The Employment and Training Administration (ETA), U. S. Department of Labor (DOL, or the Department, or we), announces the availability of approximately $10 million in grant funds authorized by Section 171(c)(2) of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA) and section 169 of the Workforce Innovation
and Opportunity Act of 2014 (WIOA) for grants to State Workforce Agencies (SWA) for the Workforce Data Quality Initiative (WDQI).
With the passage of the WIOA, WDQI grants become even more vital as states move towards developing and building a more integrated data structure and develop consumer-friendly displays (i.e., scorecards) of program outcome information.
WIOA expands on WIA by weaving data collection from both DOL and the Department of Education (ED) in a manner that is unique for the workforce system.
Furthermore, we will encourage grantees to align and integrate data systems to support program management, performance reporting, and common case management systems.
Additionally, grantees should focus on designing information technology systems which reduce burden and present integrated information to support service provision and inform customer choice.
We further encourage grantees to use grant funds to expand access to comprehensive information sharing tools that enable both participants and employers to access programmatic outcomes.
The Department has reserved up to 3 percent of this round’s total grant funding (a maximum amount of approximately $300,000) to provide technical assistance to grantees in developing and implementing their State workforce longitudinal administrative databases.
For the remainder of this document, we will interchangeably refer to the databases created as “workforce longitudinal administrative databases” or “workforce longitudinal databases.” Grants awarded will provide SWAs the opportunity to develop or expand State workforce longitudinal administrative databases.
The State workforce longitudinal databases will, at a minimum:
1) include information on programs that provide training, employment services, and unemployment insurance; 2) connect with education data contained in Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems (SLDS) databases; 3) be linked at the individual level to allow for the evaluation of federally and State-supported education and workforce programs; 4) be capable of generating workforce training provider performance information and outcomes in a standardized, easy to understand format (e.g., scorecards), consistent with all applicable Federal and State privacy laws; and 5) lead to better information for customers and stakeholders of the workforce system.
Where such longitudinal systems do not exist or are in early development, WDQI grant assistance may be used to design and develop these databases.
WDQI grant assistance can also be used to improve upon existing State workforce longitudinal databases.
This FOA provides a description of the application submission requirements, outlines the process that eligible entities must use to apply for funds covered by this FOA, and details how grantees will be selected.
Additional background information on the WDQI is available at http://www.doleta.gov/performance/workforcedatagrant0 9. cfm.