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Dear Parents and Guardians:
We are excited to announce that ACA will be offering all students 1:1 computing devices for the 2020-2021 school year! Due to increased Federal funding for the Covid-19 global pandemic, ACA was able to secure these devices for our students.
Here are a few details:
Kinder and 1st grade students will receive iPads which will allow them to interact and touch the screen given their fine motor skills are still developing
2nd – 8th grade students will receive laptops
ACA will be offering a device insurance plan – details can be found in the accompanying FAQ section of this letter
Each student will be assigned an individual device for the year – this will ensure personal responsibility and care of the device as well as the health and safety of our students as they will not be sharing a device with other students.
We are very excited to roll this concept out for the 2020-2021 school year and think that it will truly allow your child to maximize their educational experience at ACA. Given the uncertainty of the global pandemic, we felt like this was a necessary first step in ensuring that regardless of what happens ACA will continue to be able to offer an excellent education to all students. ACA will be utilizing more online curriculum as the year progresses; we will scaffold this starting from portions of the kindergarten curriculum to full implementation for our 5th – 8th grade students.
ACA has been working diligently with our technology department to ensure that adequate support can be provided throughout the day to help troubleshoot any issues with devices. We are confident that we have a clear plan that will allow the technology team to support students with minimal disruption to the learning environment. A specific process on how to access support throughout the year will be included in the Student Device Addendum of our Student Handbook as well as with the device when it is checked out to your student.
Please check out the below Frequently Asked Questions regarding our new Student Device Initiative and if you have any questions please contact us here.
We are very much looking forward to what 2020-2021 will bring us and continuing to defy odds – we can and we will!
Frequently Asked Questions for Student Device 1:1 Initiative
Why is ACA moving to 1:1 for the 2020-2021 School Year?
We heard the parent feedback and it was also suggested from the AZ Dept. of Education and we wanted to ensure all families have access to individual student devices. Given the uncertainty of COVID-19 we wanted to ensure students had all of the necessary tools to be successful from the first day of school.
What does 1:1 mean?
Every Arizona Charter Academy student will receive a device to use for school-related purposes, including note-taking, assignments, tests, research and asking questions. Kinder and 1st Grade will receive iPads and 2nd-8th graders will receive laptops.
Why is the school participating in a 1:1 model of instruction and learning?
The provided device is an important learning and teaching tool. As students and teachers become more familiar with the device, software and applications, teaching and learning activities will evolve and become more in-depth. Key areas of focus are student engagement, access to higher level questions and activities, student self- assessment, parent monitoring of student progress and teacher assessment of learning. Technology usage is an important component of many post-high school challenges, including college, university and work. The 1:1 model will better prepare students for success in high school and beyond.
Will students still have workbooks?
In certain instances, yes. Kindergarten will receive math and ELA workbooks. Students in grades 1 – 4 will also continue to receive ELA workbooks. All other curriculum will move to online.
When will these devices be issued to students?
Students will receive their devices during the first week of school.
What is required for a student to receive a device?
Students must submit a signed Technology Device User Agreement to the school to receive their device. Students will not be allowed to receive a device unless this form is signed by the parent and the student. Parents are not required to be in attendance. This will be done during our Annual Update time in July.
Are these devices considered school property?
Yes, these devices are checked out to students much like textbooks, and students will be required to return the devices in good working condition. Care and use expectations can be found in the Student Device Addendum.
In addition to the device, what other items will be issued to the student?
Each device comes with a power cord. These are considered property of Arizona Charter Academy and must be returned at the end of the school year.
Will students be issued a mouse?
ACA will not be providing mice. Students are welcome to purchase their own mouse at the store or mice will be available for purchase in our front office.
How is the school able to afford a 1:1 program?
ACA received additional federal funding specifically to support COVID-19 educational and safety needs.
Can a student “opt out” of the 1:1 initiative and not receive a device?
No, Arizona Charter Academy encourages all students to have the technology skills to become successful in their future endeavors. In today’s technology-driven world, a device is a tool, like a textbook, that is part of a student’s learning process.
How will the 1:1 distribution impact students with special needs?
The devices being issued to all students have amazing capabilities to help enhance learning. Each child’s IEP team will determine the best strategy and tools for the student’s success.
Will my student need to turn in his or her device at the end of the school year?
Yes, the school-provided devices will be collected, much like textbooks are distributed and collected. Every effort will be made to provide the same device to returning students.
Costs and Protection/Maintenance Plan
Device Protection/Maintenance Plan (DPMP)
As part of the schools 1:1 technology initiative, parents have the option to enroll in the school’s Device Protection/Maintenance Plan (DPMP). Enrollment in the plan will minimize the potential repair and/or replacement costs associated with the device.
By signing up for this plan, you agree to pay a fee to be enrolled in the DPMP of $25 per device with a max family plan of $75.
If a device becomes damaged, your student will take it to ACA Technology Department and would follow the below schedule for repair. Under the DPMP, if the device is lost or stolen, a fee of $150 will be assessed.
Enrollment in the DPMP does not begin until the payment has been received.
What’s covered under the plan
Accidental damage, such as cracked screens or cases, broken keyboards, etc.
Battery replacement (if it is determined that the battery is malfunctioning)
Reduced replacement cost of lost or stolen device. If the device is stolen while off campus, a police report must be filed with a copy of the report sent to the district.
