- Eight months after pulling the plug on its troubled 1:1 iPad program, the Los Angeles Unified School District is threatening to sue Apple if it doesn't refund millions spent on the devices and related Pearson software.
- The district says that it won't spend another dollar on the Pearson software, which, according to Apple Insider, was riddled with errors and missing lessons and interactive materials that were promised when the deal was made.
- LAUSD attorney David Holmquist also told KPCC that the majority of the 650,000 students in the nation's second-largest school district still can't access Pearson's curriculum on the tablets.
Neither KPCC nor Apple Insider provided an amount for the refund being sought.
This latest chapter in the rise and fall of Los Angeles' abandoned $1.3 billion plan to put an iPad in the hands of every student is a doozy. On one hand, if the district can show that it was promised services, capabilities, and results beyond what it actually received, there's probably an argument to be made for the refund. On the other hand, there remains the view that the rollout may not have had sufficient preparation. Problems prior to the plan being dropped included unforeseen needs for accessories like keyboards. After all, it'd be pretty difficult for students to efficiently complete essays and other written assignments using an onscreen keyboard. And then, of course, there were the kids who "hacked" their devices by deleting security profiles.
Dropping the program wasn't the end of the issues by a longshot, either. KPCC uncovered last August ties between Pearson executives and former superintendent John Deasy (along with other top officials in the district), and December brought on a FBI investigation. Then, in February, news broke that the district could no longer afford a 1:1 program with any device.