CHAPTER 61a

EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY

Table of Contents

Sec. 4d-80. Commission for Educational Technology.

Sec. 4d-81. Educational technology account.

Sec. 4d-81a. Grants to further the use of technology.

Sec. 4d-82. Connecticut Education Network. State-wide Universal Service Fund application.

Sec. 4d-82a. Ed-Net account.

Sec. 4d-83. Technical assistance. Purchasing under state-wide contracts.

Sec. 4d-84. Technology standards.

Sec. 4d-85. State-wide standard for teacher and administrator competency in the use of technology for instructional purposes.

Secs. 4d-86 to 4d-89. Reserved


Sec. 4d-80. Commission for Educational Technology. (a) There is established a Commission for Educational Technology within the Department of Administrative Services. The commission shall consist of: (1) The Commissioner of Administrative Services, or the commissioner’s designee, the Commissioner of Education and the president of the Board of Regents for Higher Education, or their designees, the State Librarian, or the State Librarian’s designee, the chairperson of the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority, or the chairperson’s designee, the chief executive officers of the constituent units of the state system of higher education, or their designees, (2) one member each representing the Connecticut Conference of Independent Colleges, the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education, the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents, the Connecticut Educators Computer Association, and the Connecticut Library Association, (3) a secondary school teacher designated by the Connecticut Education Association and an elementary school teacher designated by the Connecticut Federation of Educational and Professional Employees, and (4) four members who represent business and have expertise in information technology, one each appointed by the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, the speaker of the House of Representatives and the president pro tempore of the Senate. The Lieutenant Governor shall convene the first meeting of the commission on or before September 1, 2000.

(b) The commission shall elect a chairperson from among its members. Subject to the provisions of chapter 67, and within available appropriations, the commission may appoint an executive director and such other employees as may be necessary for the discharge of the duties of the commission. Notwithstanding any provision of the general statutes, the executive director shall have the option to elect participation in the state employees retirement system, or the alternate retirement program established for eligible employees in higher education or the teachers’ retirement system.

(c) The commission shall:

(1) Be the principal educational technology policy advisor for state government;

(2) Develop, oversee and direct the attainment of state-wide technology goals including:

(A) Connecting all institutions of higher education, libraries, public elementary and secondary schools, regional educational service centers and other parties through a state-wide high speed, flexible network that will allow for video, voice and data transmission;

(B) Wiring all school classrooms and connecting them to the Internet and to the state-wide high speed network through wired, wireless, or any other digital transmission technology providing high speed connectivity;

(C) Providing access for all public schools, public libraries and libraries at institutions of higher education to a core set of on-line full text resources and to the ability to purchase collaboratively for other collections in order to maximize buying power;

(D) Ensuring, in cooperation with the State Board of Education, competency in computing skills by the sixth grade for all students;

(E) Ensuring competency in specific computing skills and the integration of technology into the curriculum for all public school teachers;

(F) Ensuring that institutions of higher education offer a wide range of course and degree programs via the Internet and through other synchronous and asynchronous methods;

(3) Coordinate the activities of all state agencies, educational institutions and other parties involved in the creation and management of a reliable and secure network that will offer connectivity and allow for the transmission of video, voice and data transmission to every library, school, regional educational service center and institution of higher education;

(4) Be the liaison between the Governor and the General Assembly and local, state and federal organizations and entities with respect to educational technology matters;

(5) Develop and maintain a long-range plan and make related recommendations for the coordination of educational technology. The plan shall (A) establish clear goals and a strategy for using telecommunications and information technology to improve education, (B) include a professional development strategy to ensure that teachers and faculty know how to use the new technologies to improve education, (C) include an assessment of the telecommunications, hardware, software and other services that will be needed to improve education, and (D) include an evaluation process that monitors progress towards the specified goals;

(6) Measure the availability and usage of Internet access sites available to the public, including, but not limited to, those maintained by state and local government agencies, libraries, schools, institutions of higher education, nonprofit organizations, businesses and other organizations and recommend strategies for reducing the disparities in Internet accessibility and usage across the state and among all potential users;

(7) Establish methods and procedures to ensure the maximum involvement of members of the public, educators, librarians, representatives of higher education, the legislature and local officials in educational technology matters and organize, as necessary, advisory boards consisting of individuals with expertise in a particular discipline significant to the work of the commission;

(8) On or before January 1, 2001, and annually thereafter, the commission shall report, in accordance with section 11-4a, on its activities, progress made in the attainment of the state-wide technology goals as outlined in the long-range plan and any recommendations to the joint standing committee of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to education and appropriations and the budgets of state agencies, the State Board of Education, and the Board of Regents for Higher Education. The report shall include recommendations for adjustments to the funding formula for grants pursuant to section 10-262n if there are school districts that are at a disadvantage in terms of wiring their schools and the use of technology in their schools;

(9) Enter into such contractual agreements, in accordance with established procedures, as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this section;

(10) Take any other action necessary to carry out the provisions of this section.

