Schools in Sheffield are reporting that pupils still do not have access to the laptops needed to learn remotely.
The Government has had ten months since the start of the pandemic to ensure that every school pupil has access to the internet and a device, and yet thousands of children are still unable to take part in online learning. As the fifth week of lockdown begins with most of England’s 8.8 million school children learning from home, over a quarter of laptops the government has promised to deliver to pupils struggling to learn remotely have not yet been delivered.
Along with other Labour MPs, I’ve called on the government to adopt a plan to get every child online, including:
- Provide access to a device for every child who needs one
- Provide internet access for every child who needs it
- Work to remove data charges on educational websites to stop mobile data charges from pricing families out of education
Fortunately, Sheffield’s Labour Council has provided a £1.5 million to help fund the local Laptops for Kids campaign, but this is really the Government’s responsibility. The Conservatives’ empty promises and failure to properly support children during the pandemic risks failing a generation of young people.”