We’ve seen a lot of news about technology in schools lately. It’s hard to keep up with all the updates, but one thing that is clear is that it is challenging to manage the influx of devices and other technology in schools today. We’ve heard stories about how some districts are collecting student devices every school year, some students keep devices until graduation, while others even give devices to students permanently. The question remains: Is it worthwhile to implement and keep track of a yearly device collection? In this month’s “Know How” we will explore and investigate the pros and cons of adding an annual device collection to your technology management processes.
- Drastically reduce the number of devices that are retired mid-semester.
- Theft and loss will decrease.
- Schools will save money by collecting all student devices in a single year.
- Many devices are already out of date at the beginning of a new school year, so collection could be done at more opportune times throughout the year, like during summer break or holiday breaks.
Drastically reduce the number of devices that die mid-semester.
You’re probably thinking, “What are the pros and cons of implementing a yearly device collection?” Well, there are many. Most importantly, students will be able to use their devices longer. When this happens, it saves the school district money because you won’t need to replace as many devices mid-semester. This will also free up your technicians from having a constant influx of repairs on outdated devices. Finally, teachers won’t have as much stress since the students will be using more reliable devices.
Theft and loss will decrease.
The collection of devices is also beneficial for student devices, who will be less likely to lose or damage their devices if they know that they will be collected in a specific time frame. This can help mitigate theft as well, as students are more likely to keep track of their devices.
The accountability that occurs with knowing your device is going to be collected at year end has been shown to drastically cut down on damages, loss, and theft.
Schools will save money by collecting all student devices in a single year.
If you are a school district looking to implement a device collection program, you may want to consider the potential financial benefits. A study conducted by Gartner states that the cost of a device replacement program depends on several factors including hardware, software, and services. These costs can quickly add up as devices become obsolete over time due to changes in technology or software updates.
Costs also fall into categories such as collection, repair, replacement, and lost devices. The cost associated with each category varies depending on how often your school replaces its devices and whether your district has an annual collection program in place.
The cost of collection and repair may be the most expensive component of your device replacement program. The cost of collecting devices from students and repairing them can be anywhere from $2 to $4 per device. However, this expense can be offset by invoicing for devices that are not returned to the school or those with malicious damages. This will encourage both students and parents to ensure their device is turned in sooner rather than later.
Many devices are already out of date at the beginning of a new school year, so collection could be done at more opportune times throughout the year, like during summer break or holiday breaks.
One of the main reasons that many schools are hesitant to implement device collection policies is because they feel it’s too costly, especially when there isn’t a good return on investment. The reality is that many devices are already out of date at the beginning of a new school year, so collection could be done at more opportune times throughout the year, like during summer break or holiday breaks. This would allow students to have access to their devices for longer periods of time and avoid paying for replacements in schools where budgets are tight.
- Some schools might not have the schedule flexibility for a yearly collection event.
- Districts may not receive enough funding from students’ secondhand devices to cover them all without charge.
Some schools might not have the schedule flexibility for a yearly collection event
As a school administrator, you’ll need to consider how your schedule might impact the year-end device collection event. If you have a longer or year-round school year, you may be able to hold a collection at the end of March or April. However, if your students have very short summer breaks (like in California and other states), it might not be feasible for them to come back for an event later in the year—instead they would need it held earlier on during their spring break. An alternative would be to plan two separate collections: one at the end of each semester or school year.
Another factor that might affect when and how often you collect devices is whether there are holidays during which no students are present in school anyway; these would naturally make good times for collecting devices if they fall near the end of one semester but not necessarily when another begins (for example, Thanksgiving). Many school districts now opt to deploy new devices mid-year rather than at the start of the school year.
Districts may not receive enough funding from students’ secondhand devices to cover them all without charge.
One of the biggest challenges to implementing a device collection program is that districts may not receive enough funding from students’ secondhand devices to cover all the repairs without charge.
This can happen for several reasons:
- Repair costs are often more expensive than new device prices. Many schools find themselves paying more for repairs than they would have if they had just purchased new devices in the first place, which means their budget will be even lower when it comes time for future collections.
- Buyback programs typically offer less money than repair costs, meaning that school districts won’t benefit as much from selling their old devices when compared to what they would get if they kept them and either repaired them or resold them on their own later down the line.
A device collection can be a great way to maximize the value of your technology investment. However, it’s important to keep in mind that this strategy may have some drawbacks as well. We hope we’ve helped you make an informed decision about whether a yearly device collection is right for your school district.
The Pros and Cons of Implementing a Yearly Device Collection in a K-12 School District The Pros and Cons of Implementing a Yearly Device Collection in a K-12 School District