Teachers call for DfE's free laptop scheme to be expanded

Teachers and school leaders are asking the Department for Education (DfE) to consider extending its free laptop initiative to cover a wider range of disadvantaged pupils.

Last week, the DfE unveiled plans to supply laptops or tablets to disadvantaged children in England. It comes alongside plans to provide 4G routers to families with disadvantaged secondary pupils that have no mobile or broadband access (DfE, 2020a).

Children eligible for the laptops include those with a social worker, care-leavers and disadvantaged year 10 students who will be sitting their GCSEs next year.

However, education unions have immediately called for the scheme to be expanded across “all stages and ages”.

There has been limited information made available about how the scheme will be rolled out. The DfE has confirmed, however, that schools will be able to keep the donated hardware after re-opening.

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