Apple will re-bid on nixed $1 billion LA Unified School District iPad contract

Posted:
in iPad edited August 2014
Though Apple's contract with the Los Angeles Unified School District to put iPads in the hands of every student was canceled this week, the company still has a shot to win out in the end, bidding once again on the troubled $1 billion project.

Education


Both Apple and Pearson had their contracts severed by Los Angeles officials this week, but they will be supplying new bids as the nation's second-largest district looks to regroup, according to The Wall Street Journal. Still, the canceled contract essentially sets Apple back at square one, more than a year after the company had publicly touted the deal as a coup for the iPad in education.

The original plan called for a $1 billion rollout of iPads sporting digital textbooks from Pearson to all public school students in the Los Angeles area. But the project quickly ran grossly over budget, and more recently the deal was scrutinized as accusations arose that top employees at the district had improperly close ties with Apple.

Specifically, Superintendent John Deasy and Deputy Superintendent Jaime Aquino were found to have had regular contact with executives at both Apple and Pearson well before they won the contract, which gave some the appearance of a potential conflict of interest. Deasy insists that the bidding process was conducted properly, but agreed to cancel the contract to "take advantage of an ever-changing marketplace" and also give "time to take into account concerns raised" about the project.

As of now, there's no timeframe as to how the future re-bidding process will work. So far, Los Angeles had spent about $61 million on tablets and laptops for about 40 schools, or 4 percent of the district.

Though Apple will apparently remain a part of the bidding process, the company has remained silent on the nixing of the contract, and has not responded to accusations that it worked improperly close with the district superintendent in order to secure the deal.

While Los Angeles got cold feet, other schools around the country have been embracing Apple's iPad, including an announcement this week from Minnesota's St. Paul School District, which plans to roll out 40,000 iPads to students in 37 schools around the city. Rather than purchasing the tablets, the school district plans to lease them from Apple.

Apple revealed in its last quarterly earnings call that more than 13 million iPads have been sold for education globally. The company also said it currently sells 2 and a half iPads for every Mac sold to kindergarten through 12th grade institutions.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 19

    LA school officials need to talk to that blogger from Europe (either Ireland or the UK) that talks a lot about large scale iPad deloyments. He seems to know what he is talking about. I forgot his name or the webaddress for his blog.

  • Reply 2 of 19
    canukstormcanukstorm Posts: 2,427member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RalphMouth View Post

     

    LA school officials need to talk to that blogger from Europe (either Ireland or the UK) that talks a lot about large scale iPad deloyments. He seems to know what he is talking about. I forgot his name or the webaddress for his blog.




    His name is Fraser Speirs.  Here's his blog;

     

    http://www.speirs.org/

     

    He also did a 15-part podcast on iPad deployments in education so these LA school officials should listen to that too.  He knows his stuff.

  • Reply 3 of 19
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member
    It makes sense that they would rebid. They didn't do anything wrong given the lack of evidence. it was whoever that wrote the specs that is the fault in this. Sounds like whoever that was really really wanted it to be iPads and wrote the specs to suit. Rather than writing them based on research of what the district needs and the iPad happening to fit the bill.

    That said, I rather hope they aren't trying to do a one size fits all scheme. Because frankly the needs of elementary kids aren't the same as high school. iPads in a case might be fine for 4th graders but a 12 grader is likely to also need a keyboard, perhaps even a stylus. And the type of apps and books will be different.

    by the same token the concerns about proper use are different. We saw what happened when they handed iPads to high school kids without proper research into tech etc. the kids figured out they could remove the MDM super easy and of course did it. And apparently there were no contracts etc about losing the iPads, hacking them etc. If the proper policies etc had been in place the kids that hacked the MDM, no matter how easy it was, would have been suspended, expelled or whatever.
  • Reply 4 of 19
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RalphMouth View Post

     

    LA school officials need to talk to that blogger from Europe (either Ireland or the UK) that talks a lot about large scale iPad deloyments. He seems to know what he is talking about. I forgot his name or the webaddress for his blog.


     

    Let's hope they know how to use that thing that you use to look for things online, to find that blogger from Europe (either Ireland or UK) that you forgot his name and webaddress for his blog, or something.  

  • Reply 5 of 19
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by redefiler View Post

     
    Let's hope they know how to use that thing that you use to look for things online, to find that blogger from Europe (either Ireland or UK) that you forgot his name and webaddress for his blog, or something.  


    I used that thing but I didn't find it. I did find this though.

     

    http://www.avaya.com/blogs/archives/2013/11/updated-nov-2013-123-largest-ipad-deployments-by-enterprises-and-schools.html

  • Reply 6 of 19
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by redefiler View Post

     

     

    Let's hope they know how to use that thing that you use to look for things online, to find that blogger from Europe (either Ireland or UK) that you forgot his name and webaddress for his blog, or something.  


     

    Having a bad day? 

  • Reply 7 of 19
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RalphMouth View Post

     

     

    Having a bad day? 


