The Loyalsock Township School District proposed an iPad initiative Wednesday, that if approved would be implemented at the beginning of the 2013-14 school year.
"We want to hand an iPad to every kid eighth (grade) through 12," said Superintendent Robert Grantier.
Entering into a three year lease with Apple would cost the district about $181,000 a year. An additional $180,000 also would be necessary to update the district's network infrastructure, which it already was planning on doing.
The cost includes 700 iPads, 20 Mac Pros and Apple training.
The initiative would add to the "rough" budget estimate of a $118,000 deficit that Gerald McLaughlin, business manager, announced. McLaughlin said although the deficit would increase, the district has enough unassigned fund balance to cover it.
While exploring the iPad initiative, administrators and teachers visited Montgomery High School, which currently is in the middle of it's first year of a similar program. Teachers said they were impressed with the effectiveness of the program and how much more teachers were able to do.
Students would be able to take the iPad home. The district would purchase insurance for each iPad, but students and their families would be responsible to pay a deductible, which would range from $50 to $100, if an iPad was damaged and needed to be replaced. When asked what the district would do if a student refused to pay the deductible, Dr. Matthew Reitz, high school principal, said it would be handled on a "case-by-case basis."
Teachers spoke about how students would have all of their assignments and materials with them by having an iPad. Jennifer Beck, social studies teacher, said she currently uses an application that allows her to answer student questions on homework assignments as students have them at home.
McLaughlin said there could be a saving in textbook purchases, paper and printing costs.
He added there would be more discussions on the initiative before it is voted on and numbers could change.