Wednesday, May 27, 2015 at 9:00am CT
Host site: Varner Hall Board Room, 3835 Holdrege, Lincoln
Remote sites: ESU 13, 4215 Avenue I, Scottsbluff, NE; Metro Community College, Bldg 30-Suite 252, 30th & Fort Streets, Omaha, NE
Mr. Burke Brown, Palmyra School District OR1
Mr. Mike Carpenter, Doane College
Mr. Matt Chrisman, Mitchell Public Schools
Mr. Steven Hamersky, Daniel J. Gross Catholic High School
Dr. Dan Hoesing, Schuyler Community Schools
Mr. Greg Maschman, Nebraska Wesleyan University
Mr. Gary Needham, ESU 09
Ms. Mary Niemiec, University of Nebraska
Mr. Randy Schmailzl, Metro Community College
LIAISONS/ALTERNATES PRESENT: Dr.
Kathleen Fimple, CCPE; Ms. SuAnn Witt, NDE
MEMBERS/LIAISONS ABSENT: Mr. Derek Bierman; Mr. John Dunning; Ms. Yvette Holly; Mr. Steve Hotovy; Dr. Mike Lucas; Mr. Darren Oestmann; Ms. Brenda Decker; and Mr. Gary Targoff
CALL TO ORDER, ELECTRONIC POSTING, LOCATION OF OPEN MEETING LAW DOCUMENTS, ROLL CALL, INTRODUCTIONS
Co-Chair, Mary Niemiec, called the meeting to order at 9:02 a.m. The public meeting notice was posted to the Nebraska Public Meeting Calendar on May 19, 2015. The agenda was posted to the NITC Web site on May 19, 2015 and was amended on May 26, 2015. The Open Meeting Statutes were located on the south wall of the Varner Hall Board Room. Ms. Lopez-Urdiales called the roll and found nine voting members or alternates present. A quorum was reached in order to conduct official business. Members and guests introduced themselves.
CONSIDER APPROVAL OF THE AGENDA FOR THE MAY 27, 2015 MEETING*
Mr. Brown moved to approve the meeting agenda as presented. Mr. Carpenter seconded. Roll call vote: Brown-Yes, Carpenter-Yes, Chrisman-Yes, Hamersky-Yes, Hoesing-Yes, Maschman-Yes, Needham-Yes, Niemiec-Yes, and Schmailzl-Yes. Results: Yes-9, No-0, Abstained-0. Motion carried.
CONSIDER APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES FROM THE FEBRUARY 18, 2015 MEETING*
Ms. Niemiec moved approval of the February 18, 2015 minutes. Mr. Carpenter seconded. Roll call vote: Schmailzl-Yes, Niemiec-Yes, Needham-Yes, Maschman-Yes, Hoesing-Yes, Hamersky-Yes, Chrisman-Yes, Carpenter-Yes, and Brown-Yes. Results: Yes-9, No-0, Abstained-0. Motion carried.
DISCUSSION WITH THE NITC CHAIR, MR. FELIX DAVIDSON
Mr. Davidson thanked the members for volunteering to serve on the Education Council of the NITC. Mr. Davidson provided information about his background and work history. The Education Council members introduced themselves. Mr. Davidson described his role as assisting the Governor in assuring that the engine of state government operates smoothly. He would like the Council to focus their energies on what the Council sees as the most important initiatives. The strategic initiatives for the Statewide Technology Plan were approved at the last NITC meeting. Two new initiatives were added – IT Spending Analysis and Cloud Strategy. Mr. Davidson asked the Council members to provide feedback regarding information technology in education and barriers facing their educational institutions. Some of the issues and barriers discussed were as follows:
· Getting adequate bandwidth in rural areas
· Lack of technology at the personal student level - no computer at home
· Developing better internal infrastructure to better utilize the available Network Nebraska bandwidth
· Funding for renewal of computer equipment
· Getting students interested in computer careers
· Technology playing a huge role with Spanish speaking population
· Involving communities in information technology
· Students’ need for Wi-Fi and being on the same page with educators as to how best to use technology
· Frustration when there is duplication of efforts – the state needs to do more collaboration with federal, state, local and private endeavors.
· Educational Service Units listen to K12 needs to assist with accomplishing their IT needs - growing your own expertise is difficult to accomplish in rural locations.
· Network Nebraska has provided a terrific foundation for collaborative efforts. Now the project needs to think outside the box; how do we breakdown silos; is one learning system good for the state and will it be cost-effective method?
· The Coordinating Commission for Post-Secondary Education promotes efficient use of resources. The CCPE is the Point of Contact for SARA (State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement). SARA is an agreement among member states, districts and territories that establishes comparable national standards for interstate offerings of postsecondary distance education courses and programs. The barrier is that there is no statewide database of higher education institutions for data collection requested by the public or other states.
· Equity for each student in the state, including the quality of education, is a barrier.
Mr. Davidson appreciated hearing members concerns and issues and again thanked the members for dedicating their time.
Joe Kinney, with Dell, recommended putting together some kind of consortium for cost savings when purchasing technology. Dell was awarded the 1-1 contract with Lincoln Public Schools and now have 1,000 employees working in Lincoln to serve its customers.
