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The resource section of this web
contains a budget info and links
page for more detailed information. Money for school library media and technology
programs can come from several sources:
School Fund. Article X, section 2 of the Wisconsin State Constitution created
the Common School Fund. Income from interest on money
loaned for school building projects is to be spent library books
and other instructional materials for school libraries. Over the
past few years, some of this money was moved to the TEACH fund,
but after one biennium, the funds were returned to purchase
If the budget passes on time, each school district should be
sent a check in January. The amount is figured on the total number of
children between 4 and 20 in the district on the preceding June
30. The total amount in the fund on December 1 is divided
among the districts in proportion to the number of children in the
count. The amount changes from year to year based on the amount in
|In 2003-2004, the amount rose to $15.98 per student.
|In 2002-2003, the amount dropped to $13.87 per student.
|In 2001-2002, the amount was $19.13 per student.
|In 2000-2001 the amount was $17.68 per student.
|In 1999-2000, the amount was about $22.00 per student,
almost double the previous year's amount. |
The money goes to the district, but there is not a requirement
that it be divided equitably among the schools in the district.
Check the DPI website for a list
of the amount
each district received.
This money is to be spent only in the following budget
|Audiovisual materials (431)
|Library books (432)
|Programmed software (435)
|Reference books (439)|
Common School Funds are not to be spent for textbooks, materials
housed in one classroom or used for only one curriculum area,
class sets of books, library automation software, or site
The amount delegated to each district is published each January
in Channel DLS and on the DPI
Other state funded projects
|TEACH. The functions of TEACH were moved to the Department of
Administration in August 2003. TEACH will still offer the
Telecommunications Access Program as well as continue to
administer the Statewide E-rate Consortium Application, but no.
new educational technology block grants, wiring loans, or
teacher training grants will be awarded. Existing wiring loans
and teacher training grants will continue to be tracked and
reported on through project completion. Previous programs
|Infrastructure Financial Assistance (wiring loans)
(approximately $100 million for schools and $10 million for
public libraries in 1999-2001) for networking school and
public library buildings. Only half must be repaid.
|Telecommunications Access for T1 data line at $100 per
month or DS3 line for video at $250 per month.
Generally one per district funded, except for districts with
multiple high schools. Also available to public
libraries. (over $12 million from universal services
fund in 1999-2001)|
|Full text databases of periodicals and newspapers available to
schools, libraries, and citizens of Wisconsin. The number of
full text resources has increased five times since start of this
|Other examples include UW System PK-16 Technology Initiative,
WASDI academies, ECB's Mathline and Scienceline, and Teaching
through Technology. CESAs also offer numerous academies and
other professional development activities. For other sources of
funding in the state, see Wisconsin
Grants and Financial Assistance|
|Local property taxes
|This is less of a factor in Wisconsin than in many states as the
Common School Fund is intended to decrease the disparity among
rich and poor districts. There is currently a lawsuit in the
courts challenging these assumptions.|
|Special bonds / referendums
|Districts may choose to ask the taxpayers to approve a
referendum for special funds for a building program or a large
technology purchase. In recent years, these have not faired
particularly well in many local districts.|
|Federal funds or grants
|These programs could be block grants or competitive grant
Literacy Challenge Fund was one federal program, administered
through the state, that funded technology-related expenses,
especially professional development, in the schools. For
1999-2000, $6,900,000 was budgeted. In 2000-2001, approximately
$6,142,000 was awarded to school districts. Both individual
districts and consortia were eligible. Internet filtering
software was required in funded districts. As of this spring 2002,
TLCF was folded into the EETT funds. Check the DPI webpage for
more information on this funding as it comes available. It appears
that it will go to districts with large number of Title I students
or consortia including such schools.
Education Through Technology (Ed Tech) Program is administered
through DPI to improve student academic achievement through the
use of technology in schools. It is also designed to ensure that
every student is technologically literate by the end of eighth
grade, and to encourage the effective integration of technology
with teacher training and curriculum development to establish
successful research-based instructional methods. Individual
schools and consortia where at least one partner has an 11%
poverty rate are eligible to apply. These EdTech grants now
replace the TLCF grants.
