The Opportunity

We invite all students at Victory Park to Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) from home to use at school.

The concept of BYOD is not new to education and is used by numerous schools up and down the country to supplement the devices provided by the school. Our goal
is to increase student access to a device and ideally enable all students to have a dedicated device to use for their learning. The BYOD invitation is optional. Each Victory Park Hub has a number of devices provided by the school. This equates to about 1 device for every 5 students. Every BYOD device is beneficial, not just to the student bringing it but to those who do not bring a device as it increases access to the devices provided by the school.

The same is true for the teaching

Laying a foundation that cultivates lifelong, self-directed learning starts at an early age. While much of the discourse on lifelong learning focuses on the later stages of life, it is actually the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes acquired during the early life-stages that provide the foundation for the lifelong learning habit. Schools are pivotal organisations for laying such foundations. 21st century competencies. The pedagogic model underlying too many schools and classrooms is still aimed at preparing students for the industrial economy and is very different from the activities at the heart of knowledge-based organisations, societies and economies.of

The curricula, learning experiences and overall environment must be centred on fostering the skills and mindset of self-directed lifelong learning, with21st century competencies strategically interwoven through the learning experiences

Our world is changing rapidly and it is critical that our education system and schooling is fit for purpose. The Centre for Educational Research and Innovation at the OECD articulates the key shifts that schools need to respond to.

They are:

Far-reaching technological change

Technologies have developed apace, with change quickening all the time. This has far-reaching consequences. The information revolution is transforming how we work, play, read and think; it is changing the nature of our economies and societies from the most personal level up to the global. We are living in an era of incredible invention and growth in information and communication technologies.

A profound transformation from industrial to knowledge economies

Knowledge is now the central driving force for economic activity, with innovation critical. The relocation of economic activities to other countries and world regions – of our societies. As knowledge has become so fundamental then so has learning.

Self-directed, lifelong learning

The capacity to continuously learn and apply/integrate new knowledge and skills has never been more essential. Students should become self-directed, lifelong learners, especially as they are preparing for jobs that do not yet exist, to use technologies that have not yet been invented, and to solve problems that are not yet even recognised as problems.

Lifelong learning—the ability continuously to develop over one’s life span—is essential so that each citizen may be able to access the requisite resources and support in order to learn the content and competencies they need. The ability continuously to learn is fundamental in developing adaptive expertise i.e. the ability to apply meaningfully learned knowledge and skills flexibly and creatively in a variety of contexts and situations.

Lifelong learning, 21st century skills, and adaptive expertise are critical in a world that is constantly shifting and demanding higher cognitive capacity. The higher-order skills increasingly prioritised in workplaces and in society as a whole include the capacities to:

  • team-work, social and communication skills
  • media literacy
  • acquire a deep understanding of complex concepts
  • be able to justify and solve real world problems
  • be creative
  • be adaptive and flexible to new information
  • ask meaningful questions
  • make decisions weighing different forms of evidence
  • think systematically and critically
  • generate, process and sort complex information

The Vision

An education at Island Bay School embraces joy and curiosity and provides challenge to ensure each student achieves to the fullest of their capabilities.

Our holistic philosophy recognises that learning is highly personal. We are interested in developing our students as active researchers of their own world. Our goal is to ensure our students are advantaged as they grow into an

Island Bay School is a progressive school with a bold vision. We believe in moving with the times to best prepare our students for life in the 21st Century.

Our goal is to grow children to be excited and energetic about their education—for schooling to be fulfilling and rewarding. ever changing world. Ensuring our students understand themselves as learners and are skilled as managers of themselves is central to our National Curriculum.

It is not a small vision but at Island Bay School we don’t believe in being timid about the aspirations we hold for the success of our students

Our Rationale

It seems strange that many classrooms throughout New Zealand still look and work the way they did 100 years ago but other practices in areas such as medicine and science have evolved significantly as new knowledge and understanding has developed.

The advent of technology is an example of the changing world confronting our students. Many educators in schools throughout New Zealand are thinking about how to harness the advantages of technology to benefit students. At Island Bay School we value technology because it is an enabler of our vision. It helps children personalise their learning. It activates learning not otherwise possible without the use of technology.

There are many advantages—Technology provides:

  • connectivity to digital information
  • audience for learning and feedback
  • easy access to student learning for parents and for communication between home and school
  • digital learning; the combination of multiple literacies in the one learning experience—sound, moving images, and text.
  • an ability for students to communicate their achievement in more accurate and complex ways
  • access to a more personal curriculum for students

We embrace the challenge of enabling 1:1 access to a digital device to support students to reap the advantages of technology and access these opportunities—opportunities made available because of technology.

