PR: Red Hat Launches Nation's First K-12 Red Hat Linux Education Program
May 07, 2002, 22:00 (4 Talkback[s])
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RALEIGH, NC--Red Hat, Inc. has announced its K-12 Red Hat Linux
Pilot Program, designed to extend the availability of the Internet
and computing technology to all schools, regardless of size or
budget, improving the overall learning experience for all students.
As part of its open schools initiative, Red Hat will assess the
computing needs of participating schools, install open-source
software and applications, and provide technical support. Seven
North Carolina counties have already joined Red Hat's program --
Chatham, Clay, Durham, Lee, Orange, Scotland and Tyrrell.
Schools participating in the initiative will be provided with
Red Hat software and services at no cost. Red Hat will assess the
current and future computing needs of each school and then install
the appropriate open source software and programs. Each school is
providing its own hardware, and has agreed to meet the minimum
requirements set by Red Hat.
"We replaced our proprietary servers with Linux and our school
district now uses open-source software to run our firewall, mail,
internet site, intranet sites, WAN administration and monitoring,
file and print services, and student information systems," said
Michael Williams, Network Technology Director of Haywood County
Schools. "With the money we saved from not buying proprietary
licenses, the school district purchased additional resources that
directly effected the learning experience of our students and
brought us into the 21st century."
The success of the pilot program will be measured based on
regular reporting from each school. Schools can use Linux for
infrastructure (Web, file/print, application servers),
administration (database servers), or even an entire computer
science lab environment, where Linux runs the central server, and
Linux or any other operating system can run on individual
workstations to check email, access the Internet and use
At a Red Hat-sponsored kick-off on April 19, numerous local
school representatives from the various counties, Red Hat and Dell
executives, and State Education Department CTO Bob Bellamy
expressed the need for open source technology in K-12 schools.
"DPI is pleased to be working with Red Hat to further the
technology options for some local schools," said Bellamy. "We are
conscious of balancing the technology needs of local schools with
the funds available to support these needs. Open source initiatives
are viable alternatives in certain instances and we want to take
advantage of all options."
Typically, when technology budgets are available, a large share
of a school's money is spent on costly proprietary technology and
software licenses. The K-12 Red Hat Linux Pilot Program provides an
effective, yet inexpensive, way for all schools to offer
high-quality computer programs to students. Because open source
software is inexpensive or free, schools can spend budget dollars
on additional computers for the classroom or on hiring technical
staff to teach the students.
"States across the nation face shrinking education budgets at a
time when our educational institutions need to expand the the role
of information technologies in schools," said Michael Tiemann, CTO
of Red Hat. "Existing proprietary solutions cost our schools more
money each year, while limiting choice and making it difficult for
schools to meet new educational mandates in innovative ways. The
K-12 Red Hat Linux Pilot Program provides the alternative. It
extends the reliability and flexibility benefits of open source
software to schools at a fraction of the cost, providing an equal
opportunity to schools of any budget size."