The Kentucky Department of Education expects to save over $1.5 million per year for the next four years, by embracing Microsoft’s free suite of online services aimed at scholastic organizations. The Commonwealth of Kentucky estimates that it will save no less than $6.3 million in operational costs throughout 2014 by simply moving to Microsoft Live@edu. The savings come as Microsoft and the Kentucky Department of Education have inked the largest Cloud agreements in the United States and one of the largest in the world, involving a massive 700,000 seats of the Redmond company’s cloud-based service.
“With Live@edu, all school districts in Kentucky have access to the same powerful Microsoft applications and Web 2.0 technologies. That means we can close the technology gap between rich and poor districts and level the playing field for students regardless of where they live,” revealed Dr. Terry Holliday, commissioner of education for Kentucky. “Because they are ‘in the cloud,’ Kentucky schools will always stay up-to-date with the latest innovations. And the features are far greater than anything we could have afforded to offer to every school in Kentucky.”
And fact is that the vast majority of the 700,000 students, faculty and staff across the state can already start taking advantage of Microsoft Live@edu. Over half a million people have already been transitioned to the Cloud service, with the migration taking a single weekend. A few days, it’s all it took Microsoft and the Kentucky Department of Education to take half a million people from across 180 distributed Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 on-premise servers to Live@edu.
Chuck Austin, Office of Education Technology for the Kentucky Department of Education, revealed that he was impressed with the speed of the migration process. Austin underlined that by working together on the planning and execution, Microsoft and the Kentucky Department of Education managed to do away with the implementation cycle and the migration process in a single weekend.
“Kentucky is getting a world-class communications and collaboration infrastructure that is dependable and highly secure,” added Sig Behrens, general manager for U.S. Education at Microsoft. “With single sign-on, Live@edu integrates with existing school systems, including school portals, allowing people to access all content with one identity that makes it easier to accomplish their work. More important, Live@edu will help transform the learning environment by extending education opportunities beyond the traditional classroom walls and help students master the technology they will use in their future careers.”