Greetings from Montana LINCS

Leap Year is a great way to “leap” into something new.  MTLINCS will no longer be sending you a weekly email that includes national LINCS updates.  Interested in what is happening nationally?  Looking for new strategies?  Sign up on the LINCS discussion lists to follow trending information.

Having trouble with this email?  Click here for MTLINCS Email for 2/29/16.

Looking for past emails?

Go to the Email Archives in the upper left-hand corner on the home page at

Montana Information

1. Montana ABLE Trainings:

Montana BEST+ Training and ESOL Conference

Best Plus 2.0 and Best Literacy Discussion

       Tuesday, May 3, 2016

       9:00 am to 3:00 pm

       OPI 1300 11th Avenue Conference Room

ESOL Spring Conference

       Tuesday, May 3, 2016, 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm - OPI 1300 11th Avenue Conference Room

       Wednesday, May 4, 2016, 8:00 am to 3:00 pm - OPI 1300 11th Avenue Conference Room

2. Montana Moving Pathways Forward Resources

Click here to access all MPF Resources.  Logic Model and Contextualized Templates now posted.

3. Montana and National News Information

Click here to access a site that will take you to the most current information without your having to search.  New resources (NRS Implementation Guidelines) posted on 2/20/16.

4. WIOA Update

WIOA Montana Updates:


Montana WIOA Discussion Group Update

Have you been reading items posted on the Montana WIOA Discussion List?  Monthly program reports have been posted.

Click here  to access the following:   Montana WIOA:  Chunking Pertinent Information for Montana.

9/7/15:  WIOA Kickoff Follow-up

Presentations posted on DLI website: under Data and Publications.

WIOA National Update:

2/20/16:  NRS Implementation Guidelines

NRS Implementation Guidelines

12/14/15:  WIOA Graphic

How Performance Data Works

National Information

*5. Career Pathways:  Panel Discussion - Promoting Greater Hispanic Participation in the Labor Market and Career Pathways created by LINCS Communications

Taken from LINCS Notice

Snippets of info from discussion:  Click here for more information.

Snippet #1

… Let me just add that from the youth perspective,  I don't believe there is a magic bullet that will catapult an ELL young person from extremely low literacy/numeracy, with a wide range of barriers, to fully self-sufficient and speaking English at the competency necessary to advance in a career within a year's time frame (which is about the average time frame given by funders.)  Making sure that Latinos are well represented in middle-skill occupations takes sustained support over the course of years, not months, and across several disciplines …

Ann Hageage

Snippet #2

… In Taos, a small rural town in Northern New Mexico, we struggle with recruitment into our ESL program we launch outreach and recruitment campaigns through social media, plastering the town with posters, and getting on the radio waves, but inevitably, the best is 'word of mouth', going out talking to people, and maybe most importantly, making current students successful in their endeavors so that they will then spread the word …

Snippet #3

Sadly, it is not just funders that have unrealistic time frame's for "success". Educational institutions are also cutting down the time allowed for ELL courses to produce English speakers. In addition, "speaking" often assumes reading and writing competencies, too.  They are parallel, but quite different competencies.

Victoria Lara

6. ESL:  Resources

… would like to share the work of some wonderful Australian teachers who created a small publishing company for teachers to produce materials that are aimed at low literacy adult learners … Maybe Next Year, with a Teacher's Guide and Workbook. Their work may be found at These materials remind me of New American Horizons materials in that they're authentic and engaging and appropriate for adult emergent learners.

Nan Frydland

7. Math:  Uncovering Coherence Using Area Models – Free Webinar

Taken from LINCS Notice

Date(s): Webcast: Now Available - Click here to view.
Webinar: March 1st from 3 PM – 4 PM EST –
Register now!
Discussion: Immediately Following Webinar in the LINCS Math and Numeracy, College and     Career Standards, and Evidence-Based Professional Development groups

Dear LINCS Community,

Next Tuesday, March 1st, from 3 PM – 4 PM EST, LINCS will present the “Uncovering Coherence Using Area Models” webinar, part two of a three-part series on area models—visual tools that adult numeracy instructors can use to explain math topics.

