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[seul-edu] Fw: Re: ~education project introductions Re: [cwlc]

On Sun, 15 Jul 2001, owner-seul-edu@seul.org wrote:

> From: Eric Harrison <eharrison@mail.mesd.k12.or.us>
> To: Richard Stallman <rms@gnu.org>
> Cc: <karl@tux.org>, <cwlc@fairfax.van-pelt.com>,
> <mossc@mossc.com>,
>         <jholland@tomsw.com>, <seul-edu@seul.org>,
> Subject: Re: ~education project introductions Re: [cwlc]
> On Sat, 14 Jul 2001, Richard Stallman wrote:
> >Is K12Linux a group that encourages use of the GNU/Linux
> system in K-12 education?
> K12Linux is indeed a group that encourages use of free
> software
> in K-12 education. Our main objective, however, is USING free
> software
> in K-12 education. Our secondary objective, of course, is
> making
> our work available to others. Lastly, we lobby for the use of
> free software in general.
> There are two separate, independent "k12linux" groups, one on
> the
> east coast and one on the west. I'm on the west coast, based
> out of
> Portland, Oregon. The following refers to what we are doing on
> the left coast (http://riverdale.k12.or.us/linux,
> http://k12ltsp.org, http://k12linux.mesd.k12.or.us).
> Much of the core K-12 network infrastructure in the state of
> Oregon
> is powered by free software. The wide area network I run
> covers a
> large portion of the state - my servers run free software.
> Free
> software has allowed us to improve performance and reliability
> while
> lowering costs and broadening the services we offer.  Our
> results have
> had a very positive impact on the use of free software by our
> peers
> here in the Pacific Northwest [Oregon, Washington, Idaho,
> British
> Columbia]
> We host a mailing lists which offers peer support for schools
> interested in free software. We also have a hands-on clinic
> once
> a month in Portland where teachers, students, and the general
> public can come to learn.
> In the last year, we have started shifting focus to the
> desktop.
> The #1 complaint I hear from the schools is that it is
> difficult
> and expensive to run computer labs. The solution we are
> working
> on is producing a very easy to install distribution built
> around
> the Linux Terminal Server Project. Things are looking pretty
> good,
> the LTSP is looking pretty solid. GNOME, our preferred user
> interface, is improving quickly. Educational software is
> looking
> good as well, largely due to the efforts of SEUL. Hopefully
> OpenOffice, Mozilla, Nautilus, and other major end-user
> specific software will be perfected shortly.
> The second most common issue we see is managing accounts. We
> are
> working on providing centralized authentication and
> authorization
> utilizing OpenLDAP. The last piece is providing reasonable
> support
> for Windows 2000/XP. We have someone on staff helping to
> finish
> the LDAP support in Samba. We are running our agency off a
> development
> version right now with good results. Hopefully this work will
> be make it into Samba shortly.
> The Children's Internet Protection Act is a pain that schools
> and
> libraries have to deal with. We have found that the free
> software
> SquidGuard (http://www.squidguard.org) is quite competitive
> with the
> proprietary offerings. We have devoted staff resources to
> making
> SquidGuard a *superior* solution to the expensive proprietary
> offerings.
> As for encouraging the use of free software, we do quite a bit
> of lobbying and public speaking. Paul Nelson
> (pnelson@riverdale.k12.or.us)
> gave a presentation last year to Congress on why the
> government should
> be using free software. We hit all the conferences we can
> (I'll be at
> LinuxWorld, look for me in the LTSP booth ;-). We try to
> document
> everything we do so that it is easily repeatable by others.
> We license all of the software we write under the GPL,
> naturally.
> -- 
> Eric Harrison
> Network & Information Services
> Multnomah Education Service District
> (503) 257-1554
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