Pequot Lakes School District: Board enters new agreement with CTCIT

In their Monday, May 18, meeting, the Pequot Lakes School Board unanimously agreed to enter a new "Master Services Agreement" with CTCIT of Chanhassen, effective Friday, June 5.

In their Monday, May 18, meeting, the Pequot Lakes School Board unanimously agreed to enter a new "Master Services Agreement" with CTCIT of Chanhassen, effective Friday, June 5.

The agreement, good through the 2017-18 school year, indicates that CTC will continue to provide information technology services for the district, including network infrastructure, online security and system information backups.

Prior to taking action on the issue, the board heard from Ty Goeman of CTCIT on the future technology needs of the district. According to him, the district's need for more devices and a higher bandwidth will continue to increase.

Questions arose among the board regarding the cost of the agreement ($8,000 per month) and whether it would make for future budgetary concerns, especially if unexpected costs or repairs arise. Superintendent Chris Lindholm informed board members that, while a broader discussion of the district's overall budget needs to occur in the near future, this should be a manageable cost.

"Our capital tech budget for the past couple of years has been about $150,000," Lindholm said. "Out of that, we use that to replace a server if it were to go down or to refresh a lab or by more access points ... On top of that, there is a technology supply budget and a technology staff budget."


He also reminded the board that they "took on a lot of the heavy lifting" for technology costs over the past few years with the district's bond referendum.

In other action, the board approved a revised version of the district's 2015-16 school calendar. The only "major" change made in the revision is that the elementary school students will now join the middle- and high-schoolers by starting classes on Tuesday, Sept. 8, as opposed to two days later, when kindergartners begin.

They also approved the non-renewal of two non-certified staff members.

"This type of thing is done every year based on need," board chair Mike Erholtz said. "In the fall, we revisit this situation."

The board conducted the first reading of a new state policy regarding workload limits for certain special education teachers.

"We have to have (this policy), by law," Lindholm said. "You also need to know as a board that we are already living up to what the policy asks for. We were doing it long before we were required to."

In his report to the board, Lindholm said the negotiations team met with teachers Friday, May 15, to review their base costing process and Schedule C tax force process. They intend to meet again Thursday, May 21.

Dan Determan has been a reporter for the Echo Journal since 2014, primarily covering sports at Pequot Lakes and Pine River-Backus
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