[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [seul-edu] High School Educational Programs

> Word Processors, grading tools (some teachers are really lazy:) lol),
> graphing tools, mail clients, student/teacher database/ user ID and
> database, accounting software (quicken?), web browser, graphics tools (art
> class), video/audio editing (adv. communication), drum emulator ?(music?),
> html editor (web design), c++ compiler (computer programming, i don't
> very many high schools teach anything else), LOTS OF ADOBE since many
> use pdf, power point (MS Office), many server applications (such as
> UID/password auth.), the list goes on.

In addition there are reference titles that are used extensively by students
for research - Microsoft Encarta comes to mind. Individual subjects may also
have special reference products which allow teachers to tell students to
research a topic from a particular title. And there are some pieces of
software such as Crocodile Clips that allow prototyping for electronic
circuits and suchlike which are invaluable for technology subjects.

In my school the most used apps are the Office apps - Word, Excel,
Powerpoint and Publisher are taught from very early on, and Access is taught
as well, although I think it's a bit later on.

> Schools really use a lot of things that people don't think they would.
> things aren't in people's everyday life so its easy to look them over.
> To penetrate the school systems we need to:
> 1) provide a way to easily convert from programs they use now (such as
> point to the KPresentation format) <---most important
> 2) have the same functionality as the programs they originally used
> 3) make the programs easy to implement along side the current software
> 4) show an overall advantage in everyday tasks using "our" software
> 5) CAUSE NO PROBLEMS WHAT SO EVER (meaning, when version 1.0 is released
> should be flawless and not affect the other current systems/software)

IMHO these first four points at the moment would be best consolidated into
one for the mean time. I feel that for our school anything except Microsoft
Office is almost unthinkable, simply because of the penetration of this
suite into the business world - I know the main argument against any
migration would be that 'it's not what they'll need to know in the
workplace', which is, after all, what it's all about. So not only have they
got to have the same functionality, but also the same or very similar
interface, at least until the business world starts to really discover Linux
as a GUI OS.

For me right now I'd love to just be able to use WINE to run Office
directly. Although it would almost certainly stifle development of the pure
Linux office apps, at the moment as far as I can tell there is nothing
approaching Office. But I'd rather in the long run that the current Linux
based office suites just became Office clones in terms of interface and file
compatibility. That's when Linux will take off on the desktop, certainly in
my school anyway :)

> 6) manage and track what students do <--(porn sites, viruses, a.k.a. stuff
> they shouldn't be looking at or doing)

Absolutely. Fortunately you can set this sort of stuff up fairly easily,
although I have yet to see a Linux virus scanner...? Maybe I've just been
looking in the wrong places.

> 7) incorporate strict rules into the software as who can do what (example:
> see many students watching flash cartoons when they should be reading the
> curriculum (Cisco networking))

This would be great - Windows allows some control, but the granularity
you're suggesting would be wonderful!

> 8) allow the admin to easily take away certain privledges when a student
> breaks a rule that the school has set out about computer use using a
> program (something like a perl script and an html front-end would probably
> the trick)

And teachers might like to have some limited ability to do the same, agreed.

I would add:

1) Compatibility with current Windows reference apps - teachers like the
fact that they can get a reference title and it will probably work on the
school system. Take that away and those teachers that are technically
'switched on' will be quite unhappy

2) Easy to migrate *from* Windows - Assuming that schools migrate from the
Windows environment, it's got to be pretty similar at least to start off
with - if you're trying to teach kids how to use computers you don't want
the interface changing half way through the course!

There are more points, but maybe another time.


' Ore stabit fortis a fine placet ore stat '
- found on a park bench
GeForce FAQ - http://www.geforcefaq.com/
ICQ: 18705430