BYOD Frequently asked questions

Who is responsible for BYOD devices?

The BYOD device is your responsibility. The cost of loss or repairs to the BYOD device will be the responsibility of the purchaser. These devices are not covered under the school’s insurance policy and so it is recommended that you insure the device individually. Speak to your home and contents insurer to check whether the device can be covered under your existing coverage or will need further coverage. Insurance is as an option when purchasing through our recommended suppliers via the Ballarat High School website.

Will I use my BYOD device in every class?

Teachers will plan activities using the BYOD device and may direct you to load or use particular applications in class. In addition to this, the use of eBooks, EduMate, accessing the Internet and taking notes are all activities which will occur regularly and at your own discretion. Not every subject will require you to use the BYOD device every lesson, however you are to take the BYOD device to every class.

Where will the BYOD device be kept during the day?

Your BYOD device must be brought to school fully charged every day. During the school day when the devices are not being used (e.g. lunchtime, during PE, etc.) the BYOD devices should be securely stored in their locker. Students should ensure they have an adequate lock on their locker and that no other student has access to their locker. The lock recommended on the booklist has been specifically designed to enhance the security of lockers. We have had a number of issues with low quality locks some of which can be snapped off by hand.

Will the BYOD device be used during recess/lunchtime?

No – BYOD devices are to remain in lockers at those times and must not be out in the yard. This will reduce the chance of breakage in an active playground, ensure students have a break from the device which is important to prevent posture problems and eye strain and preserve battery life for class activity.

What eBooks do we download?

Any eBooks  will be listed in Ballarat High School Booklist. The number of books depends on the year level.

Won’t my child be writing anymore?

Please be assured the use of an BYOD device does not mean your child will not be writing. The BYOD device is intended to be an adjunct to their instructional habits, not a replacement for them. While not diminishing our emphasis on traditional skills BHS also promotes 21st century digital skills, without which, in coming years, students would find it very difficult to gain employment.

How long it will be before the BYOD device needs to be updated or replaced?

It is the intention of BHS that the BYOD devices purchased by parents will be kept in service for as long as technically and practically possible. 3 years would be the normal lifetime for an item of technology in a school environment. Warranty and insurance options in the purchasing portals reflect this.

Will internet access be filtered?

Yes. All internet access via our network (WiFi and wired) is routed through our filter. It is worth noting that no filter system is perfect given the dynamic nature of the internet. The filtering definitions for our system are updated nightly.

Will BYOD devices promote poor posture?

Poor posture and associated strain are generally the product of fixed body position for an extended period of time. Desktop computers and laptops are just as likely to cause strain because they control posture. BYOD devices are more mobile and light, which means they can be used with a wider variety of postures. It is easier to shift positions while remaining engaged.

Will BYOD devices cause eye strain?

Looking at any screen (computer, TV or BYOD device) for a long period of time without resting your eyes may cause eye strain. This is commonly called Computer Vision Syndrome and relates to computer and laptop monitors.

  • BYOD devices potentially reduce the prospect of computer vision syndrome in the following ways:
  • Due to its mobile nature, the chance of staring at a fixed focal length for an extended period of time is reduced.
  • The brightness of the screen can be easily adjusted to match the lighting conditions.
  • It is easy to tilt the BYOD device or change body position to reduce glare.
  • BYOD devices with retina displays (all BYOD devices after 2nd generation) may help to address this issue.

What do you advise about volume levels for headphones?

As a general rule, the volume levels of headphones should be low enough to hear a person speaking at normal levels when standing one meter away.

How much does my child need to use their BYOD device at home?

Some homework, set activities and assessment tasks will require your child to use their BYOD device at home. Outside these things however, it is your decision about when and how your child uses their BYOD device. If you have any doubts about the nature of set work, please contact your child’s teacher.

Our position is: BYOD devices provide an environment or tool for learning; that is its main purpose.

• Students can use it for other purposes but these must be appropriate to the context –

• school or home – and subject to permission.

• We support parent decisions about the setting of boundaries at home as long as school work can be completed.

• Students do not need games and entertainment apps on their BYOD devices for school. Whether parents allow games and entertainment apps on their child's BYOD device is a family decision.

