Updates from March 2017

We have completed our wide-area-network (WAN) request-for-proposal (RFP) document and will soon file FCC Form 470 applications for internet access, WAN connectivity, telephone services, and various other eligible services. After each application has been made public for 28 days, a committee will participate in a competitive bidding evaluation. The committee’s selections will then be submitted as FCC Form 471 applications. The FCC’s E-Rate program will check the information on our applications for completeness and accuracy. When complete, we will be sent Funding Commitment Decisions Letters for the services approved for funding. Letters could arrive any time between July 2017 and March 2018.

From last year’s E-Rate application, we were recently funded for all new network switches at BES (a $65,000 upgrade) and a small upgrade at CMS (a $12,000 upgrade). The small upgrade at CMS is scheduled after Spring Break. The complete upgrade at BES is scheduled after students and teachers leave for summer.

At Lewis and Clark Elementary, four new Ricoh copiers are being installed for the main office and the teacher workrooms. The new copiers are a significant upgrade from the aging copiers currently in use at LCES.

We recently started projects to implement voice-over-internet-protocol (VoIP) phones at CMS and LCES. These are the last two locations to join the division’s telephone network. The projects at CMS and LCES were funded with $85,000.00 of the Returned Funds from Delta Dental and Anthem Health Insurance were marked for Capital Improvement (Technology). New network wire will be run to every classroom and office before handsets are installed.

Cox Communications and Unite Private Networks are nearing completion of our 5,000 Mbps Internet connection upgrade. For most of this school year, the division has been using 100% of its 200 Mbps Internet connection.

The department continues to assist with various parts of the renovation projects. We’ve been assisting with everything from intercoms and fire alarms to HVAC and time clocks.

With renovations around the old CHS library nearing completion, we are beginning to plan the consolidation of our server room and the old library AV room. The server room houses all of the division’s network servers and storage equipment. Two equipment racks will be relocated from the server room to the old library AV room. With all of the division’s most important equipment in one room, we are naming the space the network operations center (or NOC). The NOC will have an outer-office that will house our Network Administrator and one of our IT support staff.

On March 15, we had to finalize any purchases related to the School Security Equipment Grant. Roughly $74,000 or 59% of the funds have been spent on electronic access controls, $13,000 or 11% on security cameras, $32,000 or 26% on door lock enhancements, and $5,000 or 4% on visitor management software. These purchases will be delivered and installed by May, in time for our reimbursement process in June.