Two Cornelius schools – Bailey Middle and J.V. Washam Elementary – are among 21 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools sites chosen for the first phase of a district-wide program that will let students connect their own tab lets, smartphones and other devices to school wireless networks.
The “Bring Your Own Technology” (BYOT) program will start at three high schools, six middle schools and 12 elementary schools overall. CMS said the school were invited to apply, and were chosen based on a survey of teacher and student readiness.
Under the program, the 21 schools will be the first in the district with wireless networks that allow students to use their own devices. CMS says the networks should be available by mid-October, depending on what equipment is needed at each school.
“Bring Your Own Technology will allow our students to use their own devices at specified times during the school day to enhance their learning,” Superintendent Heath E. Morrison said in a press release.
Students will be allowed to use laptops, eBook readers, iPads and smartphones.
“Some schools have infrastructure that will allow many students to access the network at once; others will need to limit the number of students on the wireless network at any one time,” CMS Chief Information Officer Valerie P. Truesdale said.
The access will come with some limits. Ms. Truesdale said access be on a special “guest” network equipped with “standard CMS-student filtering.”
“This expanded use of technology in our schools is governed by the district’s Acceptable Use Policy and students are still required to follow that policy, even on their own devices, at school,” she said.
All school districts are required to filter access to the internet in schools by the Children’s Internet Protection Act. The Acceptable Use Policy was amended by the Board in August to allow personal technology devices. The guidelines for the BYOT initiative were also added to the student internet use agreement.
Here’s a list of the 21 schools in Phase 1 of the program:
Beverly Woods Elementary
Hawk Ridge Elementary
J. M. Robinson Middle
J. V. Washam Elementary
Long Creek Elementary
McKee Rd Elementary
Myers Park High
Quail Hollow Middle
South Charlotte Middle
South Mecklenburg High
West Mecklenburg High