During the 2018 school year, testing and trials were conducted to assess the viability of a parent-funded Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Program at the school. The trials proved the use of digital technology:
- Strengthened links between home and school;
- Helped to remove existing barriers to learning;
- Supported development of individualised learning pathways;
- Was an effective feedback tool;
- Extended learning beyond the classroom; and
- Engaged students in ways previously unimaginable.
After a comprehensive consultation with the broader school community, a decision was made to implement a 1:1 iPad Program in Term 2, 2019, starting with all students in Year 4.
Samford State School engaged the expertise of New Gauge Digital to manage the Program’s implementation from end-to-end.
During a carefully phased process the New Gauge team provided specialist services which included support for school community engagement strategies, site infrastructure assessments, risk management, project planning and management and support in professional learning for teachers, and IT staff.
The New Gauge team designed and implemented best practice deployment services, this seamless implementation ensured that technical difficulties did not impact on great teaching and learning in the classroom.
The carefully monitored Program had a clear focus on teaching students to use digital technology responsibly and encouraged them to use digital tools to create, explore and learn about the world in which they live. The students learnt that IT is not just a source of entertainment but also of exciting learning.
The second phase of the 1:1 rollout was due to commence in Term 2 2020, due to the impact of COVID-19, the decision was made to move this forward, and through careful planning and execution, the New Gauge Team had Samford State School up and running for online learning for students in Term 2 2020.
For Samford the Program’s outcomes were considerably better than the team had anticipated, and the transformational success of the Program has inspired surrounding schools to engage in similar approaches.