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Equity devices in BYOD schools

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Started by Claire Amos 23 Aug 2012 2:23pm () Replies (14)

Hi all,

Just seeking some feedback in regards with how BYOD schools are dealingworth the issue of equity devices? Do you provide loan devices? Lease deals? Classroom computers? Or nothing?


Any info appreciated.





  • Matt Leach (View all users posts) 22 Jul 2016 8:23am ()

    We run google apps across the school and have been successfully been running BYOD with students being able to bring in a laptop or ipad to with their learning. As a school we resource COWs- namely by purchasing old teacher laptops that still have plenty of life in them, lease chromebooks and ipads and band aide old machines to add to the stock around the school- if it connects to the internet our able band of techies strip it down and put it back into use.  

    My leasing budget is maxed out and my repairs and maintenance is getting sucked up replacing keys and cracked screens. In doing all of this we are still short of devices and no where near a 1:1 model. The old tela laptop system was great- go online, complete a form and have a replacement machine arrive in good time. Wouldn't it be great if this could work for student devices? Any thoughts or bright ideas?? 


  • Nikkie (View all users posts) 18 Jul 2016 12:28pm ()

    Hi there, thought I'd share too because it's the holidays and I have time to read AND reply!

    We are a full primary school in Papakura, Auckland We introduced our version of BYOD in 2014 in two trial classrooms. We built a working model for teachers, parents and other stakeholders to see what this looks like and then in 2015 for our 5 Year 7 and 8 classrooms. In term 3 last year we introduced this to our Year 5 and 6's and starting this term we will have a 1:1 class in year 4 to help illustrate for our teachers and parents what this might look like at this level. In terms of equity we have many strategies in play.

    Our spending has not changed over this time (and I'm hopeful it won't change in the long term!) now we can target our spending a bit more to work with our strategically targeted areas. In this instance it is our Year 3 and 4 area this year.

    We still have a significant number of student accessible, school owned devices for students to use. At last audit we had more than 320+ such devices. This does not include TELA laptops or devices used primarily by teachers or admin staff. Our roll is around 640 so this puts us at 1:2 before any BYOD devices are included. These include COWS, desktops, our IT suite and ipads in our junior school and an increasing number of tablet/laptop hybrid devices which are fast becoming our preferred way of getting things done. Multi-modal input is what our kids love. Keyboard, touch and pen works best but is still out of the reach of many. It amazes me how much our preferred device has changed over the last 3 years! What once was something my colleagues begged for (more desktops in a pod) they now want removed because they are not mobile/flexible enough :-)

    In response to parent feedback we do provide suggested specs and packages for BYOD. We always provide more than one option, a basic laptop, a mid priced one with additional features (touch, tablet hybrid and sometimes pen if we can find one) and a higher priced one with all the bells and whistles.

    One thing we did notice was that some of our students, often those with less experience with devices lost many precious minutes adjusting to different devices. Slightly different log in methods, small things like power buttons and headphone sockets in different places, accessing shared drives for documents etc all caused delays. These were the students who needed that precious time for learning not fussing to get the thing going. Our board stepped in and provided a basic device (HP Stream) which these students are allocated for the year.

    Jonathan, tying this together and supporting all of this is Office 365. We use 365 all day, everyday. I can't tell you if it's better than google but I can tell you that it most definitely meets our learning and professional needs (and then some!). We've been using 365 since 2014 and it's been growing with us, and helping us grow too. We have created a wide array of collaborative sites for teachers and students and use OneNote Notebooks for a range of purposes including digital modelling books, collaborative planning and our appraisal documentation. Happy to share more with you if you'd like to hear more.

  • Jonathan Hanlon (View all users posts) 18 Jul 2016 10:32am ()

    Kia ora everyone. I'll chip in with my two cents worth from our small rural area school:

    Like many schools we have trialled a number of technologies over the years on the path to developing a sustainable and workable BYOD model. In our community, the reality is that many students cannot afford to purchase a device. At this stage we have no intention of asking students to. However, for those who are willing to purchase a device, it has come down to individual teachers to recommend a device that suits their class level and teaching style. In reality though, students bring a wide range of devices to school and teachers are expected to be able to integrate these devices into their programmes. So far this hasn't posed a problem - teachers learn very quickly from the students how to use each device. 

    For those that do not have a device, the school has 20 chromebooks (we used to use netbooks but found the build quality and life expectancy far too low). The chromebooks have been working well and are in their third year, with no major signs of slowing down. Students can issue them from the library in the same way as they would issue a book.

    Our junior classes have a set of 10 iPad minis that have just been integrated into their rooms. 

    Most of our work - inquiry, collaborative writing etc is based on Google Docs - We are also experimenting with 365. Can anyone out their provide me with some solid reasons why 365 is better? I would rather use one platform for collaborative work and cloud storage,and Google seems to be quite suitable for what we do at this stage.

    Thanks - Replies on the 365 question appreciated!

  • Whaea Merenia (View all users posts) 16 Jul 2016 4:17pm ()

    In the Education.govt.nz it says this..

