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Gosford Public School

Gosford Public School

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Student Use of Digital Devices and Online Services Procedure



This procedure guides student use of digital devices and online services at our school.

Our school acknowledges the educational value of digital devices and online services in supporting and enhancing educational outcomes and student wellbeing. We also recognise they may cause harm if used inappropriately and that we need to support our students to use them in safe, responsible and respectful ways.


This procedure provides a consistent framework for the safe, responsible and respectful use of digital devices and online services by students in our school. It sets out the shared responsibilities of school staff, students and parents and carers. It also provides a framework to manage potential risks to student safety and wellbeing.

This procedure covers student use of digital devices and online services in school-related settings, including on school grounds, at school-related activities and outside of school where there is a clear and close connection between the school and the conduct of students. This procedure covers the use of school-provided and personal digital devices and all online services.

Our School’s Approach

As part of our strong and ongoing commitment to Future Focused teaching and learning practices, Gosford Public School has implemented a Technology for Learning (T4L) initiative, which commenced in Term 1 2022. This initiative is school-wide with all students K-6 having the opportunity to participate. 

Depending on the individual learning requirements of each class, students will have the opportunity (not compulsory) to participate by bringing a personal technology device (that meets school specifications) into school to ‘value add’ to their learning, unit of work, or time specific teaching and learning experiences. Some classes may be completing work that lends itself to the use of a personal technology device for an extended time period, while others may only require the use of personal devices during a particular unit of work or short project. 

The T4L initiative refers to students bringing a personal technology device to school to use for educational purposes under the direction of a teacher. For the purposes of T4L at our school, a ‘device’ means a privately owned wireless tablet/laptop/notebook computer. 

The school will provide the ability to connect compatible devices to a filtered Department of Education internet service which will provide safe, secure internet access for students.

There are many reasons for T4L at Gosford Public School. These include:  

·      Bridging the gap between school and home

·      Personalised and differentiated learning, e.g. Using Google Classroom as a platform and a variety of apps to produce quality pieces of work, accessibility and options to adjust to learners’ needs

·      Augmenting best teaching practice by redefining and modifying what students can do 

·      Allowing students more control/ownership of their learning

·      Building student organisation skills and sense of responsibility

·      Fully Engaging students in learning activities

Gosford Public School is sensitive to the fact that not every family may be able to access a device for use. It is important to note that students unable to access their own technology, will still be able to access technology at school, with the school having both fixed and portable devices available for student use.   

For successful access to the Department of Education internet, strict adherence to device specifications is required. These are set out on the adjoining page. We encourage you to refer to the device technology specification sheet when determining if your child’s device is suitable. Students will be using their device primarily to access the internet, complete set work using Google Apps for Education, as well as using other web-based applications.  

Technology for Learning is part of an evolution of technology use and our school is leading the way. Developing and maintaining students that are well versed in Digital Technologies is a key area that Gosford Public School believes will set students up for future success.

Please Note: Gosford Public School has made the decision that mobile phones, smart phones and smart watches will not be accepted as part of the school T4L Initiative.  


Students will need to house their device in a sturdy case for protection and take their device home each night so that they can be charged.


When at school, students should only use their device to access classroom related activities. T4L devices will not be used before/after school or during break times in the playground. Students will comply with teachers’ requests to turn off the device during periods of explicit instruction. Students should not take photos, video or sound recordings of other students and members of staff without their knowledge and consent. They are not allowed to transmit or post photos, video or sound recordings taken at school without the expressed permission of a teacher.  

Consequences for inappropriate use

Gosford Public School uses behaviour supports to help students learn how to behave in safe, responsible and respectful ways. NSW public school staff must follow the School Behaviour Support and Management Plan when supporting students who show behaviours of concern. A copy of this plan can be accessed on the school website and via the front office.

Breaches of Student Use of Digital Devices and Online Services procedures or violations of school or class rules involving a student’s personally owned device may result in appropriate action by the school. This may include the loss of internet and network services access for some time, as determined by the Principal.

The school reserves the right to inspect a student’s personal device if there is reason to believe that the student has violated school policies, school rules or has engaged in other misconduct while using their personal device. 


Exemptions to any part of this procedure may apply for some students in some circumstances. Parents and carers can request an exemption and these will be considered on a case-by-case basis and granted when required by law or at the principal’s discretion.

Contact between students and parents and carers during the school day

Should a student need to make a call during the school day, they must approach the administration office and ask for permission to use the school’s phone. During school hours, parents and carers are expected to only contact their children via the school office.

Responsibilities and obligations

Supporting students to use digital devices and online services in safe, responsible and respectful ways is a shared responsibility.

For students

·         Be safe, responsible and respectful users of digital devices and online services, and support their peers to be the same.

·         Respect and follow school rules and procedures and the decisions made by staff, knowing that other schools may have different arrangements.

·         Communicate respectfully and collaboratively with peers, school staff and the school community and behave in the ways described in the Behaviour Code for Students.

·         Take full responsibility for their own device. While every effort will be made to ensure their security, the school and its staff take no responsibility for loss, theft or damage to the device either at school or in travel to and from school.

