BYOD Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. About the Program

2. Choosing the Device

3. Technical Support

4. Using the Device

5. Teaching and Learning


1. About The Program

What is BYOD?

BYODD stands for Bring Your Own Device. It is a hybrid model between school-supplied and fully-fledged BYO programs whereby the College stipulates the type of device that can be used in the program. The main advantage of BYOD is that teachers, parents and students can be assured that they are equipped with a piece of technology that has the capability, performance and reliability that matches the educational demands that will placed upon it.

Why BYOD?

As outlined in our previous letter, the college anticipates the BYOD program will not only provide students with access to expanded, global resources and content but will also give students the opportunity to take ownership of their learning and approach to creative problem solving.

Which year levels are included in the BYOD Program?

Students in ALL year groups are included.

Who is paying for the devices?

The devices will be purchased and owned by families.

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2. Choosing the device

Can I buy an alternative device from another vendor?

Parents may choose to purchase an alternative device, however please note the following limitations:

  1. The device must be a laptop-style device. Tablets such as iPads, Chromebooks, Android devices and smartphones are not acceptable.
  2. The device must have enough battery power to last through a full-school day. A manufacturer-claimed 7-hour battery is a minimum. Greater than 8 is recommended.
  3. The device must have 5GHz capable wireless at N or AC speed.
  4. Generally, retail devices only include a 12-month warranty. Out of warranty repairs can be expensive, typically ranging from $300-$1200.

Can we use a laptop we already own?

The aim of the program is to ensure ALL students are equipped with reliable, high performing devices that allow for the development of an equitable learning environment for students to learn in. Therefore it is imperative that no student is disadvantaged by having a device that lacks the reliability or the performance to meet the demands of daily use. Accordingly the College is discouraging the use of older, less-reliable devices. Pre-owned devices can be used if, and only if:

  • the device is deemed to meet the minimum requirements of battery life and wireless connectivity as outlined above.
  • the device is a laptop, or laptop-style (ie not a iPad/smartphone)

Why can’t my son/daughter use a less expensive iPad or Android device as a primary device?

We do not advocate one operating system over another. All have their relative strengths and weaknesses. We do believe, however, that tablets, like the iPad style devices, while great for content consumption, lack the raw computing power and flexibility that a laptop style device has for true content creation.  A true keyboard, large storage, screen dimension and the ability to run a wide variety of software from office applications to multimedia content creation software are required in a device.

Should I purchase a Mac or PC?

Broadly speaking there is no reason to choose one over the other. Based on current trends we have about 75% Mac and 25%PC in use among our current students, but the choice is yours. The best advice is to go with your student’s preferred platform as they will likely be more engaged with it. The College will be maintaining some specialist computer labs to cater for device-specific software as required.

Will there be specific software which must be purchased?

The college has partnered with Microsoft and will be offering students downloadable versions of Microsoft Office at no charge. The Adobe Creative Suite will also be made available to students as they need it. As the program matures, it is likely that certain software packages may require purchasing by families. To keep costs down, the College will seek to access volume discounts and site-based licensing where possible.

Should I purchase the optional insurance?

We highly recommend you purchase insurance for your son/daughter’s device that covers accidental damage and theft protection. Insurance is available as an optional extra for each of the 6 devices through the Computers Now online store. The security of the device rests with the individual owner and, as such, Oakhill College takes no responsibility for stolen, lost, or damaged devices. While the College will help students to identify how to keep personal devices secure, students will have the final responsibility for securing their personal devices. Please check with your homeowner’s policy regarding coverage of personal electronic devices, as many insurance policies can cover loss or theft. Some credit cards also offer coverage if purchased using the card.

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3. Technical Support

How will the devices be supported?

One of the aims of this program is for students to take responsibility for the care of the device and to become self-sufficient in managing software and the setup of their device. The College IT department will be available to assist students with basic issues like connecting to wireless and to troubleshoot basic issues.

What are the warranty arrangements?

The  devices available through the online portal are each covered by a 3-year onsite warranty. Should a warranty claim arise, the Oakhill College IT team will facilitate warranty repairs on behalf of families. This means IT staff will arrange for a technician to attend and ensure the correct work is performed in a timely and appropriate manner. Families purchasing through external suppliers will need to arrange their own warranty repair via their supplier.

