California Educational Data Processing Association
The DataBus - Vol. 37, No. 1
December, 1996-January, 1997

President's Corner

CEDPA Focus: Coming year will further efforts to enhance K-12 classroom technology.

Greg Lindner, Yolo County Superintendent of School

What a conference! This was one of our largest ever. We have heard many positive comments about the conference and are already looking towards next year's conference. This year's event was attended by 200 people. If you are new to CEDPA, you may think 200 attendees is a low number, but when you think of it in terms of who these 200 people are, you may take another view. CEDPA traditionally attracts DP/MIS/ITS Managers, Network Engineers, Technology Coordinators, and Computer Specialists from K-12 institutions across the state. Our newsletter reaches over 700 K-12 Technologists in California. It is further distributed throughout Educational offices to several hundred more technologists. The association brings each of its members a very unique opportunity to discuss technology issues with their colleagues, and to network with their peers. Doing so brings benefits to all our members and our organizations.

Our annual conference provides a way for us to meet face to face and exchange ideas and ask questions. Our periodic special interest meetings allow us to meet and discuss specific topics that are of interest to us throughout the year. The bottom line is that if you are in the business of K-12 Technology, CEDPA is the organization for you. It brings you unique and unmatched opportunities to network with your peers throughout the state and to find answers to problems you have been working on or are about to work on.

I have been a member of CEDPA for quite a few years now. My major emphasis this year as President will be to highlight the strengths of our organization. I believe we are an organization that has its finger on the pulse of technology in the K-12 arena in California. I believe we are uniquely positioned to assist K-12 Education to further the use and understanding of technology in the classroom. I believe CEDPA members have the knowledge, skill, know-how and experience to make a positive impact in K-12's use of technology.

As stated, CEDPA's members are "techies" for the most part. We like what we do, and we do it very well. In the coming year, it is my goal to utilize the skills, and knowledge of our membership to assist K-12 Education in moving forward with technology. Specifically, this year, CEDPA will be putting together a minimum thresholds list for computers. This list will contain criteria that will assist schools and districts in establishing minimum standards for the computers they purchase. Minimum is meant in this instance as, "The minimum computer you should purchase if you want to do the following is: .......". CEDPA has already put together a working committee on this project. Once the initial analysis has been completed, the board will review the minimum guidelines and seek input from the association. The final minimum thresholds will be placed on the CEDPA home page (cedpa-k12.org) for the benefit of all K-12 education.

We feel having a Minimum Threshold of Computer Equipment list will be beneficial to all of us similar to the Minimum Threshold of Services report submitted by the California County Superintendents Education Services Association Telecommunications/Technology Task Force. That document found at http://marin.marin.k12.ca.us/~ccsesa/ is to assist K-12 Education in targeting the minimum level of telecommunications infrastructure and technical services that each region should provide. It is part of the statewide plan to get all schools connected to the Internet.

I am excited about CEDPA. We have such a tremendous amount of expertise and knowledge in our organization. I want to tap that knowledge in a statewide organized manner to assist all of K-12 Education in California to further their technology plans. I feel we can do this and am determined to move forward. Districts throughout California are finding they have additional funds for technology. Many of these districts are smaller districts and not certain of what they should purchase or who they should listen to. It is my goal to have CEDPA be a technical beacon to which they can look for advice and guidance on K-12 Technical Issues.

Our members are the people who design, plan, implement, support, and manage every network in K-12 Education today. We have solved or know someone who has solved thousands of technical problems. We know what works in a small, medium and large organization. We know who to go to for help, and who to stay away from. We know how to get discounts on equipment and how to get training. We know and understand the issues of security, data reliability and supportability. Our members work in almost every County Office of Education and District throughout the state and in several school sites. Our association is as the industry is, in a state of change. Stay tuned to our web page (cedpa-k12.org) and the DataBus, for more information on this in the future. Email and let me know what you think or how CEDPA can make a more positive impact on you or your organization.

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