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LAUSD must purchase at least $400 million before it will receive the discounted price of $678 per iPad

The iPad rollout in the L.A. Unified School District (LAUSD) just got a whole lot more expensive. 

According to a new report from the Los Angeles Times, the revised school budget for LAUSD shows that each iPad will cost about $100 more than the previously reported price of $678. The new price per iPad is now $770. 

Why the price jump? The report says that LAUSD must purchase at least $400 million before it will receive the discounted price of $678 per iPad. This means that the district would have to buy 520,000 iPads before getting the lower prices. 

The deal includes the iPad, a protective case, a limited three-year warranty, technical assistance and training, curriculum from Pearson Education Inc. (which is still being developed) and one Apple TV setup per 20 students.

LAUSD started out with a $50 million budget for the iPads, which is supposed to put an iPad in the hands of all students and teachers at 47 schools in the district. That budget includes training and upgrading wireless Internet at these campuses, but the prices seem to be increasing over budget. 

For example, the original budget set aside $20.3 million for iPad devices, but the revised version added over $4 million for the tablets. Also, the classroom carts (which are used to charge the iPads) were to cost $2.6 million for the first phase, but that rose to $3.2 million. 

LAUSD is trying to stay in that $50 million budget range by delaying a system for providing online courses and also shifting costs to the general fund of about $550,000. 

Despite these cost issues, the revised budget reportedly says the district is right where it wants to be in terms of the iPad rollout.

But cost isn't the only issue the district has had with the iPad launch. Earlier this month, LAUSD took the iPads back from students after nearly 300 students "hacked" into the devices allowing for access to prohibited websites like Facebook, Twitter and Pandora. About 2,100 iPads were distributed at that time. 

LAUSD counted 260 cases of iPad security "hacks" at Roosevelt, 10 from Angelou Community High School in South Park and 70 at Westchester High.

Apple scored a $30 million contract from LAUSD back in June, which is part of a a $1 billion technology plan in the school system. The school district committed to spending "hundreds of millions of dollars" with Apple over the next two years, since they chose the company as their only tablet vendor. 

Source: The Los Angeles Times

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RE: And that, my friends...
By kleinma on 10/25/2013 3:14:20 PM , Rating: 5
If they had gone android or WinRT, they probably would have been 400 dollar devices, and been just as good or better for what the school is going to use them for.

RE: And that, my friends...
By Apone on 10/25/2013 3:32:18 PM , Rating: 5
@ kleinma

Exactly, and to add to yours and vortmax2's comments, unless LAUSD has a new education/learning platform that requires students to have an iPad to learn and do schoolwork, I think Android or Win RT tablets are a more cost-effective alternative.

Honestly, I think getting students a full-functional $250-$300 refurbished notebook (e.g. Dell Latitude D630, E5400, etc.) would also teach them real-world work-related programs at an early age like MS Word/Excel/Access/PowerPoint so by the time they graduate middle or high school, they have a solid proficiency in these programs upon entering the job market.

RE: And that, my friends...
By Jeffk464 on 10/25/2013 10:33:56 PM , Rating: 5
You need to do a little research on LAUSD there is no learning going there in the first place. I fail to see how iPads are going to change the fact that its one of the worst performing school districts in the country. The should have focused on getting students to actually show up to class and actually graduate high school.

RE: And that, my friends...
By Apone on 10/25/2013 11:20:26 PM , Rating: 4
You need to do a little research on LAUSD there is no learning going there in the first place. I fail to see how iPads are going to change the fact that its one of the worst performing school districts in the country. The should have focused on getting students to actually show up to class and actually graduate high school.

No research needed; you just confirmed my suspicion about LAUSD and why it chose this particular (and expensive) course of action. Let's also not forget the liberal-ness of California that contributed to the clusterf*ck that is this iPad deployment.

RE: And that, my friends...
By headbox on 10/28/2013 4:25:49 PM , Rating: 4
My kids are home-schooled, no video games allowed, and my oldest just scored 99th percentile reading and 95th math- a grade above where public school would have her. F*CK public school. It's a failed experiment. Responsibility lies ultimately with the parents, not our public daycare system. Every new (and usually expensive) gimmick further illustrates you can't throw money and technology at the problem of parents not caring about their kids.

