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Last update: 2007-10-08

End: 2008-01


Open-Source software development for students in secondary education

Computer Science is a growing subject in high schools (12-to-18-year old students). In 2007 it will become a 'profielkeuzevak', a core profile course, for the Dutch high school curriculum. The CodeYard project aims to attract students to the production of Open Source Software (OSS). Students can use the infrastructure and expertise of the CodeYard project to produce OSS which can be passed on to future generations of students, leading to a wider use and more production of OSS.

The CodeYard project aims to attract students to OSS by providing infrastructure with low barriers to entry and local expertise related to the technical issues the students may face. New software will be developed to support students working together using the SUbversion revision control system.

Students should find out that writing OSS is fun. In this respect the community-building aspect of CodeYard is more important than the code that might be written there. We need to attract students to OSS so that they stick around in the long term, and do not just use it briefly to fulfil their high school credits requirements. In this sense the CodeYard project is an idealistic one, and depends on the enthusiasm and cooperation of local high school students.

There are many projects that illustrate the use of OSS in educational or high school settings, and there are even entire Linux distributions (for instance SkoleLinux) devoted to it. Stichting NLnet supports several such educational projects, like SchoolLan and ThinkQuest.
Other projects, such as Ratio, are geared towards providing educational material on specific subjects (Mathematics, in Ratio's case).
None of these projects engage the students at high schools in the design, implementation, and testing of the products being delivered. The Open Source philosophy behind them is just that --behind them. CodeYard aims to bring it to the forefront and actively engage students in the Open Source community.

Project CodeYard

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