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General Chat Thread, Skype. Which schools use it and why in General; Just a bit of research this. I would like to find out just what schools are allowing staff (or even ...
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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    Skype. Which schools use it and why

    Just a bit of research this. I would like to find out just what schools are allowing staff (or even pupils) to use it, what features they use it for, and any measures they have in place to restrict facilities on it. This is in light of the UKERNA\JANET report where Skype access is down to the RBCs decision on how to handle it.

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    Ric_'s Avatar
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    Re: Skype. Which schools use it and why

    I thought that we were only allowed to use it on a very restricted basis - i.e. disabling it when not 'on the phone' and only using it for educational purposes.

    Don't use it at all at work though.

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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    Re: Skype. Which schools use it and why

    We are to produce 'guidelines' for schools.

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    mark's Avatar
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    Re: Skype. Which schools use it and why

    Powys intend to use it in some form but we're still at planning stage.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    Re: Skype. Which schools use it and why

    I use it at home all the time to talk with relatives abroad. I did mention it to my LEA sometime back, but never had a response. It could save a lot of money in theory, but problem is I can never really see it taking off in the Enterprise market for fear of security problems or I suppose excessive bandwidth costs if lots of users were talking simultaneously.

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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    Re: Skype. Which schools use it and why

    One problem we have noted is similar to that of mobile phones in schools. If we were to let pupils have access to the telephony side of things how can you be sure who they are talking too?

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    Ric_'s Avatar
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    Re: Skype. Which schools use it and why

    @Dos_Box: Why allow the little darlings to 'chat' in school. They are there to learn, not socialise!

    If you are instructing them on new means of communication, surely a demonstration to the class by the teacher (maybe a conversation with a foreign school?) should suffice.

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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    Re: Skype. Which schools use it and why

    On of the problems that is inherent with IM or group communication tools in schools is that people like the idea of the technology but don't have an application for it educationally.

    A walled garden for communication within the school is not a bad thing. It can be very good when used and monitored correctly. There is one schools I know in Solihull that has "home learning" days ...where a particular year group stay at home for the day and complete certain tasks based on materials written by their subject teachers.

    Presently they use mobiles to allow students to ring in and ask questions but Skype is a perfect solution for them.

    The idea of using IM to facilitate communication between student and teacher is something else that is possible ... a group IM session that is left open for the whole lesson and students can ask questions, have them answered by the teacher and other students can look back at questions already answered and pick out the bits relevant to them.

    I am still getting staff used to the idea first ... and getting some students involved with peer-support done electronically ...

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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    Re: Skype. Which schools use it and why

    Quote Originally Posted by Ric_
    @Dos_Box: Why allow the little darlings to 'chat' in school. They are there to learn, not socialise!

    If you are instructing them on new means of communication, surely a demonstration to the class by the teacher (maybe a conversation with a foreign school?) should suffice.
    We quite like the video conferance facilities, but we must ensure schools ARE awawre of the problems that Skype may give them, which is why we are ensuring that schools have a well thought out guide to the uses, configuartion and security aspects of it.

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    skype in schools

    We have used it to talk to schools in brasil worked well and are looking for more schools

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    We're using it on the admin side quite heavily here but only for the IM features - not installed on any student machines.

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    We are in the process of setting it up for SMT and for some of the admin girls. We're linked with several schools abroad, and it's a lot cheaper than the phone bill. As for the admin girls, I don't have an extn in my room, and they call my mobile at the moment, so again another cost saving exercise.

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    Domino's Avatar
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    errr - is this the free version we're talking about?
    End User License Agreement

    2.1 License: Subject to the terms of this Agreement, Skype hereby grants You a limited, personal, non-commercial, non-exclusive, non-sublicensable, non-assignable, free of charge license to download, install and use the Skype Software on Your computer
    Do skype have a policy for schools? cause the 'personal' caveat in that would imply to me that they wouldn't really approve....

    Also you can't use it as a full replacement in schools because there's no access to emergency services as they can't use number location to find where you're calling from.

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    We've used it in the past to talk with schools in other countries, but it is a case of "restrict access, setup and then remove when activity is over".

    My concern as a sysadmin is it's an encrypted, undocumented network protocol written by people who design p2p apps for a living and it's owned by the world largest flea market.

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    russdev's Avatar
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    We use the commercial version of the skype app on here. staff only have access to and on limited machines. Used to talk to schools abroad etc.

    Russ

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