Do you use the theory of least-privileged user account () with your teachers?
While I believe in the theory, I’ve also found that if you use it in an educational setting with the teachers that you increase your workload. I have had to only remove 3 virus/malware infections in the last 3 years on a user base of over 500 computers at my school. All the infections have been on teacher laptops from downloads or internet usage. The student computers, both laptops and desktops are locked down using LUA, so I haven’t had a problem with them.
The teachers need autonomy to use or try different programs to teach their students. The teachers are given administrator rights on their laptops and are given full access to the laptop hard drive. They have their own Home folder on a network server to save important data like grades and documents. I only ask a few things from the teachers….
- If you are going to install a program let me know ahead of time to see how it installs and if it conflicts with any district applications.
- Do not install any other anti-spyware, anti-virus software.
- Do not install anything from Google. I install Google Earth as a default in the image for the teacher laptops.
- No Instant Messaging software.
- Do not click on any dialogs for updates to Flash, Adobe Reader, Java or anything else unless I’ve sent an email.
- No AOL.
Pretty basic, common sense requests. The teachers know that if they do not follow these basic requests and their laptops is not reparable to a previous state within a minimum amount of time that I will have to image it to a pristine state. Also, I am not responsible if they lose any data that they have not saved or that I cannot find in normal locations on their hard drives. A disclaimer here: I do my best to get every bit of data from a teachers laptop even though I state that I am not responsible for any lost data.
I believe in treating the teachers with respect, letting them do what they do best…teach our children. If you do, they actually come to you for help, ask questions and respect you in return. It makes my job much easier.