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Skyward to challenge state's $15M contract award


STEVENS POINT, WI (WTAQ) - A Stevens Point firm plans to challenge the state’s decision to hire a Minnesota company to provide detailed student information that schools throughout Wisconsin can share.

The Administration Department said late Friday that it would negotiate a $15 million contract with Infinite Campus Incorporated of Minnesota. Infinite Campus keeps detailed student data for about 10 percent of Wisconsin’s school systems.

Skyward provides similar software about half of the state’s schools. And it claims that the state used a “flawed” process to award the contract to the Minnesota firm.

The new state system would store data on all Wisconsin students about their test scores, disciplinary records, and other information. All state schools could share it.

This is the second time the state put out bids for the system. The first one was scrapped after it was learned that Skyward would get a tax break from the state’s Economic Development Corporation if it won the contract. And if it didn’t win the deal, it was reported that Skyward would leave Wisconsin.

CEO Cliff King tells the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel he does not believe last year’s controversy had anything to do with being snubbed for the statewide project now. He said there was no way that Infinite Campus could offer a better product than his.

State Senate Democrat Julie Lassa of Stevens Point called for an independent review of how the firms were evaluated. And on Facebook, a new page went up during the weekend calling on people to demand that, “Wisconsin remains Open for Business to Wisconsin companies.”