Back on September 15th we reported that Pinellas County Florida schools were forcing the migration from Mac to Windows PC. The directive came from Pinellas County superintendent Howard Hinesley, who wants to the district to use one type of computer instead of two. At last count, of 50,465 computers, laptops and servers, 34,538 of them came from Apple. Hinesley made the decison without even telling the district’s own director of technology and sought no input from parents and teachers. Now it has been reported that Hinesley is a short-timer, due to retire before the costs of switching from Macs to PCs will ever affect his job, the school system, teachers and students.
“Hinesley, who is retiring late next year, answered that had he opened the process, debate would have gone on for two years. ‘That’s what would have happened. And we’d have had 95 percent of the users that have PCs that are parents saying, ‘What are you taking so long?’ those that use Macintoshes saying, ‘I prefer Macintosh, let’s keep both,’ and those that wanted PCs saying, ‘Let’s go PCs. And guess what would have happened? They’d have looked at me and said, ‘Well, Hinesley just put that on the back burner and didn’t deal with it,'” Richard Bockman reports for The St. Petersberg Times. “No, he said, it’s wrong to fake it, to pretend to take input. The superintendent is charged with deciding, he made the best choice for the district, end of story.”
Hinesley “said he never sent board members any written information before he announced his decision Sept. 4. He said he informed them orally, during a July 28 workshop. The meeting ran some 5 1/2 hours. During the morning session, members faulted Hinesley for a ‘pattern’ of communicating poorly with them. After discussing whether to move to the next agenda item or break early for lunch, Hinesley said he had something to bring to the board members’ attention. The discussion lasted 45 seconds. Hinesley never used the words computer or classroom, Apple or Macintosh.”
You have to read the transcription of Hinesley supposedly orally informing the school board near the end of the article. Full article here.
This forced migration from Mac to Windows has prompted at least one derisive article from The St. Petersberg Times so far.
MacDailyNews Take: Something smells bad in Pinellas County. Are the Wintel box assemblers now targeting soon-to-retire superintendents who won’t have to take the heat when their decision to ditch Macs and move to Windows PCs proves more costly than ill-informed school board members will be able to fathom? The Pinella County School Board are as follows:
Howard Hinesley – Superintendent of Schools – firstname.lastname@example.org
The Board can be reached en masse via email here: Board@pcsb.org
Related MacDailyNews articles:
Pinellas County Florida schools forces migration from Mac to PC – September 15, 2003
Pinellas County migration from Mac to PC faces derision – September 17, 2003