Los Angeles Unified School District Stories September 29, 2015

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Apple to hand back $4.2M to LAUSD to settle failed ‘iPad for every student’ program

Apple has agreed to repay $4.2M to settle a claim by the L.A. Unified School District over the disastrous attempt to put an iPad into the hands of every student, reports the Los Angeles Times. It was first reported back in April that the LAUSD might take legal action against Apple to recoup the money spent on iPads for the program. Apple had initially expected to earn $30M from the first phase, a number that would have reached around a quarter of a billion dollars if the rollout had been completed as originally planned.

The first sign of trouble emerged when students managed to bypass the restrictions designed to ensure the devices could be used only for school work, but that was only the start. The LAUSD was accused of having miscalculated the cost of the program, resulting in its suspension and later abandonment.

Both the FBI  and the SEC were called in to investigate allegations of corruption, and a federal review concluded that the entire project had been doomed from the start.

The Board of Education is expected to vote on whether or not to finalize Apple’s settlement offer. If so, nearly all the money repaid by Apple will be used to buy computers through a fresh program.

Image: Huffington Post

Los Angeles Unified School District 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

Los Angeles Unified School District Stories April 16, 2015

The Los Angeles Unified School District is exploring the possibility of litigation against Apple over the failed project intended to provide every student with an iPad, reports the LA Times.

The Los Angeles Unified School District is seeking to recoup millions of dollars from technology giant Apple over a problem-plagued curriculum that was provided with iPads intended to be given to every student, teacher and administrator.

The project ran into early problems when students figured out how to bypass the restrictions designed to ensure the devices could be used only for school work, shortly before the district was accused of having miscalculated the cost of the program. The program was suspended last year, and later abandoned after deciding iPads were the wrong device. This was far from the end of the story, however …  expand full story

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Los Angeles Unified School District Stories January 13, 2015

LA Unified School District ‘iPad for every student’ plan doomed from the start, says federal review

A federal review of the Los Angeles Unified School District’s plan to give an iPad to every one of its 640,000 students concluded that it was plagued by problems right from the start, reports the LA Times.

The report criticizes the scheme for unclear goals, use of school construction bonds to fund the scheme, failure to consider cheaper options, lack of teacher training, failure to upgrade Internet connections, poor security and poor support for lesson-planning around the iPads. So, er, pretty much everything, really.

“Among the most significant gaps we identified was the absence of district-wide instructional technology leadership,” the report stated.

The first public glitch in the program was when students figured out how to bypass the security restrictions designed to limit the devices to educational use. Next it was suggested that the school district had gotten its sums wrong on the true cost of the scheme.

A subsequent review backtracked on the plan to standardize on iPads, before the program was suspended and then permanently closed as the FBI opened an investigation into whether any laws had been broken.

Apple remains strongly committed to the education sector, last October creating a microsite to highlight its support for the ConnectED program focused on bringing Internet access and technology to schools in need. Tim Cook said in July of last year that Apple has an 85% share of the tablet market within US education.

Los Angeles Unified School District Stories December 2, 2014

Earlier this year the Los Angeles Unified School District announced that it would be suspending its “iPad for All” program after it ran into an array of problems. Things started off optimistically in July 2013 when the district announced that it would give 640,000 students iPads for school.

A few crafty students figured out a way to bypass the built-in restrictions on the devices, then the district realized that it may have miscalculated the cost of the entire program. Eventually officials started to question if iPads really were the right tablets to hand out after all.

Now the LAUSD has decided to scrap the entire plan for good just as the Federal Bureau of Investigation has started taking a closer look at the deal.

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Los Angeles Unified School District Stories August 26, 2014

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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

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