Bring Your Own Device Program

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St Patrick’s Marist College is a school that runs a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) program.


Students in Grades 7 to 12, will be able to bring only Apple or Windows laptops (not iPad) to use for educational purposes. Having ongoing access to technological tools will enable your child to build the necessary digital literacy skills required in our ever-changing landscape.

A wealth of studies identify the positive benefits of infusing technology into the classroom, coupled with the successful practice witnessed over the past 5 years here at the College. The introduction of the BYOD program at the College is a deep commitment to building digital capacity and responsible digital citizenship as an integral part of learning here at Dundas. Digital skills unpin and support the development of entrepreneurial skills, specifically:

  • critical thinking
  • student-centred learning practice
  • working collaboratively
  • learning to share in ethical ways
  • shared knowledge construction
  • problem-solving

Student devices will be used to access our Google suite including Google Classroom. Information and Communications Technology (ICT) is a powerful tool for learning and at St Patrick’s Marist College we focus on using ICT tools embedded in the best practice of teaching and learning to meet present and future learning needs for all students. We utilise technology in an innovative and creative manner so that the learning outcomes for students are presented with depth and quality. We use a combination of digital and traditional mediums of communication balancing both typing and handwriting activities, and integrating many internet services into the daily student experience.

A focus of this initiative is digital citizenship, which is the responsible use of technology. Your child will learn digital skills, ethics, etiquette, and online safety. These are important aspects of participating in today’s world. To maintain a safe and secure learning environment, a filtered Internet connection is provided for students.

We look forward to the educational opportunities that BYOD will bring. Participation in this initiative is compulsory. Your child will not be left out if they do not have a device. St Patrick’s Marist College will continue to provide support to families who are unable to access a personal device for their child due to financial reasons. Please contact the College to discuss this matter further.

The information below provides parents and students with all the information required to take part in our BYOD program. You can download a copy of this information to refer to at your convenience by pressing the 'PDF' button above. You also can download one page information sheet here.

If you have any further questions please feel free to contact St Patrick's Marist College Dundas by email or phone 02 8841 7900 weekdays between 8:30 am and 3:30 pm.

About Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) - 2019 Edition

BYOD recognises that technology and choices about technology are very much personal. BYOD acknowledges technology in education means more than meeting specific curriculum requirements.

BYOD is designed to give you, as students and families, freedom to make technology choices that suit you and all your circumstances. All students are expected to bring their own computing device to school every day.

Technology has a significant role to play in our students’ lives. Increased access to technology not only allows for the benefits afforded to traditional education subjects but also allows for increased education of appropriate digital citizenship. Our aim is to normalise the ICT integration into teaching, learning and life in an appropriate way.

BYOD opens the doors to creative aspects of teaching and learning only possible through digital means. Personal ownership brings many advantages, and reduces the cost as duplication (a device for home and another for school) is avoided. The BYOD device remains the property of the student/ parent, with insurance also remaining responsibility for the parent.

The school makes recommendations as to the model of device students may choose to bring. Or you can bring something of your own choosing that meets our Device Specification. There is also some software that is required on the device. In most cases, there are free options for the software.

Students are required to sign a User Policy that sets out how the device can be used at school outlined in their College Diary.

A member of the school staff, the School ICT Support team, are available to answer questions and to give assistance to students.

However, the school does not manage, support, own or warranty the device - it's your device.

A range of devices in a range of price categories meets the Device Specification.

The Device Specification includes Apple Mac Laptop (school preferred ) and Windows laptop.  

The school recognises that all students should have equal access to learning opportunities. There also may be occasions where devices are not available to bring to school. The school provides devices for borrowing on the rare occasion when a student is not able to bring in their own device. Temporary (one day) loans are available through the Library. Families in exceptional circumstances should contact the Administration Office to discuss solutions.

A number of factors come into selecting a device. The Device Specification (below) sets out the minimum of what is required, but you are provided considerable leeway in device characteristics.

When selecting a device, you should give consideration, first and foremost, to the Device Specification. However, there are other factors to consider.

It is the intention of this program that the school will work with the Mac or Windows device the parents choose to provide their students with. However, we recognise that parents will appreciate some guidance, and with that in mind, please consider the following:

  • Phones are not suitable for learning devices. Amongst other factors, the school believes screen size needs to be of a minimum size to allow efficient learning activities and allow adequate teacher supervision in the classroom. In addition, parents should consider that 3G/4G enabled devices can bypass the school’s network filtering, and this is not the school’s desired option.

