Technical Assistance to States on Performance-Based Funding: Final Project Report
In 2008, the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE) introduced its Technical Assistance to States on Performance-Based Funding initiative to help state policymakers and adult education administrators make informed decisions about adopting performance-based funding (PBF) systems to allocate adult education monetary resources. Combining national training workshops with individualized technical assistance (TA), this two-year project was designed to help state staff understand how PBF operates and the steps involved in developing PBF systems. OVAE contracted with MPR Associates, Inc. to design and deliver training and TA. Two national training workshops were held, for up to 15 states each year, and two rounds of targeted TA were provided for up to six states each year.
This report profiles the twelve states that received targeted TA. Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island participated in the first round of TA (March–November 2009); the second round included Alabama, Iowa, Maryland, Montana, Nevada and Texas (January–September 2010). States and TA facilitators worked together to design TA activities to address state-specific needs and interests, adapted from the PBF development process shared at the national workshops. Key activities for each state included convening a state task force; specifying state funding priorities; defining base and performance criteria for allocating resources; identifying appropriate data sources; modeling alternative funding formulas; and designing implementation strategies.
States may use the report to gain a better understanding of how PBF systems operate and to make more informed decisions about designing and implementing such systems. The state profiles in the report describe technical assistance requested by each state, activities that were undertaken to address the needs, and outcomes that resulted from each state’s participation in the initiative. Of particular benefit to state-level adult education administrators are descriptions of:
- How states participated in systems development for their funding systems through use of task forces
- State-level activities that were conducted to establish and revise funding criteria; review PBF models, options, and practices in other states
- How states implemented or plan to implement changes in their funding systems
- Outcomes for each state, described in terms of base funding and PBF.