Accessibility options
 
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Provision options

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Once you have your objectives clear, you can move on to consider the provision options and the most appropriate method of achieving 1:1 access. There are a number of options with each option bringing its own opportunities and challenges and, of course, not all will be suitable or practical in every school.

To help you choose the best way forward, we have identified the six most common options along with their related benefits and challenges. Your task is to consider these, taking into account the specific opportunities and challenges each present, against your defined objectives and fit with your school.

At the end of this process you should be able to make an informed decision on the best way your school can ensure 1:1 access to mobile learning.

Provision Options

Click on each option below for more details and an assessment of the benefits and risks.

Equity model - with parental contributions

OPTIONS - Equity with parental contributionsWith this approach, the school takes responsibility for providing every pupil with a device which is bought or leased and maintained by the school but with a significant element of funding coming from small but regular charitable donations from parents. A small amount of Pupil Premium funding can also be used to offset where eligible families are unable or less able to donate.

Benefits

  • School can save some of the costs of 1:1 provision
  • Savings possible through reducing the number of ICT suites
  • Gift Aid is added to the funds (worth 25% of donation made by a tax-payer)
  • Appropriate use of Pupil Premium funding, confirmed by Sutton Trust Pupil Premium Toolkit guidance
  • Inclusive – no-one is left out because of their financial circumstances
  • Teachers confident using ICT in the class knowing all pupils can also work at home
  • Parents are engaged financially which can lead to further engagement
  • Children learn to be responsible for their own device
  • Same device for all pupils avoids difficulties for technical staff
  • Same device for all pupils avoids stigma of not being to afford it
  • Financially sustainable year after year

Risks

  • Parents may not be willing to donate (may already have a computer for their child)
  • Parents may not be able to afford the donation
  • Donation commitments may be withdrawn
  • School has the responsibility to keep the devices well maintained
  • Teachers must use the devices regularly

Summary

Overall this is a good solid choice that will ensure every pupil in the school has the same opportunity to benefit. Your major challenge is to win the hearts and minds of your parents which will significantly reduce the risks.

Equity model – with Pupil Premium

OPTIONS - Equity with Pupil PremiumWhere a school serves a disadvantaged community then parental contributions will always be limited. In order to provide every child with a device that is bought or leased and maintained by the school, then an element of Pupil Premium funding should be allocated, and, where possible, this can be supplemented where some parents are happy to make donations.

 

Benefits

  • Appropriate use of Pupil Premium funding, confirmed by Sutton Trust Pupil Premium Toolkit guidance
  • Savings possible through reducing the number of ICT suites
  • Inclusive – no-one is left out because of their financial circumstances
  • Parents can still contribute something, even if small, removing the stigma of "charity"
  • Teachers confident using ICT in the class knowing all pupils can also work at home
  • Children learn to be responsible for their own device
  • Same device for all pupils avoids difficulties for technical staff
  • Same device for all pupils avoids stigma of not being to afford it
  • May attract a small amount of Gift Aid

Risks

  • Parents may not be able or willing to donate enough to make up the amount needed
  • School may be unwilling to commit Pupil Premium funds or have already allocated them
  • School has the responsibility to keep the devices well maintained
  • Teachers must use the devices regularly

Summary

A good choice that will ensure every pupil in the school has the same opportunity to benefit. By using some of your Pupil Premium, you will be ensuring that pupils from low income families have the same learning resources as better-off children. But don't forget to ask parents who can contribute to do so!

Buy your own device from the school

OPTIONS - Buy a device from schoolThis is where schools encourage parents to buy or lease a device directly from the school for their children.

