If you’re familiar at all with NC3T, you’ve probably heard about Seamless WBL. A browser-based app we launched a couple of years ago. This tool is designed to help educators with the following:
- find and manage partners,
- run their work-based learning activities,
- manage their advisory boards, and
- provide the kind of reporting that helps practitioners know exactly how work-based learning is happening across their school or district.
Up until a few months ago, we were serving schools and districts exclusively. That changed last September, when the Arkansas Department of Education (ADE) asked if we could create a customized version of the system, specifically tailored to align with their WBL reporting requirements.
We worked through a strategic planning process and tweaked the setup a couple of times prior to our January launch. When all was said and done, we had a system:
- that carried their branding,
- held their manuals and primary documents,
- added several fields to capture essential information, and
- produced customized reports lined up exactly with their quarterly reporting requirements.
This has the potential to be a game-changer for the state: Rather than chasing data from dozens of schools each quarter, people at the state office can simply run a report and gather everything they need at once. The system was redesigned to accommodate their workflow, with the potential to drastically improve reporting and review capabilities going forward.
You might think that this was because work-based learning was their Perkins primary indicator, but it wasn’t: Theirs is certifications. The reason is that during their initial application, they didn’t feel that they had the infrastructure to report on work-based learning; that has changed with Seamless; however, and they’re now considering adding it during their next application.
I held a workshop with Dr. Angela Kremers and Mary Beck of ADE during the Spring 2021 Advance CTE conference; you can see a recording of that session below. If you’re interested in learning more about our work with Arkansas, please contact me at [email protected] or 410-740-2006, x5.
Brett Pawlowski is Executive Vice President of the National Center for College and Career (NC3T) (www.nc3t.com). NC3T provides planning, coaching, technical assistance, and tools. These strategies help community-based leadership teams plan and implement their college-career pathway systems and strengthen employer connections with education.