Southern Literacy Communication Consortium

SOUTHERN LITERACY COMMUNICATION CONSORTIUM
REGION II HUB QUARTERLY REPORT TO
THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR LITERACY
APRIL 1- JUNE 30, 1996

Project Staff: JoAnn Martin and Clint Williams, Texas Literacy Resource Center
Brenda Bell, Center for Literacy Studies

Report prepared by Brenda Bell and Clint Williams

States reporting: Oklahoma, Virginia, West Virginia, Louisiana, Texas, Tennessee, Mississippi and Arkansas

I. Goals and activities for Quarter 3

Goal 1 - Develop SLCC Information System on WWW

a. Construct and maintain SLCC homepages
During the third quarter of this grant year, three more states mounted homepages, bringing the total to twelve of the fourteen.
The Region's homepage was accessed 4,832 times during the third quarter, a significant increase from the 741 recorded for the second quarter. We have 315 html pages on our server. The usage statistics for the quarter are:
SLCC page : 4,832 hits
April 533
May 2069
June 2,230
Texas 15,147 hits
April 2,714
May 5,621
June 6,812
Arkansas 2,354 hits
April 147
May 1,190
June 1,017
South Carolina 443 hits
April 41
May 206
June 196
Oklahoma 272 hits - for just one month!
April 0
May 0
June 272
Georgia 0 hits
April 0
May 0
June 0
Mississippi 56 hits





None of the other reporting states have the capability of counting hits at this time.

GOAL 2 - Develop capacity of each SLRC to implement and maintain WWW site

a. Implement Region II listserv.
   The listserv has been in operation for two quarters, with varying degrees of usage. It has been an effective mechanism for sending out information and requests; it has not been used as much for sharing ideas and developing plans. All state reports for this quarterly report were received via e-mail, in response to a posting on the listserv. We did not mail a paper request.    Reporting states said they think the listserv is a valuable communication tool and that we need to continue to post more to it.
   When asked how often they check their e-mail, responses ranged from three times a week to daily, with several of the daily checkers reporting that they automatically receive notification of e-mail every 30 minutes throughout the day.

b. Provide technical assistance    The tecnical manager has been available by telephone and e-mail to provide assistance and answer questions. Of those member states who have requested assistance, all report satisfaction with the results. Several states have not needed technical assistance from the consortium.

c. Assist in the development and updating of homepages for each state.    The training session held in Texas in June (described in more detail in Section 3) provided the opportunity for states to continue developing their state pages. For example, Oklahoma reports: "Our delegate to the June meeting received the necessary assistance which enabled OLRO to establish our home page, and we're very pleased with the results."

GOAL 3- Develop capacity of SLRCs to train local literacy providers in use of SLCC and LINCS

a. Implement local access projects with five pilot states    The following supplements the report on local access projects given in the Quarter 2 report:

Virginia: Anthony Harbour reports:

Tennessee:

Mississippi

Other states in the region have been continuing their outreach to local programs.

Oklahoma reports:

b.Provide training for state teams
   The consortium's second meeting and training session was held at Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, June 1-4. Representatives from 12 of the 14 states attended. (One participant cancelled at the last minute due to a death in the family.) Ginny Heinrich, Minnesota Literacy Resource Center, served as a resource person for training in library cataloging and database management issues.
   Topics covered during the three day event included: Overview of NIFL's LINCS system and the process for developing a national literacy database, including the project goal and vision and the consortium's roles and responsibilities; Collecting locally-produced materials: tips and tricks, information and resource sharing and discussion of issues; using NIFL's online forms for cataloging and searching. Also included were sessions on homepage development and advanced homepage work, including multi-media, and which included a trip to Texas A&M's new distance learning center with a live session using distance learning technologies to connect with Roy Kaiser in San Antonio, Texas,

GOAL 4 - Promote LINCS and SLCC Information System to literacy, ABE, and employment skills providers

Consortium members have been continuing to spread the word about LINCS and the Region II network:

   Arkansas presented the SLCC at their statewide adult education technology institute with 80 adult educators and literacy council providers. A presentation was given at COABE in Pennsylvania to 30 adult educators and administrators. The Arkansas Association of Public Continuing Adult EDucation Preconference received a SLCC presentation to 90 adult education and literacy council representatives.

   Virginia has conducted sessions on the use of the Internet and the VAELN webpages. The sessions have included LINCS/SLCC has an integral part of the information provided.

   In West Virginia, Louise has been working with the small group of ABE teachers who have Internet access to use the SLCC homepage as a starting point for exercises within the classroom. During a staff development session she worked with a group of 23 practitioners, using SLCC homepage as a starting point to explore the Internet.

   In Louisiana, the Home Instruction Program for Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) staff were trained in Internet use, using family literacy sites maintained through the network and consortium members. Department of Education, ESL division has worked with Louisiana Center to enhance their web page information. Developing plans to work with the Community Action Agency and special education school districts during quarter four. Louisiana has publicized SLCC/LINCS in their newsletter, which has a circulation of 2,500.

   Oklahoma, which has just gotten their page up and running, is developing plans for quarter four to provide training to the State Dept of Education, Lifelong Learning Section, in using LINCS/SLCC.

   Texas reported the following presentations or articles:

   In Tennessee, Brenda presented SLCC/LINCS to state agency representatives at the TRIMS Policy Team Meeting and to members of the TLRC/CLS advisory board.

