Garin College is a BYOD (Bring You Own Device) school – all year 9-13 students need a computer at school next year. We have clear advice of what works best at Garin.

BYOD Overview

BYOD Overview

You will have noticed that increasing numbers of schools are making the switch to BYOD. Garin College moved to BYOD in order to take advantage of the new opportunities information technology offers students in a blended learning environment. A student device is essential to participate fully in the learning environment. Not all devices however are made equal and we do have some basic minimum requirements to ensure that the students are not disadvantaged.

System Minimum requirements (must haves):

  • Good Wifi (any new device will suffice)
  • Full-form keyboard (students need to type comfortably)
  • Screen large enough to work at comfortably for the student (minimum 10”)
  • At least four hours’battery life (It is not always possible to have the device plugged in)
  • Anti-Virus support (many devices come with a few months of trial antivirus software installed). The device MUST have active and up-to-date anti-virus software to be allowed on the school
  • The device MUST meet the above Minimum requirements to be allowed as the main student device. We do however have some preferred devices for you to consider when you are deciding on a new device for school.

Preferred devices

You do not require a powerful machine and neither do you need to buy any software to do this. A device need not cost any more than $400. While some other devices that meet the above requirements are allowed, Garin College strongly recommends that incoming students choose either a device that runs the full Windows or Apple operating systems.


Student devices are valuable items even beyond the monetary value associated with them and as such we have some recommendations to consider for adding to the student device.

Warranty: The life expectancy of a device is around three years and as most repairs to a device involve replacing the screen or the motherboard, an extended warranty is recommended. Please note that warranties differ from supplier to supplier. Please ask about things like “are you supplied with a replacement device to use if your device needs to be taken in for repair”.

Hard case protection: a hard case can save damage from students dropping their school bags or knocking them about. Note that this kind of damage is not usually covered by warranty.

External Mouse: An external mouse can make things easier for students.

Solid state drive: If the device does not come with a Solid State Drive or SSD It can often be negotiated or the larger Hard disk Drive (HDD) swapped for a smaller Solid State Drive (SSD) as they are less prone to damage, quieter and use less power – in effect extending the run time of the battery.




BYOD Best Practice

BYOD Best Practice

Students should:

  • Share and talk about the problems they are having.
  • Install Google drive as it allows working off-line.
  • Secure their device by setting up as ‘public domain’.
  • Watchthe battery level. Charge the device every night.
  • Hibernatethe device when not in use to save power.
  • Do updates to keep software current. Do these at home as downloading at school is inconvenient.
  • Use Google Driveas it will allow the creation, sharing, storing, and backing up of data.
  • Be organised by regularly tidyingGoogle Drive.
  • Check email as they will be messaged frequently by teachers and school admin.
  • Manage wireless by only using it when necessary.

Parents should think about their child’s safety by:

  • Supporting their child in doing the above.
  • Rationingwireless access at home. Turn it off! Change the key.
  • Not allowany device in to your child’s sleeping area.
  • Askingyour child to friend you on face book.
  • Ensuringyour child’s Face book is locked down.
  • Ensuringyou have an admin account on your child’s device.
  • Monitoringwhere the device is used. Nothing must be private!
  • Ensurethe devise is ready for school every day.
  • Paying for 3 years replacement warranty.
  • Providing a purpose designed school bag.
  • Discouraging the sharing of a device and never
Device Advice

Device Advice 

Primary devices: You will require a device which allows you to create and edit documents efficiently, which means typing and managing files. This requires a full-size physical keyboard and a screen large enough for you to see what you are doing and work comfortably for hours at a time. You do not require a powerful machine and neither do you need to buy any software to do this. Capable devices can cost from as little as around $400.

Minimum Specifications: (to be allowed as the primary device)

  •          Wireless card support (5Ghz 802.11ac preferred)
  •          Full form keyboard
  •          Minimum 10” screen (Large enough to wok comfortably)
  •          6+ Hour Battery life
  •          USB Support
  •          Anti-virus protection –  (AVG or Avast have free versions)
  •         Win 7 to 10   Mac OS X
  •          3-year warranty (recommended!)

Things to consider:

  •          A Wireless mouse makes life easier
  •          Solid state drives (SSD) are fast robust and efficient and use less power.
  •          School bag with Laptop support makes transport safer and easier.
  •          Some pre-installed antivirus requires re-licence after 3 to 6 months!
  •          A second hand device can mean you are buying someone else’s problem.
  •          Devices do not have to be expensive or very high spec’


Device overview:

  • Chrome books are not recommended. (if you already have one we will allow it)
  • One reason they are not recommended is that they do not support the installation of programs and can only run “apps” from the “app store”
  • MacBook’s’ (Air etc.) are very popular, are good but very expensive and unnecessary.
  • IPads or any PAD is unacceptable. Devices must have a fully attached keyboard.
  •  As most work is done on the “cloud” one of the most important parts of the device has become a good fast reliable wireless card (see minimum specifications)


Peripheral devices

Smaller devices (Phones etc.) may go on the network and share the unique wireless key and access the internet but they are not considered suitable tools for learning due to their limited size. They could be useful for accessing Gmail or the KAMAR portal.


Get Connected

Get Connected

There are a few steps you need to take before you are able to get connected to the GC-BYOD network:

  1. Choose and buy a suitable device. You can read the preferred devices page to help you choose.
  2. Read and submit the form outlining the expectations.
  3. Receive and connect with your personal key.
  4. We recommend you change your sharing settings so your device is not visible and able to be accessed on the school network.


You may not be alone so share your problem with your class mates first. There is an expert in every class 

Can’t get the internet/Google even though I’m connected!  

  • Check that you are not already connected on another device (ie your phone -turn the phone to flight mode)
  • Disconnect/reconnect
  • Have a go with Mozilla Firefox
  • Reboot
  • If you are comfortable, try disabling the network adapter then re-enabling it
  • Go find tech support.


Purchasing Options

Purchasing Options

You can purchase a computer from one of the big chain store retailers like the ones listed below:

There are also on-line retailers such as: