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[K12OSN] NELS and NECC



Hello,

My wife and I just returned from a two and a half week vacation touring
the North East. The vacation included two and a half days attending NELS
and a day and a half attending NECC.

It was great meeting so many FOSS advocates and placing faces with
names.

You can't beat NELS as a forum to network with other people in the
education sector who are also advocates of FOSS. I highly recommend this
symposium to anyone who has deployed FOSS in the education sector or is
considering integrating FOSS in a K12 environment.

I can't tell you how great it was to see an email garden running ltsp at
NECC and a modest but steady stream of attendees using the Linux
desktop.

Three short years ago I was greeted with a "polite" chuckle from many
vendors at the FETC when I mentioned our school was using Linux. In
contrast, this year at the NECC neither my wife nor I received any
condescending attitudes from any of the vendors we talked OSS with. In
fact, I found vendors were quite interested chatting Linux when I
mentioned the commitment our school has made to FOSS over the past three
years.

I'd suggest that anyone who has the time to attend any regional Edu Tech
conventions do so and politely mention to as many vendors as possible
that you are using Linux in your school.
 
The FETC (Florida Educators Technology Conference) is held in Orlando
every year. The FETC has been as large or nearly as large as the NECC.
I'd guess this is due to its proximity to all the Florida attractions.
There has been three attempts that I know of to represent FOSS at the
FETC. I'm hoping the FETC organizers will be more open to Open Source at
next March's convention. If anyone is planning on organizing a presence
at this convention please contact me as I live a short drive from
Orlando. Also if anyone is interested in researching the possibility of
creating a SEELS (South East Educators Linux Symposium) please contact
me.

John


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