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Linux Booming in Indiana (USA) Schools

VAR Business writes, “Hoosier Daddy? In Indiana Schools, It’s Linux.”

“Mike Huffman, special assistant for technology at the Indiana Department of Education, said schools in the state have added Linux workstations for 22,000 students over the past year under the Affordable Classroom Computers for Every Secondary Student (ACCESS) program. And that could expand quickly with several new updated Linux distributions, such as Novell SUSE, Red Hat and Ubuntu.

This year, Huffman expects Linux desktop deployments to grow from 24 high schools to 80 high schools, driven by lower costs, higher functionality and early successes…

“We have a million kids in the state of Indiana,” he continued. “If we were to pay $100 for software on each machine, each year, that’s $100 million for software. That’s well beyond our ability. That’s why open source is so attractive. We can cut those costs down to $5 [on each computer] per year.”

For students and teachers, it doesn’t matter which platform they are using. They’re learning a curriculum, not an OS and software stack.

In education, open source can do the same job with equal effectiveness as Microsoft’s products, at (using the numbers from above) only 5% of the cost! That’s more than just saving money, that’s making possible things that otherwise could only be imagined.

One Response to “Linux Booming in Indiana (USA) Schools”

  1. Razib Ahmed Says:
    September 27th, 2006 at 5:40 am

    “That’s why open source is so attractive. We can cut those costs down to $5 [on each computer] per year.””
    Yes, this is very attractive and I am happy that India has started to develop Linux in the country but, spreading with this speed doesn’t seem to bring good result because Linux is not as easy as windows and it is a bit specialized and there are not many skilled teachers or even engineers in India.