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Apple puts USB-C ports on their pro-level devices so they can use pro-level peripherals, but that isn’t a significant benefit for their consumer-level devices.

In terms of compatibility, continuing to use Lightning is probably better for the target market of the consumer-level devices. More importantly though, using Lightning lets Apple ensure that any accessories will provide a reasonably good experience since they distribute all the connectors to approved third-parties through the MFi program.

This was exactly my point above, but I seemingly have worded it in a way that was was unpopular. This is iPad Air and iPad Mini, not iPad Pro: Apple didn't see the need to figure out how to jam USB-C onto a "standard" iPad when Lightning does just fine.

But it’s not only that Lightning does just fine technically (even though that’s true), it’s that Lightning gives Apple more control over the whole product ecosystem and therefore the experience of using the product.

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