While the Burbank Unified School District is satisfied that its
computer systemsare year 2000 compliant, it is still preparing for the
worst when the clock strikes midnight Jan. 1.
“I will breath a sigh of relief after the new year, but I’m confidant
the staff has taken all the necessary steps,” said Gregory Bowman,
assistant superintendent for the school district.
Bowman said the district spent nearly $200,000 to shore up against any
From payroll to tracking student grades to checking up on kids who are
absent, the district, like much of the rest of society, relies on
computers to perform the tasks that allow it to function on a day-to-day
District officials said they began constructing their plans to deal
with potential problems from the change over to the year 2000 in
“If the proper measures are not taken to correct the Y2K issues, the
district might face serious consequences,” Technology Services Supervisor
Rick Vonk warned in a report to the school board that was submitted in
Compliance is ensuring that hardware, software and data in computers
will not fail due to the changing of the century, Vonk said. Older
computers -- many ofwhich have two-digit date codes -- will be confused
by the “00" reading when the new year begins, mistaking 2000 for the year
On Friday, Bowman said student databases containing high school
records have been upgraded and the payroll, security and telephone
systems are also Y2K compliant. In addition, he said, district officials
have either upgraded or replaced all of the schools’ computer networks
and servers to ensure there won’t be any surprises when Jan. 1 rolls
Bowman acknowledged that some of the district’s older computers might
pose a problem in the new year. However, he said that because those
computers are not used for instructional purposes he’s not concerned.
Another factor in the district’s favor when it comes to dealing with
possible problems is time. The district’s winter vacation doesn’t end
until Jan. 4, giving it several days to iron out computer malfunctions
before students return to school.
As part of it’s preparations to avoid problems with the so-called
millennium bug, each school has been assigned a computer technician.
Those technicians have met with district and city officials to discuss
potential breakdowns and to come up withplans of action in the event they
occur, Bowman said.
While most people are enjoying the first day of 2000, the district’s
computer technicians will be making rounds at the schools and the
district office to make sureall the systems are working as expected.
“We believe that nothing will happen -- except for minor glitches. But
we’ll still have staff ready in case anything does,” said Bowman.
Since September 1998, the Burbank Unified School District has been
taking steps to prevent computers problems that might arise in the year
2000: The following systems have been deemed Y2K compliant:
*School and administrative offices
*Winnebago -- runs circulation and catalog systems at school libraries
*The district has been assured by city officials that its power grid
is Y2K compliant and that Burbank will be able to generate sufficient
power in the event of a crisis.
*All data on the district servers will be backed up prior to Jan 1.
*Technology Services employees will be check all school systems Jan 1.
*Emergency measures in the event of failures will be in place before
winter break begins on Dec. 18.
*Backup systems are being reviewed and steps are being taken to assure
they will be operational as of Jan. 1.