AppleCare is pretty great but expensive and doesn’t cover everything in most cases. At our school we came up with a plan to speed up repairs and have a little more control over breaks.
If you understand how insurance company’s work, you know they charge a fee to many people in hopes all of them don’t need to actually use all they put in. Same goes for AppleCare and other third party iPad insurance programs. So, why let them have all the fun?
The cost of a screen replacement on an iPad 2-4,(iPad Air & mini’s are a completely different beast), is around $150. It could be as low as $99 for a simple switching out the glass but dents and buttons can add up quick. We have a deal with a repair shop for a discount that makes it @ $140 for each repair including dents.
Here is the form, (cropped), given to parents when their student receives an iPad. We would like to pay this insurance ourselves but having the parent pay this “one time” fee, gives the parent a little kick to make sure their child is taking care of it and the $50 is to get the kid in trouble for actually breaking it. (Truth hurts). Some of the teachers have threats of demerits, detention and loss of privlages for careless use of their iPad.
We don’t enforce the $50 fee every time. True accidents and a lot of tears can get this waived.
So, we have @ 325 students with iPads. You do the math. Ok, I’ll do it, cause it’s awesome! $24,375! Each year all 5th graders pay the $75, (@72 x $75 =$5,400), fee and returning 6-7 do not. Everyone is subject to the $50 for the full 4 year stay. So, in theory if a student breaks an iPad only once, it will cost them $125 and we will pick up the $15 ;) Last year we spent around $8000 on repairs, the program was new and we had not yet implemented the $50 charge. This year it should be at least half that as the students, teachers and parents are used to caring for them, now. If we keep collecting $50 for each break we should always be ahead.
We explained this fee alongside the fact that book fees are much lower because of the digital form and that helped get them over the sticker shock.
How does your school handle repairs? Got a better way? Comments please…