Technology  Planning for E-Rate
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Technology Planning for E-Rate

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Presented on behalf of the South Dakota State Library by Michael Sauers & Christa Burns on 24 & 26 April 2010.

Presented on behalf of the South Dakota State Library by Michael Sauers & Christa Burns on 24 & 26 April 2010.

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  • Must include why’s and how's!!!
  • Alignment: Is your plan to use technology in alignment with the programs and mission of your organization?Does the plan align with the programs and mission of the funders with whom you wish to develop or deepen your relationship?Business Case: The business case for most technology projects can be computed by a relatively straightforward equation. The net benefits of the technology initiatives must outweigh the total costs.Framework for Accountability: Your plan should provide a high-level timeline for achieving goals and putting technology systems in place in a strategic and coordinated way. This timeline is a natural framework for ensuring accountability and providing funders with concrete milestones. During each phase of the planning, development and implementation, organizations and funders can make decisions about whether tasks were accomplished and initiatives continue to be viable.Discrete Initiatives: Often it will be in your best interest to develop your technology plan as a series of discrete initiatives. If you are pursuing a multi-funder strategy, this will allow funders the opportunity to decide which specific areas of the plan they would like to fund.Appropriate Costs: Demonstrate reasonable efforts to optimize the costs of your projects. Consider ongoing costs such as staff time, maintenance, and support.Proactive Approach: Articulate how your plan is proactive in its approach to technology instead of just simply trying to patch a set of existing problems in a "break-and-fix" mode of IT spending.Highlight Innovation: Many funders may be drawn to projects that use technology in new and innovative ways to service programs and mission. Funders may view such innovation projects as an opportunity to experiment with ideas that may prove to be valuable for other grantees in their portfolio. Although innovation can also provide an opportunity to raise the profile of your organization in the eyes of prospective funders, keep in mind that funders who are most interested in innovation may differentiate between "leading edge" and "bleeding edge" technology projects.Viability and Sustainability: You will need to ensure that the set of objectives outlined in your technology plan are reasonable both in their scope and timeframe. Additionally, your technology plan and its initiatives must be able to endure over time and enhance the health and long-term stability of your organization.

Technology  Planning for E-Rate Technology Planning for E-Rate Presentation Transcript

