The September 22, 2003, meeting
of the Education Telecommunication Councils was held at Iowa Public Television
with the following members present:Robert Barak, Board of Regents; Al Bode, ISEA; Jim Bodensteiner, Board of Regents; Bruce McKee for Merv Cronbaugh, IACCT; Susan Olesen for Greg Davis, IASB; Mary Gannon, IASB; John Hartung, IAICU; Ellen Kabat Lensch, IACCT; Pam Pfitzenmaier, IPTV; Kay Runge, DE/Pub Libraries; Gail
Sullivan, DE; and Mary Travillian, AEA Boards and Connie Maxson for Robert Vittengl, AEA Boards.Paul
IAICU; Tim Dose, SAI; Ed Gambs,
DE/CIANS; and Kathryn O’Shaughnessy, ISEA; were absent.
The following visitors were also present at roll call:Kathy Guilgot, RTC 1; Kathy Otis, backup scheduler for
Region 3; Kitty Conover, RTC 3; Colette Scott, RTC 4; 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; Dennis
Yoshimura, RTC ICN consultant for Heartland AEA 11; Pam
Southworth, RTC 13, Cena Johnson, RTC 14; Linda
Abel, RTC 15;
Robin Madison,Legislative Service
Bureau; John Gillispie, Tami Fujinaka, and Phil Groner, ICN; Judy Jones, State Library; and Deb Fiscus, IPTV.
Mary Gannon added a new item to the agenda under
updates:G. New ETC Member.Pam
moved to approve the agenda.Robert
Barak seconded. The agenda was approved as amended.
II.A.Appointment of New ETC
Executive Committee Members
Mary Gannon opened the discussion with an overview of
the duties of the 7 member executive committee that is rotated yearly with each
new chair.The duties of this committee
are to set up the agendas for the ETC meetings, provide advice and input to the chair
concerning issues that come up between
meetings, etc.The members who automatically make up the committee are the past chair (Paul Bowers), the chair (Mary Gannon), the chair elect Ellen Kabat Lensch and Pam Pfitzenmaier, facilitator.Mary asked for 3 volunteers to complete the 2003-04 executive committee.Those who volunteered are:Robert Barak and Mary Travillian.Mary Gannon will check with the other K-12
representatives as well to recruit one more Executive Committee member.
II.B.Revision of Educational Trends Document
Pam Pfitzenmaier provided an overview of the document, “ETC Technology and Telecommunications for K-12
Current and Future Needs, 12/17/01,” that was written by the ETC for the ITTC concerning Part III bids.According to Pam, the document is outdated
and does not include either higher education or public library needs.Pam asked for volunteers to help with
modifying the document.Al Bode, Kay Runge, Ellen Kabat Lensch, Paul Bowers, Jim Bodensteiner, and Pam Pfitzenmaier volunteered.This group will draft a revision and forward
it to the full committee for feedback before the December ETC meeting.
II.C.Upcoming Legislative Session
Mary Gannon opened the discussion with what issues/topics
IASB expects in the upcoming legislative session.
Status quo funding for schools; IASB
will ask for allowable growth--2% for 2004-05 and 4% for 2005-06 school
sale of the ICN
academies—e.g., “Bill Bennett’
school issue; online learning
laptop issues—a leadership bill of both houses; mandates wireless laptops for 7th
and 8th graders up to 12th grade, as well as those who
teach those students—estimated to cost $50 million per grade level for start up
in professional development dollars; that was lost this year—both the monies
for the AEAs and Phase III
million to complete the conversion to digital television
for operating expense of the digital transmitters
Board of Regents has not developed their budget request as yet.
Dept. of Ed.
quality—how to maintain what they’ve got;
for community colleges
financial aid including work study
b.Iowa grants; tuition grants
state dollars with federal dollars in special ed
discussed last session (“sale of services” proposal)
to generate funds locally
Mary Gannon stated that the legislative revenue conference
meeting is held the first part of December and
more would be known regarding the State budget at that time.She suggested asking that someone from the
revenue meeting attend the December ETC meeting to apprise members of the outlook for
the 2004 legislative session.
