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It's Not the Device
This post is part of an ongoing series of chapters from the book CHOICE. Please view this post for an introduction and table of contents. To keep up with each new chapter published, please subscribe.
If you are starting your 1:1 program with deciding on a device, you are in for trouble.
This book will refrain from recommending a specific device. Chromebooks, iPads, Surfacebooks, Kindles, Netbooks, have all seen their day in education. Depending on when you are reading this, there are probably even more device options available.
At one time the iPad was considered the “best device” for education. Many schools adopted a 1:1 iPad program. Years go by and the Chromebook is the "best device" for education. Many schools were stuck transitioning from iPads to Chromebooks. The IT Department transitions from an Apple District to a Google District. But why was the district tied to just one company in the first place?
Don't be an Apple District, a Google District, or a Microsoft District. Be an innovative district.
With the CYOD model, a district will use any combination of devices from any combination of companies. The district doesn't get tied to one company or platform. The technology plan in a CYOD district is to provide the best available and most accessible resources to students.
It's not about the device, so don't make it a conversation topic. CYOD removes the device specifics from the conversation. Don't let the 1:1 program turn into a debate about iPads vs Chromebooks vs Windows. Screen size vs RAM vs every other technical aspect you can get lost in the weeds with. It should be about making it possible for students to use the best technology resources available to them.
Choose devices based on what your students and staff actually want to use and are comfortable using. Not what is considered the "best tool" today.