Converge, June 1999, p. 46
There are several areas you’ll want to focus on as you root out potential Y2K problems in your schools; here are the top four:
- Suppliers. Check with your providers of major services to ascertain whether or not they are Y2K compliant. Request a letter either stating that they are compliant or identifying which systems are not compliant.
- Administrative Systems. Determine whether or not your primary administrative systems (finance, payroll, and student services) are compliant.
- Hardware and Software. Older computers with basic operating systems called “system BIOS” can only handle two digit dates and cannot be made Y2K compliant with upgrades. While these machines can still be used for tasks such as typing documents, you should take them off your network. Check with the manufactures of software packages and of your newer machines to see if they are compliant. Visit the company’s web site for information on Y2K compliance and upgrades.
- Embedded Chips. Often overlooked in Y2K preparations are those systems such as telephones and air conditioning that have tiny chips or software in them to make them operate. Many of these systems will have to be upgraded or replaced as well.
Even after determining compliance in each of these areas and making the necessary upgrades, the authors suggest establishing a reserve fund of several hundred thousand dollars to handle any unforeseen Y2K problems.