To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the announcement by the Government on 19 April 2020 that disadvantaged children would receive laptops for home education during the covid-19 outbreak, what criteria his Department used to determine which children would be eligible for those laptops.
4 June 2020
The Government has committed over £100 million to support vulnerable and disadvantaged children in England to access remote education and social care services, including by providing laptops, tablets and 4G wireless routers.
The Department is providing laptops and tablets to disadvantaged children who would otherwise not have access and are preparing for examination in Year 10, receiving support from a social worker or are a care leaver. Where care leavers, children with a social worker at secondary school and children in Year 10 do not have internet connections, we are providing 4G wireless routers.
The Department has ordered over 200,000 laptops and tablets and allocated devices to local authorities and academy trusts based on its estimates of the number of eligible children that do not have access to a device. Local authorities and academy trusts are best placed to identify and prioritise children and young people who need devices.
The Department is providing these devices in the shortest possible timeframe; deliveries to schools and local authorities started in May and will continue in June.