I was surprised to read a story in the Oak Bay news reporting that the Greater Victoria school district last year spent over $100,000 on cell phone/data plans and an additional amount (2-3 salaries) purchasing smart phones and blackberries.
Read here: http://www.bclocalnews.com/vancouver_island_south/oakbaynews/news/116256259.html
There were several public consultation meetings about how to find over $1 million in shortfall from the budget and never once was this purchase disclosed in those public sessions. In fact, CUPE workers received lay off notices and one teaching job was eliminated. In addition, there was a 10% cut in school supplies budgets. The report to the public is still available to read here: March Budget Presentation to Public
It's not clear to me why Principals need smart phones. As far as I am aware, they already have cell phones and/or walkie talkies so that they are accessible any time during the school day. They have computers on their desks. Is it really so important that they web browse or read email on the go in the hallway? Is this what the District means by 21st Century learning?