(d) The Commission for Educational Technology may request any office, department, board, commission or other agency of the state to supply such reports, information and assistance as may be necessary or appropriate in order to carry out its duties and requirements.

(e) For purposes of this section, educational technology shall include, but not be limited to: (1) Computer-assisted instruction; (2) information retrieval and data transfer; (3) telecommunications related to voice, data and video transmission of instruction related materials and courses; (4) the development and acquisition of educational software; and (5) the instructional uses of the Internet and other technologies.

(P.A. 00-187, S. 33, 75; P.A. 01-173, S. 3, 4, 51, 67; P.A. 11-48, S. 285; 11-51, S. 85; 11-80, S. 1.)

History: P.A. 00-187 effective July 1, 2000 (Revisor’s note: In codifying this section the Revisors deemed an erroneous reference in Subsec. (c)(9) to “section 40 of this act” to be a reference to section 41 of the act since that section provides for information technology grants); P.A. 01-173 amended Subsec. (a) to make technical changes, amended Subsec. (b) to add provisions re executive director retirement options and amended Subsec. (c)(2)(C) to add public schools, effective July 1, 2001; pursuant to P.A. 11-48, “Board of Governors of Higher Education” and “Commissioner of Higher Education” were changed editorially by the Revisors to “Board of Regents for Higher Education” and “president of the Board of Regents for Higher Education”, respectively, effective July 1, 2011; P.A. 11-51 amended Subsec. (a) to place commission within Department of Administrative Services and to change “Chief Information Officer of the Department of Information Technology” to “Commissioner of Administrative Services”, effective July 1, 2011; pursuant to P.A. 11-80, “Department of Public Utility Control” was changed editorially by the Revisors to “Public Utilities Regulatory Authority” in Subsec. (a)(1), effective July 1, 2011.

Sec. 4d-81. Educational technology account. There is established an educational technology account. The Commission for Educational Technology shall deposit in said account any private donation, bequest or devise made to it to assist in the attainment of the state-wide technology goals established pursuant to subdivision (2) of subsection (c) of section 4d-80. Said account is intended to be in addition to those resources that are appropriated by the state for technology purposes. The commission shall use the resources of the account for activities related to the attainment of such goals.

(P.A. 00-187, S. 34, 75; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 01-9, S. 1, 131.)

History: P.A. 00-187 effective July 1, 2000 (Revisor’s note: A reference to “The Commission on Educational Technology” was changed editorially by the Revisors to “The Commission for Educational Technology” for consistency with Sec. 4d-80); June Sp. Sess. P.A. 01-9 changed the name of the Educational Technology Fund to the educational technology account, effective July 1, 2001.

Sec. 4d-81a. Grants to further the use of technology. The Department of Administrative Services may make grants to further the use of technology, including education in technology.

(June Sp. Sess. P.A. 01-9, S. 79, 131; P.A. 11-51, S. 76.)

History: June Sp. Sess. P.A. 01-9 effective July 1, 2001; pursuant to P.A. 11-51, “Department of Information Technology” was changed editorially by the Revisors to “Department of Administrative Services”, effective July 1, 2011.

Sec. 4d-82. Connecticut Education Network. State-wide Universal Service Fund application. (a) The Commission for Educational Technology shall develop, with the advice and assistance of the State Board of Education, the Board of Regents for Higher Education and the Department of Administrative Services, a five-year plan for the implementation of the Connecticut Education Network to provide state-of-the-art, high-speed, reliable Internet access and video, voice and data transmissions that electronically link all educational institutions in the state, including public and independent institutions of higher education, the state’s libraries and all elementary, middle and secondary schools and other institutions including businesses, job centers and community organizations. The plan shall include the establishment of a Connecticut Digital Library as a component of the Connecticut Education Network to ensure on-line access by all students and citizens to essential library and information resources. The State Library, in conjunction with the Board of Regents for Higher Education, shall administer the Connecticut Digital Library. The Connecticut Digital Library shall provide access to available on-line electronic full-text databases, a state-wide electronic catalog and interlibrary loan system and the electronic and physical delivery of library resources. The Connecticut Digital Library shall include elements specifically designed to meet the educational and research needs of the general public, higher education students and faculty and elementary and secondary school students and teachers.

