Saturday, August 25, 2012

BYOD For Teachers

The use of technology to access, store and create information has become an essential part of teaching and learning.

Regular readers of this blog know that our school has already embraced a BYOD policy for students.  You can read related information here and here

In recent years we have observed that more and more teachers are using their own device for both work and personal use. As our lives become more digitally immersed this will be the norm.   The divide between a specific "work device" and "personal device" will become increasingly blurred and redundant 

To address this growing reality, this year, the school will give teachers access to a technology grant towards the cost of a computing device. The grant will cover 50% of the cost of computer (up to a certain limit) Teachers will be eligible to receive a subsidy once every 4 years. 

The grant  must indicate how the device will be used as a teaching and learning tool and be linked to the teacher’s annual professional growth plan.  Teachers must indicate how they plan to implement the use of technology in their class and how their device will assist them in that endeavor. (we have suggested that teachers consider a “digital” Bloom’s Taxonomy to assist them in developing a plan).

Some Considerations  
  • As a school with limited resources, this approach lightens device management and maintenance.  Teachers are responsible for maintaining and managing their own devices.
  • Teachers must continue to be vigilant about the ethical uses of devices at school and with students - always maintaining proper and ethical boundaries when working as a education professional. 
  • Teachers know what device is works best for them and their teaching.  They need to get comfortable with its use and application.  This will hopefully translate into a more seamless and effective use with  students.
In end this "personalized" approach to technology acquisition for teachers, will hopefully increase the likelihood of sustainable technology integration in teaching and learning.


  1. Hi Johnny, doing my Sunday morning perusal and catching up and then this GEM pops up.
    WOW! How fabulous, how progressive and how accurate. Last year my phone was: classroom camera, classroom video camera, extra computer for Ss when they needed one, how I communicated with Ss both inside and outside of class via Twitter and Facebook (I can't get on FB on my school issue computer and FB is like email for Ss) other words my phone was invaluable in creating a connected and vibrant classroom.
    I applaud you for seeing this blur between home and work. Ok...standing ovation :)
    This was just great!!!

  2. A great idea, Johnny.

    By bringing their own device, you can ensure that teachers have a "platform" through which they are comfortable fusing their critical thinking with creativity (exactly what we want our student learners to do).

    One idea to expand upon your already exemplary plan: as there will be numerous teachers using multiple devices and delivering a plethora of learning initiatives, why not have a lined item in your staff meetings that has a teacher share what they are using and what they are doing with it. One of the ways to ensure the success of a byod initiative, in my mind, is to communicate and celebrate (peer to peer). "Personalization" in the service of community building!

    Excited to read that you're still "figuring it out."

  3. Interesting to hear someone doing this. Our district is just rolling out devices to all staff (district owned and purchased) and I have said that I think this will likely be the last time we do this - the next time (4 or 5 years from now) will be framed around staff getting a stipend and bringing their own technology. The trend towards staff bringing their own devices is not only in education it is across all businesses. Glad to see someone on the "edge" helping to figure this out for the rest of us.

  4. Hey Johnny,

    I love the idea of asking for a plan for how the technology is going to enhance teaching and learning. We followed a similar process a few years ago with interactive whiteboards. We wanted to know how teaching and learning was going to be enhanced/more relevant, etc. Sometimes just providing everyone with a device can be counter-productive if no one knows or has thought through the use of the device.

    Good luck! I'll be very interested to hear how this unfolds this year!


  5. I appreciate the thoughtful comments and suggestions. I am sure that we will experience some "highs" and "lows" and learn a few things along the way. I will be sure to document the journey for all to share and learn.