chell (Chris Bohling)

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School board votes unanimously to purchase 4,000 MacBooks for district

What should we do?

Get rid of a significant amount of testing and pay the teachers more.

February 28, 2017 at 11:24 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

School board to vote on purchase of 4,000 MacBooks for high schools

True, but basically any bulk enterprise computer sales have similar warranties attached, regardless of manufacturer.

February 27, 2017 at 4:12 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

School board to vote on purchase of 4,000 MacBooks for high schools

I would bet the cost includes a pretty hefty warranty so unless it's an easily fixable problem like a bad drive, bad computers will just get sent back to Apple and replaced.

February 27, 2017 at 2:21 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

School board to vote on purchase of 4,000 MacBooks for high schools

Macs are high-quality machines for sure, but they aren't enough better than mid-priced Windows machines or Chromebooks for them to actually be worth the price premium. Also, buying into the Apple infrastructure for the district locks you into Apple's upgrade cycle, where software updates and hardware compatibility are largely dictated by Apple. It's always stuff like: upgrade your print server, new server is only compatible with MacOS 10.12, but all your machines are running 10.10. Try to upgrade your machines to 10.12 and oops, they're not compatible with 10.12! Hahaha, nothing you can do about it! The district would be losing a significant amount of control over their own systems.

On the other hand, there are many examples across the nation of districts giving Chromebooks to their students, which are 1/4 the cost of Macbooks, have enough functionality for students to be able to do their schoolwork on them, and work within a relatively open ecosystem that doesn't tie you down to a single vendor and gives district IT more flexibility and control.

Now, I know that the district has already purchased many Macbooks for teachers and staff and so they're probably already operating mostly within the Apple ecosystem. But they're wasting a fortune on it.

February 27, 2017 at 1:05 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

School board to consider issuing MacBooks to all high school students

IIRC Apple will frequently give school districts/universities significant discounts in terms of the up-front hardware cost with these kinds of programs, but the downside is then that you are increasingly locked into the Apple ecosystem, which is a problem for obvious reasons.

February 13, 2017 at 11:19 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

School board to consider issuing MacBooks to all high school students

I like the idea of giving everybody a computer, but buying everyone a $1000+ Macbook (I'm aware there are some discounts available) is a nonsensical boondoggle. Every use case the J-W has listed here could be easily accomplished with a $250 Chromebook. As a taxpayer I'm willing to let my taxes go towards improving technology access for all students. But there's no reason to spend four times more than you need!

February 13, 2017 at 8:23 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Appeals court refuses to reinstate Trump's travel ban

Well, he could always just issue another EO with another travel ban.

February 9, 2017 at 7:04 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

As Trump slams judges, Supreme Court pick describes comments as 'disheartening'

Don't worry, keep the Bob Summers formula in mind:

If a conservative is in charge and things go poorly: blame the "entrenched liberal bureaucracy" Even if it's Kansas and the Republicans have held majority control of the legislature for decades, it's still the "entrenched liberal bureaucracy."

February 9, 2017 at 10:04 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Kobach argues for authority to split elections to enforce citizenship rule, claims as many as 18,000 noncitizens on voter rolls

Our objection isn't about that at all. It's about protecting the constitutional rights of citizens.

As I said above, the problem is that voting is a constitutional right and must be made accessible to everyone, and that right cannot be impinged without due process of the law. If you require documentation of citizenship to vote, you need to make sure the necessary documentation is available free of charge and with little to no hassle or delay.

To put it in context: Citizens who are homeless and broke are still citizens. They still have the constitutional right to vote. If you include a voting requirement that through context requires a person to have money and/or an address (as Kobach's rule effectively does), then you are violating the constitutional rights of those who may not have an address or sufficient funds to get their documents.

Kobach's law is quite similar to the poll tax or pre-voting tests that were used in the Jim Crow south - it's "fair" on the surface but in reality it disenfranchises the poor the needy.

February 8, 2017 at 8:32 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Kobach argues for authority to split elections to enforce citizenship rule, claims as many as 18,000 noncitizens on voter rolls

As I've said many times, the problem with voter ID laws is that all of the documents considered necessary proof-of-citizenship in Kansas cost money to get. You can't assume that everyone received their birth certificate from their parents.

So if a citizen has no proof-of-citizenship documents and no money to pay for the documents, under these rules, they are being denied their Constitutional rights. Since it's a financial issue, this denial of rights hits the poor and needy hardest.

If there were a nationwide system that allowed a person to receive a proof-of-citizenship document at no cost (and with expedience), I wouldn't have too much of a problem with this sort of a rule. But so long as citizenship documents cost money to obtain, this rule is unconstitutional.

February 7, 2017 at 4:28 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

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