   In Virginia, presentations were made to two regional meetings of adult education practitioners, and five sessions were presented at state-wide meetings, with 150 people attending

States are in the process of establishing homepage links to other state agencies.

For example, through the Center for Literacy's Studies page in Tennessee, the TRIMS project has links to Tennessee Employment Training and Security, DHS, and Labor.

Texas has links to all Texas agencies, including the Texas State Library and Texas Workforce Commission.

Virginia has links to all central grant programs and one local literacy program.

West Virginia is linking to the WV Library Commission and the WV Departmen of Education, Bell Atlantic Project.

Louisiana has links to the Governor's Office, Info Louisiana, State Library of Louisisana, and LSU/LA Energy and Environmental Resources and Information Center. Mississippihas linked to their Project LEAP and added local literacy providers as they come online.

Plans include links to local, state, regional and national sites as the pages evolve.

GOAL 5 - Develop a searchable database of materials and program information on WWW

a. The June training session was designed to help member states move toward having searchable databases.

Oklahoma is linking with the state's online catalog, maintaned by the state publications depository for all original publications developed in Oklahoma. The URL is: http://www.auto-graphics.com/cgipac/mmx/odol

Beginning in the middle of quarter four, Tennessee will have a part-time (10 hours per week) graduate student in library and information sciences, who will be working on the catalog and converting to a WAIS searchable format.

b. Convert catalogs of selected SLRCs to WAIS format

The consortium is contracting with the Virginia Center to catalog locally produced material and to convert their catalog to WAIS format.

II. Suggestions for Year Two - Priorities and Needs

What should be the priority for the consortium?

Oklahoma: home pages should continue to expand to include even more useful information for practitioners and the public. Several sites list topics which are still under construction. We look forward to the time when we can update information for our home page directly. More of our practitioners need Internet access before we can do widespread training. This will take time.
The self-sufficiency of the Literacy Resource Office is dependent upon that of our host agency, the Ok. Department of Libraries (ODL). ODL is getting software which will enable its Public Information Office staff to develop home pages. The target date for the Library to have its home pages up and running is September 1st. The Office of State Finance will manage our home pages until such time as this agency gets a security system for our Unix Server, possibly early 1997. At that time, we will be self-sufficient, as we will have all components here.

Virginia: Now that the infrastructure is in place, we should concentrate on providing some tangible products for adult education and literacy practitioners. This could be documents and materials that can be downloaded from our webpages. We plan to offer materials developed through our grant programs in Virginia.
Anthony Harbour writes:

Louisiana: A priority for the consortium should be continued interaction with NIFL to keep SLRCs in the budget for future block grants. Most helpful in working with practitioners would be a state-wide funding initiative to purchase equipment for schools and communities. Regarding equipment or staff needed to become self sufficient,
Pam Wall writes:

West Virginia: Louise Miller writes:

Tennessee: priority should be placed on providing state centers with equipment and/or staff time needed to successfully maintain homepages, within the confines of a limited budget. Training could focus on ways to translate existing documents into graphically interesting homepage documents, and developing curriculum for use online. Another key priority is securing funding for continuation of the network.

Texas: was concerned with securing funding as well as the development of internet training materials.

Arkansas has a priority of continued collaboration - including help with grants, homepages and LINCS

Mississippi needs technology training that staff can utilize at the local level. There needs to be more assistance to states in implementing more technology and training at the local level as we continue to build our expertise in the Resource Centers. More training modules on technology need to utilized on a local level. We need a technology staff person.

West Virginia "I feel very strongly about the development of useful training modules (complete with learning activities that the practitioner can take back to the classroom and put into immediate use) which includes not only the internet, but productivity software as well as educational software. With so much emphasis on the workplace and the SCANS report, I feel that it is important to incorporate productivity software into our learning activity as much as possible. However, at the same time, I feel that it is my responsibility as the Staff Development representative in charge of technology to develop / devise a way to do this that can address the various needs of the practitioner. For example, if given the proper training, practitioners could begin keeping electronic portfolios for our students, could use productivity software as a means to compile/report statistics needed at the local and state level, etc. After my trip to Texas, I am looking forward to hearing from Clint Williams about the progress on the "Student Portfolio" program they have developed for their state." - Louise Miller.

IV. Goals, objectives, and activities planned for Quarter 4:

1. Develop SLCC Information System on WWW

Form and maintain a consortium for participating

Involve all states in the "life" of the system, by encouraging contributions of information to system

2. Develop capacity of each SLRC to implement and maintain WWW site

Provide technocal assistance (telephone, online and on-site)

3. Develop capacity of SLRCs to train local literacy providers in use of SLCC and LINCS

4. Promote LINCS and SLCC Information System to literacy, ABE and employment skills providers

Identify two agencies per state to involve in outreach activities and in state planning

Identify and implement online links to other agencies

5. Develop a searchable database of materials and program information on WWW

Identify locally produced materials to contribute to regional database

Provide assistance and training on development and maintenance of WWW searchable database and on cataloging per Starting Point Standards

6. Evaluate the use and effectiveness of SLCC information System

With all consortium members, develop and clarify evaluation questions and format for self-evaluation
Southern Literacy Communication Consortium,

Center for Literacy Studies, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville
600 Henley Street, Suite 312, Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-4135


Questions, Comments or Problems Contact:
CLS staff; E-Mail: <hub2@cls.coe.utk.edu>; Phone: (423) 974-4109


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