(Universal Service Fund) is an example of a federal program
supported through funds from the telecommunications companies that
is available to schools for connecting to the internet.
|Other examples that may be used for technology include Goals
2000, Eisenhower, Carl Perkins, IASA Title VI, and IDEA.|
|Private foundations or parent groups
|Fund raisers (e.g., book fairs)
|Additional alternative sources of funds and resources:
|Regional services such as CESAs
|Cooperative arrangements and purchasing agreements
|Resource sharing and joint projects
NOTE: Many of these state and federal funding sources require that the
district have a certified technology plan and the federal programs will
require that the district follows the requirements set out in the Children's
Internet Protection Act (CIPA) and the Neighborhood CIPA including the
installation of a technology protection measure (i.e., filtering
software), developing an Internet Safety Policy in the district, and
holding a public hearing on this policy.
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When creating a budget, take into account long-term
goals, new technologies, any changes in school population, inflation,
curricular changes, the speed of obsolesce for different materials and
hardware, and the replacement cycle for items. Ideally, look for flexibility to acquire new formats, spread expenditures over several
years, use rental or leasing options, phase in equipment and new systems
over time, carry over funds from year to year, and negotiate installment
plans, but this will not alway be possible Ultimately, budgets must
reflect constraints and program needs.
Be prepared to justify a budget. A school principal or superintendent determines what proportion
of the Common School Fund is yours and may or may not add additional funds
for library materials, supplies, software, and equipment. This
is often referred to as a lump sum budget.
Other districts require a budget for materials
each year that demonstrates how the money will support the libary media program. Relate the library budget to the
specific needs of your students, teachers, and curriculum.
Most schools will ask for a line item budget that will
designate funds for different types of materials and other expenses.
While the Common School Fund may be spent for specific materials, there
may be many other items required for your program:
|Computer and a.v. equipment
|Computer supplies such as printer cartridges and blank
|A.V. supplies such as bulbs, transparencies, and markers
|Other supplies such as paper, mending tape, plastic book
|Licenses for software
A budget is more likely to be supported it it reflects the efforts of a library committee composed of interested teachers
and/or other stakeholders.
Budgeting in a school is
generally a zero sum game -- money that goes one place is taken away from another
place. Strive to serve the entire school population and build
support base. Emphasize meeting the library and school
mission when justifying budget requests.
Doug Johnson in The Indispensable Librarian: Surviving (and
Thriving) in School Media Centers in the Information Age (p. 109),
offers questions that budget committees or administrators should be
asking about budget requests. How would you answer these about your
|What programs teach the skills which will be vital to tomorrow's
|What programs, skills, and attributes does your community believe
|How many teachers and students will benefit from a particular
|Are there other sources of funds for activities which could be
|How might a budget decision affect the school's climate?
|Is there research to support the effectiveness of a program or
specific spending decision?
|How much budgeting is being done out of respect for sentiment or
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Computer and audiovisual equipment is very expensive and needs to be
maintained, upgraded, and/or replaced on a regular cycle.
While slide projectors could last 20 years only an occasional bulb
replacement, computers that are over 4 years old are fast becoming
obsolete and unable to run new software. Many schools have
been caught in the bind of wanting to upgrade their online catalog but
finding their computers are not powerful enough to run the new system.
This is called a capital expense as it often is not part of your normal
library budget. Generally, items over a certain price, such as $500,
and not consumable are considered capital purchases and require a special
purchasing process and long term planning. Often the school district
will also require special record keeping and labeling of such items.
