SANTA BARBARA, CALIFORNIA
LAGUNA BLANCA SCHOOL

Laptops for Learning Program 

Laguna Blanca Middle School
 
ANNOUNCEMENTS

5/22/14 - Laptops Boot Camp 2014 will be held this coming fall on Orientation Day, Tuesday, September 2, 2014. Regardless if they are new to the school, or returning, all grades five through eight students are required to bring their laptop to the session as assigned below:
 
Meet at the MS Computer Lab.
9:00 - 10:30 All 7th graders, new 6th and new 8th graders
3:30 - 5:00  All returning 6th graders and returning 8th graders.

Need software? The school has arranged for students to purchase current versions of Microsoft Office for Windows and Macintosh at the low academic rate of $43 per installation. This software is required on all Middle School student laptops, so if you would like to purchase the software for your child's laptop, please bring a check for $43 made out to the school, to your child's Laptops Boot Camp session. The software will then be installed during the session.  Please contact Barbara Remick with questions.
 

About the Laptops for Learning Program

The Laptops for Learning Program will begin its fifth year in September, 2014. All students in grades five through eight will be required to bring their own laptops to school every day. Below are frequently asked questions about the program. If you need additional information, please email Barbara Remick, Director of Technology.

FAQ's FOR PARENTS

Q. What is the purpose of the Laptops for Learning Program at LBS?  
Q. How much does this program cost?
Q. Will parents be required to purchase a new laptop for the Laptops for Learning Program?
Q. What are the minimum requirements for the laptop?
Q. Can my child bring an Internet capable device (i.e. cell phone, iPad, etc.) in lieu of using a laptop?
Q. What about Internet filtering at school?
Q.  Are there any forms or documents parents need to sign?
Q.  How will I be notified of any changes or announcements about the Program? 

 FAQ's FOR STUDENTS 

Q. What is the Laptops for Learning Program? 
Q. What kind of laptop do I need?
Q. What software do I need to have on my laptop? 
Q. What else do I need to bring for my laptop?
Q. How will I backup my files?
Q. I am a new student. How do I get my account started?
Q. When should I start bringing my laptop to school?
Q. What is Laptop Boot Camp?
Q. What if my laptop won’t work properly at school?
Q. Can I charge my laptop while at school?
Q. What if I forget to bring my laptop to school?
Q. What if I lose or break my laptop?
Q. Where will I keep my computer files?
Q. How do I print from my laptop?
Q. Can I let my friends use my laptop?
Q. Where do I keep my laptop when I’m not using it?  

  


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS FOR PARENTS


Q. What is the purpose of the Laptops for Learning Program at LBS?

A. This program signifies Laguna Blanca's participation in a worldwide paradigm shift in the delivery of instruction, which is moving from teacher-centered to more student-centered. Research has found that when students personalize their education, they perceive the learning context or setting to be supportive and thus, remain engaged in learning. 

The primary goals of the Laptops for Learning Program are:

  • to provide students with direct and continuous access to learning resources and experiences throughout the school day.
  • to have students use their laptops regularly and with purpose during teacher directed activities.
  • to have personal digital devices, such as laptops, ultimately become cognitive tools that are holistically integrated into the teaching and learning processes of the school.
  • to improve students' technology skills and better prepare them for a technology filled future.
  • for everyone involved to recognize that in this digital age, teaching practices are continually evolving, and that LBS teachers will continue to seek out and model best practices that infuse technology appropriately into the learning process.

More information on 21st century learning skills can be found at www.21stcenturyskills.org.


Q. How much does this program cost?

A.  The cost to families is for the purchase of a new laptop if they do not currently own one, and for required software if needed. See the table below for projected costs:

Required Hardware:
  Laptop $300-1,500
   Protective Carrying Case  (Hard shell case recommended) $20-50
Required Software  
   PC: Windows 7 or 8 and Microsoft Office 2010 or 2013 $43 (through school)
   Mac: OS X and Microsoft Office 2011 $43 (through school
  Anti-virus software (Free programs are also available online) $10-30
  Other free downloads required are Java, Flash and Adobe Reader $0

 

Q. Will parents be required to purchase a new laptop for the Laptops for Learning Program?

A. Only if they currently do not own one that meets the minimum requirments below. Families that need assistance with acquiring a suitable laptop can contact Barbara Remick, Director of Technology to inquire about borrowing a laptop from the school for the school year.


Q. What are the minimum requirements for the laptop?

Laptop minimum requirements:
  • OS - Windows 7 or 8, Mac OS 10
  • 1.6 GHz 32-bit processor
  • 2 GB of system memory
  • 100 GB hard drive
  • 128 MB of graphics memory
  • WIFI 802.11 b/g/n
  • USB ports
  • 4+ hour battery life

It is strongly recommended that the computer not be older than three years of age and that it is covered by an extended warranty with accident coverage.

Q. Can my child bring an Internet capable device (i.e. smart phone, iPad, etc.) in lieu of using a laptop?

A. No. The Laptops for Learning Program is designed around classroom use of laptops will full version software applications, and Web-based resources. While the small size of an iPad or smart phone is convenient, the processing power and memory does not meet the specifications which will be required for the resources and assignments teachers are planning to use. The iPad does not display Flash enabled websites, many of which are used by our teachers.


Q. What about Internet filtering at school?

A.  All computers used at school are subject to our filtering system, whether on the WIFI or standard network. It's important to keep in mind that no filtering system is perfect, so students are expected to observe the guidelines set forth in the School’s Responsible Use Policy while using any digital device at school.

