Do your homework!

Have just been asked for some good places to get free e-books to put on tablets that a school have purchased.

I found the above in my inbox this evening. Along with a request to tidy my desk which caused me to lose my temper a bit. Okay – there are free eBooks. There’s the out of copyright classics for a start. Then there are publishers – particularly educational publishers – who give out free ‘tasters’. But why exactly would people expect free stuff of any real value?

When contacting publishers regarding reduced price books for our book award I was told by one the “there are so many awards that if we gave discounts to every school we’d be broke”.

And of course a school can turn to pirate eBooks, but this query from a primary school is symptomatic of the problem that also manifests itself as a room full of stupidly expensive Apple Macs and no worthwhile software or properly trained teachers.

As long as schools are magnets for IT snake oil salesmen you’ll still have the bizarre situation of senior management spending thousands on expensive computer hardware and having no budget for software/ media to put on it. Or no idea of what software/ media to put on it.

Perhaps it’s not the pupils who should be set homework…