All Sixth Form students should bring a device each day to use in lessons and to make best use of school network/digital resources on site.
Please see our Sixth Form bring your own device overview here.
A digital stylus option is now of growing importance to a number of Sixth Form courses. For devices which do not support a digital stylus and touchscreen, a USB drawing tablet should be considered instead, for example, the Wacom One model.
Many students will already have a suitable device (or one that is sufficiently close to the recommended specs) and so no new additional device will be required.
If purchasing a device however, we recommend the Microsoft Surface Pro 7 (Core i5 8GB RAM 128GB SSD) for the best balance of suitability, portability, affordability and quality of digital inking.
As of June 2020, Amazon offer this, including the type case keyboard (required), for £868. Alternatively, the Microsoft Store offers a 10% discount for students, if requested, by telephone on 0800 0260061, although this costs more than the current Amazon price even with the discount.
Students do not need any Office 365 subscription with this because it is available to download using their school logins from office.com.
Students are advised to purchase the Surface education pen & the Kensington rubber case directly from The Perse ICT office (around £35 each) for a discounted rate.
The school strongly recommends that parents have insurance in place for all personal devices brought on site. Students should keep devices in lockers when not in use but accidents do happen, particularly to screens. In some cases, devices may be included on wider insurance schemes that families already have (e.g. house insurance). However, individual named device insurance can sometimes offer better isolated protection (e.g. to make a claim without directly affecting any no-claims benefit on a different policy). The school cannot offer any advice on this however, as it depends on other insurance policies that families may or may not have in place. Extended warranty e.g. for two or three years is also strongly encouraged where available but, depending on the scheme, often does not cover accidental damage and does not include loss or theft.
Students and parents will have different views/needs, including possible longer term usage beyond Sixth Form. Chromebooks can also stand out for value for money and with robust models available which support digital pen inking. These can also offer good access to web browsing, school email and Microsoft Office apps including OneNote. This would cover more than 90% of the day-to-day functionality that students actually use and would certainly suit as a school device if students have access to another device at home for any additional, more advanced, editing tasks.
Windows laptops with decent performance (8GB RAM/i5 processor/SSD) are also increasingly affordable, particularly if purchased as a ‘refurbished’ option. Again, a digital inking model should be chosen wherever possible.
We encourage a pragmatic approach. Devices with screens smaller than 11.6” can be good for portability/convenience, but are only suited to subjects with less intensive web research/essay writing. The Surface Go 2 then, for example, has a smaller screen than ideal for any extended work, but has good resolution and brightness so might be an option for some who will use their devices less.