Office of Learning and Information Technology
UW System CIO Council
February 20, 2003
- e-Learning RFP
- Budget Update
- Student Technology Fee
- Microsoft/ORACLE Update
- 2003-05 IT Planning Process
- Future CIO Council Meetings
CIOs and their Representatives
The RFP process has evaluated the vendor responses according to four criteria:
- 10.0% General requirements
- 25.0% Costs for software, installation and licensing for five years
- 32.5% Technical requirements
- 32.5% Functional requirements
The RFP process has completed five phases:
- Review and scoring of RFP responses by the task force.
- Vendor demonstrations to the RFP task force and invited guests of faculty, technical staff, instructional designers and instructors.
- Vendor demonstrations to the LTDC site administrators and invited guests, followed by two weeks of hands-on evaluations.
- Vendor demonstrations to faculty and students at all UW System institutions via Placeware.
- Review of all feedback, financial portfolios and reference checks, followed by rescoring by the task force.
All of the vendors did considerable work in the way of converting courses, giving demonstrations and setting up accounts. As the process unfolded, the UWS participants became more open to accepting the inherent change and evolution in software systems.
The recommended subsequent steps are:
- Issue an Intent to Award to the highest scoring vendor and enter into negotiations for a five year contract. If those negotiations fail, the task force will reconvene to develop another recommendation.
- Pursue the contract negotiations as a strategic partnership.
- Appoint a negotiation team immediately.
- If possible, schedule a site visit to the vendor's headquarters.
- Appoint an implementation/transition team as soon as possible to begin designing and planning for the technical deployment. Give the LTDC staff access to a development environment in summer 2003.
- Support the existing UW System courseware licenses through fall 2004.
- Explore open source code development opportunities independent of the main contract.
The CIO Council accepted the task force recommendations and Ed Meachen will send a memo informing all of the UWS administrative groups. The CIO Council expressed its appreciation for the fine work of the task force and the many other participants, including 1,000 faculty from across the UW System.
The negotiation team will include representatives from the task force, UW-Madison, UW-Milwaukee, UW-Stevens Point, and the appropriate offices within UW System Administration.
All UWS institutions, except four, have contacted the IAA technical team regarding the supply of institutional data feeds to the IAA project. Near real-time triggers for data uploads are working well between the UW Colleges and DoIT, however a number of institutions are preferring to go with batch updates. Either method will work. With Kronos about to come online, authentication issues are at the fore and a near term scheme has been developed using local campus IAA servers with local IDs and passwords. Full specifications, details and diagrams are available at http://axle.doit.wisc.edu/~rwl/IAA2/IAA2main.htm.
Ed Meachen will set up an IAA policy group, composed of campus representatives, that will control how the data is accessed and used. The next major phase of the project will be implementing authorization functionality.
In his recent budget address, the Governor recommended $110M base cuts for the UW System in 2003-04 and an additional $30M base cut for the next year and following. Therefore, the ongoing cut is $140M. He also provided for an increase of $50M in tuition revenue in the first year and an additional $50M in the second year, although there are limits as to the actual dollar amounts that tuition can increase per semester at the different institutions. Therefore, the net cut for the UW System is $60M in the first year and $40M in the second year and following.
In order to minimize the effects of the tuition increases, the Governor provided for increases in auxiliary reserve funds to increase financial aid. The financial aid increases are larger than the minimum that is statutorily required. The UW System is less expensive than its peers with respect to undergraduate, resident tuition. There are no provisions in the Governor's budget related to non-resident tuition. The assumption is that increases to non-resident and graduate tuition will be at usual levels.
The Governor is also interested in trimming the size of the State workforce. His proposal includes a required reduction within the UW System of 650 FTE GPR positions in the upcoming year. Moving staff from GPR to program revenue positions will count as a reduction. The official reporting date for this reduction is April 2004. UW System Administration will discuss further how to take and distribute the position cuts. A few provisions in the Governor's proposal may encourage retirements:
- allow employees to purchase extra service credits for retirement
- eliminate 30 day waiting period for the rehiring of retirees
- value sick leave credits at the highest wage rate
In addition, health insurance benefits for all employees may change. The employer currently pays up to 90% of the Standard Plan with the employee picking up the difference (if any). Under the Governor's recommendation, it appears that there would be low, medium and high cost health plans with the State picking up at least 80% of the lowest cost.
