- Under a new contract with the Lower Hudson Regional Information Center, 35 districts in New York's Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties will implement a "managed IT" model to better ensure tech is integrated into classrooms.
- The program was piloted last summer by the Pleasantville district, where a $150,000 contract provides three rotating tech and ed specialists to train teachers, help make tech purchasing decisions, build out infrastructure, and meet with curriculum administrators on implementing tech into lessons, as well as remote support from an office in Harrison, The Journal News reports.
- The costs per district across all 35 range from $126,957 to $830,788, depending on size, and instead of hiring IT personnel specifically for the district, each will receive support from a pool of 200 LHRIC employees who will handle three or four districts on rotation.
While successful device rollouts and ed tech implementations need solid training, support and infrastructure, the truth is that it can sometimes be difficult for a district to meet those needs across all of its schools with dedicated IT staff. Increasingly, districts are joining forces to mitigate costs on certain services — and with classrooms going increasingly digital, the training, support and curriculum integration assistance sought in this instance by these 35 New York districts is something that no district can afford to go without.
Another area where districts have joined forces is on broadband internet services. In Illinois, the Chicago Tribune reported in 2014, Glenbrook High School District 225 joined forces with two elementary school districts to form the Northfield Township Technology Consortium to purchase more bandwidth at a lower cost.