Free laptops for disadvantaged young people


East Sussex County Council was the first authority in the country to place an order under a Department for Education scheme aimed at ensuring pupils can continue learning at home during the coronavirus lockdown.

Vulnerable and disadvantaged young people in East Sussex have been given a boost to their learning with the arrival of a shipment of over 1,000 free laptops.

The county is now one of the first areas in the country to receive the new equipment, with the council taking delivery of 1,187 laptops and 170 4G dongles this week.

They are now in the process of being delivered to children and young people who receive social care from the Council, while a further order has been made for laptops for disadvantaged year 10 pupils.

Cllr Bob Standley, East Sussex County council lead member for education and inclusion, said:

It’s vital that all our young people are able to maintain their education during the lockdown.

The scheme means vulnerable and disadvantaged children who wouldn’t otherwise be able to do so can get online and continue learning at home until they’re able to return to school.

It’s going to make a real difference to their lives and will give a boost to their education in the extraordinary times we’re living in.

I’ve been really impressed by how our children’s services and IT teams worked together to make this happen and to ensure we are one of the first areas of the country to benefit from this initiative.

Under the Department for Education scheme, East Sussex County Council has also placed an order for 129 laptops for disadvantaged year 10 pupils in its maintained schools.

Meanwhile, working with national body Uni Connect and Hastings Opportunity Area – which aims to boost social mobility through education – the Council has secured funding for an additional 200 laptops for disadvantaged year 10 pupils at maintained schools and academies across the county.



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  1. This should help narrow the gap between middle class families who have many resources and can support their children through the lockdown, and those who don’t have a chance and who are falling even further behind. But why on earth is this only being rolled out now? We’ve been under lockdown for two whole months. Another example of the government being behind the curve all the way through, and ESCC needn’t pat themselves on the back. They should have been demanding that the government (their government) get this going, and pay for it, much sooner.

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