Will loan devices be available?

A pool of College designated devices will be made available for students should their device be unavailable due to repairs. Loans are provided to students irrespective of how or where families obtained the device. Loan devices will be clearly labeled as College property and the loan time will be restricted to a maximum of two weeks. There will be no charge for this loan. With that said, loan laptops will NOT be issued to students who have forgotten to bring their laptop to school.

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4. Using the device

Will the school provide WIFI?

Yes. Whilst the school is open, your son/daughter will be able to connect to the internet through the College WIFI service when they are on College premises. Students choosing to stay at school after normal hours for study or homework help will be able to remain online.

Will there be web-filtering at Oakhill?

When students are on school premises and connected to the internet through the school’s WIFI network, sites and content will be filtered according to College policy. Inappropriate websites detected to contain age-restricted material, potentially harmful material or illegal content will not be accessible. In addition, Facebook will be blocked whilst on site.

Will there be web-filtering at home?

Oakhill is only able to offer web-filtering while students use the college wireless network, and not while students use any other network, such as 3G/4G, home wireless networks or public wireless hotspots. Filtering while at home is the responsibility of parents who are encouraged to make use of filtering to restrict and control internet usage by their son/daughter.

Will my son or daughter be able to use 3G/4G connections instead of the school WIFI network?

We strongly recommend that your son or daughter uses the school’s WIFI service to connect to the internet whilst on school premises and does not use 3G/4G for their primary device. 3G/4G connections can become very costly and are not subject to web-filtering.

Will my son/daughter be able to recharge the device at school?

No. Due to WHS issues the recharging of devices will not be available. Students are required to bring their device to school fully-charged at the start of each day. Charging devices will also not be loaned to students. In emergencies students can leave their device in ICT to re-charge over recess or lunch.

What if my son/daughter forgets to bring their device to school?

Loan devices will NOT be issued to students who forget to bring their device. Students will need to use pen and paper for the day.

What about printing?

Limited printing will be offered to the students. This is in line with the College’s aim of reducing printing in favour of electronic media. Students will be encouraged to submit work electronically to teachers. Where printing is absolutely necessary, students may print to the library printers.

Will my son or daughter be able to download songs, movies and other media on their device?

As you own the device, by default your son/daughter will have  local administrator rights to his device and will therefore be able to download and install any program or files they choose. All access to Internet resources, email, copyright, etc on BYODD devices is governed by the College ICT Acceptable Use Policy and Responsible User Agreement.

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5. Teaching and Learning

How will the devices be used in class?

The over-arching objective for the program is to transfer the ownership of learning to students by providing them with the opportunity to collaborate, communicate and research on a global level in real time. Currently our teachers deliver various teaching styles which range from setting specific online tasks to giving open-ended tasks where students are expected to find the solution however they can. With the introduction of our BYODD program this will become more fluid and prevalent.

Will students use a computer in every lesson?

Not necessarily. Technology will only be used when appropriate and as the learning dictates. Technology is only one of many tools used in a modern pedagogy.

How will it be used in the classroom?

In a modern classroom, as the pedagogical focus moves from remembering content to creating content, technology can be used to allow students to creatively apply knowledge in the production of multimodal content, without the need to book a lab. Resource availability is no longer a limiting factor or impediment to pedagogical processes and ensures digital learning styles are no longer situational. Remembering, while still important, can be done at home and at the students own speed, this potential will increase overtime through increased digitisation of resources, and teachers exploring new delivery methods like flipped classrooms.

How can BYOD improve learning?

Technology can be used in the classroom to change the focus to the higher order activities like creating, evaluation and analyzing. Modern productivity tools allow student to create content much more readily, and the easy collaboration offered in online tools such as Google Apps and Office 365 can enable students to get peers analysing their content. By peer evaluating each other’s content can gain a deeper understanding of what they need to do when creating their own content.

Will students become too dependant on computers? Will students never use a book?

No, technology will not supplant a well rounded education. Importantly the humble pencil is still part of the modern academic entry processes, and the college will ensure that students are well prepared for externally run exams like QCS and NAPLAN. Electronic devices are just another tool in the wide spectrum of tools used in classrooms.

What about handwriting?

Handwriting will have a place in the classroom, and remains important in the curriculum. It however will not be the sole way students can create content in a standard classroom.

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