This week’s meeting of the Encinitas Union School District board of trustees was a contentious one because a slew of parents turned up complaining that their sons were looking at pornography and other inappropriate material on school-issued iPads.
Five of the outraged parents spoke at the meeting in Encinitas, a laidback beach town about 30 miles north of San Diego, reports the Seaside Courier, a local newspaper.
An angry father said his seven-year-old son ogled some porn after a classmate had downloaded the sexual subject matter at home and brought it to school on a taxpayer-funded iPad.
A mad mother said she was traumatized after seeing porn on her son’s tablet computer.
A second frustrated father — this one an information technology specialist — told school board members that he had successfully added a filter for inappropriate material to his son’s iPad. However, the kid’s teacher wiped the filter right off the very next day.
The Encinitas school district originally launched its iPad program in 2012 for older students. By now, though, every student from kindergarten through sixth grade gets a tablet.
The district has purchased 5,400 tablets altogether. The cost of the project is $2.7 million annually. The amount comes from a bond approved by voters.
“[O]ur IT director has come up with a potential solution to utilize our mobile device management system to filter our iPads at home,” district superintendent Tim Baird informed concerned parent Amber Goodson in an email, according to the Courier. “We are currently testing this solution in an upper grade classroom at Ocean Knoll. As soon as we get verification that this solution is working, we will be implementing it district wide [sic]. I appreciate your input and focus on this issue.”
Baird promised to provide a timeline for fixing the district’s problem with little kids gawking at porn soon.
Meanwhile, just up the road in Los Angeles, the much larger school district disastrously tried and failed to throw iPads at every teacher and student — at a projected cost of $1 billion to taxpayers.
A pilot program failed miserably. Hundreds of students figured out almost immediately how to hack the security settings on their iPads. Another 71 kids ostensibly lost their iPads just as immediately.
Then, a week or so after giving thousands of iPads to students as part of a 47-school pilot program, officials at high schools in Los Angeles Unified School District had to take them back. (RELATED: EPIC FAIL: Los Angeles High Schools Now Confiscate All Free Ipads They Gave Students)
Despite promises by administrators that wireless connections would be sufficient, many teachers pointed to persistent infrastructure glitches. Almost 75 percent said they or their students had experienced serious connectivity problems. (RELATED: L.A. Schools’ Ipad Giveaway Continues To Be A Hilarious, Epic Disaster)
Each iPad cost the school district $700. The school district was also supposed to pay an extra $60 million each year in order to re-license the English and math curriculum software on the devices.
Last month, a federal report determined that the ambitious billion-dollar plan to give iPads to every public school student in Los Angeles was doomed from the start. (RELATED: You Didn’t Even Know Just How Stupid The LA School District’s Plan For iPads Was)
In the summer of 2014, Los Angeles school district officials announced that they would permit 27 high schools to select from a set of six different laptop computers to give to students. (RELATED: After Last Year’s Epic iPad Disaster, Los Angeles Schools To Try Possibly Epic Windows Disaster)