Beginning in 2011, Notre Dame High School allowed students to bring and use a variety of electronic devices on campus. In so doing, we have embraced a technology and learning philosophy that invites students to “Bring Their Own Device” (BYOD). This approach to technology integration is being adopted by a number of schools across the country to meet the learning needs of individual students.
BYOD is based on the following premises:
- Technology integration is not tied to a particular device or platform. Instead it allows technology to be a tool, one resource among many that students and teachers access to enhance teaching and learning.
- Learning is about the needs of the individual learner. A BYOD approach to technology invites flexibility and openness to methodologies and strategies that best support students.
- BYOD learning environments support the integration of 21st Century learning skills, engaging students in critical thinking, collaboration, and creative problem solving.
Notre Dame’s technology infrastructure has been upgraded to provide a stronger and more vibrant network. Work has also begun on upgrading and improving the wireless access points on campus. The school’s Internet access has recently been increased to 100 Mbps to meet student and teacher demand for faster, more efficient delivery of information.
The Acceptable/Responsible Student Use Policy and Notre Dame Student Handbook have been updated to permit students to bring their personal devices to school. The policy provides students with guidelines for responsible use of devices both in and out of the classroom.
Over the next two years, faculty professional development will focus on:
- Curriculum design, pedagogy and appropriate technology integration for student learning
- Shifting teaching and learning resources to create a paperless learning environment—utilizing Internet resources, e-materials, Google Apps for Education and Moodle 2.0.
- Integrating 21st Century learning skills, and the creation of lessons that actively engage students in cohesive, integrated curriculum focused on accessing quality information and applying new knowledge to solving authentic problems.
- Learning environments that are centered on production instead of consumption. Students are not passively receiving information, but instead actively gaining knowledge through investigation, research and application of critical thinking.