Island Bay School has invested in Apple devices. Apple devices are popular in education as they support a wide range of educational applications.

Our preference is for children to bring an Apple device or a Chromebook ACER C730.

The Chromebook ACER C730 was an addition in 2016. This is not an Apple device but offers excellent connectivity to the Google Suite of applications. It is also the device of preference at South Wellington Intermediate School and as such could be used when students progress onto Intermediate.

The focus on either Apple devices or a Chromebook (we recommend the ACER C730 or C730e) has an associated advantage for staff who need to be able to integrate technology into teaching and learning programmes.

Devices provided by the school, in the Victory Park hubs, include iPad Mini, Acer Chromebook C730, MacBook Pro, and MacBook Air.

In 2020, we invite any of the following devices:

  • Chromebook (recommended: ACER C733)
  • Apple iPad Mini Gen 7
  • MacBook Pro or MacBook Air

Other tablets may be negotiated with your hub teachers.


What is the difference between the terms “e-learning” and “ICT”?

Some people consider “e-learning” to refer to using tools – such as Mathletics – which are specifically designed for a particular purpose. Those kind of “e-learning” tools represent only a very small part of how ICT can be used to support the New Zealand curriculum. Most valuable learning using ICT, uses tools that can be applied to multiple learning contexts. Examples include Google Apps, blogs, smart applications such as ‘Explain Everything’, ‘Puppet Pals’ and ‘iMovie’. These help students to experience, capture and share information, thoughts and skills relating to the New Zealand curriculum in a different way. We therefore use the term “e-learning” much more widely and essentially use the two terms interchangeably.

What does BYOD and BYOB mean?

BYOD stands for Bring Your Own Device – that is allowing students to bring a device (currently an iPad, Macbook, or Acer C730 Chromebook, in our case) from home to use in the classroom. People sometimes use the term BYOB (Bring Your Own Browser) to refer to a wider programme allowing students to bring anything with a browser.

Why are students recommended to bring specific devices (Apple devices or an Acer Chromebook C730)?

Having specific devices that reflect the ones already used at Island Bay School will enable better support and structure for learning with digital technology, as teachers grow their approach. We included the option of Chromebooks in 2016. The school provides a range of devices in each hub at Victory Park; Acer Chromebook C730, iPad Mini 2 and Apple MacBooks. We are aware that our device recommendations align with the choices available at South Wellington Intermediate School.

If I walked into a BYOD classroom in the middle of the afternoon, what might I see?

Just like other classroom resources such as paper and paint, students will use technology when there is a good reason to.

If technology is used then it may be:

● to research an inquiry topic using Google

● to post learning to a blog

● to review and comment on the work of their peers

● planning and scheduling their learning

● to create content (pics, text, music, movies) using creative applications

Alternatively, students could be writing, reading, creating artwork, discussing learning and collaborating with each other, debating, experimenting using science apparatus, working with an expert visiting the class, being involved in drama, dance or physical education.

It is important to understand that it is the purpose of learning that informs the action of learning. In other words, “What needs to be achieved?” and then “What is the best tool for the job?” Where technology presents as the best tool, it should be used.

Will students be allowed to use devices/computers outside of class time?

The general rule is that devices will be locked away and students will not be allowed to use computers at playtime and lunchtime. The exception to this is if a child is really engaged with some great learning which they want to finish before they take a break. To do this, they need specific approval from the teacher and the teacher will be present.

As students increasingly use devices to plan their day, it is likely that some of them will do this before school; in the classroom with teacher supervision.

How much time would a student be likely to spend on a device in one day?

In a usual day there are 3 blocks of learning time. During these blocks, classes and individual students are scheduled for a variety of core activities that don’t involve using a device such as fitness, reading groups, maths groups, visiting the library etc.

Even if a lot of what the child is working on in a particular day involves using a device it would be very unusual for the total ‘device time’ to dominate the learning day. It is also likely that during much of that ‘device’ time students would also be working in other ways for example collaborating with others, planning on paper what they want to create on the device. There will be days when students spend more time using a device and days when they spend very little time.

If my child brings a device, will other children use it?

If a child brings a device to school they are responsible for that device and it is theirs to use. It may be that some of what they are doing involves collaboration with other students, so in this respect it will be shared.

