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Welsh Government funds support for digitally excluded schoolchildren

01/05/20

Mark Say Managing Editor

The Welsh Government has pledged £3 million in funding to support ‘digitally excluded’ learners during the coronavirus pandemic.

It said it will make the money available to local authorities so they can work with schools to support schoolchildren who do not have access to an internet connected device the take part in online learning activities from home.

This comes in response to the lockdown measures which are now keeping most children out of schools.

They will use the money to repurpose school devices and provide 4G connectivity using MiFi routers, which act as mobile hotspots. The Hwb infrastructure programme will help to fund the replacement devices for schools.

Local authorities are identifying devices that can be repurposed, while schools are identifying digitally excluded pupils by contacting parents and carers.

Kirsty Williams

Education Minister Kirsty Williams (pictured) said: “It is my priority that no child or family is left behind during this crisis and all children have the opportunity to continue learning. By repurposing school kit, we will ensure that children and families get the support they need as quickly as possible.

“This funding will ensure that a lack of access to a laptop or broadband will no longer be a barrier to learning. It will play a key role in supporting families, ensuring that their children continue on their education journey, wherever they are learning from.”

Image from Welsh Government, Open Government Licence v3.0

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