Shamong BOE is going green

Shamong BOE is going green

indian Mills side

The Shamong Board of Education will now be going green and running meetings entirely through electronics instead of paper.

Board secretary Marie Goodwin, who recently came over from the Northern Burlington County Regional School District, has been using this system for about five years now and had nothing but good things to say about her experiences with it.

“It’s so simple,” Goodwin said.

The board will be using a system called BoardDocs. In just more than its 25 years of existence, BoardDocs has lowered costs, increased transparency and reduced the time spent producing board packets by up to 75 percent for more than 1,000 organizations.

BoardDocs’ next-generation paperless services will now allow the board to significantly improve the way it creates and manages agendas, accesses information and conducts meetings.

There are two different versions, a $3,000 basic BoardDocs option that Shamong will be using, and a $12,000 a year program, which is primarily for larger districts.

The plan is to begin using this new technology in August at the first board meeting of the 2015–16 school year.

Prior to that, Goodwin will be around all summer for anyone who wants to learn how to use it.

“Over the summer, I am going to work with BoardDocs and get something figured out,” Goodwin said. “I’m also willing to help whoever wants to come by and learn more about how it works.”

BoardDocs is a web-based system in which every member of the board will receive a login or a user ID.

“It’s really just the same agenda that you have in front of you, but everything is just on the screen,” Goodwin said. “It’s the same format that we are using right now.”

There are attachments that will be exclusively for board members and other areas that will be accessible by the public.

“There is a public access tool so the public is going to be able to get on here and they’re going to be able to view the public content,” Goodwin said.

There is also a search option tool Goodwin referred to as her favorite. This tool gives you the opportunity to file through every meeting ever held in the database to find whatever it is you are looking for using keywords.

In addition, there is a section that allows board members to comment for members who prefer taking notes at the meetings, and there is a public comment section for parents who want to voice their opinions on particular topics.

BoardDocs still gives you the opportunity to print as well, for those who are more comfortable with having a paper copy of the documents.

Indian Mills Elementary School Principal Nicole Moore’s mother has been retired from the Mount Laurel school system for 10 years now, and she used laptops at her board meetings so this change has been a long time coming.