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iPad Program NMPS 2019

Children born in the 21st Century are digital natives, growing up in a rapidly evolving world. Technology is driving innovation, progress and holds the key to future employment. According to the World Economic Forum’s Future of Jobs report, two thirds of children entering primary school today will end up working in industries and job types that don’t even exist yet. Transferable skills such as Collaboration, Creativity, Communication, Critical-thinking and Problem Solving are recognised as essential for future careers. Naturally, the nature of education and learning is also changing, and at North Melbourne we have created digitally rich, flexible learning spaces that foster these 21 century skills.

At North Melbourne Primary School we are committed to giving students the best possible start to their education: building skills to help them thrive in the future. We embed technology throughout the curriculum and provide new opportunity for students to represent their thinking, clarify ideas, make connections, identify patterns, and reflect on their thinking across the curriculum.

We have been successfully running an optional Bring Your Own (BYO) iPad program for Grade 3-6 students for several years. The BYO iPad program is embedded in our School’s Strategic Plan to create highly engaged, personalised learning environments. Students are given the opportunity to become digitally fluent, become responsible users of technology and develop skills that will prepare them for the digital expectations of high school and beyond.

Enrolling in the School iPad Program

For an iPad to be used at school, it must be enrolled in our school Mobile Device Management (MDM) system. This provides access to a safe and secure learning environment. We use the Department of Education’s network filter, Eduproxy and Zuludesk Management System.

Zuludesk enables the following to occur automatically at school:

  • Connection to the school network, server and WiFi.
  • Connection to the education department filtering system, ensuring safe internet searching.
  • Connection to compatible school hardware, such as Apple TVs, printers.
  • Installation of educational apps.

Our school technician will enrol your child’s iPad in the MDM system.

Enrolment does not affect or control any use at home. You may withdraw from the school MDM system at any time and this will remove any connection your iPad had to school, including provided apps.

iPad safety at school: Usage & the Responsible Usage Agreement Policy

The North Melbourne Primary School Responsible Usage Agreement Policy outlines the rights, responsibilities and regulations of iPad use at school. It is designed to ensure that iPads are used safely and appropriately at school to enhance student learning.

All students, parents and teachers are required to agree to the School Acceptable Usage Policy of ICT. For the safety of all students, North Melbourne Primary School reserves the right to limit student access to technology and the school network if they disregard any part of the policy.

At school we promote a safe learning environment by:

  • Using Education Department Internet network filters for safe internet searching.
  • Teaching positive & responsible online behaviours.
  • Creating school agreements that outline student expectations when using technology.
  • Linking cyber-safety and to our school wellbeing program.

Safety at home: supporting parents

We have had an incredibly successful history of responsible technology usage at North Melbourne Primary School. We have established a safe environment for students to explore how to use technology responsibly. When technology is used, it is supervised and the internet is filtered by the Department of Education.

For many parents, this will be the first time their child has access to an Internet capable device. If you have the internet at home, set the expectation that your child shows you what they are doing online. If they are reluctant to show you their iPad or specific apps, there may be a reason. The small number of issues we have experienced had the following things in common:

  • They occur outside of school hours (e.g unsupervised at home, or a friends house or the technology was being used in a private space such as the bedroom).
  • They involve Mobile phones (students see iPads as "school" related so are less likely to use them irresponsibly).
  • They are social media related (Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Messages, Skype, Group chat functions on games) and their accounts were not being supervised by parents.
We strongly recommend that parents ensure they have set up a safe environment for technology use at home.

Parental management using Apple Screen Time (IOS 12+)

Any iPad running IOS 12 can be managed by Screen Time which allows parents to control access to various apps and web content. Full instructions can be found here:

What are the educational benefits of iPads?

The Department of Education and Training (DET) conducted a research program “iPads for Learning”. They provide extensive list of research articles showing the positive effects of iPads in education.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:

  • Do I have to join the iPad program? No, it is an optional program. If you choose not to participate, your child will be provided with shared access to technology at school and will not be disadvantaged in any way.
  • Which iPad should I buy? An iPad running IOS 12 and with 32GB+ of storage space available for school use.
  • Can my child bring an Android or generic tablet? Unfortunately we not yet able to set up Android or generic devices at school. One solution is that your child uses a school iPad when at school and we can provide log in details to the main apps/websites we use at school to enable access at home.
  • My child already has an iPad, can we use that? Yes. Please ensure there is enough storage space on it for school use.
  • What apps should I purchase and install so I am ready for school? None. The school provides all apps.
  • Do I need to create an Apple ID or any other accounts? No. An Apple ID is not required. The school will create and manage a google account for school use.
  • Will the iPad be safe at school? The school accepts no responsibility for any damage or loss of iPads and recommends that parents ensure their devices are fully covered by their home insurance. We also recommend parents set up iCloud on their Apple Devices which helps locate devices if they are misplaced.
  • Will my child be using the iPad all day? No. Just like pencils, paper, concrete materials, books, rulers and calculators, iPads are one of many tools used to help students learn. During unit planning, teaching teams carefully consider which tools can be used to enhance or personalise student learning.
  • What about handwriting? Students will continue to write with paper and pencils and work to improve their handwriting.
  • I’m concerned about safety? Please read the safety section above. The easiest way to reduce risks is to monitor your child’s iPad use and keep all use in shared areas. In addition you can use Apple Screen Time to monitor and manage usage.
  • What kind of things will my child be using technology for? As a general guide, technology lends itself to reading & research as digital libraries such as Britannica, Reading Eggs and Epic allow teachers to assign levelled texts or content specific information to individual students. Technology is also an important tool for personalising learning goals. In other learning areas they are most likely to be used when capturing their learning, recording a thought, explaining a concept, or creating a project.
  • Where do I go for technical support? Believe it or not, but restarting an iPad or restoring it to factory settings fixes most problems. The Apple support page is without doubt the most comprehensive support available and should be the first place to look when troubleshooting. You can also contact our school ICT Technician: Simon thompson.simon.n@edumail.vic.gov.au
  • What if my question isn’t answered here? Please ask Joe or email joe@northmelbourneps.vic.edu.au
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Joe G
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