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4 Reasons Against iPads In the Classroom

Written by Danny Mareco Danny Mareco | October 28, 2013

When researching the iPads in the classroom trend, it is helpful to look at some of the negative aspects of spending time and money on these devices prior to implementation at your school.  Below are some negative aspects of allowing your school to become technologically mobile as iPads enter the scene. 

High school students using iPads in the classroom

Wireless Network Will Be Strained and Incapacitated: 

Many schools do not have the proper wireless infrastructure to allow iPads to enter the classroom and to be used properly and effectively. 

Before deciding whether iPads are the right fit for your school make sure to get a proper RF Wireless Network Design.  This design should be specifically for a high capacity setting.  For more information on wireless network designs read, “What Should Be Included in A Wireless Networking Design.”  This design will allow you to plan and budget properly and will not leave your network strained when and if you decide to incorporate iPads into the classroom.

Students Will Only Damage or Lose the Devices: Stolen iPad sign

Statistics are staggering when it comes to the percentage of devices that get lost, stolen or cracked.  Many schools budgetary funds go to buying all the iPads without having a plan in place for how they will keep those iPads from damage or replace the iPads if lost.  It is helpful to know the stats before deciding on the iPad rollout and from there put a proper Mobile Device Management plan in place.

There is effective Mobile Device Management Software today that will help you minimize the risk of loss on your devices.  Make sure your MDM software includes the ability to

  • Manage network policies
  • Securely onboard and manage devices
  • Admit guest users
  • Securely distribute and manage mobile work apps
  • Work on any network

Students Will Just Surf Facebook Instead of Properly Use the Devices for Classroom Instruction: 

next generation firewall for iPads

Many schools fear that they will be left unable to make sure students don’t spend all day surfing their favorite social media sites rather than participate in classroom instruction.  

A proper firewall at the edge of your network can allow this fear to be eliminated by filtering applications based on users and groups.  The firewall should provide integration with your school’s active directory, providing visibility and control of each application.  Prevention of a wide range of threats, blocking unauthorized file and data transfers, and ability to control web surfing should also be key features of a firewall.  For more information on what type of firewall to put in place please read, “Why Every School Wireless Network Needs A Palo Alto Firewall.”

My Teachers Will Lose All Control of their Classrooms if iPads are Allowed 

teacher using iPad in a classroom lesson

Many believe that if students are allowed the creative avenue to use the iPads for classroom instruction that the teacher will lose all visibility and control of what that student is doing. 

Luckily for all classroom instructors today, software has been created specifically for visibility into what the students are doing while on their devices.  Teachers, with proper software in place, are able to monitor student activity within a classroom and can thus reduce student distractions by blanking screens, limiting applications and limiting web browsing abilities. 

For more information see, “Technology in The Classroom: Ending the Cheating Epidemic.” 

The Reality and Focusing on the Positive Aspects 

Dwelling on the potential negative aspects of iPads in the classroom can leave one feeling uncomfortable about an implementation. 

Neale Donald Walsch states it well with his famous quote:

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” 

The reality is: iPads in the classroom are here to stay. 

Such new technology is often at the end of our comfort zones, yet that should not stop us from realizing the infinite possibilities for the future of our students and their learning.  With proper research and implementation, all these negative aspects will be problems of the past. 

Our mobility specialists here at SecurEdge can help you get past these problems and guide you to a successful and secure iPad program for your school. Just contact us here for a free consultation which includes a Free RF Design.

Our goal is to be a resource to you! Good luck!

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