II.D.Results of the ITTC Meeting
The ITTC decided at their September 11 meeting to maintain FY 05 ICN video rates at the FY 04 levels.The ETC will send a thank you note to the ITTC for
After looking at the copy of the Video Rates for FY 04 and FY 05
document, Pam posed a question for ICN staff concerning the Non-E-rate supported
K-12 use category—she understood that this category was to be effective
immediately.Tami Fujinaka, ICN, reported that she would check with the
appropriate ICN staff and have a clarification.
Pat Thieben and Roger Rezabek reported that they presented at the September ITTC meeting, detailing the fact that the video rates for
community colleges have increased in previous years.The cost increase had necessitated not
offering classes at remote sites where the student enrollment was not high
III.A.K-12 Use Task Force
Paul Bowers was absent and unable to provide an update.
Pam explained that the name, “IowaVirtualAcademy” has been changed to “Iowa Learning Online”
so it is not confused with Bill Bennett’s company, K-12 Virtual School
Gail Sullivan explained that PocahontasSchool District has contracted with Bill Bennett’s company and mailed marketing materials to parents with kindergarten
students. In the materials, it was suggested to the parents that if they would
like to take advantage of this virtual school program, they would open enroll
their child through their local school district.It appears that Bennett’s company focused on kindergarten students
this first year because they missed the deadline for parents to file for open
enrollment for anyone other than kindergarten students.While Bennett’s company was suggesting this would
qualify as a public school program and the full per-pupil amount would be
transferred from the district of residence to Pocahontas as the receiving
district, the DE examination of the situation determined that this would not meet accreditation standards for open
enrollment.However, the DE did find
that the program would probably meet the conditions of the home school
assistance program.DE has sent a letter to all school districts telling them if
they have parents who have enrolled their children in Pocahontas for this
program, the resident district could count each student as .6, the home school
assistance per pupil weighted amount.
Pam provided a timeline to members of the status of the Iowa Learning
There are advisory committees
established to aid in this effort.There is an advisory committee for each group--IASB, ISEA, SAI,
AEAs, school counselors, and community colleges.
was a web site established last year that will be revised.
January, school administrators in Iowa were polled about classes needed for high
high school teachers with skills for teaching “at a distance” is in
progress.NCREL provided a class for
teachers this past summer and a second class will be held this coming spring
for those who want to develop their own online courses.
operational structure for Iowa Learning Online will be established in fall
of platform and tech support for online classes has been completed for a year.By February or March a decision will be made
whether to change platforms.
high school Web-based classes from various providers were reviewed by Iowa high school educators for possible
use.Approximately 3 dozen HS teachers
reviewed those classes.Cost is an
issue.None of the courses are free,
some come with strings attached.
design/development of three Web-enhanced HS science classes (physics,
chemistry, anatomy/physiology) is in progress. They are hybrid classes with ICN video sessions, Web-based elements and F2F
labs.The courses are expected to be
fully completed by summer 2004.Funding for these classes is provided by some
Star Schools money, but most will come from the Roy J. Carver Trust.The lead teachers involved in the development
of these classes are Gail Wortmann of Ottumwa for anatomy/physiology; Shannon C’de Baca
of Council Bluffs for chemistry; and Terry Fritsch of Johnston for physics.When the courses are completed, the course content will be available to Iowa educators at no cost.
schools needing courses with those schools/colleges providing courses is
recruit schools/colleges to offer needed courses that are not currently
available is on-going.
the availability of Iowa Learning Online services to schools is on-going.
Ten Year Anniversary
Tami Fujinaka informed members of a ten year anniversary celebration
being planned for the ICN.A committee has been set up that includes various authorized ICN users from around the state.They are producing documents that will help
celebrate the ten year anniversary on the state level and are hoping to provide
ideas of what to do in communities and local/regional levels to tell the ICN story.There will be more information provided at the December ETC meeting.
