$35,000 presentation

March 17, 2012

Journal, Lloyd, School

iPad presentation smallIt’s late here; it’s been a long day, and Lauren is too tired to write a post. Our Gala dinner and auction fundraiser for Lincoln Lutheran High School was last night and I was in charge of the presentation where we asked our supporters to donate $36,000 to buy iPads for all of the teachers. I was supposed to give a $36,000 presentation, but I only delivered $35,000.

Rather than me bore you to death with details, ask me any question about the evening that you want and I’ll answer it.

Lauren here with some photos. Note, I really needed a flash, so they are mostly blurry.

Lloyd and Curt behind the centerpiece:

Lloyd’s display for the iPad project. We borrowed the display boards from the nice local Apple store.

Charles photobombing:

Bob was the emcee. He said he was a little nervous, but he didn’t look it one bit.

I am sad this didn’t turn out better. Charles and Deborah looked great!

I was curious how the golf-ball-patterned butter balls were made. I asked the wait staff and it turns out they don’t make them on side. They arrive as bags of butter golf balls, to be shaken out onto little plates.

Here’s the presentation: small presentation (PDF ~3Mb) large presentation (PDF ~30Mb)

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About Lloyd

Lloyd Sommerer is a middle/high school teacher who likes to build websites, read books, grow beards, make fun of Lauren’s prototypes and eat the sauce of the picante.

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32 Responses to “$35,000 presentation”

  1. Brad Said on:

    Do all of the teachers go to your auction?
    Do they have active roles, or do some of them just dine?
    Did you have to pay for a ticket?


    • Lloyd Said on:

      No, not all of them come. I would say we had nearly 75% attend. That seems about normal for us.

      The school gives the teachers a ticket if they help out with the Gala in some way. But the jobs are divided up so that you are not always working. You might help check people in at the start of the Gala, or check them out at the end, or serve as greeters or serve as a spotter for the live auction. And yes, some teachers just pay for a ticket and come.

      I’ve been paying for our tickets the last 3 years because we’ve put together a Bad Movie Night table of people who normally come to Bad Movie Night.


  2. Lauren Said on:

    Did your wife grab a microphone and start singing along to ‘Danny Boy’ or did she just imagine that?
    Since you were across the table and I didn’t see your plate, did you finish your green beans?
    Did you tell the ladies at our table how nice they looked?


    • Lloyd Said on:

      No, this did not actually take place (as far as I know).

      Yes, I finished every single one of them. They were quite tasty, but were not the best part of the meal.

      I believe that I did. I even went so far as to complement their outfits.


  3. Deborah Said on:

    where are all the photos>


  4. Kristi Said on:

    So what did YOU buy?
    Which tasted better: key lime pie or peanut butter pie?
    Were you nervous about your presentation?
    Were there any wardrobe malfunctions?


    • Lloyd Said on:

      I was bidding against two other people for the gift certificate to Embassy Suites and I thought I had it won. But one of them must have swooped in at the last instant and out bid me. I thought it was the person at the table next to ours (the bid numbers are your table number plus one other digit), but when I went over to congratulate him and thank him for letting me run him up, he told me that he thought that he was running me up. It turned out it was that person from table 30 that got it.

      I did not eat any desert. It is considered bad luck in my culture to eat desert before you ask people for $36,000.

      I was very nervous. We were using new technology for the presentation, and I didn’t know if what I had planned to say was the right amount of funny, but they laughed and clapped at the right times, so I guess it all worked out.

      To my knowledge there were no wardrobe malfunctions.


  5. Karla Said on:

    Do your students have iPads yet? If no, is that your eventual plan?

    Can I ask more questions later?


    • Lloyd Said on:

      I actually did a little research on this when I was seeing how much it would cost to improve our wireless network. over 80% of our students own* a device that they can use to surf the internet (laptop,iPod,smart phone, tablet). 20% of them have tablets or some sort (nook, kindle, iPad). We do not have nay concrete plans for a 1:1 device program, but I would be surprised if something like that was more than 2-3 years away.



      • Karla Said on:

        How long has this plan been in the works? I mean, how long ago was this plan just a twinkle in your or someone else’s eye? Are you going to go with iPad 2 or iPad 3? And more specifically, how do you want teachers to use this technology? Do you think a 1:1 ratio is really good, or just an inevitable evolution? How are you going to handle the possible breakage of one?

        While not naming names, there’s a school here that feels it necessary to have iPads next years for all students -- k through 8. No pilot program, no gradual integration, just jump right in with both feet and hope for the best. The annual dinner/auction fundraiser that is allotted for different funds is going to be hijacked for finding this, and now that fees for next year have been published there will be a hike in tech fees. Those close to this are more than a little frustrated at how things are being handled. Can you come out to give a presentation, and, in the process get them to scale this down a bit? Great. Thanks.


