BSCP Center Services
What are the levels of services for BSCP initiatives?
The BSCP Center provides three levels of service, based on need, as follows:
Level 1 Direct Access/Dissemination—This level of service includes self- service tools, webinars, and information available on the BSCP Center website in the Publications page. These currently include the Solutions publication, monthly Letters from the Director, and other information about the BSCP Center, such as case study reports and benchmarking reports. A publication series entitled SEA of the Future is available twice a year as Level 1 information. Periodically, trainings and webinars will be held live, recorded and made available for self-service viewing on the website. Additional tools and information publications that are developed as a result of BSCP Center work with Level 2 and 3 assistance for specific SEAs and Regional Centers will be made available for self-service on the website. Additional information about these publications can be found on the Center website on the Publications page of the BSCP Center website.
Level 2 Interactive Assistance—This level of service includes collaboration with multiple SEAs and Regional Centers about a topic of interest or need area. These types of activities include Collaborative Benchmarking, Capacity Development Communities, and Multi-state or Multi-Regional Center Trainings.
Level 3 Intensive Assistance—This level of service is focused on program implementation and productivity tools. The BSCP Center provides this intensive technical assistance for SEAs that are adopting complex technical tools, engaging in intensive organizational change, or working on SEA initiatives. These services include Consultancies, Training Intensives, Productivity Analyses, and work related to the SEA System of Recognition, Accountability and Support (SRAS).
How does the BSCP Center determine if a request for service will be at Level 1, 2, or 3?
There are several factors that affect decisions about the type and level of services used to respond to a request. Due to the broad array of SEA requirements, it is important that BSCP Center resources are thoughtfully allocated to have maximum impact. While being attentive to differences among states, the Center will seek to leverage similar interests across SEAs and facilitate cross-state activities. Also, the considerable breadth of content available to the BSCP Center will need to be distilled in order to yield a manageable core of tools and information that are plausible for Regional Centers and usable for SEAs and LEAs. The BSCP Center management team weighs the needs, opportunities, and potential impact on the work of SEAs, against the Center resources required by the assistance approach, and allocates resources to maximize benefit for both SEAs and Regional Centers.
What is the role of the Regional Center in the services provided by the BSCP Center to SEAs?
The role of the Regional Center varies with the different types of available services. The BSCP Center works with the Regional Centers to plan for the type and level of support that can be provided for each project that includes an SEA. Determination of services and the roles to be played begin with a telephone call with liaisons from each Regional Center that helps the BSCP Center to understand needs and maintain involvement that will be applied to the Center’s work. An example of the type of involvement would be a Regional Center co- facilitating, with BSCP Center staff, part of a training for an SEA in their region.
How long do the Solutions pieces take to develop?
The Solutions publications emerge from specific questions or problems facing an SEA that arise during the work of the BSCP Center with the SEA in a consultancy and may be about implementing processes, procedures, and use of tools, among other subjects. The publication represents information that is highly responsive to an SEA’s practical needs. Subjects for issues of Solutions can also be stimulated by questions from Regional Comprehensive Centers. New issues of Solutions are released after a response has been written to a question, which may involve engaging outside experts and some work with the organization asking the question.
Will the Solutions publications be released monthly?
The Solutions publications are not produced on a regular schedule; they are released in response to specific questions that are determined to be of high impact and relevance to the work of the Regional Centers and SEAs. An announcement will be made in the monthly Letter from the Director when a new Solutions is scheduled for release, and its subject focus.
What is the topic for the next Solutions publication?
The topic for the next Solutions publication will be announced in the monthly Letter from the Director prior to its release.
Will there be opportunities to be engaged in the Solutions publications process (i.e., suggesting topics, collaborating on writing, incorporating regional differences related to the topic)?
Topics addressed by the Solutions publications result from specific questions about implementing processes, procedures, and the use of tools. Instead of suggesting a topic, an SEA or Regional Center could ask a question or series of related questions that may be considered for a future Solutions publication. The writing of the Solutions paper may result from engagement with one or more SEAs and Regional Centers and these participants may be involved in sharing ideas for the final document. SEAs and Regional Centers are encouraged to specify in their request if their question is about cross-regional concerns or involve only a particular region or SEA. The topics selected for Solutions publications are questions that are determined to be of high impact and relevance to the work of all, or many, Regional Centers and SEAs.