Q.  Are there any forms or documents parents need to sign?

A.  Before any student can connect to the school network, a signed copy of the RUP Consent and Agreement form must be returned to the school.  This document was provided in the summer mailing.  If you did not recieve it, please access it using the links in the column to the right. A section of the RUP releases the school from any liability should a laptop be damaged, lost or stolen while at school. This includes data loss.


Q.  How will I be notified of any changes or announcements about the Program? 

A.  You will recieve email messages with important information and updates about the Laptops for Learning Program. Therefore, it is important that the School have current email addresses for parents. Please contact Chris Davis in the Main Office to update email addresses. We will also post updates to this webpage as needed. Please contact Barbara Remick, Director of Technology with any questions that are not addressed on this webpage. 


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS FOR STUDENTS


Q. What is the Laptops for Learning Program?

A. Students in grades five through eight are required to bring their own laptops to school every day to use in their classes. Students connect to the Internet over our WIFI network and use Microsoft Office for creating documents, presentations, and spreadsheets. They also connect to various websites depending on what teachers have planned for their classes.


Q. What kind of laptop do I need?

A. Students are to bring a fully charged, lightweight laptop running Windows 7, Windows 8 or Max OS X, with a of battery life of at least 4 hours. Students are asked not to bring iPads to school for the L4L Program. You and your parents should be aware of the minimum requirements for your laptop as listed above.

 
Q. What software do I need to have on my laptop?

A. If you do not already have it, you need to purchase and install Microsoft Office 2010 or 2013 for Windows, or Microsoft Office 2011 for Mac. For Internet browsing, please download and install Firefox. You will also need a current anti virus software, Java, Flash, and Adobe Reader on your Windows laptop. Some teachers may have you create some shortcuts or download certain “open source” software programs, which are free for everyone.


 Q. When should I start bringing my laptop to school?
 
A. Fifth and Sixth grade students will bring laptops beginning the second day of school. Seventh and eighth grade students will begin using laptops at school after trip week, but are required to attend one of the Laptop Boot Camp sessions prior to the start of school.
 
Q. What is Laptop Boot Camp?

A. Laptop Boot Camp is a one hour session which all Middle School students are require to attend, even if you are a returning student and will be using the same laptop used during the previous school year.  Dates for the sessions for Fall 2013 are posted at the top of this page.  Students bring their laptops to the Middle School computer lab and prepare them for use at school. An email will be sent to parents in early August asking them to sign you up for one of the sessions.

The amount of time you need to be at Laptop Boot Camp is dependent upon your needs and the condition of your laptop. New students will initiate their network, email, and student portal accounts at this time. Laptops will be checked for the minimum requirements and connected to the school WIFI network. If you do not have a current anti-virus license on your Windows laptop, we will install ESET anti-virus for you at no charge. We will also prepare you to use your laptop responsibly and safely at school. You will learn about the School's expectations and routines for using software programs, the Internet, school printers and how to manage your data. 

Q. What else do I need to bring for my laptop?

A. Please bring a protective carrying case and power cord. It is very important that you are able to protect your laptop from bumps and dropping with a sturdy case. A power cord is also very important especially if your laptop will not hold a charge for at least four hours.

 
Q. How will I backup my files?

A.  Students are asked to backup their school files on another computer at home, an external hard drive, on a usb drive, or on a cloud storage service such as DropBox or Google iDrive. Every year we see a few students lose important work because they only kept it on their laptops.


Q. I am a new student.  How do I get my account started? 


A. New students will be able to activate their Laguna Blanca School network, email, and student portal accounts during the Laptops Boot Camp .  See dates posted at the top of this page.


Q. What if my laptop won’t work properly at school?


A. The Technology Department staff (Ms. Remick and Mr. Laza) will do their best to get your computer going on the WiFi network. If we cannot resolve the problem because of low disk space, lack of current OS updates, viruses, or faulty or obsolete hardware, your parents may need to help with providing repairs or upgrades.

 

 Q. Can I charge my laptop while at school?
 

A. Yes. It is recommended that you come to school with a fully charged laptop each day. But if needed, teachers can provide extension cords for you to use during class. Be sure to bring your laptop power cord each day.


 Q. What if I forget to bring my laptop to school?

A. You may check out a school loaner from Ms. Remick's office for use while you are at school. Some teachers may have consequences for students who repeatedly forget to bring their laptop to school. So, do your best to bring it!


 Q. What if I lose or break my laptop?
 

A.  We will be able to provide a loaner for a few days while repairs or replacement of the student’s laptop can occur. Loaner computers cannot go home, so saving files online to a cloud server or a flash drive is the best way transfer files.


Q. Where will I keep my computer files?

A. You will not have access to school file servers unless you are using a School-owned computer. So, when using your laptop you should save your files to class folders on your computer and back them up on a usb drive, an online cloud server, or on another computer at home.


 Q. How do I print from my laptop?
 

A. Printing will be set up on your laptop during Laptop Boot Camp.  There are a number of WiFi enabled laser printers around campus that you will be able to use.


 Q. Can I let my friends use my laptop?
 

A. Loaning your laptop to anyone else is strongly discouraged. The only exception may be leaving it with the Technology Department staff for troubleshooting problems for you.


 Q. Where do I keep it when I’m not using it?
 

A. When not in use, keep your laptop in your backpack or in your locker in its protective case. NEVER leave it unattended. Any laptop left lying out in the hallways or left in a classroom unattended will be taken to the Middle School office where you will need to go to retrieve it. If you repeatedly leave it out and unattended, the School will call your parents to come pick it up for you.

Please contact Ms. Remick, Director of Technology, if you have questions about the Laptops for Learning Program.  805.687.1652 ext. 215 or email: bremick@lagunablana.org

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