LAUSD sues over failed iPad program

Meagan Ford

Los Angeles Unified School District is suing Apple, Inc. and curriculum-creator Pearson after the $1.3 million iPad program failed to deliver over its two-year implementation.

Former district Superintendent John Deasy first proposed the program in 2012 with a promise to provide iPads to over 600,000 LAUSD students as well as teachers. However, the program quickly broke down. Starting with an April 13 letter from LAUSD to Apple, the district began to sue Apple. Furthermore, FBI has begun to conduct a criminal investigation into the iPad program.

The program was anticipated to cost at least $500 million, not including additional expenses for internet improvements to streamline the program, according to LAUSD and Apple, Inc.’s contract. According to a 2014 Los Angeles Times article, the FBI seized records of expenses on Dec. 1, 2014, out of suspicion that the iPad program was illegally funded using federal money.

According to a letter sent from LAUSD to Apple in 2014, “any given class typically experiences one problem or more daily.” And several schools have stopped using the iPads altogether. By April 7, only two of the 69 schools with iPads used them regularly.

LAUSD has rejected the program entirely. Following the resignation of John Deasy, superintendent Ramon Cortinez gave his blessing to stop using the products, stating that “LAUSD will not accept or compensate Apple for new deliveries of Pearson, Inc,” in a released statement.

LAUSD declined to comment on the nature of the lawsuit and how it may affect students.

According to an April letter from LAUSD to Apple, “LAUSD will no longer use Pearson content for the ITI (Instructional Technology Initiative) nor will (LAUSD) be making any further purchases of devices from Apple that contain Pearson content.”