        • Lloyd Said on:

          How long? Well, that sort of depends on how you look at things. I thought the iPad 1 was interesting and that there were people who could put it to good use, but I (I’m speaking here as technology coordinator) didn’t see any reason to spend the school’s money on them. We had one really gun-ho Apple teacher who purchased one for himself, so I played with them a bit. I thought of it as an iPhone with a big screen that couldn’t make calls. Not really interested. We did spend some money to get a few “slates” (tablets without a screen) in the school to see how they would work out.

          When the iPad 2 came out, I was more interested because you could mirror anything on your iPad onto the projector screen with a $99 Apple TV. I had some money in my budget, so Matt Haden (Apple Fan, math teacher) and Lincoln Lutheran split the cost of an iPad 2. We had previously installed projectors in all of the classrooms, and this way you could really control your computer from anywhere in the room. While this experiment was going on, more and more of our students were getting tablets (about 20%), and more of our teachers were getting iPads (a little less than 20%). I became more interested, because if Lutheran teachers will spend their own money to use a device in their classroom, you know they are serious about it.

          The iPad 3 was announced and added these benefits for schools: (1) a good enough camera. A camera that you can immediately show to your students has a lot of uses. (2) higher definition screen --the iPad 1 & 2 have a lower resolution than our projector will project, heck, they have a lower resolution than an iPhone. (3) Apple’s textbook initiative seems like it will be the way textbooks head within the next 3-5 years.

          One of my fears was being in the situation where I was doubling my budget for teacher “computers.” You can’t go back to supporters every 4 years and ask for more iPads. But I’m now convinced that for what our teachers need to do, they will not need a desktop machine in 3-4 years. I fully believe that I will not buy desktop computers (Lincoln Lutheran doesn’t do laptops for teachers) ever again.

          Having said that, my plan would have been to wait a year with the iPads, but we were about 2 months away from the Gala with no clear winner in terms of special projects. For the Special Project you need something that is somewhere in the $20,000 to $40,000 range that supporters can see a need for and get behind. I suggested the iPads and our administration was interested enough to want more details.

          Okay, I think that answers the first question. I think I’m going to start a new comment for the others.


        • Lloyd Said on:

          We’re going with the iPad 3, because (1) The high definition screen makes better use of our projector’s resolution. (2) The camera is good enough to use. (3) I’m going to have to use these for 3-5 years, and I don’t want to start off in a one year hole. (4) The iPad 2 is only available with 16Gigs, and that won’t be enough for what we want to have the teachers do.

          I’ll upload our presentation so you can see what we think our teachers will be able to do with this.


        • Lloyd Said on:

          Our students are 80% of the way to 1:1 without us doing anything. I think the real question is whether a school will do 1:1 with BYOD (bring your own device) or have everyone using the same type of device (either purchased by the family or the school). You can make a case for everyone having the same device (especially in lower grades), but you can also make a case for people having whatever they want (I would think you would set some minimum criteria).


        • Lloyd Said on:

          We don’t know if we are going to: (1) Self-insure -we figure for the cost of 3 years of insurance we can buy 6 new iPads. (2) Make the teachers responsible for their device as a criteria for getting one. That is to say, they could decide if they want to get insurance or just be careful and pay for repairs if it breaks. (3) Purchase insurance as a school. My initial investigation indicates that we can insure them for less than $50 per year against everything except lose. (4) Have the teachers kick in $50 a year for insurance, self insure and give any money left over back to the teachers at the end of the year (or roll it over into next year).

          It might seem a little cheap to have the teacher’s buy insurance, but in talking with teachers, they seem to like the idea of taking responsibility for how they take care of the machines, especially if we use the money that we would have spent on insurance to get the next better model (64Gig instead of 32Gig).

          We fully intend for the teacher to also use these as personal devices. We think that will help them learn how to use them more quickly and make them take better care of them.


        • Lloyd Said on:

          As far as that last bit, I would not want to do the whole school until my teachers were somewhat familiar with the devices. On the other hand, it doesn’t take a whole lot learn the proper care and feeding of these things.

          I would ask if they ready for the other costs of 1:1. These things need a good wireless network. Lincoln Lutheran (a school of about 400) would require about $15,000 to upgrade our wireless network for 1:1. You have to have spare machines for when kids break, leave at their other parent’s house or don’t charge their device. Most schools our size that go to 1:1 seem to need nearly a whole other computer person to deal with having 3 times as many computers on campus.

