identifies writer‟s point of view ________  uses linking words
________  makes predictions ________  uses descriptive language
________  draws conclusions ________  well organized paragraphs with details

Level 4 Level 4
________
________  makes difficult inferences ________  very few spelling errors
________  develops and clarifies own point of view ________  wide variety of sentence type, structure
 derives meaning from uncommon vocabulary and ________  well linked, developed paragraphs
sentence structure ________  uses expressive language

Level 5 Level 5
________
 demonstrates critical thinking skills (analysis, ________  sophisticated and effective command of vocabulary
________ comparison, evaluation) ________  creative, persuasive written material
 demonstrates knowledge of literary devices (simile, ________  logical development of topic
metaphor)
LES Math and PLAR Checklist
Name: ___________________________ Date: _______________________________
Fill this out with your instructor. See how much you’ve accomplished! You will need to complete various demonstrations
and file them in your portfolio.
Updated Updated
On Basics – I can: On Decimals – I can:
 (+, -) decimal numbers
 Read and write number words to ten
 read signs (+, -, x, ÷)  (x, ÷) decimal numbers
 count by 2’s, 5’s, 10’s to 100
 read an analog clock Percents/Ratios – I can
 understand place value  use percents and ratios to compare quantities (by cross
 (+, -, x, ÷) one digit numbers mentally multiplying)
 add whole numbers with carrying  change percents to decimals and decimals to percents
 subtract whole numbers with borrowing  determine tax using percents
 multiply whole numbers more than 2 digits each
 divide whole numbers – more than 2digits each Order of Operations – I can:
 understand the idea of integers and negative  use BEDMAS to solve expressions
numbers Exponents – I can:
Fractions – I can:  understand what an exponent does to a number
 simplify using the Product Rule
 recognize types of fractions (proper,
improper, mixed)  simplify using the Quotient Rule
 convert between mixed and improper fractions  simplify using the Power Rule
Note: after successfully completing this section you are now ready to
 reduce fractions to lowest terms take the grade 11 Workplace math course (MEL3E)
 add and subtract fractions with same denominators
 add and subtract fractions by finding common
denominators Statistics – I can:
 multiply fractions of all types  calculate the mean, median, mode and range of a data set
 divide fractions of all types
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 93

Updated Updated
Graphs – I can: On
On
 understand how percentages are represented in a Angles and Intersecting Lines –I can:
circle graph  tell what is meant by a degree
 calculate quantities using graph info  recognize different types of angles (acute, right, obtuse, reflex)
 calculate unknown angles using other known angles
Algebra – I can:  tell what parallel and perpendicular
lines are
 tell what a variables, terms and coefficients are
 calculate angles with parallel lines using Z, C and F patterns
 simplify polynomials by collecting like terms
 calculate interior angles of a triangle
 understand how polynomials can represent real life
situations
 add/subtract polynomials Area – I can:
 expand polynomials (multiplication)  calculate the area of single rectangles
 tell the difference between an expression and an  calculate the area of compound shapes (more than one
equation rectangle)
 solve simple equations  calculate the area of a circle
 solve multi-step equations
Square Roots – I can:
Linear Relations/Graphing – I can:  calculate the square root of a number
 draw and label a Cartesian Plane
 say what an ordered pair is (X,Y)
 plot an ordered pair on the Plane Pythagorean Theorem – I can:
 label the Origin on the Plane  understand where/how you can use the Pythagorean
 say what a linear relationship is Theorem to calculate side lengths in right angle triangles
 describe a linear relationship with an equation
 graph line (relationship) using an equation and table (Note: after successfully completing all sections you are now ready to
of values take a Grade 11 College level math credit course and/or write PLAR
math)
 tell what slope means (positive/negative)
 calculate slope of a line (2 ways)

CESBA: 2009
APPENDIX E

(Source: Breaking the Barriers p.37)

Information Session – Pre-Credit Program

AGENDA
1. Introduction
a) Program goals and objectives
b) Program outline and weekly timetable
c) Materials and supplies
d) Assignments
e) Marking scheme
f) Expectations and Procedures re:
i. Attendance and absences
ii. Punctuality
iii. Late assignments
iv. Program guidelines
v. Getting extra help
2. Application Process
3. Question and Answer
CLEARING THE PATHWAY 95

APPENDIX F

Credit-Prep Application Questionnaire

Probably
Yes Maybe
Not
Work •
Can you arrange your work schedule so you can go to school
every day? • Will you have enough time and energy after work to
meet the demands of school?

Family •
Is your family supportive of your decision to go to take this
program? • Can you meet your obligations to your family and still
participate in the program?

Children •
Will you be able to take your kids to daycare and still be on time
for school? • Will you have enough time and energy after taking
care of your children to meet the demands of school? • Can you
get support looking after your kids so you can do your
schoolwork?

Health •
Can you manage any health problems you have so you can still
meet the demands of the program?

Money •
Do you have enough money to take the program (bus fare; lunch
money)?

Distance/Transportation •
Are you able to get to school on time each day?

Other •
Can you re-arrange any important appointments you have so you
won‟t have to miss any classes?

CESBA: 2009