Cloquet school district dialing in a new phone systemIn a brief meeting of the Cloquet School Board Monday, Sept. 13, the district technology reported that phase one of a project to re-vamp the district’s technology infrastructure has been completed.
By: Brittany Berrens, Pine Journal
In a brief meeting of the Cloquet School Board Monday, Sept. 13, the district technology reported that phase one of a project to re-vamp the district’s technology infrastructure has been completed.
Technology Coordinator Yvette Maijala told school board members that the infrastructure was put in place Sept. 3 and installers are still working through a few problems with hook-ups.
It’s all part of a plan that was first brought before the board at their June 28 meeting. Maijala expressed concern over the amount of money spent on the upkeep of the failing phone system infrastructure. She reported that about $30,000 was spent in maintenance and repairs to the phone system over the past couple of years.
“We continue to spend money on a product that is failing and we have very limited resources to work on it and fix it,” said Maijala during the June meeting.
She also feared the phone system would fail during an emergency when 911 service would be essential.
“There is something really not good about this system,” she said. “We are at a point where this phone system is very unreliable. I wouldn’t be here today if I didn’t feel this was an important project.”
Board members requested more specific information on costs before they could make further consideration on the project.
A formal proposal was presented at the board meeting on July 12 and it was requested that formal bids be sought for the project to ensure the district got the best deal possible.
The district sent out the project specifications to four vendors and only one quote was received by the Aug. 2 deadline. That quote was from Eventis for some $65,000.
The next step in the project is to meet with the phone engineer to do a walk-through of the buildings and meet with building office staff to discuss individual classroom needs and preferences. The ultimate goal is to go live with the new phones on Oct. 25. This will include staff training on how to use the new telephone system. The telephone system upgrade includes a new model of phone, the 7942 G, which includes speakerphone.
A special Cloquet School Board meeting was held Tuesday, Sept. 7. The board approved the following new hires:
• Jacqueline Berg, dietary assistant
• Danielle Wheeler, Cloquet High School math teacher
• Roderick Syck, Cloquet Area Alternative Education Program math teacher
• Chelsea Annette, Churchill home school liaison
• Tina Swartwoudt, Churchill academic tutor
• Elizabeth Barra, Washington academic tutor
• Lisa Lawrence-Northrup, Cloquet High School home school liaison
• Carrie Manty, Cloquet High School academic tutor
• Tara Graves, Indian Education director