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[ NNSquad ] L.A. School District's Expensive iPad Program Already in Trouble

L.A. School District's Expensive iPad Program Already in Trouble

http://j.mp/1fmG8RZ  (L.A. Times)

    By Tuesday afternoon, L.A. Unified officials were weighing potential
    solutions. One would limit the tablets, when taken home, to curricular
    materials from the Pearson corporation, which are already installed.
    All other applications and Internet access would be turned off,
    according to a district "action plan."  A second approach would be to
    buy and install a new security application.  Apple's just-released new
    operating system might help, but not the current iteration, according
    to the district. A fix from Apple is not likely to be available before
    late December.  The devices should work normally at school, although
    even that has been problematic. Teacher Robert Penuela said his use of
    the tablets has been limited because he can't get them to work for all
    students at once.  Roosevelt freshman Alan Munoz said that, so far, he
    was using his iPad only during free time.  The excitement of receiving
    the device quickly wore off for senior Kimberly Ramirez when she
    realized it was for schoolwork only.  "You can't do nothing with
    them," she said. "You just carry them around."

 - - -

When this program (which basically was pushed through in secret) was
announced, I was critical of its cost (sweetheart deal with Apple and
Pearson for expensive iPads rather than alternatives) in a time when
the LAUSD really needs more teachers. And I noted that if the district
really thought they were going to restrict what students did with
these things (liability issues, huh?) they were fooling themselves.
Well ...

Lauren Weinstein (lauren@vortex.com): http://www.vortex.com/lauren 
Co-Founder: People For Internet Responsibility: http://www.pfir.org/pfir-info
 - Network Neutrality Squad: http://www.nnsquad.org 
 - PRIVACY Forum: http://www.vortex.com/privacy-info
Member: ACM Committee on Computers and Public Policy
Lauren's Blog: http://lauren.vortex.com
Google+: http://google.com/+LaurenWeinstein 
Twitter: http://twitter.com/laurenweinstein
Tel: +1 (818) 225-2800 / Skype: vortex.com
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