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FWCS board authorizes purchase of 1,100-plus laptop computers

Monday, November 25, 2013 - 8:30 pm

More than 1,100 laptop computers will be purchased by Fort Wayne Community Schools after its board gave its approval to complete the transaction Monday.

The purchase price for the 1,184 laptops is $768,416, according to information provided by the district. The devices will be acquired from Hewlett Packard Direct. FWCS will also purchase licenses for Microsoft Office and other services from a Cleveland-based company for an additional $37,401.

Some interesting tidbits from board discussion of that purchase, as well as a presentation about the district's technology goals:

The district opted for laptop computers instead of iPads because some schools still do not have full computer labs.

Keyboarding skills are still being developed for some students, which also makes having the laptops more useful.

The district has 7,000 iPads.

FWCS is weighing a "Bring Your Own Technology" option for its students and is working through the logistics that would require, including how to protect its network against attacks.

Also on Tuesday, the board ratified a two-year agreement with the union that represents its bus drivers. The agreement contains provisions for a 2 percent base wage increase, while the 401(k) match is suspended and will not be available until it is included in a board-approved budget.

The board also retained the ability to reduce transportation expenses for the length of the agreement.