LINCS Math and Numeracy trainers Amy Vickers and Connie Rivera will lead a guided instruction on applying the area models concepts to real-world classroom situations. They will apply area models to Coherence, a Common Core State Standard priority and a key shift in the College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education, [JS2] which links concepts and thinking across different grade levels.

If you missed part one of the event—a short webcast introducing Area Models—it is available to view here. It is approximately 30 minutes in length and gives a basic introduction to the Area Models concepts.

Please join the discussion in the LINCS Math and Numeracy, College and Career Standards, and Evidence-Based Professional Development groups. Participants can dig into the subject matter, ask questions, and share experiences about using area models in their classrooms.

Area models are accessible to math students of all levels and are a great way for learners to visualize numeracy concepts. We hope you can join us for this exciting event!

8. Reading:  Learning to Summarize

Taken from LINCS Adult English Language Learners

Learning to summarize is a complex skill to master, especially in a language you are still learning. Take a look at this activity, ELL Practice + Prompt/Changing Your Mind, designed by one of my favorite bloggers, Larry Ferlazzo, who is a regular contributor to the New York Times Learning Network. While this lesson is designed for middle school and/or high school English learners, it would also be relevant for adults.

Susan Finnmiller

*9. Technology:  Digital Divide

Taken from LINCS Technology and Learning

A good article on the digital divide from today's New York Times that is a relevant to adult learners as it is to children and adolescents:

*10. Technology:  Millennials up Next for PIACC

Taken from LINCS Technology and Learning

Wednesday, February 24th, at 11 AM is the next webinar in the RISE Webinar Series America's Skills Challenge:  Millennials and the Future explores the skills of those age16-34, found in the PIAAC data.  This presentation and discussion notes the growing inequality of opportunity in the United States and the impact this has on both skills acquisition and outcomes for both current and future generations. (RISE is the Research on International Studies in Education.)

To learn about past and future events, visit the PIAAC Gateway CalendarAnd, have you tried the online demo version of the test?  What did you think?

Cynthia Zaftt

*11. WIOA Webinar:  Education – A Key Service in WIOA – March 1, 2:45 – 4:00 PM ET

Taken from LINCS Technology and Learning

The U.S. Department of Education is pleased to announce a webinar, Education: A Key Service in WIOA, on March 1st from 2:45 – 4:00 PM ET.

The webinar will focus on the importance of youth and adults gaining strong foundational skills, completing high school equivalence, and earning industry-recognized credentials and degrees in order to gain economic stability and self-sufficiency. The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) offers multiple coordination points and opportunities at every level to move learners forward.

Panelists will include:

·        Janet LaBreck, Commissioner, Rehabilitation Services Administration

·        Johan Uvin, Acting Assistant Secretary, Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education

·        Michael Yudin, Assistant Secretary, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services

This panel was originally scheduled to be held as part of the WIOA National Convening in January, but was cancelled due to inclement weather.

Join the webinar with password DeptofED1! and call in to the conference line: 888-790-4881 participant code 9552347#.

HiSET Information

HiSET Success Story:  Glendive

HiSET® February 2016 Newsletter

Welcome, Pennsylvania!

ETS proudly welcomes Pennsylvania to our family of states and jurisdictions that offer the HiSET® exam to out-of-school youth and adults who are pursuing their high school equivalency credential.

Weather-Related Closings

Please be sure to contact your Test Administrative Services (TAS) representative if your center will be closed due to weather-related incidents. It is important that TAS knows and has as much time as possible to notify test takers and assist with rescheduling appointments.

Have questions about the HiSET exam but don't know whom to contact?

