Superintendent apologizes for poor communication regarding iPad cost

NEW HAVEN, Ind. (WANE) – Lots of parents in East Allen County Schools still aren’t happy they have to pay more money for iPads. The decision was made months ago; parents within East Allen County Schools now have to pay more for iPads at their child’s school. But some said they refuse.

“I personally have spoke to over probably close to 200 parents in the last two to three weeks who said the same thing- they’re not paying that bill,” Amanda Dowell said.

Ever since the change was made back in May, it’s been a battle. Parents said they had no notification and just all of the sudden got a bill in the mail. Most parents paid the $30 for insurance but the new bill is $131 per iPad. That’s because the district decided to pay for Apple Care – which is 100-dollars.

“We went from $30 dollars a year to $525 for an iPad that after four years the school will get to keep,” Dowell said.

The schools have paid for iPads through capital funds but now, for three years, parents will pay the $131. Superintendent Ken Folks said he thought they communicated this change to parents well enough but quickly found out the parents disagreed.

“In June and July we distributed information. June on the website, July in newsletters. When parents came to register in August, it was at all of our registration sites,” Folks said.

Folks apologized in his superintendent’s message saying he was sorry for the ‘stress and anxiety’ this has caused. Monday he described it as a learning situation.

“We could have done a better job. We didn’t use our school messenger. But I thought we had communicated. I didn’t know that parents didn’t know until they brought it to my attention that they didn’t know,” Folks said.

Parents agree but still aren’t on the entirely same page.

“I hope that the district will learn from this and at least help protect you know parents that are going to be having children move up into junior high and high school and prevent them from walking down the same path,” Dowell said.