·         Charge the device prior to bringing it to school each day. It should be capable of running off its own battery while at school. Desired battery life is 6 hours minimum.

·         The student will use the school’s filtered wireless network. Mobile phones or smart watches are not considered T4L devices. Use of 3G - 5G wireless connections are not allowed.  

·         Store the device in a sturdy case for protection. 

·         Ensure their device has up-to-date anti-virus software installed. 

For parents and carers

·         Recognise the role they play in educating their children and modelling the behaviours that underpin the safe, responsible and respectful use of digital devices and online services.

·         Support implementation of the school procedure, including its approach to resolving issues.

·         Take responsibility for their child’s use of digital devices and online services at home such as use of online services with age and content restrictions.

·         Communicate with school staff and the school community respectfully and collaboratively as outlined in the 2018 School Community Charter.

·         Switch off or put their digital devices on silent when at official school functions, during meetings and when assisting in the classroom.

·         Provide digital devices that meet school specifications where a school is participating in a bring your own device program and complete any related paperwork.

For the principal and teachers

·         Deliver learning experiences that encourage safe, responsible and respectful use of digital devices and online services. This includes:

­    Establishing agreed classroom expectations for using digital devices and online services, in line with this procedure and departmental policy.

­    Identifying strategies to ensure that all students are able to engage in classroom activities including strategies to accommodate students without a digital device.

­    Reading and abiding by the Terms of Service for any online services they use in teaching, including those limiting use by age.

­    Educating students about online privacy, intellectual property, copyright, digital literacy and other online safety related issues.

·         Model appropriate use of digital devices and online services in line with departmental policy.

·         Respond to and report any breaches and incidents of inappropriate use of digital devices and online services as required by school procedures, departmental policy and any statutory and regulatory requirements. This includes:

­    Reporting the creation, possession or distribution of indecent or offensive material to the Incident Support and Report hotline as required by the Incident Notification and Response Policy and Procedures and consider any mandatory reporting requirements.

­    Working with the department and the Office of the eSafety Commissioner (if necessary) to resolve cases of serious online bullying and image-based abuse.

­    Following the school’s behaviour management plan when responding to any incident of inappropriate student behaviour relating to the use of digital devices or online services.

·         If feasible and particularly as issues emerge, support parents and carers to understand strategies that promote their children’s safe, responsible and respectful use of digital devices and online services.

·         Participate in professional development related to appropriate use of digital devices and online services.

For non-teaching staff, volunteers and contractors

·         Be aware of the department’s policy, this procedure and act in line with the conduct described.

·         Report any inappropriate use of digital devices and online services to the principal, school executive or school staff they are working with.

Communicating this procedure to the school community

Students will be informed about this procedure by their classroom teacher and through messages delivered by the Student Representative Council (SRC).

Parents and carers will be advised via the school newsletter. This procedure can be accessed electronically via the school’s website and in hardcopy at the school’s administration office.


If a student, parent or carer has a complaint under this procedure, they should first follow our school’s complaint process. If the issue cannot be resolved, please refer to the department’s guide for students/ parents/ carers about making a complaint about our schools.


The principal or delegated staff will review this procedure annually.

Devices Specifications

Hardware Specification

The device MUST meet all of the following requirements

Form Factor

Laptop, hybrid (touch screen notebook), Chromebook Device, or Tablet.

Physical Dimensions

•       Minimum Screen Size: 9.7”

•       Maximum Screen Size: 17”

Operating System (OS)

•       Microsoft Windows 10 or 11

•       Apple macOS 10.14 (Mojave) on newer

•       Apple iOS 11 or greater

•       Android 10 or greater

•       Chromebook version 90 or greater

Battery Life

Recommended advertised battery life of six hours or more

Wireless Capabilities

Device must have 5GHz 802.11n support

This may be advertised as:

•       Wi-Fi 6

•       Wi-Fi 5

•       Dual Band Wireless

•       802.11ac

•       802.11ax

•       Gigabit Wireless

Note: Devices marketed as “802.11bgn” probably do not support the required standard.

Additional Requirements

•       Maximum weight: 1.8kg (strongly encouraged)

•       Minimum RAM: 4GB, 8GB+ (preferred)

•       Minimum Storage: 128GB, Solid State Drive - SDD (strongly encouraged)

•       Accidental loss and breakage insurance (strongly encouraged)

Functional Specification

The device must also meet the following functional requirements pertaining to application software

General Education Software

Web browser:

•       Google Chrome 90 or newer

•       Microsoft Edge 90 or newer

•       Firefox browser 96 or newer

•       Safari browser 14 or newer


• Word Processor, Spreadsheet & Presentation Package: Examples include Microsoft Office Suite, Google Apps (Chromebooks).

Microsoft Office and Adobe products are provided to all DEC students free of charge. These are most compatible with Microsoft Windows and can be downloaded through the Student Portal.

Back up

Cloud or USB based backup solution

Students must ensure that their files are regularly backed up. Note that not all “cloud” based solutions will work through the DOE network.

Security/Virus Protection Software

Current and reputable security / virus protection software. A declaration will need to be signed and returned to school. This will be sent home in due course.