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How do you do....it? Thread, Laptops for students in Technical; Originally Posted by bossman Aparently there is an investigation into wireless in education as there has been a report from ...
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    Quote Originally Posted by bossman View Post
    Aparently there is an investigation into wireless in education as there has been a report from the NHS of a 40% increase in brain related disease i.e. tumours, aneurysm's etc in children between the ages of 8 - 14 due, they think in part to mobile phone 2.4Ghz technology .
    Further investigation revealed that at least 23% of age groups 8 - 14 asked in a survey conducted by the NHS had also revealed they slept with their mobile phones under their pillows switched on.
    My bet is its the aspartamne in a lot of drinks now (mainly diet drinks), chewing gum and the other 4200 products this poison is in. Brain tumours is the main thing studys with a non vested interest find this evil does, ie ones not funded by coca cola.

    As for the original post, if it was me being forced into this, i would make disk protection from Windows Steady State a tool to try and reduce damage. But i see screens and power adaptors and keyboards and batterys being the expence.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Quackers View Post
    But i see screens and power adaptors and keyboards and batterys being the expence.
    I forgot the way that keys "just fall off" .

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    jcollings (1st October 2008)

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeMarchand View Post
    I forgot the way that keys "just fall off" .
    Yes we get that now with our mobile classrooms. I've lost count of the times staff have argued with me that the keys fall off. In many years of using a laptop none of my keys have "fallen off"

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    oh good god no (to answer the OP)

    a laptop given to every pupil to use as they like?
    I can't imagine a worse scenario to have to deal with on a daily basis...

    If that was suggested here, I'd draw up a huge document,
    detailling EVERY aspect of laptop lending/use/ownership/penalties/costs/replacements and so on, stacked full of policies for pupils to sign, parents to sign, rules and regulations......

    hopefully that would put them off!
    and if it didn't, at least there'd be a stack of stuff to help you
    out agasint all of the inevitable problems that will come up witing
    seconds of you giving the laptops out.

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    LeMarchand's Avatar
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    What I find bizarre is that when heads from other schools visit to see how the scheme is going, they never bother to talk to me! Instead, they are given the "buzzword tour": inclusion... independent learning... ownership... responsibility (hah!)... etc etc.

    Still, at least there seems to be some thought given to possibly replacing one class's machines with EEEs (I'm pushing for Linux ).

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    Ah, yes, I think another reason, I ran away from this last time was the support issue.

    But I do remember that another company (who's name has escaped me), did a similar deal, whereby they would do all the laptop support issues. So the students had a phone number to call in case of issues. I think this is something you could arrange with the company you decided to buy the laptops from, although this would push the price up a little.

    I had the Syscap guy call me up today, and he's sent some examples over to my email account.

    See attachments, and, this is what he quoted as rough estimates:


    Unit cost: 2 year scheme 3 year scheme
    200 12.50 pcm 9.88 pcm
    400 23.85 pcm 18.53pcm
    600 35.20 pcm 27.18 pcm

    Required parental contributions

    Arrangement fee: 165 one off fee per school

    (the formatting seems to have gone awol).
    Attached Files Attached Files

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    Quote Originally Posted by User3204 View Post
    But I do remember that another company (who's name has escaped me), did a similar deal, whereby they would do all the laptop support issues. So the students had a phone number to call in case of issues.
    That's what is supposed in the school I support. The very few parents who have tried to contact the so-called support line have been met with indifference/denial that they have any sort of support in place. Now I get all the problems, deal with those that I can, and feed any that I can't to the AO who wastes a lot of her hours on the phone being passed around various less than helpful people in an attempt to have them sort out the problems.

    When they finally agree to do something, a lot of time is wasted as often it's just an easily fitted part (optical drive, keyboard, hard drive etc) that needs replacing - but rather than send a replacement with us returning the faulty part on receipt the whole laptop has to be sent back .

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    Umm...I'm not sure about all this negativity here! I feel I am here to advance our students' education, and if the decision is taken to issue laptops for students' school and private use, and a good case was made for this, then I would support it. The issues raised here are all good ones, but I feel a bit of positive thinking could make this work. Insist on Anti-virus, and anti-adware, which is regularly run by the Parent/Guardian. A fee for repairs not due to fair wear and tear, or laptop not fixed. An understanding that any software faults would be resolved by 'burn and re-build' - a ten minute job with Ghost and a USB stick - possibly even do-able by tech-savvy teachers, or even the students themselves - why not?? - it would solve the problem! I can see a case where a project like this would reduce the load on our Desktops, and relieve the maintenance requirement there. I also believe that this is going to be the way forward, whether we like it or not - so I'm starting by working out what my list of requirements is, before it's forced on me!! Oh, and I would insist they NOT be joined to our Domain - they can use our external home drive portal to get to their work (they can get an IP address from our DHCP server just fine), and printouts would have to done from a regular desktop, where we can keep an eye on it...

