All families will be responsible to purchase or provide a laptop for their student based on the minimum required specification. Kennedy Catholic is offering to assist families with making a device selection. Technology department staff are willing to discuss options to assists families in finding a good quality device in the best possible price range. Please contact us with questions. We are happy to help!
For many years, Kennedy Catholic has maintained a BYOD policy to allow student use of personal technology devices on campus and in class. Students can use these devices where/when appropriate at the discretion of their teacher. While this program has been useful to many students, it has presented challenges and has fallen short of the potential that a one to one device to student ratio can provide. Challenges include: behavioral management of students with devices; access to professional development to assist teachers in leveraging learning and instruction in the classroom; and universal access for students in and out of classroom. In short, using personal devices in a classroom setting is difficult when many kids do not have nor bring appropriate digital devices for learning. Cell phones have proven to be more of a distraction than a useful tool unless used for simple tasks.
The Academic Office and Technology departments have collected feedback that warrant modification to our current BYOD program and consider a one to one approach where students still bring their own device, but a device is required just as a writing utensil and notebook paper are. Having a requirement around student devices will help alleviate many of the challenges that exist with traditional labs, smart phones, and the inconsistency of student owned devices.
As recommendations are made in this matter, the Academic Office and Technology departments wish to design a program that best suits the Kennedy Catholic community. To do this we must consider the following: a financial model that ensures equal access for all students; limiting program to specific devices and specifications that meets our diverse classroom needs across the board; continued investment in infrastructure to support a collegiate model program; provide curricular material that is appropriate and cost effective; and expanded eBook offerings and open-source resources.
The recommendation of the Academic and Technology offices is to develop a required BYOD model with a minimum set of requirements/specifications for devices that meets a baseline for compatibility, application/software access, and other content, such as, eBooks and online resources. This program will include a financial model that ensures universal access for all students both at school and at home. This program will also include an enhanced set of policies and condition of use to better aid our teachers and staff with classroom management issues and related student behavior issues.
Definition of new program
Kennedy Catholic supports a collegiate model regarding student technology use. This includes requiring personal devices that meet prescribed specifications. These specifications leverage classroom and student engagement without inhibiting either. Kennedy Catholic’s model is not cost prohibitive nor use limiting as so many traditional 1-1 programs can be. Students are already immersed in technology in every aspect of daily life. Our goal is to teach the mindful use of technology in our community that prepares for college and career life.
Kennedy Catholic’s collegiate technology model supports the following:
- Student owned devices can afford the following opportunities
- Increased digital fluency
- Challenge students to be better digital citizens
- Ownership of students’ time and responsibilities
- Remove smart phones from the classroom resource equation
- Universal access to technology by offering an array of acceptable options of varying financial commitment
- Savings on operational costs can translate into increased financial assistance
- Consistent access to a baseline of resources, such as, Internet, Office 365, eBooks, other tools used in and out of class
- Paper book options are always available and acceptable
- Accommodations for those without internet access at home
The most effective use of technology is an ever-evolving conversation. Student devices enhance learning as a tool, but not as replacement of pen and paper.