Test Administration Services

Provides assistance to test center staff with ordering test materials, account information, e-learning, general questions regarding procedures and test site scheduling


8 a.m.–11 p.m. ET 

8 a.m.–8 p.m. ET

Test-Taker Services

Provides assistance to test takers who are creating accounts or have questions about registration, procedures and policies


Fax: 1-866-387-2602 

9 a.m.–7:45 p.m. ET

For test-day issues, please call 
1-800-257-5123, option 3.

xBT Support

Provides technical assistance during computer-based test center certification and test delivery


8 a.m.–8 p.m. ET

Disability Services

Provides assistance to test takers who request accommodations for testing and provides answers to questions regarding procedures and policies

1-855-802-2748 (toll-free)

8 a.m.–5 p.m. ET

HiSET Success Story – Glendive, Montana

After not attending traditional high school for nearly three months, Summer Bird decided it would be best to drop out and seek an alternative route. Determined to obtain her high school equivalency credential, Bird enrolled in prep classes for the HiSET exam at Dawson Community College and studied every day for six months. With the support of family, friends and her teacher, Jane, Bird achieved what she set out to do — she passed the HiSET exam and earned her high school equivalency credential. Read more about Bird's story (PDF).

Does your state or jurisdiction have a HiSET success story you want to share with us and others? If so, we want to hear it. Email Sheri Mayo with details and include "HiSET Success Story" in your subject line. For more information about the HiSET program, contact us.


Phone toll-free:



Montana HSE Update: February 2016

Update:  2/20/16

HiSET Approved Materials provided by Marianne Shomaker, Montana OPI High School Equivalency Specialist

Update:  1/4/16

Important Update Regarding the 'Are you Ready to Take the HiSET Exam?' Chart

During a recent quality control of all online material, we discovered that the Math range tables posted on September 1, 2015 do not reflect the most current information.  As you may recall, the Math tables were updated back in April to accommodate the additional items added to the existing practice tests. Please note that the tables were in fact accurate at that time. On September 1st, the document was then updated to include the newly added practice tests. When that update occurred, the Math range tables inadvertently reverted to the data as it existed prior to April 2015. The error was immediately corrected and an updated chart has been posted online.


To summarize, the Math tables published between September 1, 2015 and December 18, 2015 were incorrect.  Please use be certain to use this updated chart moving forward.


Our sincere apologies for any confusion or inconvenience this oversight may have caused you or your test takers. Please contact me directly with any questions or concerns. My contact information can be found in my signature below.


Wishing you all a wonderful holiday season!



Adriana Wells

Senior Product Manager


Update:  10/19/15

·        HiSET 2016 Montana Presentation by Jonna McDonough, Director, ETS High School Equivalency Test (HiSET®)

Update:  10/5/15

·       2016 Writing Response Scoring Guide:  NEW

·       2016 Scored Sample Writing Responses:  NEW

·       2016 Sample Questions:  NEW

·       2016 Test at a Glance:  NEW

·       2016 HiSET Program Manual:  NEW

Update:  8/31/15

HiSET 2015 Information Brief - Math

As many Math teachers requested, we have enhanced the Math information with a great deal of detail.  Teachers may expect a similar level of detail in our 2016 Informational Brief for all subtests.  This particular update was developed in response to feedback received from Math teachers across all HiSET states and territories.

Click here for the brief.

Estimate how well prepared you are for the HiSET exam:

Are You Ready to Take the HiSET Exam?

HiSET Preparation Materials 2015

Montana HiSET Resources

Check out the shared resources on the HiSET Resource page at

HiSET Success:  Montana

Do you have a HiSET success story you want to share with us and others? If so, we want to hear it. Email Margaret Bowles with details. Include "HiSET Success Story" in your subject line

P.S. Remember -- if you are having trouble with the links in this email, go to the Email Archives at the top of the MTLINCS homepage at .  Also if you no longer wish to receive this mailing, please email !  Thanks!

Norene Peterson, Adult Education Center