A multi-million pound IT contract that will benefit almost 70,000 children and young people in Glasgow schools and nurseries has begun the roll out of pupil iPads that will empower our pupils to embrace the digital age, improve learning and teaching and help towards closing the attainment gap.
This innovative project - in conjunction with CGI - and the biggest Apple education project in Europe, will see all pupils from P6 - S6 receive their own iPad as part of the council's connected learning and digital strategy and a shared iPad between five children in our nurseries and pupils in P1 to P5.
By 2021 every Glasgow primary and secondary teacher and their pupils will have access to their equipment, which includes a provision of a core suite of best-in-class education apps. This will transform learning in the classroom and help raise attainment and achievement across the city.
CGI is also working to bring in stronger networks into schools, including faster broadband speeds, a home wireless network TV and WiFi in every classroom.
So far, eight school learning communities have seen their teachers - more than 2,000 - benefit and the first pupils (S2/3) at St Thomas Aquinas Secondary have been getting to grips with their devices since before the summer and now back after the summer holidays, the roll out across all year groups will begin and the full impact of the digital strategy can filter through the school.
Then a planned roll out schedule will begin in earnest across the remaining 29 Glasgow learning communities.
Councillor Chris Cunningham, City Convener for Education, Skills and Early Years said: "This is a really exciting time for our schools and an amazing opportunity to digitally enhance the learning and teaching opportunities in our classrooms.
"We've had really positive feedback from the teachers who already have their devices with some brilliant examples of good practice and shared learning across the city.
"We want our children and young people to be equipped with the skills that will make them shine as digital citizens both now and later in their working lives.
"We are aware that 90% of jobs in Scotland involve digital work and so our pupils will be well equipped for the workplace.
"I know that this project will result in raising attainment and achievement in every one of our schools and nurseries.
"This is the biggest Apple education initiative in Europe and I'm delighted that Glasgow is once again leading the way in innovative practices."
Justene Ewing, Vice-President Consulting Services at CGI, said: "CGI is passionate about placing youngsters at the heart of education and raising levels of attainment and learning outcomes as well as supporting equality and inclusion for all.
"We believe our partnership with Glasgow City Council, which involves the rollout of 52,000 iPads in Glasgow's schools from today, will help achieve that goal.
"The rollout includes 47,100 student iPads and an additional 4,900 teacher iPads, which will help free up teachers and boost their control of the learning process, while also improving inclusivity for students in the educational process.
"It's a brave new world for pupils, teachers and parents and one that CGI hopes will help make schools in Glasgow an even greater place to learn."
All parents and carers will be invited to attend information and engagement sessions at their child's schools prior to roll out - and a chance to find out more about the many benefits of the scheme, but also to be made aware of the home school agreement.
This is a set of guidelines to help keep young people safe online and about the need to look after the new equipment.
To show off their digital skills and to help St Thomas Aquinas parents understand the new iPads, the pupils created their own film below
All iPads will be tracked and managed via Glasgow City Council's Mobile Device Management system.
All iPads can be locked or rendered inoperable remotely via Glasgow City Council's Mobile Device Management system.
Can my child access the internet?
Pupils can access the internet from their iPad however Glasgow City Council's firewall remains present to block inappropriate sites. However, parental supervision is always recommended.
Can my child keep personal information on the iPad?
Your child will be taught about the importance of password security however they should not store any sensitive information on their iPads. Remember school staff can access iPad at any time.
Who is responsible for the iPad?
Your child is responsible for keeping the iPad safe and should only remove it from their school bag either in school or at home. The iPad remains the property of Glasgow City Council and must be returned whenever requested by school staff.
Will my child still use jotters and textbooks?
Pupils will continue to use books and jotters in class. The iPad just offers an enhancement to teaching and learning strategies already used in STA.
Can my child access social media?
As with all Glasgow City Council devices which allow internet access all social media sites are blocked.
Can we take the iPad on holiday?
Once your child has been given their iPad it is theirs to use however the home school agreement must be followed.
Can I use a different case or charger?
As stated in the Home School agreement only the equipment provided by the school should be used for protecting or charging the device.
What should I do if the iPad is damaged?
If this happens then contact the school immediately.
What should I do if the iPad is stolen?
If the iPad is stolen then report it to the police immediately. Then contact the school.
Will my child be able to record photos and videos?
Pupils can record but must ensure that they only do this with permission and that recordings are appropriate.
What happens if my child accepts content from Airdrops?
Every child is responsible for the content on their iPad and have responsibility for what they accept from others.
What should I do if I am worried about how much time my child spends on their iPad?
As a parent or carer are responsible for the overall wellbeing of your child. If you feel that your child is spending too much time on their device then you can take appropriate action.
In school iPads will be used to enhance learning and teaching experiences - this does not mean your child will spend all day on their iPad.