Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Considering BYOT / BYOD next year? Get started with this sample policy & answers to FAQs

One of the best ways to prepare students to be prepared for the world is to help them use the tools of their world responsibly. Allowing students to bring their own devices is a terrific way to do just that, but even though some schools may have the wireless capacity and infrastructure, the admins / teachers may want to have a policy in place.  Below is the policy shared with me by Tim Clark who serves as the Coordinator of Instructional Technology for Forsyth County, GA Schools.  

What is great about this district is that they empower schools to modify the policy to their needs.  Standardizing a policy in a district that can be customized to the needs of the students in a particular school is a best practice that all innovative districts should consider.  

Of course the policy is just one of the ingredients needed for success.  Forsyth County Schools addresses many of the others in their frequently asked questions which you can find here.  
Check out Teaching Generation Text: Using Cell Phones to Enhance Learning for more ideas about thinking outside the ban to harness the power of student-owned devices for learning including policies, contracts, management ideas, and research.


  1. I love this. I mean, YES, things can definitely go wrong when you allow kids to be on personal electronic devices at school. But can't kids still get into trouble with regular pencil, paper, and/or art supplies? It's just a different kind of trouble. If we teach kids how to properly use these devices for the benefit of education, I think tech tools will have an amazing impact on the way we all teach. Kudos for creating (and sharing!) this agreement!

  2. there is nothing to plan, no policy needed....make sure the wireless works and tell kids to bring their connectable devices to school.

  3. Glad to hear @Mrs. K.

    Couldn't agree more @MrC ;)

  4. BYOD with access to the internet on port 80 is easy. Explain how a traditional school district with legacy applications and file storage/printing provides these resources to a kid with a mobile phone?

  5. @Anonymous,
    They can take the lead of educators like me. 98% of the work I do is via free applications in the cloud. Some can be done via phone, some can not. It just extends options for students and teachers. If you want to see how it works in action, why not visit one of the many schools who have already moved in this direction.

  6. I just don't like the fact that people make BYOD sound easy. The real BYOD requires the proper technology deliver model that is aligned with the district curriculum that supports anytime/anywhere learning.

  7. @Anonymous,
    When the world outside of school has figured out how to do this years ago, the world inside of school needs to catch up. If we can't employ the same type of people who can make this work at libraries, McDonalds, Starbucks, airlines, etc. we need to reconsider who we have working for us.

    One way to uncomplicate things is by updating beyond old legacy applications, moving in the cloud, and realizing that not all devices need access to the same things. BYOD does not mean that schools have no technology. For that which can't be done in the cloud, school devices are used.

  8. With thinking that starts "Above The Cloud" We need to start with the integration of Educators needs and the solutions that provide proper security from the IT Designer. The real problems with BYOD is that the educator and
    Engineering are not on the same page. Rember -Quality begins with Design!

    1. Can you explain what "Proper Security" you are talking about?