K-12 programs in the NSFNET regionals.

Peter S. Ford peter at goshawk.LANL.GOV
Fri Jun 12 00:00:04 UTC 1992


I would like to get some input from this group on K-12 programs.
My desire is to get some feel on the role of the regionals 
in provisioning K-12, and how they go about it, and what the issues
of extending the Internet into the K-12 community are.  I think of
extending the Internet in terms of through direct IP connectivity, or
some application level connectivity (telnet, mail,  etc.), other 
protocols (uucp,, fred ...), etc.

here is a partial list of issues that be of interest to discuss or 
hear about:

	Barriers to connectivity: cost, adequate service,  appropriate
		technology, who pays?, can a regional's NOC handle 
		a couple hundred schools in a major urban area, etc.

	What technology issues need to be addressed:  is IP the right way 
		to go, do telnet, ftp and email provide sufficient 
		value added, are user  interfaces the barrier everyone 
		says they are?

	What have been, or what will be good matches of technology with
		programmatic elements inside the schools.

	Which communities with the schools really benefit, and why:
		teachers, science students, english students, seniors, 
		3rd graders?
	Where can the regionals have the greatest impact  wrt K-12 
		network access and in which areas are they ill suited 
		to make a difference.

	What do you figure for costs: equipment, line costs,  ramp-up
		time for both sides (network provider and schools), 
		continuing  costs over time, etc.

	what stuff do you use?  Cisco terminal servers? NAT routers,
		PCs, Macs?  What software?  training material?

	anything else?...

I am asking this for several reasons.  I am getting asked these questions 
on a regular  basis and I would like to  know more about what people 
are doing so I can tell people: "go talk to ..., they did something 
interesting in that area ...".  Also, Los Alamos has run a supercomputing
program with schools in NM for the last two years, and last year over 
100 schools signed up, which is fantastic given how small a population 
is in this state.  Most schools use terminals to access LANL via 2400 baud
modems into New Mexico Technet.  We are looking at what it might take
to get many of the schools up on the Internet and would like to learn
what others have done.  The students are especially interested and we would
like to make it possible for them to "build the network from scratch".

I would really like to hear from people about what things they think have
made their efforts a success, and from efforts that did not work out with
a good post mortem analysis.


Peter Ford 
Los Alamos National LAboratory
peter at goshawk.lanl.gov

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