RESPONSIBLY NAVIGATING A DIGITAL LANDSCAPE.
Porter-Gaud understands that we live in a technological culture where our students will need to be familiar with how to leverage technology to accomplish a task. In our Lower and Middle Schools, students will use iPads as a tool to consume and create educational content. In the Upper School, each student will receive a laptop. Please see the guidelines below for how we manage these programs.
We chose the iPad for our Lower School and Middle School because it's a device that meets most of our students day-to-day technology needs, will help engage students in any time, any place learning, consolidates many educational tools including textbooks, science probes, calculators, calendars, cameras, video recorders, maps, dictionaries, and organizers, and finally, it's cost effective, has a long battery life and is easy to use and support. A few added benefits are that the iPad will help lighten the load of backpacks and assist in our goal to reduce the amount of printing and photocopying. Below are answers to a few common questions:
Q. Do I need to purchase an iPad or will it be provided by school?
Students in grades 3-8 will be issued an iPad.
Q. Why is the school moving towards a school funded 1:1 program?
A. We are moving in this direction for a few reasons:
- Safety and Management - If the school owns the technology, we can better keep our students safe while online as well as disable apps that we feel inhibit learning.
- The Same Device – With all the students having the same tool in the class, teachers will be able to focus on the teaching and content.
- Break/Fix – Having all the devices covered by Porter-Gaud next year, we will be able to replace the broken iPads in an efficient manner.
- Pricing – When the school purchases the iPads, insurance, and cases in bulk, we get a better price. It will be the same as how we provide textbooks or another program.
- The next device – We want to be in position that when something better than the current iPad will comes out, we’ll be able to switch to the new device whether it is a new iPad or a different device. It’s important to remember that to us the device is just an educational tool to be used in the service of teaching and learning. We are always looking for the best educational tool for our students — whether it is a ruler, a desk, a textbook, or a tablet.
Q. May students use a different tablet or laptop in place of the iPad?
A. No. We have chosen a single device environment so we can place our full attention and focus on teaching and learning.
Q. May students opt out of using the iPad?
A. No. We are committed to using the iPad to enhance the education of your child.
Q. What apps will be used at Porter-Gaud?
A. Click here to view the master list of school approved apps we will use. You do not need to purchase and install these apps. We will be purchasing and "pushing" these apps to student iPads through our volume purchase program.
Q. Can students install their own apps?
A. No. We want these devices to be educational tools. Because of this, we will be restricting what apps students can install.
Parental Control Questions
Q. Will the Internet be filtered on the student iPads?
A. School-issued devices are filtered on and off campus. We will discuss how to filter your personal devices during one of our parent training sessions.
Q. What websites will be used at Porter-Gaud?
A. Click here to view the master list of school approved websites. Please continue to check this list as it will be updated on a regular basis.
iPad Support and Repair Questions
Q. Will my child still need a computer even if he/she has an iPad?
A. The iPad is not a replacement for a computer or laptop. We will continue to provide access to computers and laptops on campus on carts or in labs to support specific projects and software. We may slowly eliminate laptops as student and teacher become more comfortable using the ipad for all projects. Because of our commitment in computer science, we will continue to have computer labs to support high end and advanced software.
Q. What happens if an iPad gets broken, lost or stolen?
A. All school iPads have maintenance and insurance. This will cover any defects in the iPad for three-years including the iPad battery. Insurance will also cover accidental damage caused by misuse as well as theft or lost iPads. If your child accidentally damages the iPad, we will get it fixed and provide a loaner iPad for your child while it's being repaired. We will also charge the family a deductible of $50 to fix the device.
Why laptops for Upper School Students?
Porter-Gaud understands that students need to have a deep understanding across all subjects areas to succeed at the next level. While we feel that we have been doing this for years, we also need to continue to adapt and add new skills. Skills that include creativity, critical thinking, problem solving, communication, and collaboration. We feel that technology has become a tool that will assist our teachers and students in grasping these skills of the 21st century.
How will they be used?
Each class and grade will have specific uses for these devices. For example, these devices will utilized as a research tool, for creating projects, a communication hub, an organizer, a digital backpack and more. The teachers will be very clear in terms of how the device will be used in and out of the class.
Who owns the laptop and why?
The school has full ownership of the devices.
What are the laptop specs?
MacBook Air 11-inch
1.4GHz Intel Dual-Core Core i5, Turbo Boost up to 2.7GHz
8GB 1600MHz LPDDR3 SDRAM
128GB Flash Storage
Can students take the laptop home?
How much do I owe for the laptop?
Tuition includes the cost of the device, software, a case and battery charger.
Will all their books be on the laptop?
No, we will continue to look at digital resources that fit our curriculum.
Will there be any training for my child?
We will have workshops and orientation in August and September to make sure they understand how to use the technology as well as understand what is appropriate and inappropriate.