Many schools are reconsidering whether their BYO programs are delivering the right result for students and teachers. Are financial pressures on some school families leading to inequalities in the learning experience for students with poor quality devices?
Conceived to embrace student choice, and lower school expenditure, Bring Your Own (BYO) programs have been a popular and often necessary choice for Australian schools for over a decade. In 2009, the Federal Government's 'Digital Education Revolution' unlocked funding for independent and public schools to to purchase student laptops and supporting infrastructure. Although welcomed, the funding was not intended to be ongoing, and the scheme was unsustainable leaving many independent schools in a position that they couldn't support. With device warranties expiring after three years, the funded laptop fleets required replacing. The substantial cost of replacement, and the need to equip new student groups each year meant schools needed to consider alternatives.