The Hays USD 489 school board approved the purchase of iPads for K-5 students and staff at its meeting on Monday.

The district will purchase 1,630 iPads and cases at a cost of $604,695.

Scott Summers, director of technology, said the district is taking advantage of a special offer from Apple that will save the district $30,000 to $40,000.

The purchase is part of the district's regular technology purchasing rotation. The students' iPads were last replaced in FY2021. The staff's iPads were last replaced in FY2022.

Some of the staff iPads will be held back for spares. Summers said he hopes any remaining staff iPads will reap more in resale.

Summers said he would request bids from recycling companies to purchase the old iPads. In the past, the district has been able to sell the iPads for about $50 each.

The devices carry a one-year warranty. Summers said Apple Care costs about $100 per device, and the district had averaged much less than that in repair costs.

The board approved a contract with Midwest Energy for $214,120 to provide permanent power and electric meters to the new Hays High School site. Midwest Energy wrote off the first $100,000 and is not charging the district for a temporary transformer for construction.

The board accepted a low bid from Sunflower Restaurant Supply for $26,750 for an outside walk-in freezer at Hays Middle School. The old unit is original to the building.

The board had a second reading on policy revisions to match the new state graduation requirements, but it was tabled because board member Curt Vajnar wanted a list of electives that would meet a new STEM requirement.

The board also accepted donations from Nex-Tech and Thirsty's for a new scoreboard at Hays High. The scoreboard will be retained when the current high school is remodeled into a middle school as part of the ongoing bond improvements.