  • Weight - For students carrying tablets or laptops between classes, and to and from school, the weight of the device is an important consideration.

  • Physical Keyboard - Students will find that a physical keyboard is much easier to use than virtual keyboards hence the device like Microsoft Surface will require an integrated physical keyboard or a case that has a keyboard. 

The school is committed to providing a system that works for everyone. Most of laptop works in your home, should work at school. No Android devices will be supported.

The school has a preferred platform of Macs. Windows machines will still be supported in school but not a preferred. From 2020, Any iPad will no longer be supported for all newly enrolled students. 

Windows and Mac devices are supported for the school’s Bring Your Own Device program. An iPad with a separate keyboard is also supported for the students enrolled before 2020. 

The Device can range from 10” up to 13.3”. A device larger than 13.3” is simply too large to put in a school bag each day and is too big to sit on a school desk with other equipment. You may decide on seeing an 11” device that it is simply too small, or you may decide it’s perfect.

Devices in the St Patrick’s Marist College BYOD program are used for a lot of content creation. This means actually producing work, rather than just consuming reference material like textbooks or teaching videos.  A Mac laptop will have a distinct advantage over other devices in these scenarios.

Once students move into Year 9 they start to have some input into their choice of subject. If you’re taking or intending to take Film-Making or Information and Software Technology, for example, maybe you will see benefit from a more powerful Mac device. Families should be aware that choice of devices is personal and also should be used to further your child's learning.

Varying devices have varying build quality. This is mostly based on price. A device with cheap, flimsy hinges and plastic exterior componentry will not last as long as a better built device. A good quality device, like Mac Laptops, well looked-after could easily last four years and more.

Despite this, no device can reasonably be expected to last all six years of a high school career. So it’s important to factor in when you’re likely to want to replace a device when purchasing it. So it is common still for students to have a new device in Year 9 with the intention of keeping it all through school.

Alternatively, maybe a quality device bought in Year 7 could last until Year 10, with a new device intended for Years 11-12 and beyond.

Beware there’s always the possibility the device will not make it. All vendors provide optional accidental damage protection insurance to help ensure the device you want to last four years will last four years. Apple Care for all Macs are highly recommended for three years peace of mind.

The Requirements Specification says your device should have six hours of battery life. This will see it through the school day.

Chargers present a trip hazard when in use and are something easily lost. Students must charge their devices overnight and should not charge their device at school. The school will not be able to loan the school apple charger to any students due to upon reason. 

Note also the advertised battery life of a device and its real battery life are often vastly different. Furthermore, batteries degrade. Over time, the amount of run-time you get out of your device will decline. After two years, some low budget Windows Laptop's battery life may be cut by 30-50%. You should plan for this scenario.

If you travel to school by bus and expect to use your device while travelling, you need to factor this in when considering the necessary battery life of your device.

Warranty and insurance can add a large amount to the cost of a device, but they provide you with peace of mind.

Accidental Damage Protection can be purchased to cover situations where the laptop is dropped or knocked over (or stood on, or crushed). Students at St Patrick’s Marist often travel distances in peak hour. Students also have sport and PDHPE class multiple times per week. All increase the risk of damage.

For insurance against loss or theft, your best course of action is to specifically list the device as a valuable on the home contents insurance. Whether this is needed again depends largely on your commute to school: it is exceedingly rare that a laptop lost or misplaced while at school cannot be found again.

Consider the following:

  • Is the device brought to school your primary device at home too? (256GB SSD or more Hard drive storage will be preferred.) 
  • Do you have access to or mostly use another device at home? (128GB SSD hard drive will be sufficient. )
  • Do you travel to different parents’ homes? 

If the device is being used more because it is also used at nights/weekends plus during the school day, that will increase wear-and-tear and battery utilisation.

The Device Specification only mandates a few technical specifications. Processor speed, screen resolution, storage (disk) size and type are not on the Specification, but that is not to say they should not form part of your considerations in selecting a device. A higher spec device will most likely last longer. Though beware devices that are too large or weighty.

The BYOD device is supported by the College ICT Team throughout the school day to provide assistance to students. The ICT support team are located in the College Library.

