1:1 iPad Technology Program FAQs
Contemporary, evidence-based teaching, following the Western Australian Curriculum, improves outcomes. Technology is simply a tool with a huge amount of potential that, when used effectively, can improve student engagement, outcomes and enhance learning. This is why we have focused on pedagogy first, then introduced technology when our teachers are ready. When considering research, wide-level studies and meta-analyses are more reliable that individual analyses. Some key research studies from reliable sources are included in the 1:1 Technology Program @ MPPS proposal document which can be found on the school website.
ICT and Digital Technologies are mandated learning areas in the Western Australian Curriculum from Pre-Primary onwards. The Department of Education ICT Strategy states that: “To participate in a knowledge-based economy and to be empowered within a technologically sophisticated society now and into the future, students need the knowledge, skills and confidence to make ICT work for them at school, at home, at work and in their communities.”
It is every student’s entitlement to learn to use ICT to support their learning.
Unfortunately, government schools are not in a financial position to be able to fund such schemes. Until now, Mount Pleasant Primary School has been able to provide a limited number of iPads per classroom. Replacing these devices and increasing the number of devices across the school to support student enrolment growth is not a viable option for the school.
Shared iPads, provided by the school have supported a ratio of 1:4 in some classes. In the current arrangement, students need to share devices with a number of other students in their class and teachers are required to borrow from up to three different classrooms in order to run whole class activities. The sharing of devices between students and classrooms restricts teacher and student ability to get the most benefit from technology as a learning tool. Additionally, the ongoing replacement costs would be too great to sustain long term and would divert school budget from staff development and infrastructure.
From 2024, the 1:1 iPad Technology Program will be for students in Year 3 and Year 5. The suggested life of an iPad is two years, however iPads can last significantly longer than this. It is possible that an iPad purchased in Year 3 should last until at least the end of primary school. From 2025, the 1:1 iPad Technolgoy Program will engage students from Year 3 to Year 6 inclusive.
As the device is family owned, the school management software is removed and the device can continue to be used at home as you wish.
Mount Pleasant Primary School has already developed an iPad culture within the school. With this in mind, the iPad is deemed the most suitable learning device to enhance student learning and all for access to the full curriculum. The iPad as our 1:1 device is endorsed by the School Board.
No. We have consulted with many other primary schools and the overwhelming consensus was that a single operating system was far easier for teachers to manage in a 1:1 environment, allowing them to focus on the teaching and learning program rather than trouble shooting.
We have created a parent purchasing portal through CompNow. Throughout Term 4 2023, access to this portal will be via the website.
Buying a new device ensures that it is the same specification as other students and is set up specifically as a learning device for Mount Pleasant’s needs. It will arrive with the correct profiles loaded so that school and home can manage it effectively. This helps take the responsibility of buying school apps off families. The portal also offers education discount and the correct accessories / insurances. If there is a warranty problem with the device, the compact will collect and repair it in line with their terms and conditions. You may also be able to trade in the device when your child leaves primary school.
Potentially yes as long as it has the correct features and longevity. To ensure the device is suitable for the 1:1 iPad Technology teaching and learning program, and to ensure it remains functional while your child takes part in it, the device should be 9th Generation or newer with at least 128gb of storage. The ipad would need to be factory reset so that the school can enrol it into our mobile device management (MDM) software. This allows us to ‘push’ school apps out to the device, ensuring it is ready for learning. You still own the apps on it and can install these on another device. Once your child leaves Mount Pleasant, the device is factory reset again and you can reinstall your own apps.
Protection against damage, theft and / or loss requires a combination of human and physical environment factors to mitigate potential risks. We highly recommend buying the suggested case on the purchase portal. We also recommend the AppleCare+ option which covers up to two repairs / replacements per year resulting from damage. At school, the device is kept in the classroom and students are taught to handle it safely, with two hands, when transporting it.
Because the school is supervising the devices, we control which apps appear (even when your child is at home). This means that messaging and social media apps will not be on the device. Our aim is or this to be learning device only. Once your child leaves Mount Pleasant, the device will be factory reset and given back to you to use as you wish.
Learning the social and ethical protocols of using ICT is embedded in the Western Australian Curriculum and teachers regularly teach students about how to stay safe and be kind online and offline. Students are expected to agree to and sign the iPromise – ICT internet & iPad agreement and will be regularly reminded of the iPromise and the rules and expectations for using ICT.
Families will be supported through seminars by industry experts who share advice on how to manage technology use at home and set boundaries and expectations.
