Connected Learning Network (CLN) goes live at @PLHS

Now that the secondary school wireless networks have been modernised with the installation of the Connected Learning Networks over the summer, Preston Lodge has been creating some useful guidance.

East Lothian Secondary Schools now offer wireless learning for all young people. This means that young people can use school or personal devices to access a very wide range of learning materials online. This new opportunity creates important new responsibilities for young people.

the biggest purchase you’ll ever make

Buying a home is likely to be the biggest purchase you’ll ever make and a mortgage will be your largest debt. Most people under the age of 25 would not be able to afford a mortgage of over $500,000 without having an income of at least $50,000 per year or a credit score of at least 720, according to HomeAdvisor.

There are several types of mortgage and interest rates, and their advantages and disadvantages (look here). The mortgage interest deduction has two parts the first part allows you to write off a portion of your mortgage interest when you buy a home, and the second part is an additional mortgage payment.

If you are able to qualify for a mortgage, and you have the right credit history and enough cash, you can expect to pay about 2% of your income on your mortgage. This means that if your salary is $300,000 per year you would be paying $120,000 on your mortgage. If you get a loan with a 3% interest rate, that would mean that you would pay $200,000 per year. This is a good choice, but it does come with some financial concerns. First, you will not be able to sell your home at a profit. The seller will have to put 20% down, and that will push the selling price down a bit. Secondly, the buyer will have to accept all of the mortgage principal. So, the seller will only get their profit on the property, but the buyer will pay the mortgage principal. While this may seem like a great deal, if your purchase is not at the right price, you could end up taking a loss. A home that is worth $500,000 now may be worth $500,000 when you buy it down to $300,000. So the mortgage is not so bad if the home only drops 20% from its peak value.

In either case, both parties are getting something of value. You won’t make much on your home purchase, but the seller will eventually get paid back, and you will be able to move out on time. If you do not plan on being in Florida, you will need to know the proper mortgage term and the home value. You may want to use Fannie Mae’s Home Appraisal Guide to help you find your ideal home before you buy.

Home Inspection

When purchasing a home in Florida, it is important to be certain that you are buying a home that has met all standards, has been inspected, and passed a state inspection that verifies the home is in good condition. While most Floridians are extremely wary of home inspections, the Florida Department of Financial Services (FDFS) requires home inspections before a real estate transaction for luxury homes can be finalized. The FDFS recommends that all homeowners, regardless of income level, must have their home inspected by a licensed real estate inspector within 30 days of completing their transaction. To ensure your home inspection is thorough, it is best to first visit the home to determine if it is in fair condition. If the home is in poor condition, the FDLS will determine if the owner has been complying with the requirements of a real estate inspection in your county. The FDLS has been in charge of inspecting every home sold in Florida since 1985. The FDFS inspects about 150,000 homes a year and has issued over 50,000 inspection reports to homeowners. This annual inspection process is not limited to homes being sold, as it also includes all real estate transactions that have been completed in Florida.

Embedding Vimeo Videos: Active East Lothian

Did you know you can easily embed videos from the Vimeo video-sharing web site on eduBuzz WordPress sites?

All you need to do is post the video’s URL, on a line by itself, where you want the embedded video to appear. Use the Text editor tab when you paste in the video’s URL: the Visual editor will automatically turn it into a link, but we don’t want that.

Your post should look like this:




Get Your Head Round Scratch – in Under 2 Minutes

catLearning to make a computer do what you want – known as programming or coding – is notoriously tricky. That’s why the people at MIT developed Scratch, a program to enable children to start learning, using the same approach as building Lego models.  This video provides an excellent overview of what it can do, and how it works.

You’ll find Scratch is installed on school computers, and can also now be used in a browser from the web site.

Featured image by Torriano Junior School.

Knox Academy Tots and Teens: an in-school pre-nursery

Knox Academy
Knox Academy

Haddington’s Knox Academy has, for the past two years, been running Tots and Teens, an innovative in-school pre-nursery staffed partly by secondary students.

The students will typically complete 39 hours work experience, providing an opportunity to develop a range of skills including working independently, communicating and taking responsibility. A qualification is earned, from Edinburgh College, for successful completion of the course.

This short video has been made by the award-winning Knox Kid Witness News students to enable others to learn from the Knox experience of running this new development. You can read a more detailed report on the Knox Academy web site.