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MIS Systems Thread, An Open Source MIS in Technical; Originally Posted by Sarconia Indeed, I'm not 100% sure why it hasn't taken off yet though... probably due to the ...
  1. #16


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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarconia View Post
    Indeed, I'm not 100% sure why it hasn't taken off yet though... probably due to the DCSF changing their mind about various issues every 3-6 months and that most regular users seem to be afraid of open source.
    DCSF has been rebranded already, it's now the DfE: Home - Department for Education
    When they get downsized, and Becta scrapped they'll probably be less changes

  2. #17

    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garrysaddington View Post
    No they are both licenses approved by the Free Software foundation and the Open Source Initiative.
    The we in this context is the organisation formed to provide support services around the release of an Open Source MIS. Before someone gets the wrong idea, could I stress that the software will be totally open source, totally free (as in speech and as in beer!) and not some cut down version devised to get schools to upgrade to an 'enterprise' version.
    So what we are talking about it that schools can so with it as they want, but then they might pay for support and training. Who pays for the development when DfE change things? (like the fields due to name changes of govt departments) ... I know OSS means they could do it themselves, but how many schools really have that time or expertise in a sustainable form?

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    Quote Originally Posted by garrysaddington View Post
    totally free (as in speech and as in beer!)
    You must mean imaginary..??

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    Quote Originally Posted by garrysaddington View Post
    The we in this context is the organisation formed to provide support services around the release of an Open Source MIS.
    Yes, but... who? Reputation matters enormously in the free world.

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    Quote Originally Posted by powdarrmonkey View Post
    Yes, but... who? Reputation matters enormously in the free world.
    The developers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by timzim View Post
    You must mean imaginary..??
    Do I detect a note of disbelief here?

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    I would be interested in contributing to such a project providing it was coded with C# .net (Only one i'm familiar enough with)

    I'm not sure if I could see it going anywhere though unless a large dedicated development team was involved and /or some sort of funding behind the project.
    Last edited by painejake; 19th May 2010 at 02:09 PM.

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    I'd be interested in knowing more about this project as well

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    I'd be interested, but support, stability and meeting changing government requirements will make or break it.

    1) The next time the government decides to change the census goalposts, how quickly can you adapt the software to suit?
    2) Is there decent support at an appropriate level to a) a primary school "person stuck with MIS managment role" b) me c) an LEA rolling it out across a borough?
    3) Is it stable and secure - in the case of things dealing with pupil data, has there been an independent code review?
    4) How well does it handle mangled data from other MIS? This will happen and it must do so gracefully - getting another school not to be rubbish at producing .ctf files in an exercise in futility.

    We run the usual FOSS software in school, but much of it is immune to the usual .gov "while we already have this data in SystemA, we need you to return it again in this format for use in SystemB" idiocy.
    Last edited by pete; 19th May 2010 at 02:21 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by painejake View Post
    I would be interested in contributing to such a project providing it was coded with C# .net (Only one i'm familiar enough with)

    I'm not sure if I could see it going anywhere though unless a large dedicated development team was involved and /or some sort of funding behind the project.
    It's web based and apart from other things built using Python,Zope,Postgres,Apache amongst others and is supported on Windows server 2008/2003. As far as the development effort goes, it is a finished product that will obviously need maintenance and customisation to fit varying needs. The development team is backed by a multi million pound company from the Midlands.
    Last edited by garrysaddington; 19th May 2010 at 02:49 PM.

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    damien.deakes's Avatar
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    Surely a true web based system is the best route to go down to truly be adaptable and quick to update.
    And if a cloud based solution is the answers then I would love to be involved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    I'd be interested, but support, stability and meeting changing government requirements will make or break it.

    1) The next time the government decides to change the census goalposts, how quickly can you adapt the software to suit?
    2) Is there decent support at an appropriate level to a) a primary school "person stuck with MIS managment role" b) me c) an LEA rolling it out across a borough?
    3) Is it stable and secure - in the case of things dealing with pupil data, has there been an independent code review?
    4) How well does it handle mangled data from other MIS? This will happen and it must do so gracefully - getting another school not to be rubbish at producing .ctf files in an exercise in futility.
    I'll use your numbers to answer.
    1/About a day would be needed for adaptation. We have supplier log ins to the collect system for testing.
    2/We will be providing support and other services, which will hopefully fund further maintenance and development by the in house team.
    3/That's what open source is all about - you can see the code. However, have you or anyone else ever seen the SIMS code?
    4/Gracefully. The data is cleaned and tested before it goes in, and validated against the XSD schemas provided by the *old* DCSF for common transfer files.

    All government defined formats are used, however everything may change with a new government, but being open and web based we are agile enough to respond to any changes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by damien.deakes View Post
    Surely a true web based system is the best route to go down to truly be adaptable and quick to update.
    And if a cloud based solution is the answers then I would love to be involved.
    join the schooltool project then
    SchoolTool: free gradebook, attendance, calendars and more.

  14. #29
    garrysaddington's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by damien.deakes View Post
    Surely a true web based system is the best route to go down to truly be adaptable and quick to update.
    And if a cloud based solution is the answers then I would love to be involved.
    Yep, cloud based is the direction we are heading in. Thanks for your offer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    What, we are talking UK MIS. Schooltool can not be used as a replacement for the proprietary MIS's in use in UK schools.



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