The Voice of Business, Industry & the Professions Since 1942
North Carolina's largest business group proudly serves as the state chamber of commerce

Information Technology

Position: NCCBI strongly encourages the implementation of a technically sound, aggressive, sustainable and ongoing funding source for school technology that is based on the strategic direction and contemporary technical standards required of our K-12 education system.

Explanation: While some progress has been realized through the School Technology Fund over recent years, North Carolina’s K-12 public education system is rapidly falling behind the current and emerging standards for information technology required for the effective and efficient operations of our classrooms and information management systems.

In 1994, with the General Assembly’s creation of the $42 million School Technology Trust Fund, there was strong leadership acknowledgment of the emerging importance and impact of technology for the K-12 public education system.  Since that time, the State has invested an additional $10 million in recurring funds and has added $10 million  in non-recurring funds each year since 1996.  The needs and “mission critical” aspect of information technology has grown exponentially and without question has moved to the forefront in nearly every walk of life from private business to government, learning and teaching, to personal, professional, and organizational management.

As the School Technology Commission has reported, more than start-up costs are at issue.  Infrastructure, maintenance, technical support, hardware and software upgrades, and training necessitate an ongoing investment for improved productivity, accountability, and cost-effective planning. These areas account for approximately 70% of all school technology costs, after the initial purchase and should be seen as part of the important investment our state must make in assuring all students are adequately prepared for the

opportunities and challenges awaiting them throughout the 21st  century.

An ongoing funding source is critical in meeting the accountability expectations of our state’s business, higher education, and parent community, in assuring our students are successful in school and equally important, as they transition to the workplace and throughout their continuum as life-long learners.

This funding plan, aligned with the statewide wide-area network requirements, should address the essential areas of a sound technology plan including such issues as: infrastructure, hardware, software, high-speed interconnectivity, training, maintenance and upgrades, and technical support services.  Immediate K-12 priorities should include: infrastructure, instructional technology and teacher/administrator training. Y2K upgrade,  and accelerating the expansion of the SIMS replacement (Student Information Management Systems).

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Early Childhood Education
Teacher Recruitment and Retention
Full Funding for Mandates
Opposition to Tax Credits
Parental and Community Involvement
Stay the Course
Support for Community Colleges
Teacher/Administrator Preparation Programs and Facilities

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