          How much money is the school looking to raise? How much money will the tech fee go up?


          • Karla Said on:

            The auction hasn’t been around for very long. I think this is going to be the third year for it. Typically funds have gone to replenish the scholarship fund a couple other smaller things and then a necessary upgrade/improvement project. The first year they got smart boards for all the classrooms. Last year they got new lockers for the upper grade kids. I don’t know what it was earmarked for this year. The iPad project has just crept in and wanted to take over. I think usually they make around 40k an auction (the first year was more because a private donor matched funds. I think I’ve heard a figure of 150,000+ for this project.
            At first it was stated that it would be no cost to the families. Now there’s talk of the tech fee going from the already published amount of $100 to $300 per student. No break for families. And at a school where 40% of kids are getting assistance for lunch. Ouch.

            School enrollment is probably 125 for k-8.

          • Karla Said on:

            Oh. In addition to the hike in tech fee, there would be a $75 fee per family to get the iPads set up. Not sure what that’s about, just the the BOE member who is pushing for this -- it would be his brother that would do the set up and collect that fee. That one feels like chicago politics at it’s best. 😉

  6. Peggy Said on:

    What was the meal?

    Do you rent yourself out to raise money at other functions in other states? (I mean…Wow….$35,000.00 is REMARKABLE!! Way to go!)

    I can bet you were really funny….can you share any of the jokes?


    • Lloyd Said on:

      The meal was crab cakes, what I think are called medallion steaks, roasted potatoes and green beans with almonds. There was also a very nice salad with strawberries, walnuts and crumbed blue cheese.

      $20,000 to $35,000 is the normal range for the group of supporters to fund a special project. So it was more the donors than the presenter. In fact, we had a $40,000 challenge donation last year and ended up raising $85,000 for new school vans.

      Most of the jokes were specific to Lincoln Lutheran and/or were related to seeing the slides. Did I mention there were 187 slides?


  7. Karla Said on:

    P.S. I saw the picture of Bob and thought it was Sam.

    Deborah and Charles look great -- especially Deborah!!!


  8. Karla Said on:

    Have found any limitations with any sites regarding the use of flash? There are sites that Arron uses in the classroom that he can’t get to with an iPad because of that. We’ve tried one browser that is supposed to allow, but no luck (photon, I think is what I got). If you have found any browsers that are compatible, I’d be interested in what they are. Granted, we’ve only owned an iPad for a week.

    What Arron has found with the textbook program and apple is that they are doing high school text books first. There are limited grade school books available right now. So his school would have to do a mix. And the costs wouldn’t really be a savings, from what I remembered hearing.

    Our host provider at work uses some iPads. From what I’ve heard from one of the guys, is that it’s tons easier to use to VPN in to their computers when they’re out at banks instead of bringing a laptop.

    Now I feel like in rambling…


    • Lloyd Said on:

      Nothing wrong with a little rambling…

      Sure, Flash is going to be a problem for a while. I think for us it will mostly involve science teachers who use flash sites for demonstrations. But it will hit us in other places as well. If my choice would have been to have desktops or iPads right now I would pick desktops, but we don’t have to give up the desktops now and so we have time to transition between the two.

      Things seem to be moving away from flash/silverlight/whatever and toward html5, but that’s still in the future. I think in a few years it won’t be an issue. Same thing with textbooks. I don’t know if we’ll be getting them from Apple’s store or Amazon or Barns & Noble, but I think they are coming, and we’ll want to have our teachers looking at them.

      I think you’re right about not really saving money (until more people start publishing them), but that’s not the only reason to use them.


  9. Mary Ellen Said on:

    The BBQ joint we had dinner at last night (small Chicago suburb) equips their waitstaff with iPads to take orders and send them directly to the kitchen. Maybe you could work some classroom/cafeteria hot lunch angle to get those iPads? No more running out of sloppy joes because of inaccurate headcounts.


  10. Jane Sommerer Said on:

    Dad asked how you would handle it if a teacher leaves? Will they be allowed to take the iPad with them?


    • Lloyd Said on:

      No, the iPad belongs to the school. The more interesting question is what happens if the teacher wants to pitch in more money to get a better iPad (64GB instead of 32GB or Cellular internet -like yours- instead of wi-fi).

      In that case, both the teacher and Lincoln Lutheran have some money in the iPad. What I’m currently leaning toward is that the teacher could “buy out” Lincoln Lutheran for 125% of the average of the last 20 sales on eBay of the version of the iPad that the school would have purchased without the teacher’s money.


  11. Jane Sommerer Said on:

    congratulations on making a successful presentation.


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