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Monday, March 15, 1999
Clifford Hardin Nebraska Center for Continuing Education-North Platte Room
33rd & Holdrege, Lincoln, Nebraska



Keith Bartels
Lincoln Public Schools

Jeff Johnson
Centennial Public School

Dr. Dean Bergman
Department of Education

Terry Miller
ESU 13

Dr. Reba Benschoter
(Alternate for Dr. William Berndt)

Art Tanderup
Tekamah-Herman Public School

Carna Pfiel
(Alternate for Dr. David Powers)

Alan Wibbels
ESU 10

Dr. Ken Halsey
Wayne State College

Dr. Kristine Wolzen
Community Schools

Dr. Kent Hendrickson, UNL
(Alternate for Chancellor Moeser)

Dr. Woody Ziegler
York Elementary School

Dr. Jack Huck
Southeast Community College


Susan Fees, Christ the King School

Dr. Uma Gupta, Creighton University

Dr. Richard Flynn,Peru State College

Dr. John Muller, Bellevue University

Dr. Richard Gilliland, Metro Com. College


Sarah Cunningham, Central Com. College


Lieutenant Governor Maurstad shared his thoughts and comments about the NITC and the Education Council's role in assisting the State of Nebraska in meeting the technology needs of its citizens. He informed the council that the governor is very much in support of technology and has assigned this responsibility to the Lt. Governor. This is a charge that the Lt. Governor takes very seriously and wanted to hear and learn from the council. Council members shared their concerns and expectations: affordable infrastructure costs for schools; maintaining and improving what is already available; distance education alliances between K-12 and postsecondary institutions; assurances that students learn more better and faster; collaboration for a digital environment; and avoiding development of a system that is too bureaucratic.


The meeting of the Education Council of the Nebraska Information Technology Commission was called to order at approximately 9:00 a.m. by co-chair Alan Wibbels. Corrections and/or additions to the February 15th minutes were asked of the council members. There were none. Mr. Tanderup moved and it was seconded by Mr. Johnson to approve the February minutes as presented. Vote: Bartels-Yes, Benschoter-Yes, Bergman-Yes, Halsey-Yes, Hendrickson-Yes, Huck-Yes, Johnson-Yes, Miller-Yes, Tanderup-Yes, Wibbels-Yes, Wolzen-Yes, Ziegler-Yes. Motion was carried. February minutes were approved.


Sarah Cunningham, Central Community College, wanted to go on record stating that the Education Council should strive for the interconnectivity of all learning pods. She felt it was unfair that 11 schools in her area are being penalized by having to pay for the inter-pod connection because of the type of technology chosen for distance learning.


Mr. Thacker distributed report packets to the council members containing information about transmitter and translator locations, Network 2 and 3 NEB*SAT usage, Network 4, teleconferencing network sites, and the Policies and Priorities Governing NEB*SAT Operations. Acknowledgement was given to Dr. Benschoter for her assistance in developing the policies and priorities. After a brief overview, Mr. Thacker entertained questions from the council members. A request was made to have the hours of usage broken down between K-12 and postsecondary and to prepare a brief report on Network 2 utilizations. Mr. Thacker will have this available for the next meeting.


SECTOR REPRESENTATION: Dr. Huck presented the Education Council report to the NITC at their February 24, 1999 meeting. A question was raised about the membership representation of the council and the addition of the ad hoc representatives as voting members. Dr. Huck explained to the NITC that the council had discussed and voted to include the ad hoc members. It was clarified that the NITC determines the membership representation of the councils. After discussion, the NITC gave the Education Council the directive to return to the original sixteen voting (eight K-12 and eight postsecondary) and 2 ad hoc non-voting members. The NITC instructed the Education Council that if they would like to propose a change it could be included as part of their charter for the NITC to take under consideration.


A Subcommittee of the Education Council including NEB*SAT representatives had been formed to work on the transition of NEB*SAT into the council. The subcommittee's recommendations were brought to the council and approved at the January meeting. The recommendations included expansion of membership of the NEB*SAT council to include eight K-12 and eight postsecondary representatives, in addition ad hoc or observers could be involved as non-voting members. The committees of NEB*SAT would remain the same but would be under the umbrella of the Education Council. The operations, functions and funding would remain with the NETC.

Dr. Huck informed the council members that there is current legislation (LB880) before the appropriations proposing that the NEB*SAT structure remain in place under the NETC with the previous membership representation. The council members were asked what position they would like to take so that staff could communicate their recommendation to the Appropriations Committee. Mr. Winkle explained that under the proposed legislation, the operational, functionality, inventory and technical control would remain with the NETC. The difference would be that funding proposals would go through a two tier review: 1) NEB*SAT would review and determine priorities, and then 2) the Education Council would review and approve priorities. Opportunity for discussion and questions occurred.

Dr. Ziegler moved and it was seconded by Dr. Halsey that the Education Council endorse the subcommittee's recommendations approved at the January meeting to merge NEB*SAT as part of the Education Council with a revised membership to include eight K-12, eight postsecondary representation and two ex-officio members. Vote: Bartels-Yes, Benschoter-Abstained, Halsey-Yes, Hendrickson-Abstained, Huck-Yes, Johnson-Yes, Miller-Yes, Tanderup-Yes, Wibbels-Yes, Wolzen-Yes, Ziegler-Yes. Motion carried.


TELECOMMUNICATIONS AGGREGATION JOINT SUBCOMMITTEE: Mr. Winkle shared with the group that the first meeting will be held at 1:00 p.m. today after the Education Council meeting. The "Policies and Procedures for Developing a Statewide Technology Plan" draft was distributed to council members. Mr. Winkle wanted to clarify that Statute specifically states that a plan and procedures to develop a statewide plan must be in place by July 1, 1999 not the statewide plan. The NITC has reviewed and approved this document with the understanding that it is a dynamic document that will change as the councils and subcommittees begin their work. The NITC will be meeting April 14th for a special working session to develop goals and objectives. Staff would like to have input from the council as soon as possible. Documents will be posted on the web and members were invited to participate either electronically, through communications with staff or their joint subcommittee representatives (Ziegler, Huck, Wibbels and Hendrickson). Staff will alert council members when documents have been posted to the web.


Due to the time, the remaining items on the agenda were tabled until the next meeting to be held April 9, 1999 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. in York at the Elementary School. Dr. Ziegler had maps available for the council members. Meeting was adjourned by co-chair, Dr. Huck at 12:05 a.m.

Minutes taken by Lori Lopez Urdiales, Administrative Assistant, and Tom Rolfes, Education Information Technology Manager, Office of the Chief Information Officer/NITC.

Meeting Minutes