COLLECTING/DISSEMINATING DATA & PROGRAM INFORMATION
OH: Technology helps the Ohio Appalachian Center for Higher Education (OACHE) work more effectively. The program serves 32 counties, 11 colleges, and 19 public schools, a huge territory to cover. Webinars (GoToMeeting is the technology resource; costs 1K per year for unlimited use)help sites collect data in a correct fashion. OH also uses technology to communicate with site coordinators, to disseminate grant funding opportunity information, and to conduct RFP training for OACHE-funded programs. The director controls the computer screen and what people see, displaying forms and showing participants how to complete them accurately. TA is provided using both face-to-face and online meetings. OACHE commissioned a follow-up college access study through the Voinovich Center at Ohio University to compare 2008 data with the 1992 data; economic development is now an OACHE focus.
Note: ZoHo – an online database (Access) – is available for free. TN will be using this resource collect data from schools. Another resource, E-lluminate, is free. Some AHE Centers have used Survey Monkey to collect data.
NC: The RFP is online. The director follows up by telephone with key counties. TA workshops are face-to-face.
GA: The RFP is online. TA workshops are face-to-face.
TN: Everything is sent via email. Applicants submit application electronically. GEAR-UP collaboration/cooperation remains an issue. In planning a “sustainability summit,” it’s important to consider who needs to be at the table.
WVACHE: The RFP is online. TA workshops are face-to-face.
MS: The RFP is online, but also sent electronically. TA workshops are face-to-face. First meetings are done face-to-face, but electronic meetings are used for subsequent gatherings. GEAR UP has a new cohort – 7th grade, and one school is participating. The MSIHL (Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning) is handling this program. There are no perceived barriers, and the MSIHL is writing a challenge grant application.
KY: RFP is sent via snail mail and via email. Director follows up with personal telephone calls. Personal contact makes a difference because a lot of people don’t know what AHE Network is about.
Note: Webinars need to have a purpose and be short (45 minutes). The benefits: everyone gets the same information at the same time. With travel cuts and the expense of substitute teachers, Webinars are cost effective.
RUNNING AN AHE CENTER PROGRAM
NC: In August 2008, Director met with the Campus-based network management team to let them know about the end of funding. The suggestion: get the players together. In November 2008, a sustainability summit with partners (UNC-Asheville and Western Carolina University) was conducted. The 48 attendees included: current grantees, the ARC state program manager, state legislators, superintendents, etc. GEAR UP did not participate, but POCs were made aware of the activity.
THINKING ABOUT SUSTAINABILITY. . .
Learn more about the college-going system in your state, and about the organizations working toward achieving common goals. Create a list of similar organizations in your state and identify where partnership opportunities are possible.
REPORTS FROM FUNDED SCHOOLS
End of year report must include a treasury report with appropriate signatures. No receipts, rosters or syllabus required; however, the school must keep this information on hand, and have it available upon request.
Value-added reports are available in both TN and OH; each superintendent has this information. This information helps schools identify and address the population or areas of need such as: low income, teacher development, etc.
The National Student Clearinghouse, the nation’s trusted source for enrollment verification, can be purchased to track students for college-going rates. Note: staff from the Clearinghouse will be invited to present at the OACHE conference.
Do not use 9th grade cohort; use seniors who actually graduated (senior class) unless you used the 9th grade cohort for your initial report.
RELATIONSHIP WITH HOST INSTITUTION
Host institution must understand the mission of the Center. Host a retreat for institutional staff; help them understand the mission of the organization (Center), get help from the AHE Center board of directors.
Follow your institution’s guidelines, regardless of the grant funding outline.
-- Serve on committees for the institution.
-- Head up an office of sponsored programs for institution.
-- Use governing and advisory boards to make policies.
The AHE Center director position must be at least 50% time. You cannot be a 10% director; at 50% time the agenda is not in competition; you must have the full support of the institution.
WORKING EFFECTIVELY WITH SCHOOLS
Establish partnership with local education service centers; make presentations about the program to the staff.
Provide opportunity for curriculum dialogues between college faculty and high school teachers.
Conduct a check presentation ceremony off campus; invited guests should include: school principals, graduation coaches, superintendent, grant coordinator from each school, and ARC state leaders. Prepare press release; invite reporters to the presentation.
Any senior in NC will receive an acceptance letter from a Community College based on an area code; make sure schools know about this (and other) resources.
Provide opportunities for effective principals to speak to principals in other schools - use principals in the trenches to speak to those in similar situations.
Encourage school staff participation in the bus tour/reality store.
Sponsor a parent-student night.
Use the simulation: Welcome to the State of Poverty: Understanding Families in Poverty to help school staff understand their students (and their situations) better.
Work with 4-H clubs and other out-of-school activities (reach the students outside of the schools); develop partnerships with these and other community resources.
Tell the school staff about the resources available from the PIRC-centers; on the AHE Center website(s).
Meet with parents off campus and/or off the school site; some parents are not comfortable on campus if they had a negative school experience.
When conducting college/campus tours, invite parents to participate and chaperone.
Look for resources available from the resource CollegeGoalSundayUSA, information on where and when to attend a College Goal Sunday program, as well as accessing financial aid resources. www.collegegoalsundayusa.org
Use resources from KnowHow2Go─ real-time, on-the-ground assistance to help with college-going. This initiative has built and continues to support a strong grassroots network of partners. To date, more than 14 state and regional coalitions and 30 national partners have signed onto the campaign; KnowHow2Go-Ohio received a 20,000 grant.
Use the Educational Needs Index (ENI)– a study of educational economic, and population pressures that influence educational policy and planning (and educational results).
Spread the word widely about available college access resources; for example and if appropriate, paint barns with such information.
Conduct symposia and follow-up with a publication about what works and what doesn’t work.