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Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ’s - Bring Your Own Laptop


1) Why is a BYOD program significant?

BYOD prepares students to be anytime, anywhere learners and to access and interpret information which is always evolving and current.  Knowledge of how to be a digital citizen, how to search for and interpret websites, information, and more is preparing students for a world that is constantly changing. BYOD programs integrates mobile and web-based technologies into its delivery structure and culture.  These technologies are used to enhance learning, foster collaboration and prepare learners for careers in which information is available anytime, and anyplace. 

2) What are the benefits of having a 1:1 ratio of laptops to students in the classroom?

A laptop in the classroom instantly provides access to a world of information and tools and can be used anytime.
Our goal is not simply use technology as a substitution for traditional learning activities, but rather it is to use technology to redefine what can be done in the classroom by leveraging technology to access information; increase communication, creativity and collaboration; and become creators of content.  
At its core, a value that the BYOD program instills is Enlightened Digital Citizenship. While our children are considered “digital natives” in that they have been exposed to technology from birth, they still need guidance in becoming a productive citizen in this massive, worldwide community.  This program will teach students how to use the technology that is a part of their everyday world in a positive way as they become digital citizens.

3) There is already a computer lab in the school.  Why is a BYOD program more beneficial?

Yes, we have 3 mobile computer labs and 2 mobile iPad labs plus a dedicated computer lab in the library.  However, these 6 labs would only support 6 out of 24 classrooms at any one time.  The computer labs are shared among 714 students (24 divisions). This does not always allow for equal access.

4) This is an extra cost to parents.  Is it mandatory?

Agreed! This is a transition time. We are pushing the boundaries of traditional educational learning. We finally have the infrastructure to support a program like this and we are excited to experiment and see where this new educational tool can take our students learning. If we have more students providing their own laptops, then we can have this opportunity in even more classrooms.
Therefore, it is an optional program. If parents can not provide a laptop, the school will provide one for students to use.

5) Does this create  a 'have and have not' distinction among the children?

We have made the conscious choice to include ALL students. Thus, the program is announced once class lists are set.  We do not believe in streaming students into a BYOD or non-BYOD classroom.  Further, BYOD classrooms are at the teacher's discretion because we want teachers who will be using the technology to redefine and transform learning moving students from consumers of content to creators of content by using the SAMR model of technology (substitution, adaptation, modification, and re-creation).
All students will have a laptop, supplied from home or supplied by the school. Students using school supplied laptops receive a Dell 11 Chromebook, the same as the ones sold at Staples. The only difference is students using a school laptop cannot take it home each night and  occasionally, students may have to share devices in order for us maximize the resources that we do have.

6) I’m worried that my student may lose the computer.

Agreed. We need to put an incredible amount of trust in our kids. In our experience, kids live up to these expectations with technology and things that they value.
We have not experienced any theft of personal computers. Damage to computers is generally due to accidents.
We spend a lot of time reinforcing how to care for computers with the students and we directly teach digital citizenship.

7) I’m worried that my student’s computer may be stolen.

We have not experienced any theft of personal computers. Damage to computers is generally due to accidents.

8) What if something goes wrong with the computer?

As a school, we have worked with Staples to offer the $99 warranty program that offers a “you break it, we replace it” 1-time replacement warranty. This breaks down to $25 a year for peace of mind.

9) Will the school district be invasive with it’s use of data from the laptops?

The intent of this is that students and parents understand that while at school, students are using the internet access supplied by the district; we treat the device as a “school device” in order to reinforce that school rules and expectations regarding behaviour always apply.
Our process is one that works in tandem with parental expectations. If a device is confiscated, parents are contacted and we discuss how they would like to proceed to help make this a learning opportunity.

10) Which computer options are the best?

Specifications  - any laptop that can connect to the internet and hold a charge for approximately 3 hours.
With the use of Google Suite for Education, there are no programs required and most processing is done online.
The devices do not need more than a basic Chromebook would have (16GB; 2GB RAM)
We encourage parents to search for the BEST deals and we are in constant communication with Staples as we see ads that beat their pricing. Staples offers price matching AND the warranty/accessory discounts.
Parents have used Craigslist and/or clearout deals from other retailers to achieve unheard of prices to help support this program.

11) I understand that I don't have to participate in the program, but I’m concerned that my child will be in the  'have-not' group.

We have made the conscious choice to include ALL students. Thus, the program is announced once class lists are set.
All students will have a laptop, supplied from home or supplied by the school.
Students using school supplied laptops receive a Dell 11 Chromebook, the same as the ones sold at Staples. The only difference is students using a school laptop cannot take it home each night.

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