Education Telecommunications Council
I. WELCOME AND INTRODUCTIONS
The December 15, 2003, meeting of the
Education Telecommunication Council was held at Iowa Public Television with the
following members present: Floyd
Davenport for Robert Barak, Board of Regents; Al
Bode, ISEA; Jim Bodensteiner, Board of Regents; Dean
Cook, SAI; Merv Cronbaugh,
IACCT; Greg Davis, IASB; Tim Dose, SAI; Mary Gannon, IASB; Ellen Kabat Lensch, IACCT; Pam Pfitzenmaier, IPTV; Kay Runge,
DE/Pub Libraries; and Mary Travillian, AEA
Boards. Paul Bowers, IAICU; John Hartung, IAICU; David
The following visitors were also present at roll call: Kathy Guilgot, RTC 1; Bruce McKee, RTC 2; Kathy Goebel, Region 5 ICN Scheduler; Rick Maehl, RTC 5; Julie Thomas, RTC 6; Roger Rezabek, RTC 7; John Haack, RTC 10; Pat Thieben, RTC 11; Pam Southworth, RTC 13, Cena Johnson, RTC 14; Linda Abel, RTC 15; Julie Russell, Region 16 ICN Scheduler; Judy Jones, State Library; John Gillispie and Tami Fujinaka, ICN; Bob Steingreaber, AEA 15; Wayne Bruns and Deb Fiscus, IPTV.
II.A. Revision of Educational Trends Document
Jim Bodensteiner, Ellen Kabat
Lensch, and Al Bode provided an update concerning the
revision of the document, “ETC Technology and Telecommunications for K-12
Current and Future Needs,
II.B. State Financial Forecast
Mary Gannon stated that the Revenue Estimating Conference (REC) was held last week where they lowered the current year estimate by nearly $15m and raised next year’s estimate by approximately $63m. The day after the REC met, IASB, ISEA and SAI held a joint press conference asking the legislature to begin to look at the revenue side of the state finances. The press conference didn’t specifically ask state policy makers to raise taxes but rather to look at eliminating the tax breaks that are currently in place or to look at new forms of revenues. Mary strongly urged members and guests, school board members, educators, etc. to attend Governor’s regional budget “input” meetings in their regions. To find out when meetings are being held in your region, look on the IASB website at www.ia-sb.org. It was also mentioned that the REC will meet again in March to revise state revenues.
III. A. Iowa Department of Education Technology Advisory Committee
Greg Davis provided an update on the DE technology advisory committee
that has had some preliminary discussions concerning the issues of technology
1. The impact of technology on student learning is dependent on educators’ decisions and appropriate use of technology.
Greg stated that the group will continue to refine these belief statements and recommend to the Iowa Department of Education how these might impact state policies. Pam also stated that they would be looking at the Code of Iowa and the Department of Education administrative rules that are impairing, impacting or supporting technology in schools. Greg will send an electronic survey to ETC members that they can respond to prior to the next committee meeting.
III.B. Iowa Learning Online
Pam Pfitzenmaier provided an update on the Iowa Learning Online initiative, previously called Iowa Virtual Academy. Iowa Learning Online is being designed to help schools districts offer expanded educational programs to their students. Discussions are being held with different K-12 districts as well as community colleges about what might be offered through Iowa Learning Online.
III.C. Various Updates from ICN Staff
III.C.1. ICN Ten Year Anniversary
Tami Fujinaka provided an update on the ICN Ten Year Anniversary plans thus far. The tenth anniversary celebration will take place with a major event on February 3, 2004, 11:30am-1:00pm, in rooms 19 and 116 at the State Capitol Building and at various ICN rooms across Iowa. Two speakers will be present from the U.S. Department of Education in Washington, DC—John Bailey, Director of Educational Technology will be joining the event in person; Cheryl Garnette, Director of Learning Technologies, will be participating via videoconference. Governor Vilsack is expected to participate in the event as is Senator Harkin. The Office of Astronaut Appearances is expected to provide an astronaut for the event. There will be examples from individuals who have used the ICN for applications such as telemedicine, educational, library uses, etc. A brochure will be handed out highlighting these stories. The new ICN logo will be introduced at the event also. Tami stated that a list of 700 will be invited to attend and asked for help from the members in connecting ICN sites throughout the state. An invitation will be sent electronically to ETC and RTC members to forward to educators in their regions. It is expected at this time that ICN sites included in this event will be view only sites, but the agenda is not final. Tami agreed that the RTCs should coordinate which sites would be included in their regions.
John Gillispie provided overviews on the following ICN related items:
III.C.2. ATM/MPEG 2 Progress
John Gillispie stated that as long as the weather holds, all the ATM/MPEG2 conversions will be completed by December 31, 2003.
III.C.3. Possible ICN-Related Legislation
John reviewed the discussions that had occurred over the past months concerning the future ownership of the ICN. The concept that John had put forward for discussion with users, telecommunications industry leaders and policy makers concerned whether the ICN backbone fiber and the core optronics could be separated from the functionality of the network with no impact to the user community and provide the state a lower cost of operation. The ICN has provided decision makers quite a bit of information in a detailed write-up relative to the concept. John discussed that he is not sure whether the legislature will take any action on the ICN. He stated that the user community will need to stay abreast of these issues during legislative session to ensure that legislators know the importance of the ICN.
III.C.4. Todd Bankruptcy
Todd Communications, the ICN video scheduling/switching software provider, has declared bankruptcy. A temporary solution has been put in place to cover support of that critical software. Some of the individuals who formerly were employed by Todd Communications have formed a new company. The ICN is negotiating a permanent solution for maintenance of the software with the new company. Users should not notice any difference in video scheduling services.
III.C.5. Possible New ICN Services
John discussed several potential new ICN services. The first is related to Internet network security. During late July and August when there was a major outbreak of Internet worms and viruses, the ICN had a substantial number of K-12 institutions get heavily infected, generating Internet substantial traffic on the network. The ICN is asking its customers if there is interest in services and products like intrusion protection, email filtering, virus detection software upgrades. John reported that so far there is great interest from ICN educational customers in such services. ICN is working at establishing prices for such services.
The ICN has also been testing some point-to-point wireless technologies that provide the ability to carry data/video signals from an ICN POP over distances of 15-30 miles for connecting to other sites such as middle and elementary schools. ICN has been working with various wireless providers in response to needs expressed by school districts seeking video and data capabilities to their non-ICN sites. Mobile cart systems that are part of the wireless systems mentioned above are also being tested and are priced at $7,000.
For more information about the above issues and services mentioned above, as well as other services not mentioned, please contact the ICN.
III.D. Digital Content Work for K-12
Bob Steingreaber, Coordinator of Instructional
Resources for Southern Prairie AEA 15 in
For further information, contact Bob Steingreaber at firstname.lastname@example.org.
IV. INPUT/SHARING FROM GUESTS PRESENT AT MEETING
Kathy Guilgot informed members that at the recent RTC 1 meeting
via ICN, they invited House Majority leader Chuck Gipp
from Decorah and Senator Mike Connolly from
Kay Runge strongly suggested that each RTC should hold meeting(s) with the legislators in their region, such as the meeting held in Region 1, to aid in the marketing of the ICN and the benefits it provides to schools.
V. OTHER ITEMS:
Per Kay Runge who had to leave the meeting early, Mary Gannon
apprised the members on the name change of the Public Library of Des
Roger Rezabek, Director of Distance Learning at