     

    Nope, only get emotionally charged over comments at MacRumors,

    and specifically when it involves iPod nano rainbow colors and poignant human interest topics.

     

    You just lazy write, don't h8.

  • Reply 8 of 19
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member

    Sloppy writing. The project is a billion dollars, the device portion is, over the project's life, half that. The remainder is infrastructure and such.

  • Reply 9 of 19
    relicrelic Posts: 4,735member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RalphMouth View Post

     

     

    Having a bad day? 


     

    I don't think that's it, I was kind of thinking the same thing, not about you forgetting the guys name, I have Google and know how to use it but if you look, there are bogs with people promoting every type of technology under the sun for education, ChromeBooks and Windows laptops alike. Most even look like they know what their talking about. Let's hang back and see what the school district comes up with, I have feeling they'll go with the cheapest solution anyway. Whatever they choose though I'm sure they'll make it work.

  • Reply 10 of 19

    If what they are saying is true, and that Apple made some school officials rich via some 'Payola' scheme, let me be the first to volunteer to buy the new iPhone 6 for my entire family!

     

    All I need is $10,000 to talk them into it, apple..... talk to Tim, see what you can do!  <nudge>

  • Reply 11 of 19
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 22,828member
    If what they are saying is true, and that Apple made some school officials rich via some 'Payola' scheme, let me be the first to volunteer to buy the new iPhone 6 for my entire family!

    All I need is $10,000 to talk them into it, apple..... talk to Tim, see what you can do!  <nudge>

    Who said Apple paid off school officials?
  • Reply 12 of 19
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,408member

    I find it difficult to believe Apple had no protective clause or penalty attached to this contract with LAUSD. What legal counsel would advise a company of Apple's stature to engage in any contract unless it first protected Apple? Especially when politics is involved. I foresee class-action lawsuits and people being fired over this.

  • Reply 13 of 19
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,408member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post





    Who said Apple paid off school officials?

     

    I don't think anyone has suggested that. It appears the LAUSD RFP was written to closely describe the iPad, excluding cheap crap from the running.

  • Reply 14 of 19
    desuserigndesuserign Posts: 1,316member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

    If the proper policies etc had been in place the kids that hacked the MDM, no matter how easy it was, would have been suspended, expelled or whatever.

     

    Perhaps, but zero tolerance in schools is way over done, mainly because many of the administrators are narrow-minded bureaucrats.

    Nothing destroys creativity like imposing an institutional "death penalty" on kids for being curious, intelligent, and daring.

    Apple is essentially made up of people who were the kind of kids who would have done this sort of thing.

  • Reply 15 of 19
    jetzjetz Posts: 1,293member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

     

    I find it difficult to believe Apple had no protective clause or penalty attached to this contract with LAUSD. What legal counsel would advise a company of Apple's stature to engage in any contract unless it first protected Apple? Especially when politics is involved. I foresee class-action lawsuits and people being fired over this.


     

    They may have those clauses.  But do they really want to be seen suing a school board and get into it over allegations that there was shady business dealings?

  • Reply 16 of 19
    elrothelroth Posts: 1,201member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

     

     

    I don't think anyone has suggested that. It appears the LAUSD RFP was written to closely describe the iPad, excluding cheap crap from the running.


    Yeah, their mistake was mandating that the thing actually works, and has some form of security protection and no crapware. I can see why the other manufacturers would complain - they had no shot.

  • Reply 17 of 19
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,254member
    relic wrote: »
    I don't think that's it, I was kind of thinking the same thing, not about you forgetting the guys name, I have Google and know how to use it but if you look, there are bogs with people promoting every type of technology under the sun for education, ChromeBooks and Windows laptops alike. Most even look like they know what their talking about. Let's hang back and see what the school district comes up with, I have feeling they'll go with the cheapest solution anyway. Whatever they choose though I'm sure they'll make it work.

    If they come up with a ton of 'whatever Microsoft call their latest attempt to enter the tablet market' it will be very sad.
  • Reply 18 of 19
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member

    Maybe they'll dial the specs back to a simple textbook e-replacement? Then Kindles come into play.

  • Reply 19 of 19
    relicrelic Posts: 4,735member
    If they come up with a ton of 'whatever Microsoft call their latest attempt to enter the tablet market' it will be very sad.

    I don't think so, too expensive or at least their pro models are and I highly doubt they'll go the RT route unless all they need is a device to access the web, then a ChromeBook would probably be the better choice. Again, whatever they choose I'm sure they'll make it work. My daughters school uses ChromeBooks and you would actually be surprised as to how well they've integrated them into the students curriculum, quite impressive actually. Teachers use what are basically website wizards to create content from text books, including tests. My daughter can also retrieve any lesson plans that she missed if she couldn't make it to school due to illness. Also, unlike a normal Windows laptop, there are no ads in an educational ChromeBook, even when the student is using Google Search, tracking, no, she logs in with an anonymous 6 digit student ID and is also behind the schools proxy so no one knows it's actually her, just a person who is in Luzern.
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