Here at OLPC News, we get emails every week from people asking how they can start an OLPC program in their school. We are not alone. The good folks at SaigonOLPC get the same question. In response, they developed an XO deployment startup guide:
While OLPC doesn't offer donations, it mentors along the process. The main steps in the process are:
- Make sure the school is ready to handle the project
- Raise money to buy computers
- Find volunteers to provide training to teachers
- Enable on-going support
- Develop curriculum to teach
More detailed instructions (more info OLPC Deployment Guide):
- The school has to have electricity and teachers willing to commit to learning computers and teaching them (extra load for teachers) plus other resources, including on-going financial (teachers salary).
- You can always create a project plan and post it on Kickstarter.com to raise money to buy computers (maybe not all 140 at first, you can always start with lower number to test it out). Several on-line fundraising sites are good for that.
- When you have the computers you will need to find volunteers, who will teach the teachers at Cambodian school how to use computers, so that teachers can teach children year-round.
- You will also need to have someone on your team of volunteers who knows how to fix computer when kids break them and have spare parts ready, also provide support (repair, technical support, teacher support, maybe long-distance).
- The last thing will be to develop curriculum and be able to revise it as software changes rapidly.
Now reading that guide, I have only one question: If people are committed and raise the money, where do they buy the XO laptops? OLPC doesn't support small deployments. G1G1 eBay sales are the only XO laptop source for small deployments, unless you're willing to buy hundreds or somehow capture Negroponte's fancy.