Doesn’t that mean students without devices will feel left out?

At the moment each hub at Victory Park has approximately 10-12 ipads, 10 laptops, and 3 desktops. Where students can bring a device, it means those ‘class devices’ can be shared between a smaller number of students. Students who have devices will have the benefit of access to a device whenever it is useful for them. It is true that having ‘ownership’ of a device brings students a new level of freedom and control in their ability to use the device for learning at home and at school. We recognise that this is a concern and every care will be taken to minimise any feeling of being left out. But on balance we do not think this issue should block the chance to get more of our children using appropriate technology to open up the new learning opportunities that BYOD supports.

If students have devices, won’t this reduce their social development and ability to make friends and work with others?

The predominant use of devices in classrooms is in creating rather than consuming. This is quite different to playing a game on a device where a child may be able to be in there ‘own world’ with the device for long periods of time.

For example, students may work together to create a movie that involves them planning together on paper and then working on a device to record and edit it. This means classroom time using devices would usually be at least as interactive and collaborative as classroom time without devices.

There is good research evidence in a New Zealand context that learning in an e-Learning-rich environment may make peer and collaborative learning opportunities easier, thus supporting students’ cognitive, affective and social interactions.

We are aware that it may be appealing for some students to lose themselves in online tasks just as others would lose themselves in a book. Participating, contributing and relating to others are explicit goals of the National Curriculum and as we progress in our experience with BYOD our teachers will continue to monitor the role devices play in supporting or inhibiting these goals, generally and for particular children.

Will pen and paper no longer be used?

Pen and paper will still be used. Some tasks (notes, planning) can be easier and quicker when performed by hand and allow for viewing alongside a device. It is about choosing the right tool for the job, whether that be pen, paper or the device. Students that have not yet mastered writing legibly and fluently by hand will still practice this as part of their learning.

What exactly do you mean when you say students will be learning digital citizenship?

All students are involved in extensive discussions to raise their awareness of safety and identity online before they are allowed to sign a digital citizenship agreement. In the course of using digital and online tools inevitably they will encounter ethical questions and challenging situations. As a part of our digital curriculum, we will be taking these opportunities to help up skill them for their future, independent digital life.

For example:

  • As students begin using email, they will no doubt experience misdirected emails and even the odd unintended ‘reply to all’ – always a learning experience!
  • Students will learn how to think carefully about what they are hoping to get from a search before selecting appropriately focused search terms.
  • Students will learn to assess how reliable different information from the internet is.
  • We will teach students to consider when a digital tool is best for the task and when it isn’t. Also, how much time sitting with a device is too much and when it is time to get up and move around.

We are conscious that teaching students to understanding the digital world and how to navigate it safely and efficiently is a new literacy. Any school genuinely interested in preparing children for the reality of work and life in this century needs to activate good digital citizenship.

Will my child be identified on the class blogs? Who can see these?

In order to make class blogs meaningful and accessible to those invited to view them, students will be identified by their first names. These blogs will be ‘public’ but will not be indexed so won’t show up in Google or other searches. We therefore suggest that you provide the link to your child’s class blog to people who might be interested. The children love getting comments and it is a great way for parents and others to get an insight into what happens in the classroom (which is quite different to what many of us experienced in our classrooms).

What about individual blogs?

In order to engage students in developing the skill of managing themselves in a public space and to maximise the advantage of online student collaboration we aim for all Victory Park students to have an individual blog. This aims to share excellent learning and discovery. Students will be encouraged to interact with each other’s blogs.

While it is our preference that these blogs be public, we support parents being able to set the level of their child’s public digital life. Permission will be sought for a public blog (non-searchable). Students without permission will experience all digital life as ‘invitation only’. Those with an invitation will be: other students (as agreed with the student), adults outside the school (as provided by parents) and Island Bay School staff (as provided by the teacher).

Blog Protocols:

  • No child will be identified by surname or have their home address/telephone or email address published.
  • Only first names will be used.
  • Photos of individuals are permissible but must be appropriate to a school setting.
  • The class teacher has oversight of all blogs and comments through the teacher dashboard. All comments to a blog are approved before being published.
  • Blog entries should be sufficiently generic to avoid communicating personal information that might identify individuals.
  • Blogs will have their indexing turned off so they will not be included in Google and other searches.

How will you ensure my child is safe when they are searching the internet?

The first layer of protection is the passive filtering provided by our ISP – Network for Learning. Because this is specifically for schools, it is very stringent.

