Local School District Tech Review Nixed From Budget

Jun 24, 2015

Credit computers.com

Among Governor Rick Scott’s list of vetoed projects is $3 million that had been earmarked for a review of school technology needs.

The money came as a result of this Spring’s testing woes—in which school districts experienced outages and expressed concerns they didn’t have enough computers to administer the state’s new online-based exams. Republican Senate Education chief John Legg cited the issue prior to the start of the legislative session.

“Technology isn’t about giving every kid a laptop and iPad or an android. It’s about integrating digital curriculum into the school. And what you don’t want to do is put a big funnel of money without any parameters to the school districts without them knowing how to implement it," Legg said in January.

The state's new computer-based Florida Standards Assessment went online in March, and districts immediately began reporting problems with the exam, such as glitches, and outages. Some school districts said they didn't have enough computers to administer the test which caused students to lose out on class time.

School districts continue to express concern about the new Florida Standards Assessment. The test is under review. In his veto letter, Governor Scott says the technology review duplicates the way the Florida Department of Education assesses local school district tech needs.