2012-11-08 Enterprise Education IT Report

 DATE: November 8, 2012
 FROM:Flint Waters, State Chief Information Officer
 SUBJECT:Enterprise Education Information Technology
 CC:Office of the Governor

At the request of the chairs of the Joint Appropriations and Education Committees, the Department of Enterprise Technology Services (ETS) continues to provide updates on the progress related to supporting Education Information Technology for the State of Wyoming including the Wyoming P-20 Statewide Education Longitudinal Data System (SLDS) and the Educator Credentialing, Assignment Validation and Reporting System. ETS staff continue to move forward with fulfilling the statutory requirements.

Section 006.  Administration and Information
Review and report on all aspects of administration and implementation of school finance and data collection

ETS is supporting the Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) in determining their Information Technology (IT) needs related to data collection and reporting for the supplemental budget and contract amendments. ETS is identifying components included in the administration and implementation of school finance and data collection. Once a draft document is available, it will be shared with the Legislative Services Office (LSO).

Assess and identify the requirements necessary to facilitate the integrity, accuracy and security of all information and data utilized in calculation and distribution of payments to Wyoming school districts

ETS is working with WDE in the effort of gaining access to the data collection system. ETS is collaborating with WDE to identify the requirements that facilitate the integrity, accuracy and security of information. Once a draft document is available, it will be shared with LSO.

Section 316.  Distance Education and Statewide Video Conferencing
Establish a plan to address the video needs within the State and ensure continuity of critical services

The Governor’s Office approved the use of $600,000 in remaining Video Conference Enterprise (VCE) funds to provide the video conferencing services for the entire biennium without any additional funding request. The responsibilities held by the positions funded through the VCE budget have been transferred to existing positions within ETS and two positions are listed in the closure request as part of the consolidation report.

Section 325.  E-rate Excess Revenue Funds
Manage State E-rate application submission

Since 1996 Wyoming has been a participant in the Schools and Library Program of the Universal Service Fund - E-Rate program which provides Federal reimbursement to States for the expansion of Internet capacity for schools and libraries.  

ETS conducted an evaluation of the duties and responsibilities necessary to manage the state E-rate application submissions and determined a position would be necessary. ETS re-purposed and staffed an existing position to assume the E-rate reporting responsibilities. All E-rate reimbursements are deposited into the School Foundations account. ETS is now reviewing responses to the Unified Network Request for Proposal (RFP) that was due October 28, 2012. A review of the Funding Year 2012 E-rate application has begun.  

Section 326.  Education Accountability Data Systems
Maintaining and supporting efforts for the Wyoming P-20 Statewide Education Longitudinal Data System

In August 2012, WDE requested non-disclosure agreements to gain access to the data collection system including a data request release and signed non-disclosure affidavit, which by our understanding is not a requirement of WDE employees. ETS collaborated with the LSO to update the non-disclosure affidavit drafting a more appropriate document. It has been signed and provided to WDE. It has been accepted by WDE and Dr. Ballard now has limited access to state assessment and federal accountability data sets to start reviewing content. Initial reviews have revealed potential issues with the accountability data that will require further analysis. A report will be submitted with additional details at the December Joint Education Committee meeting.

Wyoming Student Growth Model
In 2011, additional components were added to the Wyoming Integrated Statewide Education (WISE) Data System to meet the requirements set forth in the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund (SFSF) application and received approval. The student growth model is an important component integrated into the SFSF application. WDE has finalized contract negotiations that will continue the support necessary for this effort.

In April 2012, Superintendent Hill moved forward with signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Colorado Department of Education. ETS did not have an opportunity to review the MOU before it was signed. After speaking to the Select Committee on Statewide Education Accountability in July 2012, ETS submitted questions to WDE regarding the MOU signed by Superintendent Hill with Colorado on the student growth model. A follow up communication was submitted to Superintendent Hill and a response was received from John Masters. WDE has since provided us with a copy of the response sent to LSO and we are reviewing to see if this matter can be resolved.

WDE requested approval for $225,000 in additional services of implementing a student growth model module within the Assessment Resource Tool (ART) including a national standards based operational data store. As this is new development, a business case is required. The business case review process will allow ETS to resolve concerns regarding the funding of this effort. We could only identify $500,000 related to this project and it was approved for annual maintenance and not enhancements. WDE has informed us that they are working on a business case. This matter remains open.

Wyoming Equality Network
In review of the transferred budget for funding the Wyoming Equality Network (WEN), ETS is projecting a $2,300,000 shortfall in funds. At the direction of the Governor a supplemental budget request has been submitted to address the shortfall. The proposals for the next version of the Unified Network incorporating the WEN have been received and are under review.

IT Consolidation
There are three positions at the WDE that remain contested. These positions include an IT project manager, network administrator and technology manager. These positions are still considered frozen pending the final decision of the Legislature in the 2013 session.

Proposed WDE Supplemental Budget Requests
In July 2012, ETS received four requests related to technology without the necessary supporting documentation and since then WDE has withdrawn these requests from the supplemental budget request process.

Providing statewide capability to share and access educational information between all education data participants within the state

Wyoming P-20 Statewide Education Longitudinal Data System
The purpose of the Wyoming P-20 SLDS is to establish the data cohesion and integration across the multiple agency systems to allow a system to be developed to store high-quality longitudinal data providing accurate information on how individual students, or aggregates of students, are doing over time, from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade and into post-secondary education and careers. This data, known as longitudinal data, can give policymakers and educators the type of information they need to assess the effects of their reform policies and programs efforts, and adjust policies and practices to improve student achievement. This data should include alternate pathways into careers including certificate programs and apprenticeships, as well as college and university attendance. The various source systems making up the comprehensive SLDS system retain their own internal data governance, source systems and data collections and only data that is shared falls under the umbrella of the SLDS.

To deliver the technical requirements of a preschool through workforce (P-20) statewide education longitudinal data system as required by the Legislature, a needs assessment is in the process of being conducted. A supplemental budget request has been submitted in the amount of $1,350,200 to the Governor for recommendation.

Educator Credentialing, Assignment Validation and Reporting System
The Education Credentialing System is a part of the broader P-20 statewide education longitudinal data system. This system is intended to be an enterprise solution supporting licensing agencies including the Professional Teaching Standards Board (PTSB). The RFP is under review. ETS is building core infrastructure components for this system and will be contracting subject matter expertise ensuring the success of the operation. This approach will meet the needs of many, including the specific and unique needs for the education domain.

The Wyoming Integrated Statewide Education (WISE) Data System is an infrastructure supporting a system of standards and procedures set up to acquire, organize and report education data primarily funded by the Wyoming State Legislature. The primary goal of the WISE Data System is to collect, certify and transform school district data into standardized data sets and support horizontal integration including vertical reporting across Wyoming school districts for the purposes of cleaner and more reliable data. The WISE Data System is a PK-16 longitudinal data system incorporating pre-kindergarten through 12th grade student level data and postsecondary student level data for those participating in the Hathaway Scholarship Program.  

ETS is tasked to evaluate and plan for a P-20 comprehensive statewide education longitudinal data system that would incorporate preschool through workforce information for the education community expanding the capacity of existing systems such as the WISE Data System.

A detailed expenditure report related to these sections will be provided to the Joint Appropriations and Education Committees by December 31, 2012.