All the problems with central control and locking down devices can be solved by....not having central control and not locking down devices. Our 7s & 8s have 1:1 MacBooks, effectively leased by parents but owned by the school until the lease is paid out. We image (rather our vendor does) and distribute the machines together with a portable HDD for backup. At school kids have no access to the network or network drives other than the internet. Network printing available by Papercut web print client. Their responsibility to backup and manage their machines.
Any problems caused by fiddling with settings or by downloading software that can't be fixed by tech dept in 2 minutes means that we go to the time machine backup. If that doesn't exist we re-image the machines. That's it. Best decision we ever made not to allow access to shared drives or home drives on the network, and not to try to manage the machines.
TronXP (11th October 2012)
I disagree, slightly, I think we have a duty of care to put certain barriers in place and professional curtsey to ensure software on the devices are uniform to aid lesson planning.
Generally you'll find all 1:1 devices are less locked though due to that part ownership, whether it's teacher laptops that need access to home stuff, or students.
Don't think it's the right way to do it though, still should be locked down.
If a teacher brings porn in on their laptop, it is a serious issue and would most likely result in sacking. If a child does it, the issues regarding the porn still exist. It doesn't matter that they aren't sat in a classroom watching it, its when they're on the playing fields, transferring it to their mates, or whatever other time.
Re porn & games on 1:1 devices. Yes, the kids load them up with games, but if they are playing games in class it's the teacher's class management issue not a technology issue. And porn - they can't access porn through the school internet connection (our best efforts) which means it comes from home, which means its a parental issue if it's accessed online. Also, if a parent requests that the machine be password protected or they be made administrator we will do that.
If we were to find porn, or pirated films etc, or if porn was being distributed around, it would be against the AUP and school rules in general and the kid would face sanctions. What's so special about computers that the school has to actively prevent them from holding porn or games? The kids have school bags supplied from our uniform shop and we don't actively prevent them from holding printed porn or games, yet all schools would have sanctions if it was found at school or passed around.
And that's for kids - I find it difficult to credit how any reasonable person would expect to provide teachers with any machine of which they were not the administrator, and I wouldn't expect any teacher to accept that they are not even trusted to have anything but a locked down machine. If you can't trust a teacher to be their own admin we may as well fire them all and shut up shop.
Sean-OC04 (16th August 2012)
What makes teachers so different to every other employee in the world. Most places that deal with a large amount of machines and have a need to get work done lock down the machines a little just to make sure that they can do all the menial unimportant stuff - like their jobs as opposed to installing the latest Apple coffee recomendation app. What makes teachers so much better and more responcible than all the other employees in the world. Here's a news flash for you, they are not. They are generally worse, with unions so powerful they would have to murder someone on CCTV to be fired they know they can get away with almost everything and they attempt to.
End of the day, the reason teachers have laptops to take home is for "work use", not personal use. Same reason for using a pc at school, so same rules/lockdowns should apply. Else why apply any policies at school, as they should be trusted there too?
(Edit - Obviously applies to students etc too, not just teachers )
Kids used to bring porn mags into school before the internet but the school didn't supply them. Same difference with technology in my eyes - as long as the school is taking reasonable precautions.
Steve21 (10th August 2012)
There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)