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L.A. School District Hits Expensive Roadbump in iPad Roll-out

by Todd Haselton | October 25, 2013October 25, 2013 9:00 am PDT


The Los Angeles Unified School District has had high hopes in getting iPads in the hands of students, an obvious effort to bring classrooms into the digital age and likely to cut back on expensive and outdated text books. The district has hit a few road bumps along the way, the most recent of which was that students had figured out how to skirt the security software on their tablets to use them for entertainment instead of education. Now the district is hitting another issue, though this time it’s the fault of the school district.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the school district had originally expected to pay about $660 per iPad tablet in its long-term $400 million planned deal with Apple, though apparently it didn’t factor when a bulk discount price would be applied by Apple. So, instead of paying that aforementioned $660 price tag, the district actually has to pay about $770 per tablet because the discount doesn’t apply until after it spends $400 million. That means it won’t be able to buy as many iPads as originally planned, and would in fact have to purchase about 520,000 additional iPads for the lower price to take effect, the LA Times said.

The problem lies in the existing budget, which currently only provides about $20.3 million for the iPad devices, out of a total $50 million that factors in cost for training, software, mechanical keyboards and other expenses. While the $660 cost for each iPad might seem high, LA Times said it includes a 3-year warranty and a protective cover, in addition to other bonuses, like access to an Apple TV unit for every 20 students.

It sounds like the district is still moving forward with its plans, though it’s just not going to have as many iPads as originally thought.

LA Times

Todd Haselton

Todd Haselton has been writing professionally since 2006 during his undergraduate days at Lehigh University. He started out as an intern with...