RE: And that, my friends...
By vFunct on 10/28/13, Rating: 0
RE: And that, my friends...
By vortmax2 on 10/30/2013 11:40:10 AM , Rating: 1
Unfortunately your post (albiet a but crude) is true in many cases and not so far from my stance on homeshcooling in the past. With that said, however, I've personally seen many responsible parents homeschool their kids properly...meaning both educationally and socially. In all cases, the kids have grown into responsible, educated, and socially adept adults with more than plenty to contribute to society. I've concluded that homeschooling, if done right, will usually surpass public education in my opinion.

RE: And that, my friends...
By HVAC on 10/30/2013 2:24:50 PM , Rating: 2
(apologies ... this is a diatribe, but not an uninformed one)

Success or failure in homeschooling lies with the combination of parent/teacher and student. A good teacher can teach beyond their own ability because they study and understand the best way the student learns. This study and understanding can be deductive or intuitive.

I do not write from ignorance, but I also do not write from a full understanding. I helped raise and homeschool my seven children for a period. It did not go well because the teacher/parent in question was engaging in homeschooling out of neurosis (control and fear issues) and the children were both dyslexic and diverse in learning styles (one audial, three kinetic, one abstract, one visual, and one too young to categorize).

There was a need for multiple different curriculum methods that overwhelmed the teacher/parent and the budget. Additionally it was discovered after the switch to public school that some of the students were audially impaired which kept them from proper communication development.

What I can say definitively is that socialization is actually better with homeschooling. The students interacted better with a wide range of people with different ages and economic backgrounds than I observed in neighbor children schooled at public school. This can be confirmed by reading about common homeschool myths (one can google such subjects for a wide array of information).

This relates to the parent subject on a parallel level. A school district trying to find different ways to engage students and different methods of teaching is good, but no one teaching method or engagement method is a panacea. For example, a tablet computer may engage visual and abstract learners (abstract learners, the ones that are bookworms and obedient and quiet are the ones most public schools are geared toward) but maybe not kinetic, audial, tactile, or mixed learners.

RE: And that, my friends...
By bill.rookard on 10/25/2013 4:11:29 PM , Rating: 5
Absolutely. Heck, I'm willing to bet that Microsoft would just LOVE to move a hundred thousand Surface RT's, plus they -come- with the Office apps pre-installed, and they could have gotten a nice discount in the process.

RE: And that, my friends...
By Varun on 10/28/2013 12:54:54 PM , Rating: 2
Microsoft even discounted the Surface RT to $199 for schools. This iPad rollout is a mind-blowing example of how to do the wrong thing.

This is what happens when the wrong people make decisions.

RE: And that, my friends...
By Motoman on 10/25/2013 5:26:51 PM , Rating: 5
Or $100 Android devices.

Or, best option yet...NOTHING.

There is no compelling reason to provide schoolchildren with tablet computers. None. The entire enterprise is a multi-million dolla boondoggle.

RE: And that, my friends...
By BillyBatson on 10/25/2013 9:08:41 PM , Rating: 5
I am in complete agreement!!!!! NOTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I work for a private school in the Los Angeles area, we offer grades from pre-school all the way to the 12th grade and have 5 campuses. We have some very famous and influential families that attend mainly because of our international baccalaureate program. We have purchased about 200 iPad 2's to students and 60 for teachers. We have also spent an additional $30k buying charging locking carts that house charge and sync the iPads while locking them "securely". I am not exaggerating when I said that the teacher iPads are never used as a teaching tool, and only a small percentage of the student iPads get used and are never used for more than making videos of various things (speeches, book reports, circus class) that get posted on the website for parents.
Our IT department never looked into alternatives, iPad is the defacto name in tablets to these people and the parents heavily suggested that the money be spent towards iPads rather than other teaching tools like smart touch white boards or updating our aging fleet of laptops.

