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Center for Community Alternatives                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        


Parent Success Initiative Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration Grant Project Description

A collaboration of community and faith based organizations under the lead of the Center for Community Alternatives (CCA) and Greater Syracuse Works (GSW) has been awarded funding for the Parent Success Initiative Enhanced Transitional Jobs program (PSI-ETJ) through the US Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration (DOL ETA) Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration (ETJD) (SGA/DFA PY-10-11). The PSI-ETJ program will operate in Syracuse/Onondaga County New York. It is designed to assist noncustodial parents over the age of 18 achieve retained employment outcomes by engaging in a Transitional Jobs paid work experience and varied supportive services based on specific needs. Features of the PSI-ETJ will include: 
• Completion of a paid work experience through a Transitional Jobs (TJ) experience, 
• Placement in unsubsidized employment in a high-demand occupation or industry,
• Ongoing case management and supports to address barriers to employment throughout the program period (encompassing TJ work experience and post-TJ unsubsidized employment)
• Collaborations with numerous community partners including employers, the Onondaga County Bureau of Child Support Services (BCSS), the local One-Stop Career Center, Onondaga County Department of Probation, Onondaga County Reentry Task Force, legal, literacy, parenting and social service organizations.

PSI-ETJ is conceived as a research program by USDOL. As such, it will recruit at least 1,000 noncustodial parents living in Syracuse and Onondaga County during the first two years of the project, and provide services and follow-up support for roughly 3.5 years. Random assignment will result in 500 receiving program services and 500 entering a “control group” (not receiving program services). A comprehensive service strategy will meet the needs of eligible noncustodial parents. Services will include innovative use of outreach and recruitment, court referrals, transitional job placements, case management, parenting education, work readiness, job placement and retention, vocational training, job development, legal services and criminal history counseling. 

As the lead agency, CCA will provide administrative, fiscal and programmatic oversight of the project including evaluation coordination and oversight of program reporting and outcomes. CCA will also provide direct services including the transitional job and work readiness services, and criminal history counseling services for non-custodial parents with criminal histories. GSW will be responsible for intake functions including eligibility verification and will coordinate and manage staff development, case management and other support services. 

Providers of case management services will be selected through a competitive process managed by Greater Syracuse Works. As a research project, detailed data collection will occur and project oversight will include external evaluators, technical assistants and USDOL staff. 

For more information contact Michael Irwin at 470-4264 or mirwin@greatersyracuseworks.org





Solicitation for Case Management Subcontractor Services: 
Parent Success Initiative/Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration

Application Instructions

Introduction
Greater Syracuse Works in conjunction with the Center for Community Alternatives is soliciting case management site proposals to provide case management and employment services for the USDOL/ETA Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration program, locally called “Parent Success Initiative-Enhanced Transitional Jobs (PSI-ETJ).” PSI-ETJ will serve low income non-custodial parents in Onondaga County and assist them to find and keep employment. The Center for Community Alternatives will enter into contracts with up to four sites to provide services for a two-year period, with the possibility of 1additional year pending performance review and availability of funds. Subcontractors are required to hire, supervise and support an Employment Services Specialist (ESS) whose job will be recruitment, case management, placement, retention and advancement of eligible participants into employment and training.

Expected project outcomes include:

2 year outcome Site Responsibility Grant Total
Begin Services with ESS (First meeting/plan) 125 500
Begin Transitional Jobs experience 115 460
Entered Employment (Federal definition) 75 (60%) 300
Retained Employment (Federal definition) 57 (75%) 225

Successful applicants will demonstrate abilities to hire or assign staff to carry an ongoing caseload of, at the peak of services, up to 50 low-income non-custodial parents. 

Successful applicants will be expected to provide participant-accessible computers for online applications, career exploration and assessment, and other job placement activities. 

Sites will be expected to utilize and support a program-designated computer-based case management and data collection system for purposes of information collection and outcome/data tracking. At a minimum, sites will be required to collect and track data on average earnings, child support payments, recidivism (prison reentry) and are expected to make referrals to necessary program services including parenting, legal representation and civic restoration.

