Friday, June 19, 2009

One Laptop Per West Virginia Child

While we have done a pretty good job of putting computers in West Virginia classrooms and getting broadband in the rural parts of West Virginia. We have done nothing to put laptops in the hands of every West Virginia child.

The economic reality is that not all WV families can afford to buy there children laptops. This is a disservice to the children of WV, and I call today for a private/public partnership to fund this project.

One laptop per WV child can be achieved with inexpensive netbooks running either Windows XP or linux. With this laptops children who do not currently have access to their own computers at home could write, make music, learn to program, and do homework.

If public funds are not made available, this project could be funded with private money from the WV blogging community, or from some other online donation model.

Please leave you suggestions as to how we can achieve one laptop per West Virginia child in the comments.

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Blogger West Virginia Chamber of Commerce said...

Mission WV has been doing a good job in reusing computers and getting them into the hands of West Virginians.

9:13 AM  
Blogger oncee said...

Used computers are great, but new computers are better. Netbooks are perfect for kids.

9:46 AM  
Blogger Johannah said...

June 17, 2009 More Than A Toy Story. Disney, Asus Debut 'Netpal' NetbookWalt Disney Company and Asus are teaming up to bring a netbook to children. The collaboration is aimed at bringing the ultraportable and inexpensive functionality of a netbook to children who don't need a fully functional machine ... Windows XP preloaded ... A special edition of the Disney Netpal will be available through Toys 'R' Us.The Netpal will start at $349.99 and be available in late July.

9:37 PM  
Blogger Robin said...

You know, I think this is a great idea, but I can't help thinking if there shouldn't be more to it than this. I mean, if their families really can't afford to get them a computer to use, then they're not only disadvantaged materially, but they won't have the experience with PCs that their contemporaries would.

I know at least a few of the local bloggers have a reasonable amount of education and/or experience with computers; I wonder if it wouldn't be worth it for someone to put together some kind of basic computer class, in addition to trying to donate the netbooks...

10:09 PM  
Blogger B'ville Observer said...

If the One Laptop Per Child program can work in Africa, then it should surely work here. However, broadband access is not readily available in rural WV. For example, broadband access does not exist in parts of Cabell County by Cabell Midland high school. Infrastructure definitely needs work.

7:03 PM  
Blogger B'ville Observer said...

Broadband access is not available in rural parts of WV. For example, broadband doesn't work int the area of Cabell Midland High School in Cabell County. On another note if the children in Africa can get the One Laptop Per Child, the children in WV should definitely have one too.

7:05 PM  
Blogger Buzzardbilly said...

I think that is an excellent idea and should include some training for parents and the children on safety in how one uses the Internet. Some people fear their children getting on the internet because of stories they see on TV about children who were lured by predators via becoming chatroom friends posing as other children. With education, they could not only get over that fear, but also learn how to keep their kids safe and how to help their kids with the homework using all that information just waiting a few keystrokes away. Excellent idea.

9:15 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

I propose that we do 5-6 pilots of this project in underserved communities. Let's lay out WiMAX or ubiquitous wi-fi throughout a small community, find sponsors to fund the Netbooks, provide comprehensive training, and see what happens over a 1-2 year period. Then, expand.

9:17 PM  
Blogger matterhornpat said...

I think Jeff has a great idea. Start with pilots, with sponsors and move forward.

Small steps.

Matterhorn Marketing in Fayette County will commit to two netbooks at the onset of the program. I am certain other companies that are concerned about West Virginia will sponsor as well.

11:16 PM  
Blogger Patrick said...

Great idea. Id love to help too. Count me in.

11:47 AM  

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