L.A. school gives away Apple iPads to motivate perfect attendance by students

L.A. school gives away Apple iPads to motivate perfect attendance by students
We don't know what things were like at your school, but back in the day, students were motivated to achieve perfect attendance in the classroom by the possibility of a spanking. Things are obviously softer now. Two seniors graduating from the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) each received an $18,000 car for having perfect attendance, while five elementary school students each received a brand new Apple iPad.

Why reward perfect attendance? As it turns out the school district receives $32 a day for each student that actually shows up in class. This year, it lost $156 million from absences including a whopping $14 million from kindergartners alone. Considering the cost of the iPads, it seems that the district's plan is making them money.

"When students miss school, they miss critical instruction time that cannot be made up," said Debra Duardo, executive director of Student Health and Human Services. "That impacts teachers who have to spend extra time with the student, and their classmates who said, 'Why do we have to go over this lesson again?' "

All of which proves that receiving a free Apple iPad is better than a spanking.

source: LADailyNews via TUAW



1. speckledapple

Posts: 902; Member since: Sep 29, 2011

That cannot be a good thing that students need motivation to come to school and so the school provides iPads. Go to school and learn something.

4. Reluctant_Human

Posts: 913; Member since: Jun 28, 2012

I remember when the incentive to doing good in school was trying to be the best, making your parents proud, and wanting to genuinely learn something. This is what happens when you give prizes for mediocrity and can't hold a student back a grade when he or she doesn't deserve to pass.. This proves that nowadays you get rewards just for showing up.

6. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

After the student receive their iPad what's next? An MacBook air to keep them in school? They need to educate them better! Authority must come with responsibility given to the educator.

7. quakan

Posts: 1418; Member since: Mar 02, 2011

Yeah I think I watched that movie too. Sadly, that has never been the reality for most children in school throughout history. Keep in mind children with higher attendance rates also are more likely to maintain higher grades. Most children fall right into the average range, a few that are like what you described and more, and of course your bottom dwellers, who are only in school because they have to be. I believe that incentives may not encourage all students to perform well because habitually mid to low grade students may just say to themselves, "Well I'm out of the running for that", but students who regularly receive Bs and Cs may work harder to receive that reward. I feel like regardless of the student's agenda for wanting to excel, it should be great too see them wanting to excel at all because it's a win-win situation.

2. FlushGordon unregistered

Paid Article disguised as News

3. Reluctant_Human

Posts: 913; Member since: Jun 28, 2012

And here I thought our schools were underfunded. It turns out they just hugely misappropriate money.

12. Zero0

Posts: 592; Member since: Jul 05, 2012

Both are true. Schools spend on the dumbest things sometimes, I swear. A few years ago, NJ cut state funding for schools. One of our local districts saved a few hundred thousand dollars by re-routing buses. They had all this money being wasted for all this time. Semi-related to this iPad thing, a lot of schools overspend on technology. I recently saw an article about a school in DC that switched to Linux and used donated computers; they ran as well as Windows PCs which sell for hundreds of dollars each. I understand that technology can be useful, but at a certain point, it becomes ridiculous. We don't NEED Windows, and a lot of this "use tablets" stuff is based on lobbying. At the same time, we could afford to spend more on things that actually matter in schools.

16. Reluctant_Human

Posts: 913; Member since: Jun 28, 2012

I know what you mean. I'm from Jersey too and friends with a lot of elementary school teachers and hear what goes on first hand from them and it borders on the ridiculous sometimes with how they waste money on stupid crap when it would be so much better used for other things. Like you said, the big one being technology just so the government and board can brag about it.

5. yyuu1000

Posts: 260; Member since: Jul 26, 2012

get a nexus 10

8. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

I constantly hear about needing more money for education, and they're giving away cars & ipads. Apparently they have enough money, but they're blowing it on BS. Not everyone has to graduate, the world needs burger flippers & manual labor.

10. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Education lead to a more civil society, burger flipping and manual labor are also decent way to earn a living. You look down on others for their profession, that just telling the world how narrow your views are.

13. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

I'm not looking down on them for their profession, simply put those are 2 jobs that don't require a high school diploma, and the first two that came to my mind. My point was if that's all the further some want to take their education, that's their decision. It's not the school's job to bribe them to go further, especially with taxpayer money. The school that gave away 2 cars totalling $36,000, depending on where you live that's a teacher's salary for one year. That could've employed someone, but instead that money is going to 2 kids who were doing what all kids are supposed to do anyway. I'm not looking down on burger flippers, I'm angry with a group who's constantly asking for more money and then this is how they spend it. It's also telling how you automatically think that I am looking down on people. You can't know someone by what they write on the internet. Maybe try doing what I do, read a statement twice and see if there is another point of view that you didn't get the first time. It's not fooloproofbut it helps from making snap.judgements.

9. darkkjedii

Posts: 30972; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

They need Joe Clark, from "Lean on me" to be the Principle.

14. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

The man could motivate that's for sure, and wasn't afraid to take on the system.

11. Zero0

Posts: 592; Member since: Jul 05, 2012

So many things wrong with this. First of all, perfect attendance is worthless; it's far better to miss a day of school when sick than contaminate everyone. "I'm going to school, mom. My classmates can deal with a little bit of the flu; I want my free iPad." Second, there's far better motivation to go to school than a free iPad. Namely, better education correlates with better income, and people with better income have more money to buy iPads. Wanting to go to school is great, but do it for the right reasons (to actually learn something).

15. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

I thought about both those points after I posted last night, you saved me from having to type again, thanks.;) Either way you hit the nail on the head.

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