Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Ervin..."not going to beat that horse to death"

At the March 30th, Montgomery County Council Management and Fiscal Policy Committee meeting the discussion turned to the technology budget for the Montgomery County Public School system (MCPS). During the discussion, MCPS Chief Technology Officer, Sherwin Collette described the new "My MCPS" portal* that is in development. Councilmember Ervin interrupted his presentation to ask what the "savings" were for the implementation of this new technology initiative. In her statement, Councilmember Ervin brought up that a lot of money had been spent on Promethean Boards but that she was "not going to beat that horse to death".

Whoa! That horse isn't dead! That horse may be out of the barn but it is far from dead. In fact, it is running wild!

The 2,600 Promethean Boards that were purchased in the summer of 2008 through a lease signed by MCPS COO Larry Bowers** still have 3 payments of $3.3 million each to go! And the payment plan for Year 2 of the lease has already fallen through. There is still plenty of time to pull in the reigns on that expenditure!

And the public still has no idea how the other 700 Promethean Boards appeared in MCPS classrooms.

*If anyone can find reference in MCPS Board of Education minutes to this new "My MPCS" portal including social networking features initiative, please post in the comment section to this article. Thank you!

**The lease has a signature box on page 4 for the Board of Education as "lessee". COO Larry Bowers signature appears there instead.

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