Thursday, January 30, 2014

Loss of Federal Funds Leaves Luna's Idaho Education Network $14.45 Million in Red

Posted By on Thu, Jan 30, 2014 at 10:52 AM

Unexpected costs from Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna's Idaho Education Network may throw a wrench into Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter's plan to ramp up funding for Idaho schools, the Spokesman-Review reports.

Teresa Luna, State Department of Administration director, has requested a supplemental appropriation of $14.45 million after the state failed to receive anticipated federal e-rate funding. Otter has indicated he may dip into the $29 million account that would have gone to the Public Education Stabilization Fund at the end of fiscal year 2014.

The Idaho Education Network is a package of technology-based education programs that have been part of Luna's public education package and managed by for-profit Education Networks of America. In July 2013, Luna caught flak from Idaho lawmakers when he announced a 15-year contract with the company to provide wireless Internet access to hundreds of Idaho schools.

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