    Cheers, 7&Y

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    dbrown (8th January 2009)

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    Laptops for Kids is nothing but big nightmare. I have 5 in my office waiting for repair. damaged keybaords, screens smashed. software all screwed up.

    it has taken a month for the insurance company and xma to get their act togeather. Im at the end of my teather with it all.

    the basic idea is great but from a support side of things you have little control

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    We do this with the eee laptops. We get the kids/guardians to pay 120 as a deposit, which covers warranty breakages / illegal software removal / virus removal etc etc. We stick the linux software on that comes with it rather than windows as quite simply, windows is far more prone to crashes etc etc. Anything non-warranty (IE malicious damage such as the screen breaking) is charged FULL price to the parents. They have to sign a contract agreeing to it, if they dont then the children dont get the laptop, its as simple as that. So far we have managed to charge 900 in breakages to parents and the ones that did it have not broken them since.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 7andY View Post
    Insist on Anti-virus, and anti-adware, which is regularly run by the Parent/Guardian.
    Insisting is all very well, but how many teachers do you know that update their anti-spyware regularly? Let alone parents. I've actually removed Spybot from our latest build as it never got updated - I know that it can be automated, but (IIRC) only to do stuff at logon which would further slow things down.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7andY View Post
    A fee for repairs not due to fair wear and tear, or laptop not fixed.
    Totally agree, but without support from SMT it ain't gonna happen, and as all my schools are in "poor" areas it's almost impossible to enforce. Also laptop not fixed = excuse not to do homework.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7andY View Post
    An understanding that any software faults would be resolved by 'burn and re-build' - a ten minute job with Ghost and a USB stick - possibly even do-able by tech-savvy teachers, or even the students themselves - why not?? - it would solve the problem!
    I've started to get to that stage, though (for various reasons) would say that the "work time" is 10-20 minutes while the "total time" is nearer 45. I'm hoping to finally get an MS SteadyState solution organised over Xmas which will have the children's documents on a separate partition and some sort of passworded "reset button" that the teachers can press to reset the machines without wiping out Little Johnny's work on the other partition. The main problem I'm having is that the reset will work by changing the date and that I need a "teacher friendly" (or automatic) way to correct the date after the reset.

    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    We do this with the eee laptops. We get the kids/guardians to pay 120 as a deposit, which covers warranty breakages / illegal software removal / virus removal etc etc. We stick the linux software on that comes with it rather than windows as quite simply, windows is far more prone to crashes etc etc. Anything non-warranty (IE malicious damage such as the screen breaking) is charged FULL price to the parents. They have to sign a contract agreeing to it, if they dont then the children dont get the laptop, its as simple as that. So far we have managed to charge 900 in breakages to parents and the ones that did it have not broken them since.
    For the reasons above, the charging aspect just wouldn't work at the school I support with laptops. I'm trying to push for Linux on the next wave as I don't think the kids would be shoving so much rubbish on, but suspect that the staff wouldn't be willing to learn new software.

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    All of our Year 6's here have Asus EEE 4g's they take them home and have a wireless point in the classroom.

    When they take them home they have T-Mobile dongles that go through a company called Synetrix which filters the access to unwanted sites.

    Its a pain the backside though, they're constantly having connection troubles and dropping the things.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jcollings View Post
    Yes we get that now with our mobile classrooms. I've lost count of the times staff have argued with me that the keys fall off. In many years of using a laptop none of my keys have "fallen off"

    I had a key fall off, when I was hoovering dust of the head of science's laptop. The NM and JnrTech came down from the science roofspace (access ladder is in the cleaner's cupboard) and found me riffling through a Henry. It was only when I'd got myself properly filthy that the NM pointed out we had a broken laptop I could nick a key from.

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    Quote Originally Posted by broc View Post
    You may also want to consider how the school will cope with large numbers of machines coming into school each day with flat batteries because the kids forgot to charge them up or their parents/guardians objected to paying for the electricity
    My argument exactly when our head suggested buying 1100 laptops for student use (because they can fit into their lockers ). My first question was 'and how exactly are we going to charge 1100 laptops?'

    I've not heard any more about it since then.

    HBJB

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    Some pointers when I last looked into this:-

    School owned laptops - expect a 40% damage return

    Unless you transfer ownership to the parent, School is responsible for WHAT is view at HOME via the internet. If you supply and own the laptops its your responsibility what they do with them at school AND at home (Impossible to Police)

    There will NEVER be sufficient power sockets in a class

    Put two partitions on the laptop with two copies of OS one for home use and one school, use MS Steady State on school partition to undo and changes at logoff

    Using two partitions keeps home rubbish off the school partition.

    Make the default boot the locked down school partition

    Invest in another technician, one local school has a tech continuously re-imaging laptops and he has 20-30 per week (1500 on roll)

    Insist on Accidental damage cover, students WILL break screens if they think it will get then a new unit.

    Explain to parents that the insurance does not pay out indefinitely, more than three claims a year and they refuse to cover you next year.

    Watch the market as a leading Laptop manufacturer is testing a laptop that can be cleaned in a bucket of water, dropped onto concrete from three feet and has a re-inforced screen that almost indestructable, oh and its touchscreen!

    regards

    Steve

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