Benefits

  • School can save costs of 1:1 provision
  • Potential savings from reducing number of ICT suites
  • School procurement may result in a more competitive price than parents can find on the High Street
  • Pupil Premium or Bursary Funds could be used by the school to assist those unable to buy the recommended device
  • Parents engaged financially which can lead to further engagement
  • Same device for all pupils avoids difficulties for technical staff
  • Children learn to be responsible for their own device
  • May appeal to risk averse Boards of Governors

Risks

  • Non-inclusive – parents may not be able to afford to buy the school computer, or their credit rating may not allow them to sign a sub-lease
  • School may be unwilling to commit Pupil Premium funds for those without a device
  • Parents may resent having to pay for the school-recommended device if they have already bought one for their child
  • Where leasing is used, school unlikely to sue parents for non-payment so risk is similar to donation model

Summary

In many ways a low risk option, your challenge is to ensure that pupils from low income or large families are not excluded. Make sure that you are legally allowed to sell computers (particularly if you are leasing them or taking staged payments) and get the VAT right!

School loan pool

OPTIONS - School loan planThis is where schools provide a pool of devices that pupils can book out whenever they need one.

Benefits

  • Pupil Premium or Bursary Funds could be used by the school where there is a high FSM figure to justify it
  • Inclusive approach, anyone who needs one can book one out
  • Useful where school provision is excellent and home access levels generally very high

Risks

  • Devices may not get looked after due to lack of "ownership"
  • Access could be limited depending on the number of devices available
  • Unlikely to impact on classroom practice
  • Your insurance will need to cover the devices outside the school

Summary

A good way of making sure the minority of pupils at your school don't lose out through poor home access. Make sure there is no stigma attached to using the loan pool.

Bring your own device (BYOD)

OPTIONS - Bring your own1:1 access is achieved by the school encouraging every child to bring their own device into school. This is usually most successful when the school specifies the type of device that is acceptable. Failure to do this can mean fragmentation when a wide range of devices arrive that are incompatible with the intended use in the classroom.

More recently the move to using exclusively online tools (such as that provided by Google) has reduced the need to be so prescriptive although in practice having one child using a smart phone, another on an iPad and another on a laptop will still cause challenges.

Benefits

  • School can save costs of provision and may be able to reduce number of ICT suites
  • Pupil Premium or Bursary Funds could be used by the school to assist those unable to bring a device into school
  • Local Authority or other Government funds may be available to support special cases (e.g. children in care, SEN needs)
  • School could set a minimum specification to help reduce issues of suitability

Risks

  • Non-inclusive – pupils may not be able to bring anything suitable in because of their financial circumstances
  • School may be unwilling to commit Pupil Premium funds for those without a device
  • Teachers may find their use of technology in the classroom limited by the type and variety of devices available
  • Different devices and operating systems of pupils present compatibility challenges of network access for technical staff
  • Potential risk of unsuitable material and viruses being brought into school
  • Network upgrade, or new network, may be required to handle the complexity of different devices and systems
  • Pupils from wealthy families may bring in high value devices

Summary

In many ways this appears to be a low risk option, your challenge is to ensure that pupils from low income or large families are not excluded. Make sure that your network is up to handling different devices with different operating systems and software. What insurance cover are you offering families whose equipment is lost or damaged?

Home access only

OPTIONS - Home use onlyWhere in-school provision is excellent, then schools may decide to focus their programme on the needs of the minority of children who lack access to a computer and internet at home.

Benefits

  • Pupil Premium or Bursary Funds could be used by the school to assist those without a device
  • Overcomes the digital divide
  • Funds can be highly targeted to needy families
  • If school funds are very tight then low cost devices (recycled PCs) could keep costs to a minimum
  • Pre-paid and Pay As You Go dongles or built-in SIM cards could provide internet access where no local free Wi-Fi is available

Risks

  • Difficulties getting desktops delivered and set up at home
  • Difficulties providing ongoing support and maintenance at home
  • Does not contribute to use of technology in the classroom
  • Unless laptops can be provided, desktop PCs can be inconvenient where space is limited

Summary

A good way to ensure home access is universally resolved. Perhaps the next stage is to think about use of mobile devices in the classroom?

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