A Fresh Start
Since 2012, our school has enjoyed a 1:1 iPad program using the iPad 3. When the iPad Air was introduced its lighter weight, faster processor, and improved capabilities caught our attention. Many of our students use the iPad heavily to create digital content from research papers to full length video projects and we wanted to ensure they were having the best user experience possible. The only thing holding us back was the fact that we did not want to go through the same long drawn out deployment process of two years ago. Another grey area, iCloud backups and information storage, would our students have enough space to back everything up and restore it on a new device? After a few weeks of investigating we found that all of our students could accomplish a backup and restore on a new device. Then Apple announced the Device Enrollment Program and there was nothing left holding us back. Below is a roadmap of how we collected 600 iPad 3 and deployed 600 iPad Air in under 2 1/2 hours.
A LITTLE HISTORY
One week before the Refresh Day we began to remind students to perform an iCloud Backup of their device. On the evening before the Refresh Day we sent one final announcement asking that a final iCloud Backup be done. This ensured that the back up would be the most current version.
On the Refresh Day the campus was divided into 6 zones of about 100 students each and a schedule was constructed that would have each group begin the process in 20 minute intervals. The first step was to show a Keynote in the classroom that would have students confirm their Notability documents were saved on iCloud, to turn off Find My iPad, and slides reminding them what they need to bring down to the refresh zone.
BEFORE YOU BEGIN ...
Our cafeteria was used as the first part of the refresh process, which involved preparing the current iPad to be exchanged. As the students entered, two members of the iTech Squad greeted them and assisted in removing the current iPad from the case and disposing of the old case.
At the Damage Check station there were two faculty members who carefully inspected each device for dents, cracked screens, and scratched glass. If the device was damaged a yellow dot was placed on the screen. The student was then given a punch ticket which they would carry the rest of the way. If the device was damaged the checkbox on the ticket was left empty and if no damage was present it was checked.
Students were asked to return the 30-pin charging cable and keep their brick. If a student did not return the cable the checkbox was left empty. Students were also given the option if they wanted to purchase a new charging brick.
iCloud allows all of the student work, settings, and information to be restored on the new device so we wanted to make absolutely sure that the student did perform an iCloud backup. A faculty member confirmed if the backup was current and checked the box. If the iCloud backup was not current they were sent to a side table where a member of the iTech Squad assisted them in performing a backup.
CONFIRM iCLOUD BACKUP
We decided that the most effective way to receive the old device was the have it erased prior to returning it. A faculty member and iTech Squad member assisted students in going to Settings, General, Reset and erasing all content and settings on the device. The last checkmark on the ticket was then given.
ERASE ALL CONTENT & SETTINGS
After completing all of the stations in the cafeteria, students moved to the Interactive Student Learning Center where a faculty member greeted them at the door and inspected their punch ticket. If they had one or more checkmarks missing they were sent to the finance line to be charged $50 for a cracked or damaged device, $10 for a missing charging cable, and $20 for a charging brick. If they had all the checkmarks they continued onto the device return line.
As students entered the device return area four faculty members were ready to collect their name, iPad and punch ticket and handed the student the iPad Air voucher found at the bottom of the punch ticket.
Students continued on to pick up their iPad Air and exchange their voucher for the new device and lightning charger cable. Two faculty members distributed the devices while two iTeach Squad members opened the boxes.
iPAD AIR PICK UP
Students were given the option between two cases: A multi-functional case made by Cyber Acoustics and a more rugged Tuff Skin case made by TuffKase. 80% of the students selected Cyber Acoustics case and 20% went for TuffKase.
Five members of the iTech Squad assisted students installing the case of their choice.
The final stop on the refresh journey was enrollment. Here students were given a set of instructions to follow giving them the step by step for restoring their iCloud Backup onto the iPad Air, enroll into our mobile device management system, and receive all of the necessary profiles in order to access wifi, e-mail, apps and other school provided resources.
In order to provide a smooth restore experience we installed two Mac Mini Servers running Caching Server which greatly expedited the download speeds of apps and we had one wireless access point in each enrollment room broadcasting its own SSID in order to control the amount of users.
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A brief video showing our incoming freshmen getting their iPads during Summer school.