Phil Groner provided an update on the ATM/MPEG2 conversions to
date.The ATM backbone has been completed in all 5 rings throughout the state.In addition to that, three rings (1, 4, and
5) are 100% complete.Ring three in southeast Iowa is 96% complete—there are 5 sites remaining, 4 of which
have been converted; ring two is in northeast Iowa and extends to the middle
and a little south of DM, and is 44% complete—88 of 202 sites completed and converted to ATM/MPEG2.The ATM conversion completion date for all classroom codecs is planned
for the end of October.Ring 6, which is
the DM area, does not have a completion date set.
Phil also updated members on the Internet worm and virus problems of last month,
stating that the ICN put a new router into service and plans to
upgrade the other routers in the network to more robust systems to handle
situations like those that occurred last month.
III.E.The Dept. of Education Technology Advisory
Gail Sullivan and Pam Pfitzenmaier co-chair this committee.They
have had one meeting and plan another on Oct. 15.Basically, the purpose for this committee is
to provide advice to both the DE and the State Board of Education on the
instructional use of technology.This
group is looking at the policy framework, rules, legislation, what is currently
in place and does it address all of the new things coming up, and to make
recommendations for changes as needed. Kristin Ciesemier of NCREL/NCRTEC has
been invited to the next meeting
to provide information about current research that is available.
Ad Hoc Task Force
John Gillispie, Executive Director of the ICN, provided an update on the status of the ICN Ad Hoc Task Force on ICN Futures that was set up to look into the pros/cons of selling
task force discussions have been completed and involved a broad range of
participants from the ICN,
private sectors, education, other customers of the ICN, and legislators.The Governor asked John Gillispie to look at
the various principles that both the legislature and the Governor might agree
to and to craft a proposal that might be acceptable to both.The proposal that he submitted called for a
financial restructuring of the ICN,
involving disposal of the back bone fiber assets, as well as some of the optronics (the electronic gear that is used to light the fiber to
create capacity). In return
the State would receive rights to use specified bandwidth/’lambdas” or light
waves.There were a series of goals
articulated by the Governor and legislators that they wanted to accomplish if
any restructuring was necessary.First,
the Governor wanted to ensure that education was protected in any change and
that education remains the focus of the ICN.Second, he wanted to ensure that homeland security, as well as other
users of the network, is protected. And third, the Governor
indicated that if excess capacity existed he’d like for it to be used to
promote economic development in the state.
John recommended that interested individuals keep an eye on the ICN web site.The disposition of assets
proposal, as well as two other documents—Technology and Telecommunications for
K-12 Current and Future Needs and the 21st Century Infrastructure
documents—will be posted there.The
proposals from the various telecom providers are posted there as well.
III.G.New Member Orientation
Tim Dose, superintendent at North Scott CSD in Eldridge, has been
appointed as the new SAI representative replacing Mick Starcevich.As
a new member is appointed, members of the ETC provide an orientation for that member to
become familiar with the role of the ETC.Mary Gannon asked for volunteers to join her and Pam in
the orientation for Tim.Those who
volunteered are Mary
Ellen Kabat Lensch.
IV.INPUT/SHARING FROM GUESTS PRESENT AT MEETING
Pat Thieben asked about the move of the technicians of the video help
desk at IPTV to the ICN.Pam responded that as the network has moved through the ATM upgrade, the
demarcation of what is classroom and what is transport has become less clear
cut.It is less easy to define who to
call when you are in a video classroom and experiencing problems.There was a discussion between the ICN and IPTV to join the two help desks and put
them in one place physically.The two
people at IPTV who have dealt primarily with classroom issues, Manila Houangvan and Allen Kinkennon are moving to the ICN effective September 26.
Judy Jones informed the members of the 165th
birthday anniversary of the State Library of Iowa on Wednesday,
September 24, 2003,
at the State Library.First Lady Christy
Vilsack and writer Chuck Offenberger will be there in the afternoon.
The September 22, 2003, meeting of the Education Telecommunications
Council adjourned at The
next meeting of the ETC will be December 15, 2003, at Iowa Public Television.