I have been teaching programming to a group of teachers. Lycee Technique offered us the use of a small computer lab (6 computers). The room is closed by a metal gate, but there are no screens or windows, so dust from the nearby carpentry and masonry workshops float in and wreak havoc. The school claimed to not have resources to by some cloth to cover and protect the computers, so I made my students contribute themselves.
One computer was attacked by viruses (brought in by USB thumb drives; there is no internet connection) and stopped working. Another had a hardware failure. The administration again said there was no money to repair the machines. So we were down to 4 computers. Then one computer was stolen. I don’t know who is suspected or if the school is doing much to find out.
Luckily, the minister of education sent a letter recently to the school saying that they should make an effort to teach computer skills to their business students. This seemed to inspire the school, and they dusted off the 20 computers they recieved from a partner school in France but have been sitting in a closet for 2 years and set them up in a computer lab.
I went to the new lab yesterday to see if the we could recommence our programming class. There were not enough electrical outlets for over half of the computers. And still no glass on the windows or clothes on the computers to protect them from dust.
this is an example of how the problems I encounter here often seem fundamental. Yet there is a lack of willpower to fix things, or even to prevent further problems. I just keep pushing and insisting and needling and annoying people until hopefully things will work and be somewhat efficient.
In the meantime, we will restart the programming class. This week’s topic; SELECT statements in SQL.