Nothing is a better way to go! We could have updated teaching material, planned so many more field trips, or in any number of other ways. But at least when we show prospective parents the sticker price for 1 student to attend the school per year we can follow up with "but we have iPads".

RE: And that, my friends...
By StanO360 on 10/26/2013 2:16:51 PM , Rating: 2
It is all a little strange. Ask for specifics and there won't be any. Or Apple TV's in the classrooms when a $10 Ethernet cable would do the trick.

RE: And that, my friends...
By BillyBatson on 10/27/2013 12:52:21 AM , Rating: 2
We don't have a special contract with apple so I believe we didn't get any sort of discount (we can't afford to spend $400million just to save 10%) and so we don't have any apple TV's. Our school uses Toshiba Dynadocks to connect teacher laptops to a projector and smart board and an hdmi cable for iPads for rooms that have projectors with hdmi in which aren't many.

RE: And that, my friends...
By conq on 10/28/2013 12:41:06 PM , Rating: 2
Do nothing??? That's absurd, what planet do you guys live on?

Buying millions($) in iPads is the single best thing a politician could do for a school system to get noticed. Every parent will go home that day and say, "Gosh, this school district is bleeding edge! We're on our way to winning! I love these guys and what they do for my kids!"


Anyone remember Gateway 2000? When I was still in highschool 15 years ago, my school district made the same exact decision. Buy enough PCs to put 5-10 in every classroom, every grade. I even helped put them in as a student worker. It went over with the taxpayers big. But guess what? We ever only used them to play games in between classes. Quake ran wonderfully. Don't forget to tack on the support and software costs over the next few years. Biggest waste of my town's taxpayer's money ever. The kicker to top it all off? Naturally, they became obsolete in 5 years.

RE: And that, my friends...
By nafhan on 10/28/2013 1:33:14 PM , Rating: 3
The program as a whole sounds like a billion dollar boondoggle.

For some context (based on a quick Google search for teacher salaries in LA), a billion dollars = 20,000 teacher's salaries for a year. I have serious doubts this will even begin to approach the effectiveness of a few thousand teachers.

RE: And that, my friends...
By xaders on 10/25/13, Rating: 0
RE: And that, my friends...
By CaedenV on 10/25/2013 5:30:04 PM , Rating: 2
While I agree that winRT tablets would have been a much better call, there are a few reasons I have found in working with schools as to why they choose iPads. As annoying as it is, it is the right call too.
The #1 reason to choose iPads is the Pearson software, textbooks, and other educational apps are on the iPad. As much as I would love for schools to be about productivity and training kids for the workplace (learning office, adobe suites, and other production software), school is really built around reading books to fill circles on standardized tests. That does not require any projects, or group work, or critical thinking, or writing, or anything which will be remotely useful to students 10 years down the road when life will slap them in the face and they realize that they are all morons and failures who need to start over from scratch. The Apple App store has the books and the software to achieve those goals, so that is what schools honestly SHOULD buy to fulfill them.
The #2 reason schools get iPads is because of the manageability. Link a slew of iPads to a cart, link that cart to an account, and all of the crap that the kids did to those iPads throughout the day goes away overnight when it gets plugged into the cart, and all of the software is updated right along with it. It is stupidly simple management which is needed in schools where tech help is nowhere to be found.
Reason #3 is AirPlay support with AppleTV. It may suck down all of the wireless bandwidth in the classroom, but it is super simple to link the teacher's iPad to an AppleTV so that all of the kids get a nice big picture example of what they are supposed to be doing on the device in front of them. WinRT 8.1, WP8.1, and Win8.1 are all supposed to support something similar... but I have yet to see it in action.
Reason #4 is that (as much as I HATE it) there is no public support to buy anything but iPads. Increase taxes for facilities, or new computers, or raising teacher pay, or books... good luck! Raise taxes to get something flashy and gimmicky and people are all ears. Similarly, in the private school sector (where I have worked a bit), parents actively ask if students will be using iPads in the classroom. They don't know what they will be used for, nor do they really care. It is merely that they want their kids to have the 'best' technology available in the classroom, and Apple (at least in their minds) is the 'best'. It is to the point where a private school can raise tuition more than what the iPads cost, and still retain students, which makes the iPads not only free, but a sales asset. Try raising the cost to buy some netbooks or other tablets and it goes from an asset to a liability.
Reason #5 is that Teachers are horrible students. Obviously I am generalizing. My wife is a teacher, and I have had, and have met many teachers who do not fall under this category; But the fact of the matter remains that most teachers (by a large percentage) like to teach because they know all of the answers, have a set curriculum, and can reuse that curriculum year after year without having to learn anything new. Teachers may be experts in their field, but the minute that they are confronted with something outside of that narrow set of knowledge then they clam up and you can see panic and fear all over their faces. This is especially true with technology where they are so afraid to learn it because they know that everything is going to change in a year or two and they are going to be forced to learn everything all over again. And the scary thing is that this is not a problem with older teachers! There is a similar percentage of young teachers who are paralyzed with fear when it comes to technology as the older ones. But, you present them with something like an iPad and you get a TOTALLY different reaction. These same teachers who were literally scared to doubble-click on the link for MS Word on the desktop for fear of failing to click fast enough (honest to God, that is an actual problem I have had to deal with) face the iPad with enthusiasm and fascination. Their mere willingness to learn the platform makes it a more effective platform.

