Windsor High School and Sixth Form, Richmond Street, Halesowen, B63 4BB
Part of Windsor Academy Trust
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Response to Parents' Questions

In addition to the FAQs, you will find information below summarising responses to some of the most common questions that have been raised by parents. To make it as easy as possible for you to navigate, we have grouped information into specific areas of focus.

Area of focus Information
Safety
  • Student safety is of paramount importance at Windsor High School and Sixth Form.
  • There have been no safety concerns raised since iPads for Learning started last year. We are aware that many students already walk to and from school with valuable items, such as smartphones. The existing guidance given to students on staying safe when travelling to and from school has been and will continue to be reinforced.
  • We do not and will not allow students to be singled out through iPads for Learning. Our whole school culture of respect and responsibility will be as prevalent in iPads for Learning as it is in all areas of school life.
  • There are systems in school to make sure that iPads are safe at key times of the school day, e.g. during PE lessons. We set clear safety expectations and procedures with students when they receive their device.
  • We will continue to monitor student safety because it is at the core of our daily work.
Costs
  • We have invested significant amounts of money in IT over recent years, including WiFi, network infrastructure, interactive whiteboards, software and other devices.
  • School funding has been squeezed in recent years and budgets only extend so far. An enhanced 121 device scheme (for all students and with home and school use) like this requires support from parents to make it possible and sustainable.
  • The school, nor Windsor Academy Trust, is making any profit from iPads for Learning and the best educational pricing has been sourced.
  • The £510 package includes the iPad, a Logitech crayon and case, 3 years of warranty and comprehensive insurance cover, safeguarding software, parental contribution portal and a range of free and paid educational apps. In our sourcing of the iPads and the package around it, we have made sure that best value has been achieved. The £510 package is worth in excess of £600 if purchased individually.
  • The procurement of the products and services has been aggregated to secure best value for money, we are unable to provide a price breakdown of individual items in the package. This is because we are using a range of service providers for the different parts of the package and there are commercial sensitivities relating to the best value educational pricing that has been secured.
  • The difference in overall cost when choosing the monthly payment is due to a small fee that the parent portal provider charges for collecting 36 monthly payments.
  • The first payments will be required when the iPads are delivered to the school in September.
  • We are providing support to parents who may require financial assistance. This is done sensitively on a case by case basis and according to individual circumstances.
  • iPads are recognised as the best educational device available. Apple has significantly invested in products for learning and iPads offer practical benefits such as powerful technology, flexibility and portability. iPads integrate seamlessly with our school systems and infrastructure. They provide features and capabilities that only more expensive devices offer.
  • Once the three year payment period is over, parents have full ownership of the device. There is no cost for the school management and safety software to be taken off the device. We would arrange for this to be removed when it’s no longer required to be a learning device and/or the child leaves the school.
Insurance
  • The insurance covers accidental damage and theft. Some insurance companies will not cover loss at all and others charge a very high premium which is why loss is not covered. To date, no iPads have been lost or stolen.
  • The insurance package is for three years. We will review insurance options beyond the three years at a later date.
  • The insurance is supplied by a trusted provider who has significant experience and a strong reputation in the educational market.
Communication
  • We have had students’ learning at the heart of our decision making for iPads for Learning. We have had positive feedback from students, parents and staff and our decision to extend iPads to other year groups is due to its ongoing success.
  • We value the partnership we have with parents and have provided regular communication throughout iPads for Learning via letters and parent information evenings, as well as through emails and phone calls where required.
  • Parents have been encouraged to contact the school and where questions have been raised, we’ve answered queries with parents individually and added them to the main FAQs. We continue to encourage parents to contact us if there are any questions.
  • During the parent information sessions and on the FAQs, it has been made clear that the contribution scheme is optional and no child will be left without a device. This is being further reiterated in this response.
Miscellaneous
  • If students do not sign up to iPads for Learning, then they will still have an iPad to use in school. However, that iPad will not be able to be taken home. Sometimes remote learning (homework) will be set to be completed online, e.g. through Google Classroom. This is not something that is new and was an expectation before iPads for Learning. In these cases students can use another device that may be available at home. If this poses a challenge, then we encourage you to contact school individually to discuss it. There are opportunities to use school devices on site before school, at lunchtime or after school.
  • iPads for Learning will see students using their iPad purposefully and on a regular basis. Usage will depend upon the learning that is taking place and in some subjects, they may be used more frequently depending upon curriculum planning and content. We will make sure that students receive an appropriate combination of time learning using the iPad and time doing written work in books.
  • During the pandemic and in exceptional circumstances, we supported some families to be able to access WiFi at home. Whilst we cannot guarantee support in this area, please do contact us if this is a challenge. We can discuss your situation and help to find creative solutions.
  • In the unlikely event of the iPad being lost or stolen, we can initiate ‘lost mode’ to find it. This tracking would not be initiated without the authorisation of both the parents and the school. This does not breach any data protection laws and is a perfectly reasonable and useful process to have in place.
  • The unboxing event involves every child. No child will be left out. At the event, children will receive an iPad and most importantly, training on how to use it and clear guidance on safety. The unboxing will be followed up by an intensive induction programme so students can use the wide ranging functions and available apps.
  • We use a huge range of educational apps specifically suitable for different age groups and subjects. Some of these are paid apps that we provide for free. You will see the range of apps used on your child’s iPad in September.