Boondoggle

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The Los Angeles Unified School District is prepared to spend $1 billion on iPads to be distributed to students and teachers. This is while the schools in Los Angeles are plagued by too large class sizes (40 or more students) and crumbling buildings. (A friend of mine who works as a high school teacher tells me that there is sometimes raw sewage in the hallways of the school where he works.) The iPads, which cost $647 each, will be obsolete in a few years, and in three years the district will have to spend $60 million to renew the licenses of the educational programs on the iPads. And the district apparently has no plans for what to do about iPads that get lost or broken.

This seems to me to be symptomatic of our society’s love of gimmickry when it comes to education. Standardized tests and charter schools are seen as magic solutions to our schools’ ills. Handing out iPads to students is the logical result of this shallow thinking.

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4 Responses to “Boondoggle”

  1. fututasumhic Says:

    I live in Europe and I do completely agree with you. This is also happening in here, not with ipads but with the way things are (not) working. How can this be? Is our global world global only in the weird way?

  2. The Spanish Prisoner Says:

    I’m not sure what you are trying to say here, but, yes, our a world is global in a weird way.

  3. Sue R Says:

    Cynically, I wonder who stands to make money out of the provision of i-Pads. It also encourages pupils to think that old-fashioned learning has been superseded by electronic wizardry.

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