Successful applicants will negotiate a specific budget that cannot exceed $60,000 per year. Reimbursement will be based on monthly submission of actual expenses with back up. Budgets are not required at this time, but successful applicants will need to submit a line-item budget according to a set format that demonstrates salaries at a level ensuring the highest quality case management staff.

Additional expectations of case management sites are detailed in the Self-Assessment chart included below.

This solicitation is open to any current or potential member of Greater Syracuse Works.

Application Process
Interested organizations should initially complete the Self-Assessment to determine whether it makes sense to actually submit a formal application. If your response to any of the items is “no” it is strongly suggested that you not apply.

If you choose to apply, see below for the contents of the application.

Applications should be hand-delivered or mailed to:
Jennifer Schafer, Greater Syracuse Works, 516 Burt Street, Syracuse NY 13202.

All applications, regardless of method of receipt (hand-delivered or mailed) must be received no later than 4 PM on Wednesday, August 31, 2011. Applications must be submitted in hard copy. No electronic applications will be accepted. Late applications will not be accepted. Selections will be made and announced no later than 4 PM on Friday, September 9, 2011.

All narrative responses (Section Two) should be typed in 12 font type, double spaced, with 1 inch margins. There is a 7 page limit to this Section.

Applications will be reviewed and scored by a Site Selection Work Group consisting of project staff, Greater Syracuse Works members and/or individuals from organizations/ agencies not submitting applications. 

Email confirmation of receipt of all materials will occur. Notification of results will be emailed at the end of the selection process. Decisions of the Site Selection Work Group are final. Written feedback of scoring will be provided upon request. 

Application Contents

Applications must contain the following:
• Completed Application Cover Sheet signed by the Chief Executive Officer.
• Section One - completed responses to self-assessment questionnaire.
• Section Two - narrative responses to additional questions (7 page limit). Scores under 75 will not be considered for funding.
• Section Three - 1-page summary of your agency’s mission and history, and how it relates to the PSI-ETJ program.

Contacts
All questions should be addressed to Michael Irwin, GSW Program Director, at 315-470-4264 or via e-mail at mirwin@greatersyracuseworks.org. 


Application Cover Sheet
(Please Print or Type)

Organization/Business Name

______________________________________________________

Address
__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Phone _______________________ Fax __________________



Primary Contact Name __________________________________

Address (if different)
__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Phone _______________________ Fax __________________

E-mail Address ________________________________________



Chief Executive Officer’s Name (Print) _____________________

Chief Executive Officer’s Signature ________________________



Section One 
~ SELF-ASSESSMENT ~
Criteria for Sponsoring an Employment Service Specialist

To assist in determining whether your organization is capable of carrying out the requirements of sub-contracting with the Center for Community Alternatives, consider the following criteria. 

Given your current performance, indicate “yes” or “no.” Agencies listing “no” to any of the criteria should not apply.

Requirements for Agencies Hosting an Employment Services Specialist List “Y” or “N”
1. Active membership in Greater Syracuse Works (GSW) and/ or willingness to join and actively participate in GSW. 
2. Entry into a contractual arrangement assuring that the ESS will be 100% responsible to PSI-ETJ goals and procedures and a willingness to cooperate with project oversight through PSI-ETJ Project Office staff. 
3. Provision of a Case Manager in place by October 15, 2011; commit to a minimum of weekly contact with active participants. 
4. In collaboration with Project Staff, ESSs will schedule participant meetings and appointment times around the participant’s Transitional Jobs work schedule. 
5. Commitment that all ESSs participate in all full project activities including training, workshops, meetings and events. 
6. Extended hours of operation for ESS - evenings and weekends as needed. Site location accessible by bus. 
7. Physical and programmatic accessibility for ESS or site meetings and computers for participant/ ESS use. 
8. Provision of office or space and office supports including: adequate private meeting space, desk/chair, telephone, accessible fax machine, copier, phone and Internet access. 
9. Evidence that agency equipment will be compatible with project software – Microsoft Office Suite, Internet access and e-mail capacity capable of receiving and sending attachments. 


