Blocking Ads on Student iPads

While internet content filtering is important, it doesn’t necessarily block advertisements embedded in websites, Google searches, YouTube videos, or inside apps. Most advertisements are harmless (but annoying), but do kids really need to be exposed to an onslaught of commercialism while at school? Many ads can disrupt classwork or might conflict with the school’s mission, vision, or code of ethics.

So we want to block the ads, but Safari on iOS doesn’t let you just download an AdBlock plugin like you would for a PC or Mac web browser. A few alternative browser apps have adblocking, but they aren’t the default and we can’t force students to use them. But don’t worry: we have a solution.

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Warning! Configurator 1.3 – DO NOT UPDATE!

Apple has released an update to Configurator 1.2.1 to 1.3. The update removes very important functionality. In version 1.2.1 you could install mobile Profiles to as many devices as you could plug in. Now after the update you can only install profiles, one at a time.

Configurator 1.2.1 has the option to deploy Profiles to all connected devices.

Configurator 1.3 removes the ability to install Profiles to all devices and only allows to install on one devices at a time.

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Snooping & Spying On Student iPads via DiskAid

I'm not a fan of reading personal data but when it comes to kids, parents can be very persuasive. I believe what I'm going to explain here should be the parents responsibility but because we are providing the iPads they seem to think its ours. Every once in a while a parent or student may report abuse via our device. This is how we try to see what's really going on via a third party software app called DiskAid.

 

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Is your Wi-Fi good enough? Ours wasn’t.

I had home wifi routers in just about every classroom, plenty of connectivity to go around but there's a problem. When your device is connected to one signal it doesn't really like to jump to another even if the signal is stronger. So, if your connected to room 200 & you move to room 203 down the hall, if the iPad can still see it, it's not going to let go and connect to 203, unless you force it.

Next problem is in naming. Each router needs its own name. If you have 2 routers with the same name and the same password, it won't work. The pass might be the same but keys will be different which you have no control over. So if your schools routers are all named, myschoolwifi, and you walk down the hall, your iPad will try to connect but will just error out in some fashion. Might even say connected but will have no ideas how to actually communicate.

So, when selling us on the iPad program, Apple suggested, AeroHive.

Using our existing network, their team came in and mapped out our building and ended up installing 13 Access Points, through the halls.

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