Doug Johnson's book (p. 99) provides a formula for figuring a yearly
Maintenance budget = replacement rate X total number of items X
Replacement rate = 100% / number of years in the life span of the
In his example, if a school has 50 VCRs which cost $300 each and
have a life span of 10 years the replacement rate = 100% divided
by 10 years or 10%. Therefore,
Maintenance budget = 10% X 50 items X $300 = $1500
That means a school should budget $1500 per year to repair or
This calculation gets complicated when all the items are purchased in
one year as part of a large building process or bond issue as they then
tend to need replacement at the same time. It is best to spread
these purchases out over several years to facilitate maintenance.
Do not purchase more technology at one time than can
be regularly maintained, upgraded and replaced and consider the support
personnel to service this amount of equipment. It does little good
to have 200 computers in a school if you don't have the staff to keep them
up and running every day.
While maintaining the current library media center, consider where the
LMC will be in the future in terms of capital equipment. In
the past, many schools have added computer equipment through grants and
special referendums, but this is not likely to continue into the future.
Think about where the LMC should be in 3-5 years and then divide the items
that are desirable to add by the number of years it should take you to reach
this goal. Then multiply this by the cost of the item. This
results in a realistic figure to use when discussing budget needs
with the principal, technology coordinator, or budget committee.
Bids or Educational Price Lists
Large ticket items like computers or furniture often require a bid process
or purchasing from an approved list to assure the district gets the best
price. Check with the district on when to put something out for bid
and which items are to be purchased off of an educational price list.
former is generally used for large items such as library tables and chairs
and the latter may be used for computer equipment or non-library
supplies. When writing bids, be extremely specific to get
exactly the desired products or services. The lowest bidder will generally be chosen to
as the supplier. Generally, one cannot specify brand names, so you need to
have your exact parameters spelled out. Get help on this
from your business office.
For example, for a computer system, you need to
consider things like processor speed, RAM, cache, harddrive size, storage
devices (e.g., CD-ROM, DVD-ROM, CD-RW, zipdrive, floppy drive), networking
capabilities, expansion slots, Firewire / USB ports, warranty, monitor,
The TEACH Wisconsin Technology and Services Procurement site
was intended to help districts with technology purchases but has not been
updated in the last year. Many computer hardware sites provide educational
prices for computer systems and peripherals:
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The resource section of this web
contains a budget code
page for more information. The Wisconsin Uniform Financial Accounting Requirements (WUFAR)
is used when ordering materials for the library media center. Each
number is at least 18 digits long. For example, the number 10 401 432
222 200 000 9 can be parsed to indicate a range of information.
|Fund. 10=General fund|
|Location. 401=High school|
|Object. 432=Library books|
|Function. 222=Educational media|
|Subfunction. 200=School library|
|Program or project. 000=none|
|Fiscal year. 9=1998-1999|
Additional digits may be added by each district's bookkeeping system to
meet local needs. For school library media specialists, the most
important numbers are those covered by the Common School Fund but they
may use additional numbers (see Hopkins, pages 69-71). These numbers
should be types on each requisition and are used to track how much is
spent of the Common School Fund.
|431: Audiovisual media
|432: Library books
|435: Programmed computer software
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There are several ways to actually order materials. Most people select
one or two jobbers for the majority of their print orders and resort to
the others for special orders. Common vendors include: Follett,
and Taylor, Mackin)
|Advantages: Many people like to shop at the local bookstore
because they can personally examine the items and get them very
quickly. Some of the larger bookstores even allow up to a 20%
discount on school purchases. Could order materials not in stock but
may not give discount.
|Disadvantages: Not all districts are set up to purchase things
from bookstores -- additional arrangements may be needed to handle
purchase orders. Some districts limit the amount that can be spent
this way. Bookstores may have a more limited range of children's and
YA titles. They generally handle trade, not library binding, books.
There may not be dust jackets, and cataloging or processing is not
Online bookstores (amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com)
|Advantages: Simple to locate materials by subject. Items
discounted. Reviews by other readers.
|Disadvantages: May handle limited number of titles. Sometimes
backordering can take a good deal of time. Postage fees can add up.
