[Linux-aus] Re: [ALLIES] Re: A Linux for Students project idea

Shelagh Manton oneida at tpg.com.au
Fri Mar 17 07:54:02 UTC 2006

On Fri, 17 Mar 2006 09:59:43 +1100
Donna Benjamin <donna at mel8ourne.org> wrote:

> On Fri, 2006-03-17 at 08:07 +1030, Janet Hawtin wrote:
> > schools have these budgets for software. Schools which then use
> > open source software may lose funding through not using $$
> > software. It may be better to provide fos software with the kinds
> > of frameworks that Donna is developing or the kinds of resources I
> > am aiming to do in order to hit a similar price mark to the prop
> > products thereby giving schools more bang for their buck rather
> > than reducing their spend power.
> This is a good point. It would be useful if we were to look for ways
> for schools to re-invest those funds not being spent on software into
> teacher training, development and curriculum resources.
> There's considerable debate about the value of ICT in education. Vast
> amounts have been spent and little evaluation has been conducted
> regarding the educational impact of that investment.
> Money spent on licences adds no value compared to spending on
> enhancing teachers skills and confidence at using ICT, or at
> providing them with curriculum resources they can use in the
> classroom, freeing up their time to think creatively about engaging
> students. 
> - donna
My 2 cents worth. 

Many of the schools I have had any concerns with through teacher
friends etc. seem to spend up on the machines and software, but then
have no money to upkeep the machines (ongoing budget) and the
maintenance and administration is expected of the poor IT teacher on top
of his teaching load. The global budgeting system does lead to "spend
or we lose it" mentality, but there are additional problems in that
there appears to no provision for ongoing funds. 

This may be outdated, but things don't seem to change that quickly in
government departments.


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