Student Laptop Program

At JCHS, we want to empower students and families to choose the tools that are most appropriate for them. 
Research has shown that when students personalize their education, it accelerates learning, and so JCHS employs a "Bring Your Own Device" policy with regard to student laptop and device use.

Below are answers to the most frequently asked question about laptop use along with our suggested technical specifications.

Laptop Specifications

Frequently Asked Questions About the JCHS Technology Program

List of 12 frequently asked questions.

  • Why does JCHS have a “bring your own device” model?

    We want to empower students and families to choose the tools that are most appropriate for them. Research has found that when students personalize their education, it accelerates their learning.
  • Will parents be required to purchase a new laptop for their student/s?

    Only if they currently do not own one that meets the minimum requirements (see laptop specifications). 
  • What if a student forgets his/her laptop at home?

    We maintain a small pool of laptop loaners available during the school day, available on a first-come, first-served basis. The student signs a 1-page laptop loaner agreement, leaves an item of value behind at the Tech Office, and returns the laptop no later than 3:30pm that same day.
  • Who is responsible for the maintenance and updates of these devices?

    All maintenance for the hardware device, operating system, software and/or apps purchased by the family are the responsibility of the family. Families should ensure a quick maintenance turnaround for student devices. Loaner laptops will be available in the tech office for no longer than two weeks for emergency situations. The family owns and is ultimately responsible for the upkeep and usefulness of the device. JCHS recommends that families purchase an Accidental Damage policy for their laptop.
  • What do I do if my laptop is stolen?

    We suggest that each family check to see if their homeowners  or renters insurance will cover the theft of a digital device. It is also a good idea to investigate special insurance from a company such as Square Trade or Worth Avenue. If a laptop is stolen, file a report with your local law enforcement agency. Software such as Lojack for Laptops is available to help law enforcement officials track the whereabouts of a digital device when it connects to the Internet. You are free to install such software at your own expense.
  • We have another computer at home for our student to use. Can students leave their laptops at school?

    Students may choose to leave their laptop at school as long as they are stored in the student’s locked school locker. Students opting to leave their laptop at school need to develop a reliable system for transporting or sharing documents back and forth.
  • How can students protect their computing device from theft or damage?

    Learning to take care of school supplies -- whether textbooks, calculators, uniforms, or computers -- is one of the daily tasks of student life.  We highly recommend that students purchase and carry their computer in a sturdy travel case and always lock computers in their lockers when not in use during the day. We also encourage students to backup data to a cloud-based service (e.g., Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.) or to an external storage device.
  • What else do JCHS students need to bring for their laptops?

    Please bring a protective carrying case and power cord. It is very important that you are able to protect your laptop from bumps and dropping with a sturdy case. A power cord is also very important especially if your laptop will not hold a charge for at least four hours. Headphones or earbuds are also required. Please see the Minimum Specifications sheet for more detail.
  • Can my child bring an Internet capable device (i.e. smart phone, iPad, etc.) in lieu of using a laptop?

    No. At JCHS, classroom use of laptops is designed around use of full version software applications and Web-based resources. While the small size of an iPad or smart phone is convenient, the processing power and memory does not meet the specifications which will be required for the resources and assignments teachers use. Moreover, the iPad does not display Flash-enabled websites, many of which are used by our teachers.
  • Will the laptop need to be connected to the internet to complete homework assignments?

    Yes. Students will need to be able to access their homework assignments via our learning management system. In addition, they may need to do internet research, retrieve work that resides on the internet, save work to the internet, or collaborate with other students to complete work that resides on the internet.
  • Do I need to purchase insurance for my device?

    When purchasing your laptop, please make sure you purchase Damage Protection (PCs) or AppleCare (Apple). Apple laptops will also need additional insurance for accidental damage protection as it is not covered under AppleCare. This ensures that your laptop is protected against accidental damage to your child’s device on and off the school campus. Fire, theft and acts of God are usually not covered under these programs, and we recommend you talk to your insurance carrier about your coverage. All insurance claims must be settled between you and the insurance company.
  • Is any technical support available on campus?

    JCHS will provide students with instructions and assistance in connecting their laptops to our wireless network, printers and projectors, as well as try to answer some basic questions. We will also provide tech support to students with minor problems during the school day. Due to staffing limitations, we are unable to provide extensive technical support for your individual computer. If a problem will take more than about 15 minutes to solve, it probably needs to be taken off-campus. Loaners will be available for no longer than two weeks for students who experience problems that require their laptops to be taken off-campus for servicing. As noted earlier, we recommend that you consider getting an extended warranty with your computer as a hedge against future hardware or operating system issues. This is strongly suggested if you are buying a laptop or if the standard warranty period is one year or less.
The Jewish Community High School of the Bay (JCHS) is a unique college preparatory high school committed to integrating deep learning, universal wisdom, and Jewish values. We empower each student to embrace her or his Jewish identity, generate empathy and compassion, delight in lifelong education, and improve the world.
Jewish Community High School of the Bay
1835 Ellis Street, San Francisco, CA 94115
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Phone: 415.345.9777

JCHS is grateful for generous operational, programmatic, and financial support from: