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Computers for Scottish school pupils


Scottish Government has begun to talk to local authorities about digital infrastructure and devices for all school pupils.

Scotland’s education secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville has said that the government is talking to councils about providing the country’s 700,000 school pupils with laptop or tablet computers, along with providing a consistent level of digital infrastructure in schools.

“This is a hugely ambitious programme of work that will build on efforts to tackle digital inclusion during the pandemic. These early talks with Scottish councils are a positive step towards delivering this commitment,” she said.

The Scottish National Party’s manifesto for May’s Scottish Parliament elections pledged to offer every child a device, a free internet connection and support to use it. When the policy was first announced, press reports said it would cost £350 million over the course of the parliament, with £260 million on buying devices and the rest on servicing, support, teacher training and internet infrastructure.

The Scottish Conservative education spokesperson Oliver Mundell criticised the government for having only just started discussions on fulfilling the pledge, following shortages of devices for home-schooling during the pandemic.

Image from iStock, Bet-Noir

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