MEXICO – The SAD 43 board Monday authorized Superintendent Jim Hodgkin to execute an agreement with a wireless communications firm that never got a board-approved contract.

Gloria Jenkins, the district’s curriculum coordinator, said Tuesday that school officials discovered the situation with Conterra Ultra Broadband LLC of North Carolina when a new technology administrator began working for the district.

Conterra’s communications tower is at the central office in Mexico and connects the district’s schools via Internet, telephone and computer. The district pays $1,700 per month for the service, a cost largely funded through e-rate money. It serves as a backup system if the district’s Internet should go down, and allows the district to eliminate some services provided by other vendors, Jenkins said.

The tower and associated equipment is in the building that is expected to be turned over to the town on June 30 when SAD 43 is dissolved and becomes part of the Western Foothills School District. Hodgkin said the district plans to work out a plan with the town of Mexico to continue use of the communications tower.

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