  • Technology Planningfor E-Rate
    Michael Sauers & Christa Burns
  • Who are we?
    Michael SauersTechnology Innovation LibrarianAuthor, Blogger, Photographer
    Christa BurnsSpecial Projects LibrarianGamer, Gardener, Cat & Ferret minion
  • Who are you?
    Name
    Position
    Library
    Service area / # of patrons served
    When was the last time your library had a technology plan?
  • What a Technology Plan is…
    A plan
    A demonstration
    A lens with which to focus
    A prioritizing agent
    A budgeting tool
    An aligner with other institutional goals
    A training schedule
    A fund-raising tool
  • What it is not…
    A list of technology that the library wants and on what time frame it wants it.
  • You plan should be SMART
    Specific
    Measureable
    Aggressive & Attainable
    Results-oriented
    Time-bound
  • Why?
    Give the library direction
    Show the library is forward-thinking
    Help minimize technology-related crises
    Use staff time efficiently
    Avoid wasting money on equipment
    Help you think through your priorities in order to use technology in a way that directly furthers your mission
    It’s required for E-rate requests for more than Basic Telephone Service
  • What makes a good plan?
    Concise
    Specific
    Integrated
    Foreseeable
    Flexible
  • And what doesn’t?
    Tech for tech’s sake
    Doesn’t connect the tech to the mission of the library
    Doesn’t explain why the tech is needed
    Poorly organized
    Techno-babble
    Leaves stuff out
  • What others will look for
    Alignment
    Business Case
    Framework for Accountability
    Discrete Initiatives
    Appropriate Costs
    Proactive Approach
    Highlight Innovation
    Viability and Sustainability
  • The players
    Board
    Director
    Department heads
    Staff
    Public?
  • The Resources
    Direct:
    Current strategic and/or long-range plan
    Library mission and/or vision statement
    Current and/or previous technology plans
    Indirect:
    All of the above for parent institution
    Library journals, magazines, and blogs
  • Samples
    See handouts
  • The Structure
    Executive summary
    Library description
    Library challenges
    Current technology environment
    Emerging technologies
    Web site evaluation
    Recommendations
  • Executive Summary
    1-2 page narrative summary of the plan
  • Library Description
    Introduction
    Purpose of the plan
    Library history
    Physical description
    Mission statement
    Community served
    Staffing
    Budget
    Collection size & annual growth
    Services offered
    Use of the library
    Current technology
    Visuals never hurt
  • Library Challenges
    SWOT Analysis
    Strengths
    Weaknesses
    Opportunities
    Threats
  • Current Technology
    Hardware
    Patron computers, Staff computers, networking equipment, peripherals
    Software
    OSes, Patrons, Staff
  • How to pick new tech
    Think about “competencies”What do you think you staff needs to know to move your library into the future.
  • Emerging Technologies
    Audio/Video
    Wireless (802.11n / WiMax)
    Mobile
    RFID
    Social Media
    Photo printing
  • Web Site Analisys
    Follows current design practices?
    Platform?
    Static, CMS
    Accessible?
    Social?
    Mobile?
  • Recommendations
    Priorities
    Description of relevant categories
    Listing of the specific recommendations
    Type (new software, application, hardware)
    Cost (including interdependencies)
    Benefits
    Recommended timeline
    Assessment/results/training needed
  • Suggested phrasing
    “In the next [time frame], the library will [action or recommendation], which will result in [associated benefits].”
  • 24
    Technology Plans and E-rate
    Federal Communications Commission rules require libraries to write technology plans when they are receiving support for more than basic telephone service
    Basic telephone service is defined as wireline or wireless single-line voice service (e.g., local, cellular, and/or long distance) as well as mandatory fees associated with such service (e.g., federal and state taxes, universal service fees, etc.)
  • 25
    Technology Plan Needed?
    NO
    Local/long distance service (landline or cellular)
    800 service
    Centrex
    YES
    Digital Transmission Services
    DSL, fiber optic, OC-x, frame relay, etc.
    PBXs
    Key system lines
    Internet Access
    Internal Connections
    Basic Maintenance
  • 26
    Purpose of the Technology Plan
    Technology plans ensure that libraries are prepared to effectively use the requested services to integrate telecommunications and Internet access into the educational program or library services they provide.
    Technology plans should support and validate the services requested on the Form 471.
  • 27
    Timing
    Technology plans must be written before the Form 470 is filed
    Applicants need to determine the services they require before filing their Form 470
    Technology plans must be approved before services start or Form 486 is filed (whichever is earlier)
    Generally, this means on or before July 1 of the new funding year
  • 28
    Important Terminology
    Written (same as created): When the technology plan first contains the five required elements in sufficient detail to support the services requested on the associated Form 470, USAC considers the technology plan to be written.
    The date this occurs is the Creation Date. The creation date must be prior to the date the associated Form 470 is posted to the USAC website.
  • 29
    Important Terminology
    Approved Date: The date when the technology plan is approved by an USAC Certified Technology Plan Approver. The approval date should appear on the approval letter.
    SD Public libraries go to Dept. of Ed – Peg Henson - Peg.Henson@state.sd.us
    USAC does not approve technology plans – DO NOT submit your technology plan to USAC unless requested during review.
  • E-rate Forms
    Indicate current status of your technology plan
    Block 5 of Form 470
    Block 6 of Form 471
    Certify that the plan approval has been obtained
    Block 4 of Form 486
  • 31
    Technology Plan Duration
    Technology plans should not cover more than three years due to the rapid development cycle of new technologies
    Technology plans must cover the entire funding year for which a service is being sought
    funding years run July 1 – June 30.
    Libraries need to keep copies of the technology plan and the approval letter for at least five years following their last date of service for audit purposes.
  • 32
    Five Required Elements
    Clear Goals and a Realistic Strategy
    Professional Development
    Needs Assessment
    Sufficient Budget
    Evaluation Process
  • 33
    Clear Goals/Realistic Strategy