Teachers will be aware of the searches a student is doing and the purpose for which they are doing it and will provide appropriate guidance.

The most significant protection comes from our longer-term strategy of teaching children to protect themselves online – both in the classroom and out of it. This includes using sites they know (for example those linked to their class blog or school website) as a first port of call, using carefully considered search terms and showing an adult if they get any warning window or other troubling response to a search.

How is access to the network limited and managed?

Students who bring a device to school will be given a password for the BYOD network. This will be separate to the IBS Guest network and the IBS WiFi which teachers, school devices and adult guests will use. This network will only be on during school hours.

I understand that the school is using Google Apps for Education. What is this? How much of what is on there will be public?

Google Apps for Education is a suite of free, secure tools that includes Gmail, Calendar, Sites and Documents.

Each student has a secure Google repository and can work in the cloud—a digital home for their work. This digital home is private although the teacher has full access to all students work. Learning in the cloud is made public when it is posted to a public blog.

What happens to my child’s data when they leave Island Bay School?

A student’s Google account will be signed over to parents. This gives parents ownership of the account and maintains access to the content. Should parents not wish to have the account signed over then it will be archived for 12 months and then deleted.

Will my child have an email? If so, how do we know this is safe?

Yes. Every child will have an email of (Some initials/numbers/figures etc may need to be added to create unique names.) We can set this up so that all the emails students send and receive are also forwarded to you as a parent.

Each teacher will have a Teacher Dashboard, which will enable them to have a single page view showing all of the emails to and from each child and every document and blog that they have contributed to or created.

A parent portal is available to enable parents to have access to their child’s digital learning.

Will students be using Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr, Flickr and Twitter?

No. These are all restricted R13 sites and applications due to the social media element. The only exception might be where the teacher creates a class twitter account so the class can contribute to special “ed chat” discussions at scheduled times. This can be a good opportunity for them to grow their understanding of social media in a safe environment.

What about insurance cover?

Insurance covering the device is the responsibility of parents/caregivers. Usually devices will be covered under contents insurance but check with your insurer first.

Do we as parents/caregivers need to be confident in the use of the device?

Somewhat. We do expect a basic level of understanding (charging, powering on, downloading apps etc) from children and their parents/caregivers. Our teachers however, are familiar with the iPad or Chromebook and will be able to provide support and guidance to parents on this device. If demand arrises we can explore the option of parent sessions on iPad or Chromebook use.

Does my child need access to an iTunes (or equivalent) account?

Yes, and No – Every iPad needs to be synced to an iTunes account. It is free to set up an iTunes account but you must be 13 years of age so this needs to be done by a parent/caregiver. The iTunes account is used to purchase and redeem app codes. We recommend setting this account up without a credit card attached and use iTunes gift cards if you wish to load funds onto the account to purchase additional apps. Your child will not need to access the account independently at school so we recommend that you retain the iTunes password for when it is needed. Chromebooks work under similar account setups. We can provide assistance with setting up an iTunes account if required.

Where can we purchase devices from?

Devices can be purchased from any retailer of your choice.

Is there an agreement or contract that my child will have to abide by?

Yes, yourself, your child and their teacher will be required to sign an agreement and agree to meet their responsibilities.

I already have one child enrolled in BYOD, do I need to purchase the iPad apps again for a sibling?

No. If you plan on using the same iTunes account for both children you only need the 1 set of apps. Once signed into the app store on the new device select purchased apps and you will be able to download (from the cloud) copies of every app purchased on the iTunes account. By law, you are able to put the same app on up to 5 devices. You will still need to submit an enrolment form and agreement for each child but just skip the app purchase step.

Will my child still learn PE, Art, Science etc?

Yes. We are not changing the curriculum at all so your child’s learning will continue to cover all areas of the curriculum. We encourage teachers to provide learning opportunities in all areas that both utilise devices and that encourage students to explore and learn without the assistance of their device. The device is a tool to support learning, not a substitution for learning.

How will teaching and learning change?

e-Learning is not about dropping devices in students laps and hoping they benefit from it. A successful e-Learning approach involves teachers providing learning in a way that was not possible prior to students having device access. It requires teachers to change the way they look at learning and at learners themselves. This allows for learning to be tailored and personalised. It allows learning to be carried out anywhere and anytime. It allows students to progress even if the teacher is unavailable. It allows students to work at their own pace and revisit learning when required. It allows students to develop as self-directed learners and take a bigger ownership of their learning. It allows students to learn how to learn.