that information available to parents and teachers. Twenty-seven states are implementing statewide technology training programs for K-12 teachers, and 24 states have created at least one major e-learning initiative.
Social services, traditionally one of the lower-scoring Digital State categories, rebounded somewhat in 2002. More than 80 percent of states responding to the survey have begun transferring social-service benefits electronically, and many citizens may now contact social-service caseworkers via e-mail.
On the other hand, less than half of the states offer the bulk of their social-service application forms online. Just 19 states allow citizens or their representatives to apply for social services benefits via the Internet.
This year's survey also shows states grappling with the task of implementing digital technologies in law enforcement agencies and the courts.
To some extent, all states now use video conferencing to provide telemedicine services to state inmates, to conduct hearings, to hold meetings between inmates and attorneys, and to provide family visitation. Twenty-two states said they use video conferencing technology in more than half of their state prisons. Furthermore, all states responding to the survey now let citizens access some portion of state court decisions online without charging a fee.
But just 22 states have rolled out digital mobile technologies to at least half of their state police officers. And only 19 states currently accept court pleadings, motions and brief filings online, although such systems are being piloted in a handful of additional states.