    By the end of 2016, all schools will have access to the technology available to provide high quality, high capacity, ultrafast internet access for teaching and learning. Connected classrooms offer today’s students and teachers easier, affordable, and faster access to information, teaching and learning resources, peers, experts and the wider community.

     Digital technologies have a pivotal role to play. They are a major enabler of the forces reshaping how our society and economy function. The smart use of digital technologies has enormous potential to help us recast the key principles, relationships, partnerships, and components integral to successful learning environments.

    I cut and paste this statement because it gives clear rationale behind the importance of how technology will continue to progress in the 21st century and we have to be prepared to go through transformational change within ourselves no matter how uncomfortable it is. 

    Our school is currently investing in devices for our children. We use Chrome books, ipads and PCs, however the PCs are becoming increasingly redundant due to how quickly they decide to 'break' down. Junior teachers especially  like the ipads and many of our Y4 - Y6 children are working on chrome books. We haven't yet looked at BYOD but as a Leadership team we have had a few discussions about it's benefits vs no benefits - for want of a better word. Our school has also largely been working on pedagogy shifts in relation to devices in the classroom - so one step at a time. I think it's only a matter of time before we venture down this track and after reading what Derek Wenmouth says and the links he shared, there is a place for BYOD in our school to meet learner needs and develop a pedagogy of learning for our learners and teachers. As a teacher in the US says 'Tiziana Saponaro', 'when her own shift in pedagogy transformed from direct instructional method into project and inquiry based learning approach, then helps students learn by doing gives them ownership of the education'.  If we are to meet the diverse needs of all our children it must become our responsibility to explore this route. As Lisa Nielsen writes in her '7 Myths about BYOD' '...a shift in a BYOD school is for teachers and students to come together to discuss and discover the limitless possibilities that a tech-rich environment provides and then work together to think about how best to pursue learning goals'. 

  • Anna Stockman (View all users posts) 13 Jul 2016 9:57am ()

    We started a BYOD Syndicate with our Intermediates last year.  Students who wanted to bring their own device could bring a laptop, tablet or iPad.  For equity we assigned a loan laptop form the school.  the loan laptops could not be taken home, had to stay at school.  We have decided to purchase more devices for the school, chromebooks so that we could have 1:2 devices across the school.  The students prefer to work on their own device so that they can save passwords etc for quicker log in.  We are also looking at a wifi system that we can roll out to the community so that our students without wifi access at home can log into the school N4L system.

  • MattS (View all users posts) 07 Jul 2016 12:41pm ()

    I started a BYOD environment with a Year 7 & 8 class this year. We set out to achieve this during 2014. The first hurdle was to show the community the value of using technology in the classroom. We decided to invest in buying enough school chrome books for a 1:1 environment in my class. Once this was up and running we invited the community to come in and see what was happening. Once the community could see the value and were on board, we explained the financial limitations of the school to do this for every class and that a BYOD policy was the most equatable way of having devices in the school. The school devices are now used for those students that don't have their own device. We found this a really successful roll out of the BYOD environment. 

  • Bill Godbout (View all users posts) 06 Jul 2016 1:05pm ()

    At Waiheke High School we have started 2 BYOD classes this year. One group in year 7 and another in year 9. These 2 classes were chosen by opting in. In the year 9 group we had 46 applicants. At this time management decided to hold a lottery and fill a class of 30. Retrospectively might of been able to have 2 classes of 23. It so happened that our year 9 group was an extra large cohort. Many of the questions of equity will be big during the next couple of years as there will be rollover to year 8 and 10 and 2 new ones at 7 and 9. Not sure what the plan will be after that.

  • Julian Adamson (View all users posts) 04 Jul 2016 9:06am ()

    Kia Ora Tatou,

    We are going to take a big step next year and move from a few BYOD classes at year 9 to the entire cohort being BYOD. Of course this means we are doing a lot of work around equity. I know that the local schools have been discussing for some time the idea of forming a collective to support equity and to help fund devices for those who cant afford them, but this is still in the discussion stage and may take a lot more time to get actual action.

    In the meantime, we have setup a number of COWS (computers on wheels) with laptops that can be used to supplement those that students bring themselves. We are also running two parents information evenings in the build up to next year to give year 8 families as much time as possible to consider purchasing a device. The first of these is this week. We have got local suppliers in to offer tech advice and some good deals for families.

    Our philosophy on this is that equity is an issue, but will not be a barrier to implementing BYOD. We believe that devices and the change in pedagogy that goes along with them, can help engage and bring more agency to students and that that is worth the cost of buying in more devices. Of course we are lucky in that we have the finances to be able to make this stand. I am sure there will be schools who cant afford to.

    I look forward to reading more ideas here as people keep posting them!

  • Gary S (View all users posts) 25 Aug 2012 10:37am ()

    Found this discussion really helpful. I am in a small rural school with 120 students. I was concerned about the impact of the haves and have nots in our community, however I notice that a surprising number of my less affluent families have children with iPod touches and even cheaper tablets they are keen to be able to bring to school.


  • Claire Amos (View all users posts) 23 Aug 2012 5:17pm ()

    Thanks Diane and Mark - good info!

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