Speaker Update

Skip Sharp, San Diego County Office of Education

The speaker program for the upcoming conference is just about rounded into place and it promises to be a good one.

First there are three excellent keynote speakers. Kelly Blanton, Kern County Superintendent of Schools will deliver the kickoff speech. Dr. Blanton is heading some excellent ventures which promise to have a dramatic impact on the way schools do business, from who you hook up to electronically and how, to what is going on in the classroom. Dr. Blanton's 'down home' sense of humor and style perfectly complement the very important things he is trying to accomplish.

Mark Phigler, Deputy Director for the Telecommunication Division of the California Department of General Services, will provide a description of some of the many new things happening at the state level in the area of telecommunications which will have a direct influence on the ability of schools to provide new capabilities. Mr. Phigler has a real sense of what the telecommuting will look like down the road and what skills will be required to prosper in the future.

The concluding keynote will be delivered by Alex Kaplan of BDM. Mr. Kaplan's firm has successfully transitioned from a defense oriented firm to the educational environment, and he will share what it takes to successfully conduct such a transition, a task faced by many in the education community today.

In addition to the keynote speakers there is an equally outstanding array of breakout sessions. Interested in the Internet? If so, there is an interesting panel presentation on the legality and appropriateness of presenting material from the Internet to school children and a session on Internet security.

Several members of the vendor community will team up for a series of presentations on innovative strategies and applications, ranging from how to economically provide wiring to campuses, to which topology best suits a particular environment. Don Peterson of Modesto City Schools will also share how he has used the cable TV companies to be a data signal carrier.

The California Department of Education will be presenting a series of breakouts that are designed to inform CEDPA members on what is taking place at the CDE, and how CDE ventures can help the CEDPA membership.

On the business side, Ken Prosser has an excellent presentation and first hand account on the effects of outsourcing, and Carlene Naylor and Jan Sterling will be providing an update on the new standardized account code structure. There will also be a presentation on the things you need to do before jumping headlong into a client-server architecture and a session on financial planning for individuals.

Several breakouts will be oriented to emerging technologies such as imaging, document routing, multimedia and video conferencing and how they can applied in an educational setting.

The sessions are varied and hold something of interest and value for everyone. The presenters are enthusiastic about their topics and are interested in making the sessions especially worthwhile for you to attend. See you in San Jose.