The UW System represents about 9.3% of the State's total base budget. After the proposed reductions, the UW System would have a 9.1% decrease in its GPR base (which is partially offset by tuition increases). Meanwhile the State will have grown 5%. This means that university is being asked to do its fair share, plus more.
Appropriations for the GPR portions of Laboratory Modernization Funds and other special funds will receive a proportional cut. Updated allocation notices will go out to the CBOs within the next week or two. The Student Technology Fee is covered by a DIN from two years ago, and its funding is included in the Governor's budget proposal.
- The tuition increases in the Governor's proposal are essential to address the cuts that he has proposed.
- Without tuition increases, students will be in larger classes, they will take more time to graduate, etc.
- All of the State budget cuts will impact on students, not just those borne by the UW System.
- The Legislature does not want access to the University to decrease at this crucial time.
- Wisconsin is one of the last states to consider tuition increases
All of these proposals still have to go through the legislature.
There are many components in tuition revenue that are not generated by tuition itself, e.g., application fees. The Student Technology Fee is generated from the academic year base. In the past, the University was limited to only spending amounts that were subsidized by the state. Beginning with the 1999-01 budget, there has been authority to spend revenue as the UW System generates it. Funding for the Student Technology Fee for 2000-01 was not requested in the budget, because it had its own authority. Then, when the Legislature capped tuition at 8% instead of the required 8.2%, there was not enough money to meet all the commitments. The options available were to either allocate a base reduction to the campuses, or to delay funding some items, such as the Student Technology Fee increase, until the next biennium, which is what happened.
Going into the future, the correct Student Technology Fee percentages, including summer session, have been built into the budget. The Student Technology Fee is currently in the Governor's budget with sufficient revenue, however, everything is still subject to the legislature.
In addition to the four options that were already on the table, the UW System negotiating team is laying out a desired scenario from the UWS perspective. Hopefully, Microsoft will consider the UWS position. Meanwhile, WISC is preparing to include Star Office products on their web site (http://www.wisc.edu/wisc) and will post a notice to potential student purchasers of Microsoft products about the uncertainty in the future of the Microsoft contract.
The ORACLE maintenance costs will go up about 66$K across the UW-System due to increases in the number of faculty and staff, and a correction in the base amount for the calculations. The UW institutions will pay the increase in 2003-04.
At the last CIO Council meeting, operational planning groups were proposed. The groups, and their volunteers, are:
- Teaching and Learning Environment
- Annie Stunden, Joe Douglas, Mike Bestul, Jim Lowe, Joe Brown and David Dumke
- the implementation of the selection from the e-learning RFP, with either a utility model and/or a distributed model
- clarifying the roles of Learning Innovations and the ADL Co-Lab in the UW System's teaching and learning environment
- APBS Implementation Process
- Jack Duwe, Bruce Maas, David Hart and Dick Cleek
- integration of APBS within the broader UWS IT environment
- the role of MILER
- the role of the UWPC
- Common Systems Review and Assessment
- John Tillman, Jim Lowe, Annie Stunden, Elana Pokot and Mark Anderson
- definition of a Common System
- ROI parameters in terms of costs and features
The first step for each group will be to define their goals and communicate them via email to the CIO Council for discussion. In addition, there will be a general UW System 2003-05 IT planning group which will include Carrie Regenstein and Kathy Pletcher, as well as two vice chancellors and two CBOs.
In previous discussions, the CIO Council decided to supplement in-person meetings with phone conferences depending upon the contents of the agenda. People struggle with the shortcomings of audio conferences, and video conferencing is surprisingly costly compared to travel for the institutions near to Madison. The CIO Council will plan to meet face to face every other month, supplemented by video conferences on the in-between months. Dick Cleek will distribute the costs of various videoconferencing options.
The next in-person CIO Council meeting will be held in April 2003. There may be a meeting in March via some sort of conferencing setup.