Recently, our eLearning committee have sent out information about BYOD and our intention to be teaching next year across all curriculum areas with an aspect of digital content. This is for a number of reasons which we have clarified below.
We have been working with our feeder primary schools to ensure that what they use as devices is compatible with us. Geraldine Primary School are in their second year of BYOD with all of their current Year 4 and 5 students having a Chromebook device. So in 2020, more than 50% of our Yr 7 student intake will be coming with devices that are fully compatible to our system.
In 2020, the new Digital Curriculum must be in place in all secondary schools. This is from the Ministry of Education in response to the work they do across the business and tertiary sectors along with research on what is needed for students for the world beyond school which is a digital one.
From a survey of our students, indication was given that almost 80% of students had an appropriate device for school use but were not necessarily bringing these to school.
Regarding the safety of your child’s device: we have a large number of lockers that can be locked and are easily accessible depending on when a device is needed. Many of these lockers are not used so we believe most students could have one if required. In the Homerooms, the devices will be locked over break times.
Many of our departments are using devices more and more and making teaching more real-world relevant with context learning as well as going to more digital platforms in topic or standard teaching. There has also been a move from textbooks to online content as that is what is happening worldwide with learning publications moving to digital format. The offshoot of this is that the stationary orders are reducing for purchase at the start of the year.
We have also spent time looking at how we can address the financial impact that this may have on some families in being able to provide devices. The following will be in place for next year.
Harvey Norman and OfficeMax have provided discounted devices with finance arrangements.
We will still maintain our Computer Labs for class bookings and the library has computers that can be used at lunchtime and 1-2 after school days.
We will have a number of chromebooks that will be in our school library and can be booked out on a daily basis with a user agreement on looking after it.
We are currently looking at having a second hand sale in our library in late January where anyone in the community can bring a device along to sell so that families can come and purchase. Once a student has purchased one of these, we will get our ICT Technicians to look over these before being used at school.
When our staff leased laptops finish after 3 years, as we have done in the past, we will sell these to students at significantly reduced prices every year.
The school also has an assistance fund which can support and continues to support any families for devices and other needs. If you contact Mrs Anne Rawson, our Social Worker, then she will be able to work with families for a solution. It is a pleasure to work alongside our local businesses and organisations who also get alongside our schools to support the needs of the entire family network.
We hope that one of these suggestions will be of help to you to look at access to a device for 2019. Feel free to contact the main office to talk to one of the eLearning committee should you