Maryland schools need $100 million in technology upgrades for new testing

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Some local school systems would need to shut down some of the normal uses of the computers, including sending email, to give the online standardized tests, the report said. Some districts reported that they need to buy thousands of new computers for the tests, which are required by the spring of 2015; others said they had nowhere to put the computers that they need to buy.

Lawmakers briefed Wednesday said the magnitude of the hurdles that school districts face — and the price tags — are concerning.

"Some of the data that they showed us raises some concerns," said Sen. Paul G. Pinsky, a Prince George's County Democrat and member of the Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee.

While he supports the Common Core and new assessments, Pinsky said, he is concerned that some districts are reporting the need for up to 15,000 more devices, as in Harford County, and millions of dollars in upgrades that they will have to pay for out of their budgets.

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