Perry Polk, CEDPA President

Welcome to the Long Beach Sheraton and the California Educational Data Processing Association annual conference. During your visit to downtown Long Beach, you will find some wonderful restaurants, clubs, conference facilities and lots of sites to see. The Sheraton is one of the nicest and prettiest hotels we have used for a conference. The staff will bend over backwards to help you.

This year's conference, our 34th, will emphasize the commitment that we all have to the education of California's children. Distance learning, student records exchange and Internet are major topics on the plate for each of us. This is our conference emphasis.

I think you will find all of main speakers entertaining and enlightening. Each year the search for speakers has resulted in a really challenging group of speakers. This year is no different. We have four outstanding and challenging main speakers--George Luginbill, Dr. Phil Bossert, Ed Dry and Mark Kasperowicz. We've added Dr. Phil Bossert as a speaker at our luncheon on Wednesday because we don't want you to miss his talk about his work in Hawaii.

On Friday we will have a forum to discuss the details of wiring Internet connections and other topics concerning the technical aspects of routers, high speed telephone lines, "clouds", grants, licenses and design.

The Internet Room (see related story) gives you an opportunity to see and experience how to make physical connections to Internet and to understand how each piece of equipment works and how the system works together. You will also be able to "Cruise the Net." We are indebted to two companies for their generosity in making the room work for you. GTE has given CEDPA a grant to pay for a T-1 connection to CSULB, and Internet Products, Inc. has provided much of the equipment and expertise. All of this was masterminded by Warren Williams of Grossmont Union High School District. Our hats are off to you Warren for a job well done.

Ken Jones of Lodi Unified is the speaker chair and will fill your time with interesting and challenging breakout sessions. The Thursday vendor show was arranged by Skip Sharp of San Diego County COE. These two guys have worked innumerable hours to make this conference a success for you. Thanks guys.

Have a terrific conference, enjoy Long Beach and plan now for a visit next November to the San Jose Fairmont, another top rated hotel.