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Education commissioner issues final order on monitoring contract

Contract to help monitor social media for threats in school districts

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran has issued a final order in a legal dispute about a contract to help monitor social media for threats of violence and other problems in school districts.

With a few tweaks, Corcoran last week agreed with an administrative law judge who rejected a joint protest by the firms Abacode, LLC and ZeroFox, Inc.

The protest came after Corcoran in April issued a decision that said he was awarding the contract to NTT Data.

A Department of Education negotiating team had recommended awarding the contract to Abacode, which planned to subcontract with ZeroFox.

Administrative Law Judge Mary Li Creasy last month ruled that Corcoran had adequate reasons for disregarding the negotiating team's recommendation and awarding the contract to NTT Data. But under administrative law, Creasy's ruling was a recommended order that had to go back to Corcoran for a final order.

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The contract stems from a school-safety law passed in 2018 after a gunman killed 17 people and wounded 17 others at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Broward County.