Blog

Blog

U.S. Census Bureau Launches New App – Dwellr

  The U.S. Census Bureau is providing free mobile Apps to iPhone and Android users that will allow easy access to statistical information. The dwellr App uses Census Bureau data to match the user with 25 places that best fit his or her lifestyle. Dwellr provides all kinds of neighborhood-level statistics such as demographics, home values, educational levels, population diversity, or the percent of single or married people in a city.  The dwellr App uses data from the American Community Survey (ACS) Five-Year Estimates. ACS is an ongoing survey that provides information every 1, 3 and 5 years about every neighborhood in the nation. ACS collects statistics on age, ethnicity, marital status, taxes, education, income, and much more. Dwellr updates as new data

READ MORE

W.K. Kellogg Foundation Prioritizes Family Engagement in Student Achievement

  The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) is partnering with the White House to discuss transformative family engagement as a major contributor to a child’s school readiness and success. Transformative family engagement is a shared responsibility of families, schools, and communities aimed at helping students learn and achieve. The White House recently held a first-of-its-kind Symposium on Transformative Family Engagement convening philanthropic, research, and federal partners for a dialogue on opportunities and pathways for empowering parents as leaders and key decision makers in education. WKKF’s Vice-President for Program Strategy Carla Thompson says, “Parents and caregivers are the strongest voices for their children and deserve a say in the decisions that affect their success.” In April 2014, the Kellogg Foundation announced the

READ MORE

New Team Members

  Transform Consulting Group is thrilled to announce our newest talent – Bradley Baker, Lauron Fischer and Nicholas Fisher. Bradley Baker, Project Intern, is currently a junior undergraduate student at the University of Indianapolis where he is pursuing a double major in Finance and Economics with a minor in Accounting. He is the President of the Student Economics Club and a member of the Student Finance Club on campus. After graduation he plans to move to Texas to pursue a Masters of Finance degree where he would eventually like to become a financial analyst. Bradley enjoys researching many different topics but economic development and American fiscal policy are his favorites. Being from Louisville, Kentucky, Bradley is a newcomer to Indianapolis.

READ MORE

New Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Signed into Law

  Recently signed into law by President Barack Obama, the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) is the first significant legislative reform of the nation’s job training system in 15 years. WIOA will make key improvements to the public workforce development system, help workers attain the essential skills for today’s jobs and promote a modern workforce to make American companies more competitive in the global economy. The new law emphasizes creating career pathway programs and improving the integration of education and job training services. White House Administration is taking steps to lay a foundation for the transformation of adult learning in America. They have released the Ready to Work: Job-Driven Training and American Opportunity, a federal-wide effort introduced by Vice President

READ MORE

New Federal Grant Opportunity to Support Preschools

   The U.S. Departments of Education (DOE) and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) have jointly announced the Preschool Development Grants–Expansion Grants competition.  Two hundred and fifty million is available to support low and moderate-income families’ access to high-quality preschool programs. Under the Preschool Development Grant program, states with either small or no state-funded preschool programs will be eligible for “Development Grants”, while states with more robust state-funded preschool programs, or that have received Race to the Top-Early Learning Challenge grants, will be eligible for “Expansion Grants”. This grant competition builds on President Obama’s comprehensive early learning agenda, investing in and strengthening early learning and development for our nation’s youngest children. An important outcome of this competition will

READ MORE

Client Spotlight: Boys & Girls Clubs of America

  This summer, Transform Consulting Group has had the opportunity to work with Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) in the development of their federal grant applications for the U.S. Department of Education’s Investing in Innovation Validation (i3) program and the Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL) program to improve reading performance of K-3rd grade students at high-need schools. Learning to read by third grade is a critical benchmark that marks the shift from students learning to read to students reading to learn. Students without a basic level of competency by third grade are more likely to struggle academically and have behavioral and social problems in subsequent grades (Fiester, 2010). Dr. Donald J. Hernandez found that students who were not

READ MORE

Indianapolis Mayor Announces New Education and Safety Initiative

  (Photo courtesy of the Indianapolis Star) With the announcement of his Education and Public Safety Initiative Wednesday morning, Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard proposes a holistic approach to make Indianapolis a safer city. Mayor Ballard believes the issue of crime and violence in American cities are tied to three “buckets” of responsibility: Prevention, Protection and Punishment. At the center of this initiative is $25 million in public-private investments to make high quality preschool available to 1,300 low-income 4-year-olds each year for the next 5 years. This would nearly double the amount of low-income families receiving scholarships for high quality preschool as part of Indiana’s PreK Pilot program set to roll out in 2015. In addition, Ballard’s plan makes funding available to increase the number

READ MORE

New Plan to Transform Indiana’s Workforce

  The Indiana Career Council (ICC), made up of government, education, and industry leaders, has been tasked with creating a strategic plan to transform Indiana’s workforce.  Align, Engage, Advance: A Strategic Plan to Transform Indiana’s Workforce identifies ways for agencies and partner organizations to work together to share information, align missions, and integrate resources to make sure students and workers improve their education and skills. The report is timely considering the following: According to the Indiana Chamber of Commerce Workforce Study, nearly 40% of well paying jobs remain unfilled due to a lack of qualified applicants. By 2020, 58% of Hoosier jobs will require a career certificate or college degree. Only 38% of working-age adults (25-64 years old) hold a

READ MORE

Searchable Database of Out of School Time Programs in Indiana

  Approximately 30%, or roughly 332,642, of Hoosier children (including kindergarteners) are left unsupervised in the afternoons (Afterschool Alliance, 2010).  Indiana Afterschool Network (IAN) has been working to improve the quality of out-of-school time (OST) programs that serve children in the critical hours from 3-7pm. One of IAN’s key projects has been to create an online searchable database of OST programs across Indiana for families and community stakeholders to locate information.  Managed through a partnership between IAN and Indiana Association for Child Care Resource and Referral (IACCRR), the database includes OST programs that serve K-12 youth before school, after school, over the summer and during school breaks. As of April 2014, 711 OST service providers have registered their program in

READ MORE

New Federal Grant Opportunity for Early Head Start and Child Care Program Partnerships

  As part of President Obama’s Early Learning Initiative, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has announced the availability of funds for the Early Head Start Expansion and Child Care Partnership (EHS-CCP) grant program.  The new grants are intended to expand access to high quality early learning opportunities for young infants and toddlers in poverty. Key facts about the grant program include the following: Eligible applicants for the EHS Expansion and EHS-CCP grants include: Current Head Start or EHS grantees Independent school districts Public and state controlled institutions of higher education Native American tribal governments (federally recognized) Public housing authorities/Indian housing authorities Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education Private

READ MORE