Lost, damaged school learning devices cost thousands to replace

The Savannah Chatham County Public School District is missing nearly $400,000 in lost, stolen, and damaged learning devices. The iPads and chrome books were given to students to help them learn virtually during the pandemic. David Feliciano, chief strategic and performance officer with SCCPPS, said students needed them when the pandemic hit. “We had to go to remote. We had to go to online learning and students needed devices,” Feliciano said. An estimated 33,000 devices were issued in 2021. According to an open records request, WJCL 22 News discovered most of the devices were returned except for about 1,500 or 3% considered lost, stolen, or damaged. According to the district, those lost, stolen or damaged devices cost nearly $400.00. “$400,000 is considered a lot. Any amount is considered a lot. We don’t want to lose devices. So, we are working on how to best recover those devices back,” Feliciano said. Feliciano said the devices are engraved with the district’s information on it. If a person other than the students tries to power up the device, they will find it locked, with an SCCPSS logo appearing on the screen. Feliciano said local pawn shops have been warned not to either buy or use them as collateral for a loan, but calls have come in from outside of Chatham County. “We have been contacted that they wanted us to deactivate the device. Once we con firm that it is one of our devices, we turned it over to campus police to pursue. I think it is important that the community understands that these devices are for our students they should not be sold and bought,” Feliciano said. The district hopes the number of missing devices will drop as some students who may have kept them over the summer will return them. “We want them returned. It is important for them to be returned because we cannot sustain a loss like this every year,” Feliciano said. The district encourages parents to purchase a device protection plan for $25. It pays the cost of replacement.

The Savannah Chatham County Public School District is missing nearly $400,000 in lost, stolen, and damaged learning devices. The iPads and chrome books were given to students to help them learn virtually during the pandemic.

David Feliciano, chief strategic and performance officer with SCCPPS, said students needed them when the pandemic hit.

“We had to go to remote. We had to go to online learning and students needed devices,” Feliciano said.

An estimated 33,000 devices were issued in 2021. According to an open records request, WJCL 22 News discovered most of the devices were returned except for about 1,500 or 3% considered lost, stolen, or damaged. According to the district, those lost, stolen or damaged devices cost nearly $400.00.

“$400,000 is considered a lot. Any amount is considered a lot. We don’t want to lose devices. So, we are working on how to best recover those devices back,” Feliciano said.

Feliciano said the devices are engraved with the district’s information on it. If a person other than the students tries to power up the device, they will find it locked, with an SCCPSS logo appearing on the screen.

Feliciano said local pawn shops have been warned not to either buy or use them as collateral for a loan, but calls have come in from outside of Chatham County.

“We have been contacted that they wanted us to deactivate the device. Once we confirm that it is one of our devices, we turned it over to campus police to pursue. I think it is important that the community understands that these devices are for our students they should not be sold and bought,” Feliciano said.

The district hopes the number of missing devices will drop as some students who may have kept them over the summer will return them.

“We want them returned. It is important for them to be returned because we cannot sustain a loss like this every year,” Feliciano said.

The district encourages parents to purchase a device protection plan for $25. It pays the cost of replacement.

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By ll07v

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