Our teachers received their iPads this week and it was an interesting process to hand them out! The teachers were so excited and could not wait to get their iPads. I broke out our training into groups of those that already had i-devices and those that didn’t. I figured that the group that already had devices would be ready to go and need minimal training and the group that didn’t have any i-device would need some extra hand-holding. I was correct in my theory, but I was completely wrong in how much I overestimated what the i-device group would be able to do and how much the group that didn’t have any apple experience would be able to do!
The biggest stumbling block to each group was the Apple ID! I am not sure why it has to be so confusing, but it is a huge problem. When the IT staff and I were trying to figure out how to deploy the iPads we knew that we wanted to the teachers to be able to load their own apps and make their iPads personalized. We knew that if we locked down the iPads then the teachers wouldn’t use their iPads and then they wouldn’t figure out why the ipad is such an amazing tool for teachers! The problem for us was how to use the UPP (Volume Purchasing Program) and allow the teachers to still have their own apple ID. We decided not to Pre-Load any apps on the teachers iPads, but rather give them a blank iPad and have the teachers load all the recommended (free) apps during a staff meeting. here is our list of apps that we had the teachers load. We are going to “gift” paid apps to our teachers. This will cause less headache as far as multiple apple IDs on each device and the need to sync teachers devices to a cart at the school. The cost will be about $100 per teacher over the life of their tenure at the school. The cost will only be realized when teachers are leaving the school. We figured this cost was worth not having the headache of dealing with apple ID’s and syncing.
We did this because with the VPP we can send the teachers a link to redeem the apps under their own apple ID and then we don’t have syncing issues. We have told the teachers to all sync their iPads to their work computer. We also instructed the teachers to create a new apple ID if they had a family ID where they had already purchased apps and would want to use that ID for purchasing apps. The teachers would need a separate ID for the iCloud backups, Facetime, and Messaging that is separate from their family ID (otherwise all data would be combined with the families data and teachers wouldn’t be able to message or factime). We showed the teachers how to put their family ID as the store Apple ID, but then add their new apple ID as their iCloud, Facetime, and Messaging id. I hope that makes sense, but here is a graphic that may help. It was very confusing to figure out! If someone has a better way to handle this I would love to hear it!