The ICT Support team can provide students with assistance in a multitude of areas, including:

  • Getting a device connected to the school Wi-Fi network.
  • Program administration.
  • Being a first point of call for students and parents with questions about the administration of the program.
  • Installing software, E-books available to students.
  • Diagnosing hardware faults with the device and advising students and families of an appropriate course of action for repairs.
  • Using a device to interact with school- provided services such as internet access, printing, file access and online learning tools.

The ICT Team, however, cannot mediate disputes, fix devices with non-warranty issues or facilitate repairs for devices.

Your Bring Your Own Device Program device must meet all of the following requirements:

Form Factor

Laptop

Physical Dimensions

Minimum Screen Size: 10” recommended Screen Size: 13.3”

Operating Platform

Minimum requirement

  • Microsoft Windows 10 Home/Professional / Education Edition With 1709 Update (Recommend Windows 10 Pro/Edu with 1809 update)
  • Apple MacOS X 10.13 (High Sierra). (Recommend MacOS X 10.14 Mojave)

Note: Android and iPad devices are intentionally omitted from the Specification. Windows S is not supported.

Wireless Compatibility

Device must have 5GHz 802.11n support
This may be advertised as “Dual Band Wireless”, “802.11abgn”, “802.11agn”, “802.11ac” or “Gigabit Wireless”. All currently selling Apple laptops are meeting this requirement.
Note: Devices marketed as “802.11bgn” probably do not support the required standard. 

Battery Life

Advertised battery life of at least six hours

Devices Not Supported

All iPad include iPad Pro, any pre 2009 Apple laptop, Any Android Device, Any “Windows 10 S” devices,  Any Chromebook.

Device Not Recommended

Any second-hand Macs, Any pre 2012 Apple Laptop, Any Windows 10 laptop with Intel Atom,Celeron,Pentium CPU inside.


Please take special note of the Wireless Compatibility requirements. This is the most difficult requirement to verify yourself for Windows laptops. If you are unsure, consider purchasing a recommended device.

Additional Considerations:
The following are not requirements of the Bring Your Own Device program but are considerations which you should direct your attention to:


Recommendations 

Maximum weight: 2kg

Minimum RAM (laptops): 8gb

Disk configuration (laptops): 256gb SSD

Considerations

Accidental loss and breakage insurance or Apple Care


The St Patrick's Marist BYOD program has certain software requirements. A device must meet all of the following functional requirements pertaining to software:

Operating System

As per the Hardware Specification, above.

Web Browser

Google Chrome Browser

Word Processor

Any word processor.
Microsoft Office Word (Windows/Mac) is available free to students from the school.

Spreadsheet Package

Any spreadsheet tool.
Microsoft Office Excel (Windows/Mac) is available free to students from the school.

Security Software

Windows 10 Included free Anti-Virus Windows Defender

Utility Software

Adobe Flash Player – for Windows or Mac Adobe Acrobat Reader – for Windows, Mac

 

 


The School recognises there are many other options (sometimes cheaper), but the following is our recommendations.

 

MacBook/ MacBook Air/ MacBook Pro (Current Model Sold in Apple Education store) – from $1500

 (The cheapest current selling MacBook Air with Apple Care is highly recommended by School ICT for 3-5 years life span)

  • Powerful laptop that should easily handle any school work. If the laptop will be used as the main computer at home, please consider for the 256GB SSD instead of 128GB. (That will cost $300 extra).
  • Long lifespan
  • Battery life of 9+ hours.
  • Education discount available via Apple Education Store. 

This document will be updated time to time without further noice. Please check school website at http://stpatsdundas.catholic.edu.au/In-The-Loop/Bring-Your-Own-Device-Program regularly for the latest information. 

If you have any further questions please feel free to contact St Patrick's Marist College Dundas by email (stpatsdundas@parra.catholic.edu.au) or phone 02 8841 7900 school days between 8:30 am and 3:30 pm.

Frequently Asked Questions

School ICT is highly recommended the cheapest current selling MacBook Air with Apple Care due to the fact of price, lightweight and device life span. 

All Devices should have:

  • A minimum 10 inch screen
  • A minimum 6 hour battery life
  • Wireless capability to connect to the School Wi-Fi network
  • An internet browser (Google Chrome is the school’s preferred browser, but Google Apps do also support Safari, Internet Explorer and Firefox)
  • An in-built camera and microphone.

