In last week’s Citizen paper (from Ortonville), there was an article about the possible outsourcing of the IT functions in the Brandon School district to a company called VARTek in Dayton, OH that specializes in maintaining and updating technology in schools. I think with all the interest in updating technology in the district that this should be looked at by the district. VARTec’s mission is to “be the best provider of managed technology solutions for enhanced learning in the K–12 marketplace.”
In regard to Dr. Rock’s November 21st Superintendent Column that was advertised by ClarkstonCalendar.org, which is supposed to be used to advertise Clarkston area “events”, Dr. Rock said that he had a goal to have every district building equipped to allow every student to use a 1:1 technology device by 2014. I know that the board has not approved that as yet. I find it dangerous for the superintendent to make bold statements like that to the public.
By law, if students are expected to have any specific tools to do their jobs, that the district provide the materials for the child to do that. If the children would be required to do homework on their 1:1 technology devices that will be supplied to them, the district would be required to supply the households of those children with internet access. Although they would be wonderful tools for the students, it is an expensive prospect for the district and it should be considered with the promotion of all of the technology upgrades that Dr. Rock is promoting.
The school board has one employee to manage, the superintendent, who has decided that he is making the decisions in the district rather than the board. School Board, please perform your responsibilities to manage your employee.
In closing, I wanted to point out that on the “Over 100k Salary and Benefit Information Report” currently on the district’s transparency reports, that it shows that the “Director of Facilities and Grounds” earned $7,200.00 in the “Car/Mileage” category, but his contract only allowed for 600 miles per month at the IRS maximum (50 or 51 cents per mile). That would be $3,636.00, not $7,200.00. Who approved that additional benefit to this employee?