Section Two
Narrative Responses
Demonstration of Past Performance

If you answered “yes” to the above nine criteria you may continue to Section Two. Each question has a corresponding numeric value, with a grand total of 100 points possible. Agencies scoring under 75 points will not be considered for funding. Narrative responses should total no more than 7 pages, double-spaced using 12-point font (charts or graphics may be single spaced).

1. Case Management and Placement (25 points)
a. Provide data demonstrating successful past performance in providing job development and case management services to client customers leading to successful vocational training and retained employment outcomes. Utilize the attached chart to display data by project. (10 points)
b. Demonstrate your agency’s ability to maintain an active caseload of up to 50 participants at the peak per case-carrying staff, serving a minimum of 125 individuals during a 24 month period. (8 points)
c. Location of ESS and site services - geographic location will be considered in the selection process. (7 points)

2. Intake and Recruitment (25 points)
a. Demonstrate agency’s ability to recruit noncustodial parents throughout the program period. (12 Points)
b. Describe the use of a common, customer-focused intake process providing access to all potentially eligible participants including ongoing recruiting and outreach activities. (13 Points)

3. Evidence of Strong Supervision (25 points)
a. Demonstrate that case management supervision is administered by professional staff with training in case management protocols and best practices. Evidence that the ESS Supervisor has experience providing guidance and staff development to case management staff. (10 points).
b. Demonstration of close supervision/oversight and involvement in the project as indicated by attending required meetings, participation on committees, punctual and complete paperwork and review of staff work. (10 points)
c. Willingness of Supervisory staff to participate in program training and activities prior to the program start date of October 15, 2011. Supervisors should also be available to provide for or plan coverage for case management activities in the absence of the case manager throughout the contract period. (10 points)

4. Reporting and Fiscal Accountability (25 points)
Evidence that required programmatic and financial reporting for funders 
and stakeholders have been accurate and timely in past programs.


Past Performance

Project Name and Dates Total Served Total Job Entries % Placed
of total served Total Retained 90 Days % Retained 90 Days of total placed

Section Three
Agency Summary
One Page Overview

Attach a separate one page summary describing your agency’s mission and history, and how it relates to the PSI-ETJ program.




Parent Success Initiative- Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration Grant
Questions & Answers

In addition to the information listed in the Application Packet, a number of questions were raised at the August 17, 2011 Bidder’s Conference – answers are listed below:

Q. Will there be any other performance targets other than those in the Application Packet?
A. For the purposes of the Application, no. However, there will be a number of “soft” targets throughout the project such as the number of internal referrals to project services like legal services, parenting and civic restoration. These will be determined by the Planning Advisory Committee and exact targets will be established as the project progresses. These do not need to be addressed in this Application.

Q. Are there definitely going to be 4 sites delivering case management services?
A. Yes, unless less than 4 sites reach a minimum score of 75; then case managers will be distributed over those sites making or exceeding the minimum scores. 

Q. Will the Application Packet be transmitted electronically?
A. Yes. On August 17, 2011 the Application Packet will be distributed to all organizations attending the Bidder’s Conference or that have indicated an interest in receiving one. It will also be available on the Greater Syracuse Works web site starting the week of August 22.

Q. Are there any specific qualifications for case management staff?
A. No. However, sites will be expected to hire and support highly qualified staff and will be contractually obligated to fulfill all contract requirements regardless of the background of the staff.

Q. Will an administrative rate be allowed?
A. Yes – the specifics will be part of the budget negotiations with awardees.

Q. If a case manager does not have a full caseload, will the site be reimbursed less?
A. No. Reimbursement is by position and expenses as reflected on the approved site budget and supported by written backup. Reimbursement is not based on the number of participants on a caseload. However, all sites will be expected to maintain a generally equal number of cases as assigned by the Project Office.






For more information contact Michael Irwin at 470-4264 or mirwin@greatersyracuseworks.org.