Friday, July 1, 2016

This Month in Rochester History

Half a century ago this month, the Rochester Board of Education voted to take its first big step forward with computer technology.   In July 1966, the board agreed to participate in the new Oakland Schools data processing center, which was under development at the time and was slated to begin service in January 1968.

The proposed network was described as being the first of its kind in the country.  Participating districts would be linked via leased telephone lines to the mainframe computer located in Pontiac. The system was designed to handle budget and finance, pupil and personnel records, and testing and grade reporting.  The cost to Rochester Community Schools for these computer services was estimated to be $13,000 - $32,000 annually.

1 comment:

  1. My mother worked at the Rochester Community Schools headquarters located at the back of Central Junior High at Fourth and Wilcox streets. The data processing (an IBM punch card reader) happened in the basement of that very old building. I was a young teenager then, and it all was quite a sight to watch. Paper cards everywhere!