Will SEAs be required to be part of any of the services offered by the BSCP Center or is participation based on interest and the needs of the state?
The BSCP Center services are available to Regional Centers and SEAs as needed and based on their own interests. There is no requirement for participation.
Ongoing Communication with Regional Centers and SEAs
Will all of the monthly calls with Regional Centers be individual calls with Regional Center Liaisons?
Yes; the BSCP Center has monthly calls that involve all of the Regional Center Liaisons to help us to understand their needs and to maintain Regional Center involvement in the work of this Center.
Has the "One Plan" project started yet?
The BSCP Center has started in March, the first Capacity Development Community
coordinated among states interested in what some refer to as the “One Plan”, although its official title is the State Integration of Functions and Technology Applications Project.
Is there time for interested states to participate in the "One Plan" project?
There are 11 committed states in the State Integration of Functions and Technology Applications Capacity Development Community, and they are currently working on their first assignment. We are discussing plans for the next cohort of SEAs to participate in this project. An announcement in the Letter from the Director when there will be another opportunity for interested SEAs to participate.
Will the SEAs participating in the "One Plan" project be using Indistar® as part of that process?
The states currently participating in this project already use Indistar®. Part of the project is to consider how to streamline planning and reporting processes and connect electronic systems. Because these states use Indistar®, its use will be included in the project.
For Solutions #1, where did the five functions come from?
The five functions1 for effectively managing SEA performance came out of the work of the Center on Reinventing Public Education at the University of Washington, a partner of the BSCP Center.
1 The five functions are: (1) Program administration; (2) standards, assessment and accountability (SAA) oriented toward performance and productivity; (3) support for LEAs to improve practice; (4) intervention in cases of persistent failure; and (5) innovation to replace current practice with better practice. (Gross, B., Jochim, A, & Nafziger, D. (2013). New challenges, new mindsets, new disciplines: Transforming the SEA into a modern performance organization. Solutions (Issue 1). San Antonio, TX: Building State Capacity & Productivity Center at Edvance Research.)
Indistar ® is a registered trademark of ADI, used by permission.
For Solutions #2, is the BSCP Center planning to do any additional analyses of the Focus School strategies?
We are not planning on any additional analyses of the Focus School strategies at this time.
Who is the contact person for requests for information or technical assistance?
How does a Regional Center or SEA make a request for information or assistance?
Requests for information or assistance should be made in writing to the BSCP Center at info@BSCPCenter.org. Mr. Karl Brennan will review each request and respond via return email or, if follow-up questions are indicated, a telephone call will precede a written response. All final responses to requests for assistance will be in writing and delivered via email.
How will the Regional Center know if an SEA in their region has made a request?
Our desire is for the Regional Centers to be engaged in all of the work done by the BSCP Center with SEAs in their region; therefore, the Center will always notify the respective Regional Center if an SEA has made a request.
Can the Regional Center make requests on behalf of the SEA?
The Regional Center may make a request on behalf of one or more of the SEAs in their region. These requests should be in writing, delivered via email to info@BSCPCenter.org and contain as much background information as possible.
What will be the turn-around time for responding to technical assistance or project information?
The BSCP Center responds to requests for information with either immediate engagement through email or by telephone (typically within 24 hours of receiving the request). Turn- around time for responses to project-related questions vary depending on the level of service and type of engagement that is required. (Please see the answer to the Question under BSCP Center Services above for level-of-service definitions.)
Is there a system in place to see the responses to technical assistance that other Regional Centers and SEAs have requested and the current opportunities available for SEAs and Regional Centers?
This type of system is not currently in place; however, we feel this would be of value to Regional Centers and SEAs. Therefore, we are working on the best approach to provide the information on the BSCP Center website. When it is available, we will announce this new feature of the BSCP Center website in the monthly Letter from the Director. However, the technical assistance projects are listed under the Capacity Building Projects tab on the website.
The BSCP Center is funded by a cooperative agreement (#S283B120042) between the U.S. Department of Education and Edvance Research, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Westat. The findings and opinions expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the policies of the U.S. Department of Education.