[Technology 1227] Re: Homeland Security question

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Debra Smith dlmsmith at sbcglobal.net
Sat Aug 25 16:05:54 EDT 2007

Everytime I hear about this issue, I wonder if the existence of these free
electronic resources will lead to huge reductions in government funding for
the face-to-face adult education programs currently provided by the states.
With that possibility in mind, I'm also concerned about potential students'
lack of computers and Internet access, not to mention the relative benefits
of learning exclusively online versus learning in a classroom with
colleagues and teachers. But if this new resource will be an addition to our
current resources rather than a replacement for all or part of what we're
doing now, I'm all for it.
Debra Morris Smith

On 8/24/07, John Fleischman <jfleischman at scoe.net> wrote:


> Greetings, Larry and Barry. And greetings to NIFL Tech Listserv

> subscribers. John Fleischman here at the Sacramento County Office of

> Education.


> I believe I can shed some light on the August 10th announcement by

> President Bush and Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. See: <

> http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2007/08/20070810.html>.


> The announcement by the Administration focused on improving border

> security and immigration. The last item on the list, number 26, indicates,

> "The Department of Education will launch a free, Web-based portal to help

> immigrants learn English, and expand this model over time.


> The development of this portal is an outgrowth of a currently funded

> Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE) project entitled

> Strengthening Programs Through Technology (AKA AdultEd Online), a

> partnership between my office and the University of Michigan. The contract

> was awarded to develop a number of technology resources for adult education

> including exploring the feasibility of building a Web portal where adult

> learners could find instructional materials on subjects ranging from

> learning English to preparing for the G.E.D. To better understand the

> design features a portal should have, a prototype is being built first. The

> prototype will contain learning materials in three areas: a beginning-level

> English course, a mid-level English course, and activities for improving

> reading, writing and life skills.


> The prototype should be complete on January 31, 2008. It will then

> undergo several months of field testing with learners. By September a

> refined portal should be ready to launch for use by adults anywhere in the

> United States. The portal begins with a focus on learning English, but the

> portal is expected to expand over time, with the addition of materials in

> areas such as civics and basic skills.


> Over the next couple of months we'll be sharing more information about the

> portal. We also look forward to getting stakeholder input as we conduct

> field testing during Winter-Spring of 2008.


> John Fleischman

> jfleischman at scoe.net


> Jerome Johnston

> jerej at umich.edu



> *The Technology and Literacy Discussion List <technology at nifl.gov> on

> Wednesday, August 15, 2007 at 1:35 AM -0800 wrote:

> *On Tuesday the Department of Homeland Security announced 25 new measures

> to address "border security" and "immigration challenges." I would actually

> characterize many, if not most, of them as anti-immigrant.


> There is one, however, that teachers of English Language Learners, and

> their students, *might* find helpful. It is, not surprisingly, the last

> one on the list.


> The announcement stated that the "Department of Education will launch a

> free, web-based portal to help immigrants learn English…"


> The announcement gives absolutely no other details about when it will

> begin, what might be included, or who in the Department of Education is

> actually doing it.


> Does anyone know more?


> Larry Ferlazzo

> http://larryferlazzo.edublogs.org/


> *The Technology and Literacy Discussion List <technology at nifl.gov> on

> Wednesday, August 22, 2007 at 5:28 AM -0800 wrote:

> *I will have to learn more about the site, but I think many students will

> view the help skeptically because of past experience. After September 11th,

> NYC asked all immigrants (legal and illegal) to register to help the city

> better understand its friends vs.. enemies. Many immigrants did so, and

> those illegals (Mexican, Irish, Danish, Congolese, etc.) were shipped off

> over the next couple of years.


> So, what am I getting at? Some classes build progressively and want

> individual student identification so that a student can leave mid-class and

> pick-up where they left off. Could this individual ID hurt the student's

> status: I am thinking that even if the DHS site does not ask for personal

> information it can be gotten other ways, like using a "jon.smith at yahoo.com" address to track to the user's more personal information of locale.


> Barry Burkett,

> Frankfort, KY


> *The Technology and Literacy Discussion List <technology at nifl.gov> on

> Wednesday, August 22, 2007 at 4:48 PM -0800 wrote:

> *Barry makes an excellent point. I think the public statement said it

> would be run through the Education Department, but that doesn't mean they

> wouldn't share information.


> I still haven't found anyone who knows anything more about it than what

> was said on the release.


> Larry Ferlazzo




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