Final Report: ESPORT project evaluation.
Fahy, Patrick J.
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This is the final report of the ESPORT project. Two interim reports were produced, in July 2005, and February 2006 (Fahy, 2005, 2006). A full description of the project’s origins and rationale, including an explanation for the evaluation methodology, is contained in the first report (all reports are available from the project manager; it is recommended that readers wishing a full account of the project review the interim reports, as some data and instruments used in the project are described in them, but are not restated here). The following is a brief summary of pertinent background information contained in the interim reports. The ESPORT (Essential Skills Portfolio; initially, ESCORT) project formally commenced on October 17, 2004. The purpose of the project was described as follows: The ESPORT Demonstration Project will evaluate, enhance, and promote an Internet-delivered, computer mediated process designed to assist low-literate adults in choosing, qualifying for, and obtaining entry-level employment consistent with their interests and abilities. The project targets two of the groups identified in Knowledge Matters [http://www11.sdc.gc.ca/sl-ca/home.shtml] as sources of workers for the knowledge economy: youth and Aboriginal people, and a third group – displaced workers. (“Report to Advisors,” November 7, 2004). The project was originally designed to be conducted in four phases, over the period October 2004 to August 2006 (the project was originally to conclude in summer, 2006); the reasons for the extension to the project, consisting of opportunities for use of ESPORT in promising programs, are described more fully in this report. Participating programs, through funding provided by Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC), and the Aboriginal Human Resource Development Council of Canada (AHRDCC), were initially located in Cape Breton, Newfoundland, and in selected aboriginal communities in the West (Calgary, Vancouver). (As described below, other sites commenced use of ESPORT during this period, and were included in the project, as they provided opportunities for additional relevant evaluation experiences. Also, some non-project sites are referenced in this evaluation, where information was deemed relevant and consistent with that from the designated project sites. Where non-project sites are referenced, they are identified, and a brief program description is provided.) The sites included in this report, and the number of clients represented in each (shown in parentheses, as of the end of September 2006), are as follows (see Attachment 5 for graphs of enrolment growth patterns): 1. Aboriginal Futures Career and Training Centre, Calgary, Alberta (19) 2. ACCESS, Surrey, British Columbia (37) 3. Cape Breton Educational Consortium, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia: 4. BEO (2) 5. NWEO (5) 6. The Employment Centre (TEC) (43) 7. YMCAs (Glace Bay, Sydney) (3) 8. ISSBC, Vancouver, British Columbia (59) 9. John Howard Society, Ottawa, Ontario (62) 10. Metis Nation of Calgary, Calgary Metis Education Society, Calgary, Alberta (10) 11. MOSAIC, Vancouver, British Columbia (39) 12. Newfoundland-Labrador Federation of Labour, Happy Valley-Goose Bay and St. John’s, Newfoundland (19) 13. Saskatchewan Penitentiary, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan (105) 14. SUCCESS, Vancouver, British Columbia (58) 15. Youth Employment Resource Centre, Ottawa, Ontario (5) The project was originally intended to consist of four phases. The extension of the project primarily lengthened Phases 2 and 3: • Phase 1 (October 2004 to March 2005): Concept refinement and project development • Phase 2 (October 2004 to April 2005): Preparation for implementation • Phase 3 (October 2004 to May 2006): Project implementation • Phase 4 (June 2005 to May 2006): Reporting and dissemination of results An extension of the project to August 2006 was authorized in late 2005, allowing sites that were delayed in commencing operations, and new sites identified after the project was announced, to be included in the evaluation.