We are working through issues we have been having with students creating, saving and submitting work using their iPads. The Office 365 accounts that were created at the beginning of the year have not been all we had anticipated. To hopefully smooth out the process and make it more user-friendly, we are moving towards using Google Apps for Education (GAFE). The school has created a GAFE domain and generated GAFE accounts for all of our middle school students and teachers. The GAFE accounts mirror the Office accounts for now. Eventually, the goal is to migrate all accounts over to GAFE and only have one account. This will not replace the Apple ID account. The GAFE accounts include access to Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides and an internal Gmail account. An internal Gmail account only allows students to send and receive email from people within our MA GAFE domain. We are moving in this direction for all student work as it integrates better with Canvas and other apps and allows for much easier collaboration. Teachers will be participating in GAFE training on Friday, October 30.
The iPads are owned by the school. The student will have exclusive use of it during the school year as long as they follow the guidelines outlined in the User Agreement.
The school is managing the costs for this through the technology fee. The first break is covered in full. The second break is covered 50/50 between the school and parents. The third and any subsequent breaks are paid in full by the parents.
I thought this program was paid for by the restructuring of the school's debt. Why is there a $75 fee for each student?
This fee is to cover any issues or damage to the iPad as outlined in the User Agreement. It is an annual fee in addition to the Materials fee (It is actually part of the total amount listed for the middle school materials fee.). Our materials fee is very comparable to other schools and yet includes the tech fee. We understand that it is challenging to raise children in today’s economy but we also know that this is a very good “deal” in light of what they are receiving for it. We are finding that our parents are very pleased.
The pilot program that we have used has proven successful. The teacher interaction is much stronger on one platform. The use of curricula on a single platform will be more manageable. The supports and professional development provided by Apple Education are far superior than other products. We believe this to be the better educational decision for our staff and students.
Our objectives are very simply to provide a more effective and efficient tool for our students in this 21st Century learning. To enable a student to hold an encyclopedia set, dictionary, school text, interactive text, word processor, plan-ner, and so much more in their hand without the need to leave their seat or lose class time to go to their locker. At Mon-ument Academy, we are constantly trying to find innovative ways to gain more instructional time. This tool in our stu-dent’s hands will increase instructional time immensely and will provide a more engaging tool for the students in the learning environment.
Teachers can avoid making homework internet dependent. The books and apps will be accessible without Wi-Fi. Before students leave school for the day the teachers can ensure that students have the opportunity to download any important documents.
The school library is available during all advisory periods for students requiring internet access for their home-work. If more time is needed, arrangements can be made.
As with any school supply or needed tool, they will be at a disadvantage. Under our service agreement, we will have a quick turnaround period for repairs but replacement issues will take longer. It will be the same as not being pre-pared for class and needing to share with another student or perhaps going “slow school” and using a laptop.
The Technology Fee covers the cost of a case, device management, Internet filtering, network access, and one iPad repair.
Opting out would not be possible as this is a tool required for your child’s learning. Unless this violates one of your family’s religious or moral beliefs, we would ask you to work with us on making this happen for your child. This will become a replacement for their textbooks and many other items currently in their backpack. It would put them at a serious disadvantage and jeop-ardize their ability to function properly in the classroom.
If finances are a concern, Monument Academy is committed to working with every family to make every opportunity pos-sible for your child to have an iPad.
Yes, the iPads are filtered at home and at school using Securly, a cloud-based content filter solution that students must log into using their school Google account. https://www.securly.com/
Yes, the YouTube website is blocked for students and the YouTube app is inaccessible to students. Teachers are able to embed videos into Canvas for students to view as part of the learning process. There are no ads associated with these embedded videos. Videos are viewed within Canvas and do not link to other videos on either the YouTube website or app.
If you have any further questions or feel something should be added to this FAQ, please con Traci Trimbach.