You're Going to Hate Me…

cesi-nano-simon-lewisThis evening, sometime between 7pm and 9pm, I gave a talk entitled: “You’re Going to Hate Me!”  It’s a two minute talk about how I intend to spend the €5,000 per classroom my school received from Batt O’Keefe and how any school that wasn’t on the list could be entitled to the grant.  In case I make a balls of the presentation or I run out of time, below is the text of what I intended to say.  I have scheduled this post to go up on at 9pm.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I’m privilaged to be standing in front of such esteemed ICT professionals and teachers.  My name is Simon Lewis and I am a principal of a new primary school in Carlow Town.
As you may have noticed, the title of my talk is “You’re Going to Hate Me!” and if I was sitting where you are listening to me, I’d probably hate me too.  Well apart from the normal reasons, people tend to hate me, I am the principal of one of the schools that received some of the €2.2 million that Batt O’Keefe released a few weeks ago.
I thought rather than simply listing all the nice toys I was going to get, I was going to use the opportunity to share my ideas, in case any other lucky principals were here.  I also want to add to the NCTE’s procurement list for ICT equipment.
The grant is broken up in the following way.  You get €500 for every classroom in your new school or new extention and then you get an extra €4,500 for each mainstream classroom you are using.
As a school, we decided to use the first €4,000 on a back end server.  We’re going to use a thin-client model throughout the school.  This means that every computer in the school, (we have had about 10 very old PCs donated by various parents), will run off the server and no matter how old the computers are, it won’t matter.
This leaves us with €4,500 per classroom.  Following the NCTE’s advice, we’re going to invest in a visualiser, printer, projector and laptop for each classroom.  When I say laptop, I mean netbook.  Netbooks are a lot cheaper than laptops.
I reckon that after this, we’ll have approximately €2,500 to play with and that will be going on Interactive Whiteboards.  I won’t go on my soapbox here about IWBs because many of you have subjected yourselves to my rantings on IWBs on Anseo.  However, we will be buying touch-based, like TouchIT or Smart, rather than pen-based.  Add wiring and all that jazz, I think we’ll have a fine set up for our money.
Before I finish, I’d like to add that my school didn’t make the list of 72 schools.  The government forgot about us and they may have forgotten about you.  Any school that had new classrooms built on in 2008 should be entitled to the grant.  I’d advice calling the DES Buildings Section ASAP.
And if you do get the grant, maybe people will hate you too.

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