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Emerging Practices with Promise

Submitted By: Cherish Padro, Shasta College

Comprehensive website facilitates awareness and collaboration

The Challenge

Better.Jobs dba The Northern California Adult Education Consortium encompasses Shasta, Tehama and Trinity counties, which cover a large area in the northern part of the state. The region’s vastness made it difficult to ensure consistent communications among all adult education providers, which presented multiple challenges, such as ensuring that potential students were aware of the many programs offered and facilitating region-wide coordination to ensure consistency among programs and processes. For example, there were 10 different adult education assessments in the three-county region, which created obstacles for adult learners who had to retake the placement assessment when transferring from one program to another because the programs used different tests.

The Solution

The solution arose as a result of the Assembly Bill 86 planning process, which brought all members of the consortium to the table. The group proposed developing a robust, interactive website that served as a “one-stop” location where potential adult learners could explore all of the programs offered throughout the region and receive guidance about which would be a good fit for them by answering a series of prompts. The consortium worked to bring that vision to fruition, launching the Better.Jobs website. In addition to counseling prospective adult learners, the website also includes a secure web portal that allows service providers to communicate with one another on a regular basis, allowing them to ask questions about assessments, best practices, transition plans and services.


As a result of the website, members and service providers participating in the statewide AEBG initiative throughout Shasta, Tehama and Trinity counties have a central location to easily find needed information pertaining to consortia requirements on a regional level. Resources, data information, budget requests and student data are all accessible in a private and confidential manner. Access to this information provides an easier way for providers to see which individuals have requested services and what their future goals entail. In addition, the website has the capability to allow quick communication between service providers, ensuring that questions and confirmations are handled swiftly, so as not to delay registration or other processes that impact a student's progression within the adult education system.

The website continues to be perfected on the participating adult learner side so that interested individuals can access information about the services in the region and engage with the system to determine critical steps needed in transitioning them into student status and success. The consortium’s main priority and vision for the website is to provide a smooth transition for adults in the region who are looking for more opportunity.

The Data

From the launch of the website in 2015 (originally named Adult-U) and the consortium’s rebranding in 2017 (Better.Jobs), the site has received more than 1,400 views, with more than 390 users who have successfully completed the questionnaire to inquire about programs and services. Site traffic indicates the website has been accessed from various sites, including Direct URL, Google, Bing, Facebook, The Smart Center, Yahoo, Pandora and Shasta College.

Better.Jobs hopefully will have a tracking component in the near future directly tied to the Community Pro data system to allow the consortium to see who is accessing referral services.

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