Apple teams with Detroit Public Schools to provide students with Macs, iPods, digitial cameras, more

“The Detroit Public Schools and Apple Computer Inc. have inked an up to $1.2 million, four-year deal in which the district will lease computer equipment for a new small technology-focused school inside Crockett High School,” Christine MacDonald reports for The Detroit News. “Apple in turn will give the district more than 100 days worth of technology and teaching support, including on-site help in classrooms as teachers and students learn to use the laptops, said the district’s Chief Academic Officer Juanita Clay Chambers. Detroit is using federal dollars to pay for the lease.”

MacDonald reports, “The district will get about 780 laptops, as well as iPods, digital cameras and computer software. About 240 of the computers will go to the freshman class of the new Detroit Digital Learning Community High School at Crockett. And another 14 Detroit middle schools will get the remaining laptops, in hopes that many of those students go on to enroll in the new school once they get older… Gov. Jennifer Granholm, Detroit Public Schools officials and representatives from Apple plan on revealing more details about the program today at a press conference… ‘The governor sees this as the first of a whole new generation of high schools in Michigan,’ said Chuck Wilbur, Granholm’s education adviser. ‘It is the first of what we will hope to be a wave.’ Granholm is trying to get support from the Legislature for a $180 million loan fund that would pay for the creation of more small high schools. And the state has partnered with the Skillman Foundation to reach out to private lenders to support those schools as well, Wilbur said.”

Full article here.

Related articles:
Deal not final for Apple to finance Detroit school – August 31, 2005
Apple brings hope to Detroit by funding ambitious new high school – August 28, 2005


  1. Detroit is some $40m in debt and is very close to insolvency. I don’t see how this is a wise investment. Detroit schools need better oversight, not technology. I think in this case the computers would be a terrible distraction and waste.

  2. Let’s put things in perspective shall we.

    Last quarter, Apple made more than 3.5 BILLION and are expecting to end their fiscal year 2005 (this Friday) with 13.5 BILLION.

    1.2 million is less than 1/10000 of their yearly revenue. In fact, Apple is making about 35 millions per DAY!!!

    What’s 1,2 million over a 4 year period gonna change?

    Anyway, congratulation Detroit Public Schools, that’s a start.

  3. Naraa Haras,

    I believe that the article states that they are using federal dollars to fund this. It could well be that these funds are earmarked for technology purchases and Detroit would see a “use it or lose it” on those funds.

    I wonder why they needed iPods in this type of purchase, though. I suppose if you are teaching a music class it could be helpful. Or if your IT staff is loading disk images onto the iPod to easily setup Macs?…

  4. How nice for Detroit. They’re going to use “federal” dollars, like that’s some special kind of free money that wasn’t earned by someone else many miles from Detroit and confiscated by the Feds to buy votes. I’d wager many of the original owners of that money have kids who could benefit from an iBook and a digital camera. (yeah, right, a digital camera to do your homework with.)

  5. I hope this situation works out for all parties involved, particularly the students. Being a technophile (and a Mac one at that), I generally support the use of computers in schools at the classroom level.

    However, technology has to be applied appropriately as computers and software are not right for every class. Science and math classes, yes. Not as glorified calculators to do tasks for students, but as tools that can be used to illustrate concepts to make them easier to grasp. Technology and media type classes are other appropriate venues for computers in schools. Computers might also be useful to some degree in history/social studies/government classes.

    Literature classes, on the other hand, are where I see little use for computers, except for lesson assignment/compostion/testing purposes. Even compared to the best resolution monitors, books are just easier on the eyes.

    However, science/biology/math textbooks in digital form would be easier and less expensive to keep current with advances in those fields. Even the most recently published textbooks are often outdated by the time they get to students.

    There have to be plans for using technology. Mindlessly throwing money and computers at schools won’t help anything.

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