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Re: [school-discuss] "Educating Tux" + IT apathy

Joel and James,

Oh my . . . state testing and bureaucratic straitjackets!  Don't get me

And also the dumb ass  proprietary software packages that promise miracles
(forgive me - I am originally from Iowa where we are plain spoken folks) -
that's another topic.

Getting my students to be creative has been more of a stretch this year than
ever before.  They have spent all of their time in school preparing for
tests.  I feel like I need to bring my little kids' building blocks and
just let them play.

And rural Texas schools do not believe in the importance of offering fine arts
courses.  Very few schools have choir.  Art classes are minimal.  Band is
sometimes required for football programs.  :)

So, I think you just need to do what you can, wherever you can, for as long as
you can.  This year I am using Linux for everything and having a blast - but I
know I make some people nervous.

Hey . . . what do you think about hosting a fine arts gallery for student work
created with FOSS?  Have we talked about this already?  I am not big into
contests where there is only one winner . . . but a celebration of student
achievement with some positive critiques.  I could send you some pretty cool
student generated Blender, Gimp, and Cinelerra files - then to the local people
we can say "look at this!"

Maybe we need a formal online school that home school kids and rural schools
afford that teaches music, art, science, poetry and general creativity.

James . . . your additional comments on the dumbing down of ed tech (whew!)
really sum it up.  That quest for power thing screwed us.  Is it just the
natural sequence of organizational evolution?

To be fair, we all know there are many good people in the group too - but it is
definitely a mixed bag.

And yes . . . "But the brown sugar is in reality an artificially sweetened
hypnotic cleverly designed to make the worms more palatable."  LOL  :)

Thanks for letting me ramble on philosophically.


Quoting Joel Kahn <jj2kk4@xxxxxxxxx>:

> Marilyn Hagle wrote:
> >Many in educational IT management - probably the
> >middle managers who are misunderstood and struggling
> >to keep everything running - are concerned about
> >tightly controlling the teachers. After all . . .
> >they have been breaking copyright laws, pirating
> >software, and inviting viruses and spyware into the
> >LAN.  So now teachers everywhere are in lock-down mode.
> >Experimentation is thwarted, new ideas are discouraged,
> >and creativity is scorned.
> And let's not forget atrocities like the No Child Left
> Behind Act, which forces teachers *and* students into
> bureaucratic straitjackets and makes it incredibly hard
> to even think about changing anything. A proprietary
> software package that is marketed with wild promises of
> a "guarantee to boost scores on standardized tests" has
> a big edge over any wild and risky creative things like
> GIMP or Tux Paint. If you allow those misbehaving kids
> and teachers to start really experimenting with any
> truly flexible software, who knows what kind of trouble
> we all might be getting ourselves into. . . .
> Joel
> Never miss a thing.  Make Yahoo your home page. 
> http://www.yahoo.com/r/hs