Thursday, December 04, 2008

Pupils won't ruin tax-funded netbooks

This story from Australia indicates, interestingly, the changing attitudes towards student responsibility and school-provided laptops. Just a few years ago, the majority opinion was that they would be destroyed or stolen. Now that seems to be the minority, as least in NSW, Australia.

Unfortunately, such enlightenment has not reached across the seas to us in Trinidad and Tobago. We still believe that computer resources are to be locked up in "computer labs"in the schools, and separate from, not integrated into, the general learning environment.

I hope that this attitude will disappear very soon from the educational administration here, as if we are to achieve Vision 2020, we will need to have tech resources integrated across the curriculum at ALL levels of the education system.


SENIOR NSW education bureaucrats have angrily rejected suggestions that public school students will trash the 197,000 laptop computers to be provided for them next year using federal taxpayer funds.

The $98 million tender for the mini-laptops, also known as netbooks, was issued yesterday and is believed to be the single largest purchase ever of such devices. A further $60 million will be spent rolling out a wireless computer network in 571 NSW public schools. The states and territories have received about $2 billion from the Rudd Government to upgrade computers in schools, with the NSW Labor Government deciding to spend its share on netbooks that students between Years 9 and 12 can use at school and at home.

Many students in elite private schools are already provided with laptops.

While the NSW program has broad support among principals, teachers and parent groups, one principal has dismissed the plan as "crazy".,24897,24749264-15306,00.html?referrer=email

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