Lisbon schools still waiting for computer order

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LISBON — The School Committee was advised Monday night that laptops approved by the Maine Department of Education in August still haven’t arrived because of flooding from Hurricane Harvey and lost paperwork.

However, the Hewlett Packard computers the district will receive will be better than the ones ordered and will cost less, Technology Director James Churchill said.

The laptops were delayed when flood waters filled the manufacturing building in Houston during Hurricane Harvey in August.

“Once that cleared, (the manufacturers) got back in . . . and then we found out that the sales department forgot we existed,” Churchill said.

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Laurie Underwood, the district’s Hewlett Packard representative, said the laptop order was omitted when the company updated its products.

“It’s taken HP so long to figure this out that the machine we’re going to get is now end of life,” Churchill said. “So the machine that we’ll end up receiving is actually better than the one we were originally going to get and it’s going to cost less.”

Underwood is project manager for the Maine Learning Technology Initiative, which provides professional development and 21st Century tools to Maine’s K-12 public schools. 

She said she expects to receive an estimated date of arrival this week and will update the district then.

“Very unfortunate because we already missed a year of being able to use the technology with the students,” Chairwoman Traci Austin said.

The Technology Department budget for 2018-19 is expected to remain at $45,400.

Churchill said the top spending priority is a new accounting server, which produces the payroll.

“We need to have our numbers in order at all times,” Churchill said.

The next School Committee meeting is at 7 p.m. Feb. 12 at the Town Offices.

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