The problem with the school holidays is it gives me more time to think about things than usual. Most years I come up with something to trial in the school to suck up some more of our staff free time, this year I’m thinking maybe we could extend the idea to a few others that are reading this.
Earlier in the week I read this post on the Grumbledook blog and it got me thinking. We really need to be working harder on minimising our IT spend in schools and we’ve never really put Ubuntu (or any other Linux flavour) up to a proper test to see if we could actually work with it. Like the man in the short at the start of Toy Story 3 said, we stay with the familiar.
So, my plan is to attempt to run for the whole of November using Ubuntu. I’m going to dual boot my laptop/desktop and see just how far I get before I need something it can’t do. Throughout the process I’ll document how it goes, from the install through to how I find editing video there compared to with iMovie/etc.
But, I want to go further than that and really produce some useful case study work. In addition to my own personal set up:
1) As many other members of the Wildern team will do the same thing. This will obviously cover the technician roles, but also out into our media/programming/teaching types as well. The more people involved the better the results will be, and the wider the range of needs covered.
2) We’ll set up a dual booting IT suite and look to deliver our ICT curriculum using the same setup. Again, documented to look at all the various aspects of the process but with a focus on the impact on teaching and learning.
At the moment I’m feeling incredibly positive about this as a trial. Feels to me like something that the sector needs, and hopefully the data we produce from it will encourage others to try it too. I’m hoping I have the impact to get plenty of our own staff involved as well as the wider Hampshire area, but it would be great if others would be prepared to join in too. Drop me an email/stick something in the comments if you fancy it, and please pass on to others you might think might be interested. As a school we probably have some resource available to help others who want to try but don’t feel too confident, and if you’ve already been down this route we’d be really appreciative of any support/tips you might have.
Edit- this is getting a slightly larger response than expected so I thought a quick Google Form would be an easier way for people to say they’d be interested. No pressure, just add yourself if you want to know what’s going on. Thanks…