During school times devices may only be used in class and at the discretion of the teacher. The devices are viewed as a learning tool and as such when students are at recess or lunch devices should be securely locked in their lockers.

BYOD devices can be purchased at any retail store of your choice. There is no restriction placed on the purchase location.  

Families also can purchase student BYOD devices from Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta (CEDP) purchase portal:

http://byod.parra.catholic.edu.au

Purchasing through the CEDP BYOD Portal will provide families with access to the following additional options:

  • Access to a 'one stop online shop' with access to items from recommended devices to peripherals including adaptors, external hard drives and protective cases
  • Access to a subsided educational price list for all Apple devices
  • Optional extension to Apple Care warranty inclusive in purchase price
  • Access to a large range of 1:1 and/or group Genius Bar courses in store
  • 0% interest on purchase plans.

While there will be some ability for students to charge devices in the classroom, the school is discouraging students from planning to recharge at school. For this reason, battery life is a key consideration in choosing technology. As is stated in the device specifications, devices should have a battery life of at least 6 hours. Students will need to cultivate the habit of charging their device overnight.

The necessity to print should be minimalized due to transfer of work between students and teacher via Google Classroom.

Parents do not need to purchase any additional software for student to use at school. Most of time, students will use Google Suites for their daily task. School will also provide Microsoft Office license or Adobe License if they are instructed by teacher to use those products.

 

It is always a good idea to have Anti-virus installed on the BYOD device. However, some Anti-virus softwares will not work in the school network and School ICT may need to uninstall the anti-virus to enrol student's BYOD devices to school wifi system.

Here is the example of Anti-Virus software that is tested not compatible with school network:

  1. All Norton Security software.
  2. All McAfee Security software.
  3. All TrendMicro Security Software.
  4. Family Zone

Here is the list of Anti-Virus software that is working with the school network:

  1. Sophos Security Software. (Free Version can be downloaded here. https://home.sophos.com/en-us.aspx)
  2. Malwarebytes
  3. Microsoft Defender

 

 

In the first few weeks there will be extra provision to assist with student passwords and accounts and general troubleshooting from the school ICT staff. Year 7 will set up their devices during their Boot Camp at school. It should be noted that the support will be at specific times (Lunch and Recess), not during class. The device should be viewed as another tool for students to use, if it is not working in a particular class they will need to seek assistance from the School ICT Service Desk at lunchtime.

All students are provided with a locker and required to supply a lock so that the device can be secured during break times when students do not have the device with them. It is strongly encouraged that parents buy protective covers for their child’s device to guard against damage from every day wear and tear.

All student use of the school’s network and internet is filtered and monitored. Their web history is able to be tracked. Parents should be aware that if they provide their child with a 3G/4G connected device the School is unable to filter internet use through these devices.

A fundamental objective of a BYOD program is to help normalise the use of technology and to work with students in teaching good digital citizenship. The school has put in place a number of ongoing initiatives to educate students and parents in being safe and responsible in the use of ICT. All students must sign the School’s Acceptable Use of ICT Agreement at the beginning of the school year. Significant instances of misuse will be dealt with as a behaviour issue in line with the Student Welfare Policy reference to areas of Gross Misconduct. References to what is appropriate and inappropriate are also covered as part of the Acceptable Use of ICT Agreement signed by each student.

Where a student is using the device to access material that would constitute Gross Misconduct the device may be confiscated and handed over to Secondary School Administration. Off task use of the device during a learning task will be managed by the teacher in the first instance and where there is an ongoing issue in this area and a student is not responding to teacher direction, it will then be viewed as an issue of behaviour and dealt with in line with the Student Welfare Policy.

Students will only be using devices in class under teacher direction and instruction. Students will use their devices in a manner that allow teachers to view their screens as the teacher moves around the classroom. Students who make a choice to use their devices inappropriately will be dealt with as a behaviour issue.

It is the school’s view that parents have every right to access and view the material on their child’s device. The school encourages parents to take an active role, and support the School, in the education of the students in regards to avoiding illegal and/or inappropriate materials on their device, as well as appropriate online behaviours in social media.

These guidelines support safe and responsible use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and social media. They are intended to be used as a teaching tool about safe and mature digital citizenship.

You can access this information from the 'Policies' page of our website.