Apple’s efforts in education haven’t always gone as planned, but that hasn’t stopped the company from trying. And now it’s getting a big push in the right direction in the state of California.
The California Department of Education sent out a press release today that outlines Apple’s latest efforts to get iPads in schools, but the company won’t be doing it alone. The press release says that Apple will be teaming up with T-Mobile to get one million tablets to students.
At a time when schools have experienced a shortage of available computing devices, the two companies are teaming up with the state to facilitate technological access that currently prevents hundreds of thousands of students from connecting with their teachers, peers, and school communities. Apple and T-Mobile will fulfill orders from districts—which could reach up to 1 million students—with discounted iPads already equipped with high-speed internet connectivity.
The partnership between Apple and T-Mobile will see students given access to iPads with high-speed internet connectivity, all in an effort to make sure that distance learning is possible as this school year kicks off in light of an ongoing pandemic. Apple will be offering the standard educational discount for the iPads, while Apple and T-Mobile will be handling orders placed directly by the individual school districts.
As schools are working around the clock to prepare students and families for virtual learning, I want to commend Apple and T-Mobile for stepping up in a monumental way to support California’s neediest students,” said Thurmond. “As Californians, we have a shared commitment to ensure every student has access to the basic tools needed to connect to their learning, succeed in today’s world, and pursue their dreams. This commitment provides schools across the state a unique chance to put devices in the hands of students now, while potentially making longer-term investments that can help us remove these inequities once and for all.
Apple will go a step further and offer continued support for educators, with the company’s Professional Learning Team offering weekly virtual training sessions. Apple won’t be charging any extra fees for one-on-one virtual coaching sessions as well.
At Apple, we believe technology has the power to transform the learning experience for students at all levels,” said Susan Prescott, Apple’s vice president of Markets, Apps, and Services. “We are proud the State of California has chosen iPad to facilitate remote learning, and during these challenging times we look forward to working with administrators and school districts across the state to help make learning more accessible for their students.
The Governor of California recently approved a one-time funding for education worth $5.3 billion in the state, which districts can use immediately to buy the internet-connected iPads. Both Apple and T-Mobile say they can fulfill school districts’ requests for the tablets through the end of 2020.