Often do not handle library bindings. No cataloging or processing.|
Publishers / Producers
|Advantage: Best place to be assured of getting a work of that
publisher. Extensive catalogs of their titles with descriptions and
often illustrations. May be the only way to order software or
|Disadvantages: Seldom give discounts. Postage costs. Cataloging
and processing seldom available. Not selective.|
Methods of ordering:
|Electronically: Select materials from Internet or CD-ROM
database. Print out list of selected items and attach to
requisition or order via the Internet or modem if allowed by
|Catalog (print or CD-ROM): Mark items desired on catalog and
have company order from this or have them create a list with
prices for attaching to requisition.|
|Advantages: One-spot shopping. Provide processing and cataloging
to your specifications. Significant discounts. Library binding
available. Stock items of interest to school libraries. Electronic
catalogs make selection and ordering easy. Will backorder items.
Sometimes postage is free.
|Disadvantages: Not selective. Some may have few descriptions and
no reviews. Items may not stay in stock long.|
Collaborative Purchasing Agreements
|WILS: Wisconsin InterLibrary Services|
This not-for-project library services organization provides a wide
range of services to libraries of all kinds around Wisconsin. For a
basic membership fee the district is eligible for discounts on CD-ROM
and electronic databases, hardware, supplies, equipment, and
furniture. For a school district with one high school this fee is only
$100 per year. Each fall a print catalog is sent to the district's
contact person. This catalog is updated both on the website and in a
periodic newsletter. For some services, the district sends a purchase
order to WILS, and they place the order. For other vendors, the
participating district sends a purchase order directly to the company
with a WILS code. WILS also can make OCLC and interlibrary loan
services available to public schools if desired. For more information
on the services of WILS, check out their web site. Cheryl Bradley (email@example.com,
phone: 608-263-4962) can provide additional information.
The CESAs provide a wide range of purchasing services to their
members. These vary greatly from CESA to CESA, so contact your local
representative for more information. Some are based on contracts with
Instructional Technology Support Services at each CESA. For example,
CESA 1 in the past has negotiated contracts for discounted software
purchases available to schools throughout the state from MicroSoft,
Filemaker, Edmark, Educational Resources, Forest Technologies,
HyperStudio, Inspiration, Learning Outfitters, AlphaSmart (to
individuals and to schools), NTS (DreamWriter), Perfect Solutions,
Slater Software, and Bell Education (formerly Graham MicroAge).
Discounts from Apple for CESA1 members only Novell networks for
schools under 2500 students Contact Pam Kandziora (414-546-3000, ext.
426 or 800-261 2372, ext. 426 or firstname.lastname@example.org) to determine
if any of these programs are still available. Most have been
discontinued for legal reasons.
The Wisconsin Educational Media Association has just negotiated a
contract for educational discounts on Adobe products through CCV
Software. Check their website
for an upcoming announcement.
Numerous companies will offer discounts to schools in Wisconsin. For
|Vanguard Computers, Madison:Hewlett Packard products
|CompuCom, Brookfield: Hewlett Packard products
|Grimm Book Bindery, Madison: Textbook and library book rebinding
|Dorling Kindersley Family Learning: Educational Software|
|The Wisconsin Association of School Boards Marketplace Page
advertises products of interest to schools. Searchable by keyword,
company name, or product category. There are categories such as: -
Communication, Data, Music, Sound, Video & Voice Systems -
Computers, Internet Providers, MIS Consulting, Training or Software -
Curriculum, Early Childhood, Instruction & Educational Supplies
& Resources - School & Office Equipment, Forms, Supplies &
|VendorNet, Wisconsin's electronic purchasing information system, was created to
provide easy access to a wide variety of information of interest to
vendors who wish to provide goods and services. Information provided
by the companies is stored in the central statewide vendor database
for inclusion in bidders lists as they arise. Municipalities,
including school districts, may register for VendorNet and then may
check through this listing of state contracts to determine if pricing
is available to them. Approximately 70 municipalities are currently
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