Issaquah: Student-built school computer network

Issaquah is an education district in the Pacific North West of the USA. In the early 90s they not only found a way to make computer technology affordable, they used it to change the way they teach. 

The key insight was to involve the students in building and running the education district’s computer network. This was no token system — it was a major network linking 2200 computers in over 20 different locations around the district. 

Most people would have said such a task was impossible, but at Issaquah, the students not only built the network themselves, but also provided the ongoing maintenance and helpdesk support.

The students involved in the Technology Information Project acquired credits towards their studies, as well as invaluable practical experience of great benefit when they left school. 

“There’s a group of students who come away with technical knowledge that business can use, so they walk into the workforce and get high-wage, high-skilled jobs”.