Almost 85% of our 420 7th grade students are participating in our BYOD program, so that's a lot of tech support. Over half of the devices were PC laptops or netbooks. Less than a dozen Mac laptops appeared, and only a few Kindles and Nooks. The rest were about 2/3rds Android tablets and 1/3 iPads. Students unable to bring a device will use one of the netbooks here on campus, so we will be 1-to1 in all classes. It may be a Frankenstein's monster of 1-to-1, but by golly we have it!
The day was not without incident. While getting the devices online proved fairly simple, we found that the proxy server wreaked havoc on our single-signon Google Apps. However, they wasted no time in working out a solution and had it up and running. a few things still need to be resolved, such as a no-cost alternative for terminal server access for iPads and tablets. Most of the Mac laptops had administrator passwords that parents neglected to give to their children, so that will have to be worked out. We also had a half-dozen machines that still ran XP which had difficulties getting on our network, a couple base model Kindles with rudimentary web browser which will not work, and one non-functioning laptop that the student wanted me to repair. Overall, everything was resolved satisfactorily, or plans were put in motion to handle them.
The students did an amazing job continuing with the day's assignment on the desktop computers in between working on their devices. Whenever a classroom routine is disrupted you run the risk of students going haywire, but they just chugged along working quietly and diligently. The theme for this year, and especially today, is Don't Panic - Keep Calm and Carry On. We lived it today!