What if I need to remove my child’s BYOD device access as a discipline measure?

We understand that this may be required and we will support you where we can. Please contact us about arrangements for ensuring the BYOD device is accessible at school and for school work.

What is the school’s advice about children overusing technology?

It has been noted by some sources that overuse of any form of technology may lead to problems such as sleep deprivation and addiction. Each of these issues are significant problems caused by a range of often complex issues. Our advice is:

• Regular sleep patterns free from disruption of any kind are important to brain function and mental health. This is true of children, adolescents and adults. In some cases it is necessary to remove all electronic devices from the child’s room at bed time.

• Using any form of bright screen technology before going to sleep may impact on melatonin levels. Melatonin is the hormone that controls the body clock, allowing us to sleep. It would appear that bright light creates irregular production of melatonin, changing the body clock and making sleep difficult

• Highly engaging and emotionally rewarding activities release a chemical in the brain called dopamine that positively rewards behavior. Excessive participation in any highly rewarding activity can create addictive style behavior according to some researchers. In all things, therefore, moderation is important.

The school aims for a balanced approach to using technology. There may be a number of classes in a given week where students are directed to leave their devices in their locker so that they can participate in traditional learning activities.

What about after school?

Students must take their BYOD device home each night in order to complete homework and recharge the battery. When travelling to and from school, students should store the BYOD device in its protective case. Don’t put heavy items on top of the BYOD device in the schoolbag as the screen may crack. When travelling by car it is suggested to lock the schoolbag in the boot to ensure it is out of sight if the car is left unattended.

What happens if I leave the BYOD device at home?

Students will be unable to participate fully in certain learning activities.

What happens if my BYOD device needs to be repaired or replaced?

The responsibility for all repairs and replacements lies with the family. Where a student faces an extended period of time without their BYOD device due to damage or loss this should be reported to the Team Leader and the IT Support Team (via email ).

What if the BYOD device is lost or damaged?

Any problems relating to vandalism, damage, loss or theft of the device that happens at School should be reported to the Team Leader. If the device was purchased via the a School Portal and involves a warranty issue than the incident should be reported to the IT Support Team ( and the BYOD device handed to them for collection by School Portal.

Other than the BYOD device what else should the student have?

The following items are mandatory for students and if not already owned, MUST be purchased;

•             Durable protective cover/bag

•             Earphones/headphones.

Can other people use the BYOD device?

While it is a family owned device, the BYOD device is essential for the student’s education, so it is recommended that it is not used by anybody else.

Can the BYOD device be used to play games?

Games are not to be downloaded on the BYOD device at school. Inappropriate, violent or other unacceptable material not in keeping with the Acceptable Usage Agreement and the values of the school must not be accessed or used under any circumstances. The school may require any inappropriate material to be removed from the device.

What is Copyright and Intellectual Property?

Music, information, images and games on the Internet are owned by someone. The term copyright is a legal one and there are laws to enforce it. Not only is breaking copyright morally, ethically and legally wrong, it can introduce potential risks.

Not everything on the Internet is true, accurate or unbiased. The school is working to teach digital literacy skills, which enable students to locate, evaluate, and use information effectively on the Internet.

It is important that students respect the Intellectual Property of people who contribute resources online. Students should use their own thoughts and language to express what they have learnt, and avoid simply copying and pasting information from the internet.

The school is increasingly training staff to detect plagiarism and consequences will apply. At a VCE level these may include the entering of ‘0’ marks against a task, which will impact the students ATAR score, or failing the unit.

How will my child know how to use the BYOD device?

While we realise that many students have knowledge of the BYOD device, some won’t. At the beginning of the school year we will implement a program supporting students in developing their skills in the safe and effective use of the BYOD device.

Where can I get more information?

BHS will keep you informed through the school website, newsletters, email and parent information evenings.

How do I keep my kids safe online?

The Office Of The Children’s safety Commissioner is a great place to start. The website provides a links to currently active support networks and comprehensive information with advice for parents, and children of various ages.

The Office Of The Children’s safety Commissioner also has comprehensive advice about reporting eSafety issues.

Links for students:

• Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800.

Links for Parents/carers: (Allannah and Madeline Foundation)

• Parentline 132289