Adding more transparencyPublished 5:33pm Wednesday, August 28, 2013
The Beaufort County Board of Education just saved a lot of trees. It might not have been the goal when board members opted to switch to an electronic system of distributing board documents, but it will definitely be an outcome.
The school board opted for the new system, which required purchasing laptops for each board member and an annual $4,000 membership to a cloud-based service. That service will increase transparency by giving the public access to all information but student and personnel information.
The information was always available to those who asked, but it has never been easier to track, research and understand the issues the board members discuss during televised meetings.
The site lists meetings, agendas, policies and contact information. When policies are on the agenda for discussion, the site provides links to related statutes and material.
The board tread cautiously into this endeavor, opting for the least-expensive service plan and seeking referrals from school boards that had already made the leap into paperless board documents.
This system uses the Internet as it was intended, as a simple mechanism for sharing information and a quick way to reach a large audience. We look forward to watching the school board continue finding ways to work efficiently and involve the community in its actions.
Have a look for yourself: http://www.boarddocs.com/nc/beaufort/Board.nsf/Public