L.A. school board votes to distribute iPads to 38 more campuses

“Continuing its efforts to provide every student with a computer, the Los Angeles Board of Education on Tuesday agreed to distribute iPads to 38 more campuses, begin the process of purchasing laptops for seven high schools and buy as many tablets as needed for new state tests in the spring,” Howard Blume reports for The Los Angeles Times. “The goal of the $1-billion effort is to provide a computer to every student, teacher and administrator in the nation’s second-largest school system.”

“Board members approved a $115-million proposal that removed entirely a cap on how many iPads the district could buy for standardized testing scheduled for the spring. But they insist the number will be well below the 67,500 tablets the district staff had recommended,” Blume reports. “The iPads used for testing will be shared by different classes during the six weeks of testing. The oversight committee, relying on a district analysis, had recommended purchasing about 38,500 tablets for testing. Senior L.A. Unified officials, however, decided that schools should have more tablets in the event of unexpected problems.”

“Critics have accused officials of trying to buy as many iPads as quickly as possible to make it difficult to stop the effort. L.A. Unified is paying $768 per iPad, one of the highest prices among school districts because it selected a relatively expensive device and included curriculum in the cost. The plan, which includes network upgrades at schools, is expected to consume all the technology funds available through voter-approved school-construction bonds,” Blume reports. “The proposal, approved unanimously, expands the iPad effort, which began in the fall at 47 schools. The laptop trial at high schools was launched out of concerns by board members that iPads might be the wrong device for older students.”

“Apple Inc., the maker of the iPad, had agreed to provide the latest tablets at no additional charge,” Blume reports. “Until now, the district has been locked into paying top dollar for a discontinued model.”

Read more in the full article here.

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  1. But… but… but the L.A. BoE could have bought twice as many Google Nexus 7s and the students would be able to sideload apps after they rooted those tablets. Aww, they blew it.


    1. LA has a massive illegal immigrant population from Mexico and to a lesser degree other parts of Latin America. Having a large population of poor who move around, and do not speak the native language makes a very large impact on the educational system. How to deal with this issue is an ongoing national debate, but it has as yet not been effectively managed by anyone, and in the mean time it will continue to effect the society and the children in it.

      1. Although you claim I make judgements, I have just posed questions. I don’t know what answers you came up with but the judgement seems to be all yours.

        Education is the only thing that will advance mankind and the states that don’t adequately fund education are the ones that are in the most trouble. These are political choices and are fully in the power of the people there when they vote. Ignorance is not a thing to celebrate and it is time that the states and countries that are lagging behind in education make better choices. Learn to think critically and purchase goods and services that will get the most for the money. Look at the true bottom line.

  2. Textbooks are dead, sooner or later but make it sooner. Even for McDonalds you need to apply online, so get these kids connected.

    My daughter’s backpack weighs 100lbs walking home every day full of books. Forget about it.

    Anyhow, there are companies creating dynamic tablet curriculum that makes textbooks look like the world book encyclopedia. Get the heck out.

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