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[school-discuss] What's in a name?

I have a naming problem.

I'm revising Debian Jr. documentation and the web site, and in doing so
I realize that we don't really have a good name for the people who help
children with their computers.  It struck me that this isn't a problem
specific to our project, which is why I'm turning to the members of this

So I brainstormed with Justin Zeigler of OSEF over this problem on irc
and together we came up with a list of words, some of which I prefer
better than others, and for some very specific reasons.  But without
biasing your opinion, I'll just give you the background for the problem,
and the goals I have in mind for a replacement term, and then the list
of words.  I'd like you to review them and tell me which seems like a
"best fit" and why, or suggest some alternatives.

I had been using the phrase "children and their sys admins" fairly
liberally up to this point, and that might be suitable today, with
Debian Jr. being focussed on the sys admins who install Debian Jr. on
behalf of children.  But I'm afraid the term sys admin is too narrow
a designation and won't survive as a generic label as we branch out.
Please refer to http://www.debian.org/devel/debian-jr where I use "sys
admin" throughout.  I think in most instances on this page, it is an
accurate description of the role, but as my documentation grows beyond
the systems level to touch the users themselves, the label does not
fit so well for everyone in the helping role.  Beyond the initial
system install and the occasional upgrade, the "sys admin" may not be
around often, fading into the background.

Parents, teachers, teenaged siblings, relatives or friends my all take
"helper" roles when children use computers.  What is a term that best
describes the primary person or people in the "helping" role? The term
should not have primarily dominant or authoritarian undertones.  It
should not be specific to one particular kind of relationship (like
"teacher") and it should be a "comfortable" term both as a
self-designation for any of these people and as a term used by the
children themselves.  I want some term that embodies support,
co-discovery, and mutual enjoyment in the relationship.

Here is our list of "keepers".  I will not list the ones we rejected, as
they are too numerous.  I'll deal with my specific objections to those
if any of you chances to come up with one of them.


Ben Armstrong
p.s. I unavoidably designated the role as a "helper" or "helping" role,
     in this post, which is not necessarily an endorsement of that very
     general term as a favourite.  I merely chose it since it seemed
     like the broadest term which encompassed all others, perhaps for
     that very reason a bit too broad.  (Oops, there I go biasing you :)
    nSLUG       http://www.nslug.ns.ca      synrg@sanctuary.nslug.ns.ca
    Debian      http://www.debian.org       synrg@debian.org
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