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Consider labor market needs when making budget, course & program decisions.

Decide on program capacity as a region.

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Retool programs that are not working or not meeting a labor market need so that students can study what MATTERS.

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Adopt common metrics and skills panels in CCCCO RFAs.

Strengthen regions with new skill sets.

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Solve a complex workforce training need so that our system can better deliver for employers and sectors.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy

Click here for printable version [PDF].

Q: Will this affect how CTE programs are offered at my college?
A: No. College CTE programs that are supported with local apportionment funding are structured and offered according to decisions made at the college and by the local governing board.

Colleges and programs may choose to benefit from resources made available through the Doing What Matters for Jobs and Economy (DWM) framework, such as participation in faculty collaborative communities or application for grants. However, it is a local decision whether to participate or not.

Q: How will the priority selection affect my program?
A: The DWM framework provides regional funding for 10 sectors, five of which were selected by the region as either a priority or emerging regional area of focus. Colleges offer many other instructional programs. These programs will be unaffected. Where the college offers a program in a sector that was not selected as a priority within the region, this program will also be unaffected if supported by apportionment. However, where there is alignment between programs and the region’s sector selection, more opportunities should become available for technical assistance or participation in collaborative activities associated with the sector.

Q: My program is not within one of the selected sectors prioritized by my region. Can I still benefit?
A: Under the framework, all campuses are welcome to tap into the collaborative communities which can be established in any region to support faculty coming together to update curriculum for industry needs.

Although the EWD program initially focused on providing rapid response training, SB1402 now seeks to also inform apportionment-supported curricula in priority and emergent sectors important to regions should that be of interest to a local college.

Q: How can I keep my currently funded EWD-funded Center?
A: The RFA process provides first consideration for the allocation of resources in support of regional sector priorities. To achieve this goal, the number of awards will increase compared to prior years. However, awards will only be made when the applications are of sufficient quality to address the requirements of the grant. If resources remain available after the initial review, at-large awards will be considered.

If the college currently has a center, and wishes to re-apply, strongly encourage it to collaborate with regional community colleges offering instructional programs in the sector. In addition, it will be important for centers to address the SB1402-updated Common Metrics and Accountability Measures (see Appendix D in RFAs) that promote student success and meet industry's need for skilled workers.

Q: Centers take time to become established. Why the 1-5 year renewal timeframe instead of the prior 5-7 years?
A: According to the RFA, as long as the regional economy continues to value the sector and the center performs as outlined, it is possible for the tenure of the grant to last the life of SB1402.

Q: Where did the list of 10 sectors come from?
A: This list represents three considerations: 1) labor market research, 2) existing assets and prior investments, and 3) an agreement amongst the seven state agencies regarding California’s economic strategy.

Q: How were the regions decided? How was it decided that my college is in a specific region?
A: The 15 regions represent regional economies identified through extensive research conducted by the former state Economic Strategy Panel and revisited by the Centers of Excellence with advisement of the Labor Agency Labor Market Information Division (LMID). These 15 regional economies are grouped into 7 macro-regions aligned with the California community college regional consortia.

There are other regional designations. For example, the local WIBs have 49 regions, community colleges have 70 districts including 112 colleges, and the California Department of Education designates 11 regions. However, for the purpose of jobs and the economy, the alignment of the regional consortia with the economic regions provided the best information and coordination for both colleges and the economy.

Q: Will the sector prioritization be revisited?
A: Yes, reviews will occur by the Regional Consortia each year for submission to the Chancellor’s Office in September. Sector determinations will be informed by data provided by the Centers of Excellence, other sources of data (such as LWIB, industry, and local economic development entities) and recommendations from college leadership. While it is anticipated that annual refinements and adjustments to the sectors will occur, major shifts within the sectors at the regional level are not anticipated.

Q: What is braiding? What about the legalities?
A: Braiding is a recognized resource allocation strategy whereby categorical programs are administered under a unified framework rather than in silos. T he legal parameters of each funding stream have been inventoried by the Chancellor’s Office. Braiding has become a common-place federal strategy given diminished resources.

Q: Why is workforce program funding being braided?
A: In this era of diminished resources and heightened accountability, braiding is an established resource allocation strategy whereby categorical programs are administered under a unified framework rather than in silos. By braiding funding, resources are leveraged to support regionally identified priority and emergent sectors that have the potential to rebuild regional and state economies. Braiding has become common federal practice.

Q: What is authentic partnership?
A: Often, as in the case of a grant, partners who have never worked together apply for funds resulting in a set of disjointed interests rather than a common goal and approach. California has received feedback from the US Department of Education that this is an area in which improvement is needed. The Doing What Matters for Jobs and Economy framework seeks to improve connections, relationships and joint planning in advance of funding opportunities. Such authentic partnership – either by region or by sector – will better position grant applications from colleges and consortiums for success.

Q: Did this framework solicit field feedback?
A: Yes. The Doing What Matters for Jobs and Economy framework was developed over a year’s timeframe of feedback from the field, including 13 Critical Conversations held throughout the state.

Q: How were the priority sectors determined?
A: Regions were empowered to select and submit up to five priority and emergent sectors. With approximately a year’s worth of discussions, the Perkins-funded Regional Consortia convened the regional discussions. They involved a variety of stakeholders to discuss the region’s labor market data including representatives from the local WIBs, economic development entities, CTE deans, program faculty, industry representatives, and chambers of commerce . The Centers of Excellence provided data to support the process; however, most regions did not lack in data, but rather lacked an agreement on where to target investment.

It is anticipated that this process will become more sophisticated over time as the stakeholders gain familiarity with the process. Moving forward, many regions are considering a more formalized decision-making processes, including a Joint Power Authority, Memorandum of Understanding, Co-Op, or 501c(3).

Q: Will there be continuing opportunity for input? How should colleges communicate issues and concerns?
A: The Chancellor’s Office welcomes input and has established the following sites to disseminate and collect information:

View DWM Talking Points »


The Opportunity
For community colleges to become essential catalysts to California’s economic recovery and jobs creation at the local, regional and state levels.

The Strategy
Doing What MATTERS for jobs and the economy is a four-pronged framework to respond to the call of our nation, state, and regions to close the skills gap. The four prongs are:

  • Give Priority for Jobs and the Economy
  • Make Room for Jobs and the Economy
  • Promote Student Success
  • Innovate for Jobs and the Economy
California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office