A REVIEW OF NETWORK NEBRASKA AND DIGITAL EDUCATION STRATEGIC INITIATIVES
Last week, the NITC held a working session on the strategic initiatives. One common theme prevailed – the inclusion of metrics for each of the strategic initiatives. A Vision Committee discussed the Education Council’s goals and action items and successful measures. The Vision Committee members included Mike Carpenter, Burke Brown, Steve Hotovy, Dan Hoesing, John Dunning and the co-chairs. The question was raised as to whether it is just about the technology or how the process of education is changing because of technology. It was recommended to conduct an assessment of educators’ interests and needs. Nebraska needs to leverage its strengths as a whole and establish a foundation. Council members asked if there are projects already in place that the Council needs to be aware of for inclusion in the Statewide Technology Plan. Developing metrics will be challenging and difficult depending on what is being measured.
Co-Chair, Ms. Niemac, had to leave the meeting. She recommended the council form work groups to address goals and develop action items and metrics for the next meeting.
NITC ACTION ITEMS
Task Group Membership. Due to the new action items, there will be lots of task group changes. Some existing task groups could be dissolved or radically changed. Co-chairs want meetings to focus more on the mission, goals and action items of the Statewide Technology Plan.
Recommendations and observations:
· Provide commission with more information as to the benefits of collaboration – costs and resources. The cost of printed textbooks versus online learning digital.
· Start with an assessment of what is most important and focus on that initiative. For example, now that Network Nebraska is a success focus on “Digital Education”.
· Recommended to change Emerging Technologies to Digital Education Task Group or Curricular Infrastructure Task Group. This would include the current tasks but the decisions on how best to use technologies would still be at the local level.
· Promote collaborative purchases.
· Explore the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for potential funding. If we are looking at common platform, we will need standards.
· Address the “whys” of technology implementation. For example, being able to move curriculum across school districts that works into the higher education course needs is a vital need.
The Vision Committee will take feedback and come up with a plan to address task groups.
NETWORK NEBRASKA UPDATE
Project Management Report (5/1/2015). The project is in its 9th year. On July 1, the project will reach 99.6% public education entity participation. The Education Council has worked hard and should feel proud of its accomplishments. The State of New Mexico has contacted the OCIO and will be meeting with them in June about Network Nebraska. In Idaho, the state network lost a substantial share of its E-rate funding. Idaho has also contacted the OCIO about Network Nebraska. Fourteen Nebraska school districts from ESU 3 will connect to Network Nebraska on July 1. The Lincoln Diocese has joined as a single school system. The Lincoln City Libraries will be joining Network Nebraska mid-year at the higher education fees. This should expand library patrons’ Internet bandwidth by over 1,000%.
NNAG Meeting Notes. There is an estimated dozen entities getting Network Nebraska Internet through an existing Network Nebraska Participant but are not paying any fees. The Office of the CIO has asked the NNAG group to develop a fee structure for these types of entities.
FCC Fiber Build Workshop. Mr. Rolfes attended the FCC workshop in Tampa, Florida to learn how Network Nebraska fiber development could be funded by E-rate. In FY 2016, the FCC will allow self-provisioning of fiber but will also incentivize this effort – with an additional 10% discount if each state comes up with their 10% match. Network Nebraska would be eligible and then would be able to extend dark fiber to increase the capacity of the statewide backbone.
RFP 4862 Update. Cogent Communications was awarded the state Internet access contract replacing Unite Private Networks. This second Internet provider out of Omaha will enable the Network Nebraska engineers to load balance bandwidth between the two Internet egress points. This begins July 1st. Mr. Rolfes encouraged the council sectors to get this information to their colleagues.
State colleges. No update.
Community colleges. No update.
Independent colleges. No update.
University of Nebraska. No update.
Coordinating Commission. Dr. Kathleen Fimple reported that SARA now has 16 institutions in Nebraska participating - 11 public and 5 private institutions. Nationally, there are 23 states participating with more waiting to be involved. She will be presenting Nebraska’s Transfer Portal at a future Council meeting. Having a common student information systems between the University of Nebraska and the State College Systems is proving to be very effective for students.
K-12 public & private. Mr. Brown reported that their regional consortium of schools just finished their first successful year of online testing by being on Network Nebraska. Last mile transport has reliability issues in southeast Nebraska. Dr. Hoesing informed the Council that Schuyler Public Schools just held a 2-day discover education symposium and broadcasted from Schuyler Public schools to show how technology is being used in middle school. He will share more at the June meeting.
Nebraska Dept. of Education. A legislative bill was passed that provided reduced funding for schools to exchange distance learning courses starting next year. Innovation grants may be available for school districts and NDE will keep the Council posted.
Membership Renewal. Eight EC membership terms expire on June 30th, four from K-12 and four from higher education. Emails have been sent to the sectors informing them of expirations and membership renewals
GIS Data Agreement. Nathan Watermeier, State GIS Coordinator, worked on an enterprise contract with ESRI (Environmental Systems Research Institute) to provide GIS data via the NebraskaMAP website. The Office of the CIO is extending an offer to any public schools to participate in the free licensing agreement. Mr. Watermeier is also willing to provide a NebraskaMAP demonstration to the Council.
AGENDA ITEMS FOR THE 8/19/2015 MEETING
Digital Education Initiative
Demonstrations for future meetings:
· Transfer Portal
· GIS Demonstration
· BlendEd Update
CONSIDER LOCATION(S) FOR THE 8/19/2015 MEETING
The Office of the CIO will research potential locations for the next meeting.
Dr. Hoesing moved to adjourn. Mr. Carpenter seconded. All were in favor. Motion carried by unanimous voice vote.
The meeting was adjourned at 11:30 a.m.
Meeting minutes were taken by Lori Lopez Urdiales and reviewed by Tom Rolfes, Office of the CIO/NITC.