(b) The commission shall oversee the preparation and submission of a state-wide application to the federal Universal Service Fund to enhance connectivity to the Connecticut Education Network, maximize participation and grant attainment rates, and reduce overly burdensome administrative requirements which discourage local involvement. No later than the annual federal funding deadline, and for every subsequent universal service funding cycle, the commission, or its designee, shall submit a state-wide application for universal service funds. Each local and regional board of education and public library that is designated by the commission for connection to the Connecticut Education Network shall be deemed to have authorized the commission or its designee to submit an application for such funds on its behalf.

(P.A. 00-187, S. 35, 75; P.A. 01-173, S. 5, 67; P.A. 03-76, S. 37; P.A. 06-192, S. 8; P.A. 11-48, S. 285.)

History: P.A. 00-187 effective July 1, 2000; P.A. 01-173 amended Subsec. (b) to make a technical change, effective July 1, 2001; P.A. 03-76 made a technical change in Subsec. (b), effective June 3, 2003; P.A. 06-192 amended Subsec. (b) by deleting language re feasibility report, by changing deadline from March 31, 2001, to the annual federal funding deadline, by inserting “or its designee” re commission and by adding language allowing commission to submit application for funds on behalf of boards of education and libraries, effective July 1, 2006; pursuant to P.A. 11-48, “Board of Governors of Higher Education” and “Department of Higher Education” were changed editorially by the Revisors to “Board of Regents for Higher Education” in Subsec. (a), effective July 1, 2011 (Revisor’s note: In Subsec. (a), “Department of Information Technology” was changed editorially by the Revisors to “Department of Administrative Services” to conform with changes made by P.A. 11-51, S. 76).

Sec. 4d-82a. Ed-Net account. (a) There is established a separate nonlapsing account within the General Fund to be known as the Ed-Net account. Any reimbursements received by the Department of Administrative Services for costs associated with the Connecticut Education Network shall be deposited in the General Fund and credited to the Ed-Net account to be used by said department to support the costs of said network.

(b) The funds made available to the Department of Administrative Services in subsection (a) of this section, for Ed-Net, may be transferred by said department to state agencies requiring funds for such purpose.

(May 9 Sp. Sess. P.A. 02-7, S. 99; P.A. 11-51, S. 76.)

History: May 9 Sp. Sess. P.A. 02-7 effective August 15, 2002; pursuant to P.A. 11-51, “Department of Information Technology” was changed editorially by the Revisors to “Department of Administrative Services”, effective July 1, 2011.

Sec. 4d-83. Technical assistance. Purchasing under state-wide contracts. The Department of Administrative Services, in consultation with the Department of Education, shall provide (1) technical assistance to local and regional boards of education and technical high schools to expand their educational technology capabilities, including, but not limited to, wiring, Internet connectivity and technical support, and (2) opportunities for such boards of education and schools to purchase under state-wide contracts.

(P.A. 00-187, S. 36, 75; P.A. 09-143, S. 3; P.A. 11-51, S. 76; P.A. 12-116, S. 87.)

History: P.A. 00-187 effective July 1, 2000; P.A. 09-143 deleted former Subsec. (b) re annual report and made a conforming change; pursuant to P.A. 11-51, “Department of Information Technology” was changed editorially by the Revisors to “Department of Administrative Services”, effective July 1, 2011; pursuant to P.A. 12-116, “regional vocational-technical schools” was changed editorially by the Revisors to “technical high schools”, effective July 1, 2012.

Sec. 4d-84. Technology standards. The Department of Administrative Services, after consultation with the Commission for Educational Technology and the State Board of Education, shall develop minimum and model technology standards, including wiring, wireless and connectivity standards, for school construction projects under chapter 173 and for the grant program established pursuant to section 10-262n.

(P.A. 00-187, S. 38, 75; P.A. 11-51, S. 76.)

History: P.A. 00-187 effective July 1, 2000; pursuant to P.A. 11-51, “Department of Information Technology” was changed editorially by the Revisors to “Department of Administrative Services”, effective July 1, 2011.

Sec. 4d-85. State-wide standard for teacher and administrator competency in the use of technology for instructional purposes. The Department of Education, in cooperation with the Commission for Educational Technology, shall develop, by July 1, 2001, and shall update every two years thereafter: (1) A state-wide standard for teacher and administrator competency in the use of technology for instructional purposes, and (2) a state-wide plan to assist teachers and administrators to achieve the standard. The commission shall assess the resources necessary to achieve such goal. The commission shall submit the plan to the General Assembly.

(P.A. 00-187, S. 42, 75; P.A. 04-57, S. 3.)

History: P.A. 00-187 effective July 1, 2000; P.A. 04-57 switched Department of Education and Commission for Educational Technology in roles as cooperating agency and lead agency, effective July 1, 2004.

Secs. 4d-86 to 4d-89. Reserved for future use.