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Local Coordinator Screening and Training Elizabeth Dickerson, Sr. Compliance Officer James Alexander, Program Analyst U.S. Department of State Bureau of.

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Presentation on theme: "Local Coordinator Screening and Training Elizabeth Dickerson, Sr. Compliance Officer James Alexander, Program Analyst U.S. Department of State Bureau of."— Presentation transcript:

1 Local Coordinator Screening and Training Elizabeth Dickerson, Sr. Compliance Officer James Alexander, Program Analyst U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Office of Private Sector Exchange 1

2 Importance of Local Coordinators The success of the program depends on the generosity of the American families who welcome foreign students into their homes. Local coordinators provide the critical link between sponsors, students, and host families. 2

3 Importance of Local Coordinators Exercise personal judgment in determining whether a potential host family: ◦ Can provide a comfortable and nurturing home environment, ◦ Has sufficient financial resources to undertake hosting obligations, ◦ Has a good reputation and character, and ◦ Is an appropriate match for a specific student. 3

4 Sponsors are Required to Train Local Coordinators In Conflict resolution Procedures for handing and reporting emergency situations Awareness or knowledge of child safety standards Information on sexual conduct codes Procedures for handling and reporting allegations of sexual misconduct or any other allegations of abuse or neglect 4

5 Sponsors are Required to Train Local Coordinators In Criteria to be used to screen potential host families and exercise good judgment when identifying what constitutes suitable host family placements 5

6 Department Regulation of Local Coordinators The Department does not regulate local coordinators. Sponsors are required to create and implement organization-specific standard operating procedures for the supervision of local coordinators. ◦ Designed to prevent or deter fraud, abuse, or misconduct in the performance of the duties of these employees, agents, or volunteers (i.e., “third parties) Sponsors must have sufficient internal controls to ensure that these third parties comply with such standard operating procedures. 6

7 Department Oversees Local Coordinators Through Sponsors Two key concepts: ◦ Core Programmatic Functions ◦ Imputing Third Party Actions 7

8 Core Programmatic Functions Screening Selection Orientation Placement Monitoring The Promotion of Mutual Understanding 8

9 Sponsor Responsibilities Third party means an entity cooperating with or assisting the sponsor in the conduct of the sponsor's program. Coordinators are third parties whom sponsors engage to perform core programmatic functions and are vetted annually through a criminal background check (which must include a search of DOJ’s National Sex Offender Public Registry). Sponsors are required to take all reasonable steps to ensure that third parties know and comply with all applicable provisions of these regulations. Third party actions in the course of providing such assistance or cooperation shall be imputed to the sponsor in evaluating the sponsor's compliance with these regulations. 9

10 Local Coordinator Training Origin of Idea Process Toward Development Training Requirement Data Future of Training/Certification 10

11 Origins of Training LCs are the critical link to a successful exchange program serve as representatives of the sponsors have responsibility for obtaining school enrollment locating and recruiting host families responsible for monitoring the student and the host family DOS ensuring LCs know regulatory requirements The certification program was proposed to ensure that this aspect of training was uniform All Sponsor officials, local/regional coordinators received the training. 11

12 DOS Training Module Purpose The Module is offered through Traincaster. It is in addition to the training provided by sponsors on the Exchange Visitor Program. (1) Increase the Local Coordinator or Equivalent knowledge of Federal Regulations governing the High School Exchange Program (2) Assist sponsors in refocusing their in-house tailored training according to the error pattern reports that will be made available. (3) Provide a means for DOS and Sponsors to check on LC basic knowledge 12

13 Regulatory Requirement § d (1) Regulatory Requirement § d (1) In addition to their own training, sponsors must ensure that all LCs complete the DOS training module prior to their appointment as a LC or assumption of duties. DOS training will include instruction designed to provide a comprehensive understanding of the Exchange Visitor Program its public diplomacy objectives the Secondary School Student category regulations. Sponsors must demonstrate the local coordinator's successful completion of training requirements and that annual refresher training is successfully completed. 13

14 Question Formulation Volunteer task force of CSIET members ◦ Department of State staff familiar with the Secondary School Student category and the regulations provided input. ◦ Initial list of training questions tested with a select group of sponsors ◦ Adjustments to questions after feedback ◦ Training Approach to be evaluated in future  Comments/suggestions are welcome. 14

15 Training Module Web-based Test ◦ Brief text initially Open book test minutes to complete 27 of 30 questions (90 %) must be answered correctly to be passed Test can be taken multiple times DOS certified 15

16 Who must be certified? All U.S.-based sponsor organizational officers, employees, representatives, agents, and volunteers tasked with core responsibilities that require contact with exchange students (e.g. placement/ relocation of students, student orientation, student monitoring, etc.) must be certified as set forth in §62.25(d)(1). 16

17 Meeting the Requirement Must pass DOS test yearly Currently for New LCs ◦ Within 30 days of taking on LC function ◦ Before working with students or on student- focused issues Next Deadline: July 31, 2012 ◦ All continuing LCs must be certified by deadline Compliance Violation: To not be certified and working with students or student-intensive issues 17

18 High-level Statistics (10/20/11) 21,105 Completed the Test Average Initial Score: 88.3% (90% passing) Median Initial Score: 93.3 Mode Initial Score: 96.7% 18

19 Overall Findings: Compliance 19

20 Item Analysis High Levels of Success 20

21 Item Analysis: Easiest Questions 21

22 Item Analysis: Hardest Questions 22

23 Future of the Training Module Will likely continue as is into ◦ by July 31 active LCs must pass certification ◦ New LCs must pass within 30 days ◦ Questions will remain the same Going into Training Module may change ◦ Become more of an online training course? ◦ Accept suggestions 23

24 Questions & Answers 24


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