    The technology plan must establish clear goals and a realistic strategy for using telecommunications and information technology to improve education or library services.
  • 34
    Clear Goals/Realistic Strategy
    Specific goals for using technology should identify:
    Improvement that should occur from the use of technology by library patrons
    Achievements and/or successes that can be attained using technology
    Increased staff and library patron competency with using technology
    Additional Internet and/or telecommunication options for classrooms or public areas of a library
    Accessibility to technology
  • 35
    Clear Goals/Realistic Strategy
    Realistic strategies should identify:
    How the library will develop and integrate the technology (e.g., how many computers will have Internet access)
    Standards required for implementation of the technology
    Technology needed for the future to maintain or enhance the current instructional or library environment
  • 36
    Professional Development
    The technology plan must have a professional development strategy to ensure that staff know how to use these new technologies to improve library services.
  • 37
    Professional Development
    Describe and list the professional development activities required of staff to train properly on the technology in the library
    Training is more than just how to turn on the computer
    Identify person or group in charge of planning and coordinating staff training
    Verify current levels of training
  • 38
    Details of training
    Methods of training to be used (classroom, seminars, Train-the-Trainer, etc.)
    How training supports the library usage goals
    Documentation of training (sign-in sheets, computer lab logs, lists of in-service activities, etc.)
    Professional Development
  • 39
    The technology plan must include an assessment of the telecommunication services, hardware, software, and/or other services that will be needed to improve library services.
    Needs Assessment
  • 40
    Needs Assessment
    Provide a status of the existing technology, such as:
    • Telephone system
    • Building Infrastructure (e.g., electrical capacity, cooling system)
    • Computer hardware and software
    • Internet access
    • Staff training
  • 41
    Needs Assessment
    Based on the current technology, describe new technology needs, such as:
    • Adding a firewall or replacing servers
    • Adding upgrades to phone system
    • Adding network switches
    • Adding cable drops
    • Installing a new network
    • Classroom/lab materials
  • 42
    Needs Assessment
    Describe maintenance needed for new and existing equipment
    How often will the technology be serviced? (e.g., daily, weekly, monthly, etc.)
    What are the characteristics and capabilities of the equipment? (e.g., age, model, year, memory, etc.)
  • 43
    The technolgyplan must show how the library will:
    Pay the non-discount share of the cost
    Acquire and support the necessary resources (computers, training, electricity, software, etc.) needed to make effective use of the discounted services.
    Sufficient Budget
  • 44
    Sufficient Budget
    Include specifics about budgeted items and the sources of funding. For example:
    Salaries
    Telephones (E-rate funding)
    Desktop software (state funds)
    Budgets can be projections
    Budgets should be based on reasonable expectations of receiving funding and incurring expenses
  • 45
    The technology plan must include an evaluation process that enables the library to monitor progress toward specified goals and make mid-course corrections in response to new developments and opportunities as they arise.
    Evaluation Process
  • 46
    Evaluation Process
    Evaluation process should describe:
    How frequently the technology plan will be evaluated
    The person(s) responsible for updating the plan
    How progress toward the goals and objectives will be measured or monitored
    If and how goals were met
    Any unexpected outcomes
    Any new needs that emerged
    Any goals that are no longer relevant
  • 47
    Plans for Other Programs
    Other federal, state, or local programs may have technology plan requirements
    USAC does not require a technology plan in addition to other technology plans
    However, if there is only one technology plan covering all programs, the information required under E-rate must be included in that technology plan
    HINT: Include a cover sheet giving the page number(s) where each E-rate requirement is addressed
  • 48
    Revising Plans
    Through the evaluation process, the technology plan writer may discover that the technology plan needs revisions or mid-course corrections. For example, if there are major changes, such as:
    Budget Increase/shortfall
    New technology introduced
    New construction
    Mergers and closures
  • 49
    Revising Plans
    Major Changes
    If the changes are significant (e.g., building a local area network or starting a new initiative like distance learning), the technology plan should be re-approved
    TPA can re-approve revised technology plan for balance of the original time period approved
    A new technology plan incorporating the changes can be written to cover another three years
  • 50
    Revising Plans
    Minor Changes
    If the changes are minor (e.g., a change in technology that USAC could approve under a service substitution request), the technology plan may not need to be amended
    TPA can request copies of any changes
    USAC does not expect a new approval letter
    Retain documentation of any changes
  • 51
    Pitfalls
    Technology plan does not contain all five required elements
    Technology plan is undated
    Time period the technology plan covers is not specified
    Library used an approver who is not a TPA
    Technology plan was approved after services started (if necessary, USAC will adjust the service start date to the date the technology plan was approved)
    Technology plan does not support services being requested or technology currently in use
    Technology plan is not realistic based on TPA’s expertise
  • E-Rate & filtering
    Compliance with CIPA required for:
    Internet access
    Internal connections
    But not telecommunications (telephone)
    CIPA requires
    Filtering
    Internet Safety Plan
    Public notice and public hearing or meeting
    E-rate information on CIPA:
    http://www.usac.org/sl/applicants/step10/ cipa.aspx
  • http://webjunction.techatlas.org/
    Inventory Tool
    Event Tracker
    Planning Tool
  • Resources
    Matthews, Joseph R., Technology Planning: Preparing and Updating a Library Technology Plan: Libraries Unlimited, 2005.
    TechSoup: http://www.techsoup.org/
    Technology Planning for E-rate: http://www.usac.org/sl/applicants/step02/ technology-planning/
    Links:http://delicious.com/travelinlibrarian/techplan