Budget & Resources – Planning


Element: Efficiency and Cost Savings

Description: Innovative funding for digital learning leverages technologies to improve teaching and learning as well as to increase efficiency and cost savings. A cross-functional District budget development team is formed that is composed of District leaders, key stakeholders, and subject matter experts who collectively represent the District’s interests. This team employs strategies for calculating the total cost of ownership (TCO) for all technology resources; focusing on learning-enabling technology, digital resources and instructional practice.

Possible Next Step: District leaders and budget development teams define their strategies, processes and metrics for determining Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). The district develops sound policies and procedures for the ongoing review and analysis of cost variables for equitable funding of digital learning. The District designs a communication plan that illustrates cost/benefit opportunities associated with digital learning.

Element: Alignment to District and School Plans

Description: Priorities for budget and resources are clearly linked to district- and building-level strategic and tactical plans and to continuous improvement goals. All expenditures must be justified as supportive of these plans. Innovative programs are funded conditionally upon their alignment to the district’s vision and mission.

Possible Next Step: As District leaders and key stakeholders build district- and building-level strategic and tactical plans they explicitly map curriculum integration to digital learning expenditures to viable funding streams, timelines, and accountability measures. The planning process identifies and prioritizes multiple funding and accountability scenarios.

Element: Consistent Funding Streams

Description: The District has consistent and flexible funding that enables equitable access to optimal learning environments. Budgets for technology-enabled learning tools and resources are addressed in short and long-term fiscal plans. Funding sources are identified in the District’s annual maintenance and operation budgets with minimal reliance on grants or other temporary sources. Funding for digital learning is integrated across multiple budget areas where appropriate.

Possible Next Step: Based on District vision and priorities for supporting digital learning, district leaders develop a viable plan that identifies funding priorities, propose viable funding streams and timelines, and define accountability measures.

Element: Learning Return on Investment

Description: All metrics for review of budget priorities and cost-efficiency are based on their demonstrated relationship to student learning goals. District leaders have strategies and tools for measuring Return On Investment (ROI) in digital learning; focusing on learning-enabling technologies, resources, instructional practice and student learning.

Possible Next Step: District leaders have a plan and tools for monitoring the relationship between budget for digital learning and student learning goals.