One of the aims of the 1:1 iPad Technology Program is for technology to be accessible in a ‘frictionless’ manner. This means that if a student needs it, it is available. As a result, this makes putting time limits on the use of a device challenging. Additionally, it is difficult to measure ‘screen time’ when sometimes students are solely using a device for an activity and sometimes using it alongside traditional methods, glancing at it from time-to-time. The debate around screen time has certainly shifted over the past few years to focus more on the type of screen time. For example, an hour spent developing creative, critical and abstract thinking or problem solving may be far more beneficial than an hour spent gaming or watching videos. We refer to our approach as ‘hands on brain on’, rather than ‘hands on brain off’. That said, the iPad is not intended to become the only tool students use at school. We envisage that on average less than half of the school day will involve using technology in some form.
Many schools in Western Australia have a 1:1 program and the majority of primary schools use iPads in 1:1 or shared scenarios. In planning this program, we liaised with many local schools with a 1:1 program and learnt from their experiences in order to refine our planning and processes. We believe the introduction of a 1:1 program will, in time, significantly support our senior students by further developing their technology skills in preparation for 1:1 technology in high school.
This is an excellent point and something we have considered carefully with our technology for education coach. It is anticipated that initially the students will be focused on the design appearance rather than the quality of their work. Digital products allow the students to have a greater degree of expression and allow greater depths of creativity to express their learning in new and interesting ways beyond normal pen and paper. The depth of content knowledge displayed will outweigh the ‘wow’ from the product. Teacher rubrics will still include the standards expected of the students and will now start to include creativity, design elements and other aspects previously unable to be assessed.
Navigating menus, saving and retrieving work from cloud and non-cloud drives and navigating websites are all part of the Western Australian Curriculum and these skills are currently taught using iPads. iPads also integrate well with Office 365, which we currently use at school and will continue to do so.
Yes. This is one of the areas in which iPads score highly. The iPad has a wide range of easily set accessibility options from contrasting colours, text to speech (and vice versa) and many more. It is important the iPad is utilised as a tool to support and enhance learning for all students when working within all elements of the curriculum.
While we do not teach touch typing per se, through Compow, our recommended iPad provider, we encourage the purchase of a keyboard to support the development of typing skills. Regular use of the keyboard helps with speed and fluency which will benefit students, particularly in Years 3 and 5, when NAPLAN will be completed using an iPad.
Fine motor skills and correct pencil grip are very important skills, and we continue to teach these as part of the curriculum. Students will continue to use pencil / pen and paper for their schoolwork as well as manipulating context specific tools in visual arts, music and physical education.
We aim for equity for all students within this program. Payment plans will be available through the purchasing portal with Compnow. If this is not suitable, please speak with us and we will work with you to ensure your child / children take full part in the 1:1 iPad Technology Program at Mount Pleasant.
Your child will need over the ear headphones.
We have considered this point very carefully. The decision made is that the devices will be school managed. This is because:
- School managed devices allow us to use the full functionality of the iPad. There are certain teaching and learning management apps that will not work on parent managed devices.
- Many of the schools we liaised with stated that parent managed devices can be problematic when apps are not installed, not updated or the wrong ones are installed. The added variable of having a non-standard ‘image’ results in more technical support time being needed and can get in the way of teaching and learning.
- There are a number of variables in running a 1:1 program and we want Mount Pleasant’s journey with 1:1 technology to be the best it can be. Our staff, technology coach and leadership team have invested significant time and effort in running a due diligence, comprehensive planning process and it is imperative that it gets off to a great start in 2024.
- To support our community and maintain the integrity of the program, it is important that the students see the iPad as a learning device, not an entertainment device.
For these reasons, families will not be able to install their own apps on the devices. If your child need access to a particular app (for example, one recommended by a therapist / healthcare professional) please get in touch to discuss this.
The iPad management method will be reviewed regularly.
Yes. Students in Year 3 and Year 5 will use their iPad for NAPLAN and other assessments, such as; Progressive Achievement Tests (PAT), Brightpath (Writing & Maths), 7 Steps for Writing, Bug Club, Inquisitive (HASS), Maths Online, Read Theory and Climate questionnaires. The addition of a keyboard will help students, particularly in Year 5 where the NAPLAN writing assessment is online. However, it is important to remember that research by the University of New South Wales on NAPLAN readiness found that the most important factor for student success in NAPLAN Online is familiarity with the device, not the type of device.
The decision to include a keyboard with the recommended specification supports the development of confident keyboard skills.