iPads in schools Stories May 23, 2016

Apple and the Maine Department of Education are swapping out iPads for MacBooks after a survey found that students and teachers alike favored laptops for older students. The deal means that there will be no additional cost to schools for exchanging the devices, reports the Lewiston-Auburn Sun Journal.

Auburn School Department Technology Director Peter Robinson said that the success of iPads in primary grades had make them look like the right choice at the time, but they have turned out to be less than ideal for older students …

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iPads in schools Stories May 13, 2016

The best-known Unified School District program to provide an iPad to every student may have ended disastrously, but a similar program elsewhere appears to have been rather more successful.

In LA, Apple ended up repaying $4.2M to settle a claim by the LAUSD following a failed program that led to a federal review concluding it had been doomed from the start – and corruption investigations by both the FBI and SEC.

But a $42M program to supply iPads to all 20,000 students in Coachella Valley Unified School District has been declared a success …

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iPads in schools Stories January 13, 2016

Phil Schiller said in 2013 that “education is in Apple’s DNA,” and it’s no exaggeration. The company’s commitment to the education sector was there from the very beginning. Steve Jobs told the Smithsonian that he wanted to donate a computer to every school in the U.S. as long ago as 1979.

I thought if there was just one computer in every school, some of the kids would find it. It will change their life. We saw the rate at which this was happening and the rate at which the school bureaucracies were deciding to buy a computer for the school and it was real slow. We realized that a whole generation of kids was going to go through the school before they even got their first computer so we thought the kids can’t wait. We wanted to donate a computer to every school in America.

The company couldn’t afford it in those days, but Steve lobbied Congress to introduce a bill that would have created sufficient tax breaks to make it possible. That attempt failed, but Apple did succeed in brokering a tax deal in California that saw the company donate an Apple IIe to every school in California. Apple led the PC market in education for a time, and even created education-specific Mac models.

More recently, Apple appeared set to bring its educational success into the iPad era in 2013 when it announced a $30M deal (that would eventually have been worth a quarter of a billion dollars) to equip every student in the LA Unified School District with an iPad. If that program had succeeded, it would have created a template for rolling out similar ones across the whole of the USA. Instead, it failed catastrophically, and it now appears that Chromebooks are winning where iPads have failed …

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iPads in schools Stories April 17, 2015

We learned yesterday that the Los Angeles Unified School District may sue Apple for “millions of dollars” following the collapse of its plans to provide every student with an iPad. The mess eventually led to an FBI investigation and a federal review.

The latest development, as ever reported by the LA Times, says that the program is now the subject of a Securities and Exchange Commission inquiry into whether funds were misused in the $1.3B project …  expand full story

iPads in schools Stories August 26, 2014

A plan by the LA Unified School District to provide an iPad for each of its 640,000 students by the end of this year has now been suspended, and appears likely to be abandoned altogether.

Apple proudly announced the plan in June of last year, but it wasn’t too long before the arrangement came into question. Rollout was temporarily halted last September, when it was found that students were able to bypass restrictions designed to ensure they were only used for school work when taken home. A month later, it was suggested  that the school district might have gotten its sums wrong, with the true cost significantly higher than budgeted. It was then suggested in June of this year that iPads might not be the right devices …  expand full story

iPads in schools Stories September 26, 2013

The LA Times is reporting that the distribution of iPads to all 640,000 students in the LA school district may be temporarily halted after high school pupils worked out how to bypass the restrictions placed on the devices. Apple announced back in June that an initial start to the rollout was worth $30M.

While the school networks block apps such as facebook while at school, a personal profile was used to limit usage of the devices when taken home. Within a week, children at Theodore Roosevelt High School had worked out that deleting this profile removed the restrictions …  expand full story

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