- III. Operational Planning Elements
The Unified or Combined State Plan must include an Operational Planning Elements section that supports the State’s strategy and the system-wide vision described in Section II(c) above. Unless otherwise noted, all Operational Planning Elements apply to Combined State Plan partner programs included in the plan as well as to core programs. This section must include—
- a. State Strategy Implementation
The Unified or Combined State Plan must include–
- 2. Implementation of State Strategy
Describe how the lead State agency with responsibility for the administration of each core program or a Combined Plan partner program included in this plan will implement the State’s Strategies identified in Section II(c). above. This must include a description of—
- 2. Implementation of State Strategy
- a. State Strategy Implementation
III. a. 2. E. Partner Engagement with Educational Institutions
Describe how the State’s Strategies will engage the State’s community colleges and area career and technical education schools, as partners in the workforce development system to create a job-driven education and training system. WIOA section 102(b)(2)(B)(iv).
Partner Engagement with Educational Insitutions
Florida Talent Development Council
In 2019, the Florida Legislature replaced the Higher Education Coordinating Council with the Florida Talent Development Council (FTDC). The new council, composed of legislative, business, workforce development and postsecondary education leaders, was tasked with developing a coordinated, data-driven, statewide approach to meeting Florida’s needs for a 21st-century workforce. More specifically, the FTDC was given the statutory responsibility to develop a state strategic plan for talent development that positions Florida to achieve its 2030 educational attainment goal. The “Strengthening Alignment between Industry and Learning” goal is for 60 percent of working-age Floridians to hold a high-value postsecondary credential by 2030. This “SAIL to 60” goal is a priority for Governor DeSantis and the Florida Legislature. It also is a key initiative in support of the Governor’s goal, outlined in Executive Order 19-31, to make Florida No. 1 in the nation for workforce education by 2030.
The FTDC, which is administratively supported by DEO, is made up of the following members:
- One member, appointed by the Governor, to serve as the chair
- One member of the Florida Senate
- One member of the Florida House of Representatives
- The President and CEO of CareerSource Florida, Inc.
- The President of Enterprise Florida, Inc.
- The Executive Director of the DEO
- The Commissioner of Education
- The President of the Florida Council of 100
- The President of the Florida Chamber of Commerce
- One member of the State Board of Education
- One member of the Board of Governors
Additionally, other state education leaders serve in an ex officio, nonvoting capacity. They are:
- The Chancellor of the State University System
- The Chancellor of the Florida College System
- The Chancellor of Career and Adult Education
- The President of the Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida
- The President of the Florida Association of Postsecondary Schools and Colleges
The FTDC began meeting in October 2019 to develop a strategic plan framework that addressed the following areas required for inclusion in the new state plan for talent development:
- Identify Florida's fastest-growing industry sectors and the postsecondary credentials required for employment in those industries.
- Assess whether postsecondary degrees, certificates, and other credentials awarded by Florida's postsecondary institutions align with high-demand employment needs and job placement rates.
- Identify strategies to deepen and expand cross-sector collaboration to align higher education programs with targeted industry needs.
- Establish targeted strategies to increase certifications and degrees for all populations with attention to closing equity gaps for underserved populations and incumbent workers requiring an upgrade of skill.
- Assess the role of apprenticeship programs in meeting targeted workforce needs and identify any barriers to program expansion.
- Identify common metrics and benchmarks to demonstrate progress toward the 60 percent goal and how the SAIL to 60 Initiative can provide coordinated cross-sector support for the strategic plan.
- Recommend improvements to the consistency of workforce education data collected and reported by Florida College System institutions and school districts, including the establishment of common elements and definitions for any data that is used for state and federal funding and program accountability.
- Establish a timeline for regularly updating the strategic plan and the established goals.
The Council chose to approach its work by creating five workgroups to develop proposed goals and strategies in the following areas: Policy and System Alignment, Workforce Readiness, Cross-Sector Collaboration and Engagement, Data and Accountability, and Equity and Access. Ultimately, those groups produced a series of recommendations that were deliberated on, enhanced and approved by the Council. The FTDC also adopted the following vision for this work: “Create and foster cross-sector collaboration between educational institutions, economic development and workforce needs; thereby, creating an accountable talent pipeline toward workforce readiness that fuels economic growth and evolving career pathways for all Floridians. Utilize strategic planning, data accumulation and enhanced government communication to achieve alignment between employer needs and valued and accountable education programs — beginning at elementary school through high school — and continuing to postsecondary and a credential-based education system."
In December 2019, the Council delivered the first plan with 20 goals to the Governor and Florida Legislature, while acknowledging that it is a living plan that will serve as a foundation for the critical work ahead to align programs and credentials with the needs of employers and increase education and training attainment. The plan will be continuously refined as needed. In 2020 and beyond, the FTDC will continue meeting to implement the plan’s goals and strategies, as it continues to provide statewide leadership to assist in Florida’s progress toward the attainment goal.
The Florida Talent Development Council's first plan can be viewed online at http://www.floridajobs.org/docs/default-source/communicationsfiles/florida-talent-development-council/ftdc-plan.pdf?sfvrsn=4eae40b0_6
Blending Academics with Career and Technical Education
VR coordinates with state and local education agencies and officials to collaboratively offer youth with disabilities opportunities to gain work experiences that help them prepare for careers in the 21st century. Collaborations such as High School High Tech, Project SEARCH, Work-Based Learning Experiences, and Postsecondary Education programs engage youth in both classroom and practical instruction that blends acquisition of certificates and work skills that align with occupations available through Career and Technical Education. Hands-on career exploration and preparation activities where learned skills, attitudes and behaviors can be applied in practical or real-world situations help youth to become and stay engaged.
The Division of Blind Services plans to establish an Information Technology Credentials Program at the Rehabilitation Center. The Division will collaborate with Career and Technical Education to identify course outline and establish credentials.
Collaborating with Florida’s Universities and Colleges
The Division of Blind Services works with state universities that provide master’s degrees in rehabilitation counseling. Activities include attending board meetings and presenting to college classes upon request to share pertinent information related to the Division and recruitment efforts. Vocational rehabilitation staff utilizes the “Find My College Major” website to assist students who are unsure of their career/education goals. This website serves as a single point of reference for individuals seeking information on Florida’s colleges and courses/degrees. The FDBS will work with colleges and universities to develop a process to implement the Last Mile Initiative, spearheaded by Governor Ron DeSantis. This initiative is designed to help individuals who started college but did not complete enough credit hours to earn a degree. These individuals must be Florida residents and must have attended the college or university within the past 8 years.
The Adult Education staff within the Division for Career and Adult Education will provide professional development on career pathways to FDBS staff.
Facilitating Postsecondary Education
VR has an interagency agreement coordinating transition services with state education officials (FDBS, BEESS). This state-level agreement includes agencies responsible for providing transition services to students leaving high school and going into postsecondary education/training, support services and/or employment. These agencies meet regularly to share information, ideas and initiatives; to collaborate on training and special projects; to cooperate in planning and budgeting; and to support mutually beneficial areas of work.
The VR has a representative on the State Secondary Transition Interagency Committee. The representative works closely with the regional representatives of Project 10: The Transition Education Network, which is funded through a grant from the Bureau of Exceptional Education and Student Services within the Florida Department of Education to the University of South Florida, St. Petersburg. Project 10 helps Florida school districts and stakeholders increase their ability to provide secondary transition services to students with disabilities and improve student academic success and postsecondary outcomes. Project 10 helps educators, parents, students, agency representatives and other stakeholders by providing capacity-building support to implement secondary transition services, interagency collaboration, transition legislation and policy and student development and outcomes. VR counselors serving transition students participate in each area’s local interagency councils. Interagency councils are a collaborative effort between VR and Department of Education partners, public high schools, adult service agencies, workforce programs, parents, students, advocates and employers cooperating to meet the transition needs of students with disabilities.
The FDBS has a formal interagency agreement with other divisions within the Florida Department of Education that provide transition services to high school students progressing to postsecondary education/training, support services, and/or competitive integrated employment. These agencies agree to meet regularly to share information, ideas and current initiatives; collaborate on training and special projects; cooperate in planning and budgeting, and support areas of work that are mutually beneficial. This agreement functions as a transition services model for improved collaboration, communication, coordination, and cooperation among the parties included in the agreement.