The rSmart Group Builds Momentum by Adding New Sakai Clients

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Today, at the 8th Sakai Conference, The rSmart Group announced exciting growth for its Sakai support and services offerings. rSmart, the leading full-service provider of open source solutions for education, is now providing commercial support and professional services for the rSmart Sakai Collaboration and Learning Environment (CLE) to educational institutions across the globe.

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We at Marist College picked rSmart in order to augment our resources with a team of knowledgeable Sakai experts. This allows our academic technology support team to focus on innovation in our area of expertise--teaching and learning

    Institutions that have recently contracted with rSmart for support and services around Sakai include:

-- Carnegie Mellon University

-- Charles Sturt University (Australia)

-- Cornell University

-- Marist College

-- Mesa Community College

-- New York City Department of Education

-- National Health Group (NHG), Singapore

-- Portland State University

-- Rutgers University

-- University of Houston-Clear Lake

-- University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill

-- University of Wyoming

Each of these institutions is using the Sakai CLE's powerful course management tools, ePortfolio functionality, and other collaboration features to enable and support innovative approaches to teaching and learning. In some cases the institutions are augmenting existing systems in order to get the specific best-of-breed functionality that Sakai offers. In other cases, institutions are using Sakai as a comprehensive replacement for an existing CMS solution. In implementations that vary from pilot programs to full production usage of Sakai, these institutions are relying on rSmart to support their innovations.

"We at Marist College picked rSmart in order to augment our resources with a team of knowledgeable Sakai experts. This allows our academic technology support team to focus on innovation in our area of expertise--teaching and learning," said Josh Baron, Director, Academic Technology and eLearning, at Marist College. "Partnering with rSmart allows our scarce resources to work on local innovations and serve the needs of our academic community while rSmart takes care of the more routine support of our rSmart Sakai CLE instance."

The rSmart Sakai CLE is the company's fully packaged, tested and supported distribution of the Sakai software. Similar to the way RedHat(TM) distributes and supports the Linux(TM) operating system, rSmart distributes and supports Sakai.

The CLE provides a feature-rich, fully scalable, enterprise ready software application that is unique in its ability to support teaching and learning, project collaboration, group interaction and ePortfolio construction. It offers an open source collaboration environment that is polished, customizable and fully supported by an accountable partner -- rSmart. The company also provides professional services including Sakai assessment and planning, training, installation, integration and data migration, customization and application hosting to complement its support offerings.

"We find that many institutions are so accustomed to the proprietary software model, they don't understand that using and consuming open source software can be as simple," remarked Chris Coppola, President of The rSmart Group. "The difference is that they benefit from the extraordinary level of community innovation and save significantly by eliminating license fees."

The rSmart Sakai CLE may be downloaded free of charge from the company's website. The free download enables institutions to try the software before making a financial commitment for support and services.

About The rSmart Group:

The rSmart Group is the leading open source application software company serving the education market. rSmart packages, certifies, deploys, and supports a suite of enterprise financial and collaboration and learning applications for colleges, universities, and institutions serving grades K-12. As an active member of open source projects like Kuali and Sakai, rSmart is able to provide its clients with software applications specifically designed to meet the unique needs of educational institutions. This collaborative approach allows rSmart to offer open source applications that break the dependence of educational institutions on traditional proprietary software vendors. Please visit http://www.rsmart.com for more information.

About Sakai:

The Sakai Project is a landmark venture to create a comprehensive open-source course management, collaboration, ePortfolio and online research environment for the education community. Started in 2004 by a collaboration between the University of Michigan, Indiana University, Stanford and MIT, the project is now run by the Sakai Foundation and includes over 100 members representing universities, colleges and institutions of learning around the world. For more information visit http://www.sakaiproject.org.

*Redhat and Linux are trademarks of their respective owners.

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