What is not covered under the plan
Intentional damage to the device is not covered under the plan.
Power cords are considered an accessory and are not covered under the plan and would be $15 for laptops and $25 for iPad per cord to replace.
Parents and students who choose not to purchase the Device Protection/Maintenance Plan are responsible to pay any damage in full up to $300 for the device.
Should your student’s device become damaged, they will be provided a loaner device while their assigned device is being repaired. This loaner device may not be of equivalent performance or features.
*** All repairs must be made by ACA certified technicians ***
Are student rental/use fees associated with the 1:1 program?
There are no costs for students/parents to participate in the 1:1 program. However, students/parents will be held responsible for any damages to the device. Parents have the option to purchase a Device Protection/Maintenance Plan to help minimize their financial risk of potential damage.
What does the protection plan cost?
The protection plan cost is $25 per device with a max family plan of $75.
Are there additional out-of-pocket costs under the protection plan?
Yes. The first repair is covered at $0 by the DPMP. There will be a $20 fee for each subsequent repair. If enrolled in the DPMP there is a $150 fee the first time a device that has been lost or stolen or damaged beyond repair. Since power cords are not covered under the plan there would be a $15 for laptops and $25 for iPad per cord to replace.
If we decide not to purchase the protection plan initially, can we purchase it later?
To purchase the protection plan at a later date, an email must be sent to email@example.com to have it inspected. If the device is found to be in good working condition, then you may purchase the protection plan and sign the DPMP Agreement.
How do I sign up for and pay for the DPMP?
A family can sign up for the DPMP during our online annual update, enrollment in the program doesn’t begin until the payment is received. Payment can be made on our school website, in our front office or by calling the front office with credit card payment.
What type of damages or repairs does the protection plan cover?
The protection plan covers normal wear and tear, accidental damage and general repairs, such as fixing cracked screens or broken keyboards.
Who is responsible for loss, theft or damage to the device while at school or home?
Students/parents are 100 percent responsible for the assigned device. This includes the costs to repair and/or replace the device. Parents may purchase the protection plan from the school to help minimize liability.
What do I do if my student’s device needs to be repaired?
If at school, the student would need to notify their teacher. If at home, parents should email firstname.lastname@example.org. The ACA Tech Dept will communicate the applicable costs and estimated repair completion date. The certified technicians will repair the device as quickly as possible. In some cases, a loaner device will be issued to the student at the discretion of school staff.
What if the student moves or withdraws?
Students are required to return the device to the school if they move or withdraw from the school. The device must be in good working order and be returned with the power cord. If the device is not returned when required by this agreement, after notice to the parent and student the school may report the loss to a law enforcement agency as willful failure to return loaned property in violation of A.R.S. 13-1802 or seek other legal remedies.
Will the student be able to complete the coursework without a device while it is being repaired?
Yes. Students may be given a loaner device to use while their assigned device is being repaired. The loaner device may not have equivalent performance or features.
Will students have unlimited access to the Internet?
No. This technology requires the student to enter their school-assigned user ID and password to operate the device. The device has security features and filtering intended to protect and prohibit your student from accessing inappropriate materials on the Internet, unless specific action has been taken to bypass these security features. This security and filtering applies to school, home or other networks, such as public libraries, restaurants and airports.
Will students be able to access social media?
Some social media sites have important educational and instructional capabilities, so there will be some access to social media. At this time, Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram will not be accessible through the school’s firewall.
What if we don’t have Internet access at home?
Students can still use the device without the Internet. Textbooks and many assignments will be accessible without an Internet connection. Resources may be downloaded on the device and available offline.
When can my student access the school’s Internet Wi-Fi capabilities?
The school’s Wi-Fi is always on. Students will be able to access it whenever they are on campus.
Will this 1:1 initiative eliminate the need to bring textbooks home?
No. This program will not eliminate all textbooks. However, curriculum will evolve to use the technology to the fullest extent, which will reduce the number of printed textbooks being used. This will be determined on a course-by-course basis.
What if the student forgets to bring his or her device to school?
Loaner devices will be provided to students who forget their device at home. Some students may be required to provide collateral (ex: cellphone) while using loaner device.
Using Technology/Securing the Device
How will students be trained on the use of the devices?
At the beginning of the school year and throughout the year, each teacher will train students on the technology needed for their classrooms.
Can students use their own devices at school?
No. If the school device is under repair or forgotten at home, the student will be provided a loaner device.
What are the consequences for inappropriate use of the devices?
Students must use the device in compliance with the ACA Technology Agreement regarding appropriate use of technology. The student and parent acknowledge that they have read this policy, including its regulation, and understand that violation of this policy will result in a loss of privileges and further disciplinary action.
How will devices be secured on campus?
Devices will be secured in a locked school computer cart.
Is the device heat-sensitive?
Yes. The biggest issue with mobile computing devices is heat exposure. Students should use care when storing their devices and should not leave them where they could get damaged by the weather or other elements. NEVER LEAVE THE DEVICE IN A HOT CAR.
End of Year Procedures
Will personal student data be removed from the device after it is checked back in to the school?
Yes. When ACA receives a device, the Tech Departnemtn will remove personal information and reset the device to original settings, except for initial start-up programs.
If my student returns to ACA the next year, will he/she get the same device?
That is the intention, though it is not guaranteed at this time.