More than 15 lakh Kerala schoolchildren will start giving their practical exams in IT on personal computers running on special Linux version.
IT@School project of Kerala of the State Education Department has developed an operating system based on the Linux version Ubuntu. The system called IT@School GNU Linux Version 3.0 was distributed to 2,832 high schools to more than a thousand government schools. The children of class 8, 9 and 10 will use around 30,000 PCs to do their quarterly practical examinations in IT. In Class VIII, students will use the mouse; the 'Tux' paint software for drawing; word processing and spreadsheets. A trained cadre of over 70,000 teachers will help them. The project has created a whole ecosystem of computer-aided tools for self-paced learning, online testing, instant evaluation, marks generation and so on. All this is done using royalty-free Open Source software. The Central Government had undertaken almost the entire cost of the school computerisation programme to the tune of INR 6.2 crores, while the State had spent INR 75 lakh this fiscal year.