Anywho, I hate iPads, and I hate the way that most school systems are set up, but for these reasons alone it makes the iPads a better purchase than a winRT tablet ever could dream to be.

RE: And that, my friends...
By ritualm on 10/25/2013 6:53:49 PM , Rating: 4
There is only one thing I learned through ~20 years of school: don't bother trying to learn anything at an institution, do that learning yourself, and get a job as soon as you're legally allowed to work. Also, don't bother trying for an IT major, as you'll have to learn everything from scratch anyway.

Otherwise, by the time you graduate from college/university, you're barely qualified to flip burgers and change coffee filters for minimum wage.

RE: And that, my friends...
By StevoLincolnite on 10/26/2013 5:43:46 PM , Rating: 2
Flipping Burgers isn't that bad in Australia.
Sure customers pay an extra 70 cents per meal or whatever...

But it's about $17 an hour minimum wage, you get health care, sick leave, annual leave and soon parental leave all included.

RE: And that, my friends...
By Jeffk464 on 10/28/2013 5:52:22 PM , Rating: 2
Don't know why you got rated down, Australian style of life is better for a higher percentage of the population than that of the US. The average person in the US can only hope to have it as good as the average Aussie.

RE: And that, my friends...
By Noya on 10/28/2013 9:49:20 PM , Rating: 1
Don't know why you got rated down, Australian style of life is better for a higher percentage of the population than that of the US. The average person in the US can only hope to have it as good as the average Aussie.

Because a large percentage of the users on this site or close-minded American idiots. Git'R'dun Merica!

RE: And that, my friends...
By The Von Matrices on 10/26/2013 3:21:23 AM , Rating: 2
Thank you for the insight. I few paragraph breaks would be useful, but I like the perspective.

RE: And that, my friends...
By StanO360 on 10/26/2013 2:13:44 PM , Rating: 2
We had to buy a computer/tablet for our son (private school). The RT at academic pricing was the right choice. Definitely better for that usage.

RE: And that, my friends...
By Moto7451 on 10/27/13, Rating: 0
RE: And that, my friends...
By vFunct on 10/28/2013 11:22:01 PM , Rating: 1
Why would anyone abuse children by forcing them to use Windows RT or Android?

Why would anyone give children fake iPads?

Use a REAL iPad or get out.

Android and WinRT are completely worthless junk. They are known to be garbage, used by morons that got duped into buying fake iPads.

Nothing is as good as a real iPad. Everything else is worthless junk.

The fact that web usage stats show that the vast majority of iPads are used and the vast majority of other tablets remain unused show how worthless these Android and WinRT tablets are.

Anyone that promotes Android or WinRT tablets should be banned from society.

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