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[seul-edu] Beta 3 Press Release -- Can we call it a rap?


This is what I hope to be the last revision of the release. I've striven to 
include every comment and correction that's been suggested, while being mindful 
of the imperatives of being eye-catching, clear and euphonious to reporters. If 
I missed your comment, I apologize. I will entertain revisions on two types of 
point only: egregious errors (typos, points of fact) and omissions that 
seriously misrepresent or threaten the unity of the organization.

Before you pipe in with any suggested revisions, I ask you to ask yourself if 
they are really necessary. I don't say this to do anyone any disservice. Rather, 
I ask that we should respect the efforts and schedules of our volunteer 
translators. Simply put, it's hard to translate a moving target. Also bear in 
mind that the sun literally never sets on our membership, and it's getting very 
close to Tuesday already in Australia and Thailand.

Next time we put out a major release, I hope to move a litte faster in the 
earlier stages to give us a little more time to get everything done in a way 
that makes everyone happy. I trust the below will suffice.




THE INTERNET, January 8, 2002 -- Schoolforge, a global coalition of
online groups dedicated to promoting open resources in education,
announced its formation today. The online project is located at

In November of 2001, members of the online groups SEUL/edu
(http://www.seul.org/edu), Open Source Schools
(http://www.opensourceschools.org), the K-12 Linux in Schools project
(http://www.k12os.org), and the Open Source Educational Foundation
(http://www.osef.org) decided to develop a central organization to
provide help for educators seeking the advantages of open resources
and open source/free software. Composed of 26 open-resource-focused
educational organizations on five continents, the all-volunteer
Schoolforge project hopes to harness the collective strengths of
educators by enabling them to share technical and pedagogical
expertise far beyond their localities.

"For too long," said SEUL/edu leader and Schoolforge spokesman Doug
Loss, "our many projects suffered from isolation and low
visibility. Our lack of a unified organization often meant that our
efforts as educators and as technologists were duplicative. Isolated,
we could neither build on our colleagues successes, nor learn from
their failures."

Schoolforge is intended to help its member organizations to:

	* introduce open resources, including free/open source
	  software, to primary and secondary educational settings;
	* help educators use and develop open resources, including
           free curricula and free software;
	* foster local and global volunteer support networks to
           implement free/open source educational solutions; and
  	* provide open forums for educators to share information with
	  colleagues, and with corporate and governmental educational

Schoolforge member organizations are made of volunteers, teachers and
technologists in elementary and high schools around the world who are
committed to harnessing the Internet and open resources to help
teachers teach and help students learn. Contributions to open resource
projects are free and open to anyone who desires to use them, and can
never be withdrawn from public use.

Schoolforge's member groups are delivering the power of open resources
to primary and secondary educators. While some Sourceforge groups are
focused on bringing open source and free software resources to schools
in need of low- or zero-cost alternatives to proprietary software,
other member organizations have broader goals: "When we use the term
'open resources,' we mean a lot more than free software," said David
Bucknell, Open Source Schools Project head and Schoolforge
co-spokesman. "Open resources are educational tools made by educators,
for educators, sharing the experience they've gained in both the
classroom and the lab. That can include everything from folk wisdom to
lesson plans, and from software to documentation."

Visitors to Schoolforge.net will find links to SEUL/edu's successful
case studies from around the world
(http://richtech.ca/seul/casedex.html), and Open Source Schools'
how-tos, reviews, and informative essays
(http://opensourceschools.org). Links are also provided to projects
dedicated to free and open source educational and administrative
software (http://richtech.ca/seul/), and free curriculum and free
science instructional texts (http://www.ibiblio.org/obp/). A list of
all current members, and information for organizations interested in
joining, can be found at http://www.schoolforge.net/membership.php

"We're hoping to put behind us the day when computers were used to
teach students how to use branded computer products, and to lock
hapless school districts into a never-ending treadmill of hardware and
software spending," Loss said. "We don't want another teacher ever to
have to learn a proprietary interface, only to have his or her
experience rendered useless with the next product upgrade or business
failure. Open resources promise to make technology a powerful tool for
education, not the other way around."


The Schoolforge member organization that sent you this release, or

Doug Loss					David Bucknell
(570) 326-3987 (US)		or		66-2 583-5874 (Thailand)
						US Fax: 775-244-0803