In 2016, Wellers Hill State School implemented a BYOD programme in the school. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is a term used to describe a digital device ownership model where students use their privately owned devices to access the departmental network and information systems in an educational setting.
After significant research and advice from both the market place and parents who are professionals in the field, the school decided to go down the path of introducing BYO iPads.
There are several reasons for selecting iPads over lap tops and other devices. The main reasons being:
- Cost of the device to parents.
- Technical support available through Apple.
- Availability of education apps available to be used on iPads that are either free or low cost.
- apple runs extensive programmes to support teachers, not just in the technical use of the iPads but in the pedagogical application within the classroom setting.
In Term 4 each year, meetings will be held with Year 3 parents to discuss the introduction of the programme. The school will also be providing important information through the newsletter, the Parent Rep Network, the school website and Facebook. We have developed a FAQ section in relation to the introduction of iPads on this web page.
Equity of access
We realise that there may be some families who may find it difficult to purchase iPads for the programme. While the school has limited ability to assist, we will provide support to parents who find themselves in this position.
What needs to be done?
The decision to implement an iPad programme at the school was only the tip of the iceberg in relation to the work that must now be done prior to the end of the year. Some of the things we will need to do are:
- Maintain the Wi-Fi infrastructure in the classrooms.
- Continue professional development for staff in the use of iPads in the classroom.
- Research the suite of apps that will be used by students and staff.
- Recommend peripheral equipment for parents to purchase, such as cases.
- Negotiate prices and additional services that the retailer can provide, i.e. engraving.
Badging of the programme
The programme will be badged the Wellers Hill State School Future Learning Technologies Programme, or FLTp (pronounced Flight Programme). This acronym will draw a simile between the introduction of individual learning technology into the school and the programme taking flight in the journey to success. Using the acronym FLTp will also personalise the programme to Wellers Hill as the programme it incorporates is more encompassing than just BYOD. Our programme will incorporate the use of the devices, the introduction of new interactive technology across the classrooms, the pedagogical development that will occur for teachers, as well as the HR aspects of staffing and consultation with parents and the P&C.
If parents have any questions in relation to the FLTp please do not hesitate to contact the school. Further information will follow in the newsletter and other school forms of communication.