NEWS RELEASES 2006-07
NC SCHOOLS TO BENEFIT FROM MICROSOFT SETTLEMENT
More than one-third of North Carolina's public schools will benefit from a recent national legal settlement of the class action lawsuit against Microsoft. North Carolina entered this settlement case in 2003.
As a result of the settlement, North Carolina public schools will receive $40.9 million for qualifying schools that have a high percentage of children on free or reduced-price lunch. Local education agencies (LEA) and charter schools will receive vouchers for reimbursement for purchases of computers, software, projectors and other technology equipment. The instructions for reimbursements and funding through vouchers will be distributed to the Finance Officers from the Settlement Administrator (Poorman-Douglas Corporation). There will be a 50 percent split on the vouchers distributed to each eligible LEA and charter school, half of the vouchers will be for General Purpose (computers, software products, projectors, etc.), the remaining 50 percent will be Software Vouchers. The Department of Public Instruction also will receive funds to hire two people for one year to assist local school districts in the process of redeeming the vouchers.
Schools that are eligible for the settlement vouchers are as follows:
- Elementary schools (schools with any grade between K and 5) that have 60 percent or more of their students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch in FY 2004-05;
- Middle Schools (schools with grades 6, 7 or 8) that have 60 percent or more of their students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch in FY 2004-05; or
- High Schools (schools with grades 9, 10, 11 or 12) that have 70 percent or more of their students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch OR high schools with an ABCs performance composite score of less than 60 percent in FY 2004-05.
Based on these criteria, this means that 642 elementary schools (44 percent of all elementary schools), 155 middle schools (33 percent of all middle schools) and 60 high schools (16 percent of all high schools) are eligible for the settlement awards.
NC Department of Public Instruction officials said that the settlement funds and vouchers are expected to be made available to North Carolina in the next 30 days.
The allocations will be provided as a base allocation of $10,000 to each eligible school, remaining funding is distributed to schools with average daily membership (ADM) above 500. An additional $138.64 per ADM is allotted to the schools with more than 500 ADM in addition to the $10,000 base allocation. Funding has been reduced by the courts to generate the funding for the two positions to be established by the NC Department of Public Instruction, thus the minimum allocation to any LEA or charter school will be $9,951.12.
For more information, please contact the NC Department of Public Instruction, Communications division, at 919.807.3450.
About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 126 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.
For more information:
NCDPI Communication and Information Division, 919.807.3450.