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Consultant Makes World of Difference to Cash-Strapped School

Consultant Makes World of Difference to Cash-Strapped School

  • When it comes to bridging the digital divide, human resources are just as important as hardware. In TechSoup's article Consultant Makes World of Difference to Cash-Strapped School, we spend an afternoon with Technology Coordinator Hilary Naylor at a California elementary school, where she tackles everything from incompatible software to faulty CD drives.

    Learn how one consultant is helping dozens of teachers and hundreds of students bring technology to the classroom. Read about how your organization might benefit from similar services, and find our resources for finding them.

    Has your school used a tech consultant? What are some of the ways you have worked around a limited technology budget? Share your experiences and suggestions here.
    senior editor, TechSoup
  • For me, this story really points out how even the smallest technical questions can become huge challenges for schools (and libraries and NPOs.)

    For instance, there's the part about how the librarian wants to user her barcode scanner to read books, but the hardware and the software weren't compatible with her Windows 98 machine.

    There's the part about how the teachers couldn't figure out how to connect a headphone hub to a computer.

    And there's my favorite: the Ethernet jacks that were installed underneath a whiteboard, meaning no one could plug into them.

    These examples really underscore the fact that -- despite all the high-tech tools we have at our disposal these days, like blogging, tagging, and RSS feeds -- we can't forget about the much more basic challenge that needs to be addressed before we can get nonprofits on a level playing field with large for-profit organizations.



    --Amit

    Amit Asaravala Manager of Editorial & Content Strategy TechSoup
  • > These examples really underscore the fact that --
    > despite all the high-tech tools we have at our
    > disposal these days, like blogging, tagging, and
    > RSS feeds -- we can't forget about the much more
    > basic challenge that needs to be addressed before
    > we can get nonprofits on a level playing field with
    > large for-profit organizations.

    I just want to second this emotion. Another digital divide is emerging, between very very tech-savvy organizations and those who are still struggling to get all of their computers using the same operating system, still lacking the capacity to keep their web sites up-to-date, and struggling just to answer all the emails they are getting. These nonprofits are doing very important work -- I really hate that they are being left behind.

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    Jayne Cravens
    TechSoup Community Forum Manager