support of a state's department of education makes it easier
for NetDay organizers to gain the cooperation of educational
organizations, teachers, and district and county administrators.
In California, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Delaine
Eastin, by endorsing NetDay early, opened the way for the state
department of education to act. A NetDay organizer should meet
with their state's education department as soon as possible.
He or she should explain how a NetDay event works, make it
clear why the department's support is crucial to coordinating
a statewide effort, and define the issues that the department
Here are steps the state can take to express
its support to local administrators and help them prepare
for a NetDay event. (The California Department of Education
formed a NetDay working group, composed of representatives
from the school, district, and county levels, to define schools'
needs and to help schools participate.)
- Send a letter to the
educational organizations that represent administrators
and teachers in your state, stating your support and
asking for their endorsement of a NetDay event. Hold
a meeting to go over plans for a NetDay; a NetDay organizer
- Be sure to understand the needs of schools
and districts in your state. Principle issues to consider
are: liability and risk management; technical issues related
to installing the cable; public relations; business support;
volunteer support; teacher participation; labor support,
and parent support of technology in schools (see
our answers to tough questions). Remember that teachers
and students are key supporters of NetDay events.
- Compile an information packet to send to
schools and districts. Include some checklists, illustrations,
and other information in this guide. Modify them if necessary
to address issues specific to your state. Also, be sure
to include any other state-specific information that will
help schools implement a NetDay.
- Work with NetDay organizers to plan and
conduct regional NetDay workshops co-sponsored by local
businesses, including telecommunications and high-technology
companies. (In California, county offices of education
hosted six workshops underwritten by Pacific Bell.) Ask
counties to encourage teams of school board members, administrators,
technical staff, and facility planners to come to the workshops.
At the workshops, brief attendees on how to take advantage
of volunteer and corporate support and show county, district,
and school administrators and PTAs what steps to take next.
Workshop attendees will pass on what they've
learned to the teachers and organizers who set the gears
in motion at each school - the people responsible for making
sure that a site survey is done, that enough supplies are
available, that the wiring kit arrives in time, and that
enough volunteers arrive to get the work done on your NetDay