Superintendent's Memo #192-11

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA
Department of Education

July 15, 2011

TO: Division Superintendents

FROM: Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT: Secretaries of Technology and Education Announce New Round of K-12 Speed Tests

On July 14, 2011, Secretary of Technology Jim Duffey, Secretary of Education Gerard Robinson, and the Virginia Department of Education announced a new round of Internet speed tests for Virginia K-12 public schools.

The speed tests, developed by the eCorridors Program at Virginia Tech, allows administrators at elementary, middle and high schools to test Internet connection speeds and report their findings to the Secretary of Technology’s office. The data collected will then be combined with federal e-rate and service provider availability data to determine current connectivity levels and identify sites in need of additional resources.

Results from the combined analysis will also be made available as a planning tool for policy makers and government leaders.

“Adequate high-speed broadband connectivity in all of our schools is a must”, said Secretary of Technology Duffey.  “It is our responsibility to make sure Virginia students and teachers have access to connection speeds and bandwidths capable of supporting the ever-increasing number of online resources, applications, and opportunities necessary to compete for 21st century jobs.”

To conduct the K-12 broadband speed tests, please visit the eCorridor’s site http://www.ecorridors.vt.edu/maps/k12broadband/   or the Commonwealth’s broadband Web site at http://www.wired.virginia.gov/. Results will be posted on the Secretary of Technology and Secretary of Education’s Web site (http://www.technology.virginia.gov/ and http://www.education.virginia.gov) when available.

PIW/LWN/nhb