1-to-1 Apple iPad Scheme for students/families

New technologies at Caedmon College Whitby: 1-to-1 Apple iPad Scheme for students/families

Dear Parents/Carers

As you know, Caedmon College is keen to ensure that our students are at the forefront of leading edge, technological changes and have the opportunity to maximise their learning potential. As such, we have been looking at the best technology available, to promote student learning and engage them in 21st century thinking. Our plan has been to develop a scheme whereby all students and their families’ are offered the opportunity to own an iPad. There are many schools and academies, in the UK and internationally, who have developed a scheme using iPads to support student learning.

The Apple iPad can be used by students in a variety of ways, for learning and leisure, such as:  researching by using the Internet, e-mailing, videoing, filming and photography, using a variety of apps to develop and extend learning in many subject areas, producing a variety of written and verbal assignments, developing presentations, reading books and news items, receiving push notifications and iBooks from staff and the College, as well as a host of other uses. Some aspects of the technology will also benefit young people with special educational needs and disability.

Over the course of the last academic year, the College has been trialing Apple iPads with groups of students. In addition, a number of staff have been using them in classrooms to enhance their teaching delivery. Overwhelmingly, the students have found the iPads great to use – they have developed their curiosity and motivated them in their learning. Students have told us that their preferred portable device is the Apple iPad due to its ease of use, portability and lightness.

We would like to offer all parents/carers and students the opportunity to take part in a finance scheme that offers the option to purchase a device that becomes the property of the student/family. On Friday 17 July 2015, the nominated supplier will be opening up a web portal that will give parents/carers of Year 7 students the chance to purchase an iPad Air 16Gb. Payments for these items can be spread over a period of up to 36 months and no credit checks are required. Any items purchased via the portal will automatically include a warranty and insurance to cover accidental damage or theft. Purchases will only be successful if we have sufficient demand. The portal will be open until 10.00am on Thursday 27 August 2015.

The Scheme and its affordability

In all our deliberations about the scheme, Governors have been keen to ensure that our proposal is affordable to all parents/carers, whatever their personal circumstances. We have engaged a leasing partner to manage the scheme on our behalf.

The cost to parents/carers is approximately £14 per month, for three years and with the last payment, the student/family will own the device outright. The more parents/carers who opt into the scheme, the more affordable the devices become.

Students who already have an iPad will be allowed to use them at College, but parents/carers need to be aware that they may be constrained by the filtering system that we must have in place. Existing student iPads will not be covered by the College’s insurance scheme and students will not automatically receive the suite of Apps that we will be downloading on the new student iPads, unless they individually download and pay for them themselves.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

We know that you may have many questions – and included with this letter is a list of frequently asked questions, which some of you have already been posing to us since last summer, with our responses. These can also be found on here.

We had many questions when we set out to find the best possible educational technology for students. Our research involved trips to academies and schools that already offer 1-to-1 iPad schemes and we asked their staff and students many questions, particularly those around personal safety and their responses are included in our FAQs.

How do I access the scheme?

There will be a subsequent letter sent to all Year 7 parents/carers with details of how to access the online portal to make a purchase. Whatever you decide, the last date for signing up for this scheme is Thursday 27 August so that we can order the Apple iPad in time for a mid-September collection.

When will you get the iPad?

We plan to distribute the iPads one evening in mid-September. You will receive an invitation to come and collect them and sign the iPad acceptable use policy at that time.

Please note that the iPad can be taken home every day, but it will be compulsory for students to bring their iPad in everyday, fully charged, for use in lessons.

All students and families will get a 1-to-1 iPad handbook on how to use the iPad and we will be running sessions for students and parents/carers on how best to use and manage their iPad, including e-safety information.

If you have any further questions that are not answered in our FAQs document, please do not hesitate to contact me at the College (post@ccwhitby.co.uk).

Yours sincerely
Mr A Whelan
Senior Teacher – Digital Learning

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