The founding members of The Open Source Education Foundation (OSEF) met while working at an elementary school in Tucson, Arizona. A local business donated 32 computers to the school, however the school district was unable to install them due to support issues. Personnel with the school district, contacted Harry McGregor and asked if he would install the lab. Mr. McGregor planned an Open Source implementation in Fall 1998 and the lab was installed and working by January 1999 with the help of many other Open Source Software enthusiaists. The lab was working well but the administration time was exceeding the schedule of Mr. McGregor, a full time student at a local community college, so he asked members of The Tucson Free Unix Group for assistance. Kyle Buehler, Scott Corey, Nick Lopez, Tom Rini, Justin Zeigler and many others assisted Mr. McGregor with the task.
While at a surplus sale, Mr. McGregor and Mr. Zeigler met the head administrator for a local non-profit charter middle school. After some discussion, Mr. McGregor and Mr. Zeigler were requested to come to the school and advise them on technology and a technology plan for the school. Four weeks after compleating plans for the charter school, the group completed the installation of an advanced 11-station diskless student use computer lab with an xDSL connection. All software in use for the computer lab was covered by an FSFG compatible software license.
While installing the computer lab
the administration of the Charter School handed the group a copy of the
Technology Standards from the
Arizona Department of Education and requested advice on how the standards could achieved. Research into the status of technology education in Arizona lead to the formation of OSEF.