Currently, we have 4 ICT suites each with 15/16 computers running Windows 98 and Winsuite. We are a Middle School Y5-Y7 with 540 kids. The computers range from 800MHz Celerons to 2GHz Pentiums (these are older machines that I have upgraded.. It has now been accepted that we need a major upgrade but we also need to rethink our ICT strategy. Currently, lessons are based on two pupils sharing a machine but this has obvious drawbacks. So one of the suggestions is that we combine two of the ICT suites to allow each pupil their own machine. This will mean significant construction work, so it won't happen overnight. In the meantime, we have a computer system that is steadily running out of steam.
On the basis that many of you will have "been there" already, what recommendations can you offer please?
* Upgrading hardware now with a view to it being compatible with future changes. If so, what are the hardware recommendations?
* The benefits of not sharing computers - how has that worked in your school.
* Should we wait for Vista to become a stable product. Can we buy Vista licenced machines running XP Pro until Vista is a stable product (our LEA does not recommend using Vista at this time)
* What shouldn't we be considering?
I know that I am asking a lot but even a nudge in the right direction would be appreciated.
Also, I have seen reference to BSF on other posts but nobody in our school from the HT down has even heard of BSF so is this likely to impact on our decisions?
Thanks in eager anticipation :D
ps. The reason that we are still using Windows 98 is financial and to be honest with Winsuite it has worked quite happily until now.