In the coming weeks the Council will have completed the second phase of its Devices for Pupils Programme, ensuring eligible pupils across East Dunbartonshire have access to a total of over 1900 digital devices and almost 300 Wi-Fi connectivity devices to assist with home learning.
The Devices for Pupils Programme was introduced to bridge the digital divide in our school communities and provide access to online home learning for all pupils during the pandemic.
Following the initial issuing of digital and Wi-Fi devices last term, the totals now include this latest phase, which sees a further 1416 digital devices (963 Chromebooks and 453 iPads) and 175 connectivity devices distributed. This will ensure all eligible pupils in East Dunbartonshire have the equipment they need to access online learning materials when studying at home.
Eligible younger pupils, in P1-4, are receiving an iPad and Chromebooks are being delivered to older pupils who meet the eligibility criteria. Connectivity devices are being provided for those without access to Wi-Fi. This phase of the programme has been funded by the Council and through the Scottish Government’s offer of a grant for purchase of digital devices and connectivity to tackle digital exclusion amongst children and young people.
Joint Council Leader, Andrew Polson, said, “We’re delighted to be providing even more children and young people in East Dunbartonshire with digital devices which will undoubtedly enhance the learning opportunities for those eligible to receive them. In this current climate it is vital that we are prepared for any eventuality and having previously delivered laptops and Wi-Fi devices to pupils across the area, these additional iPads and Chromebooks will ensure pupils are not disadvantaged if they are required to self isolate or if their school building is closed for a period of time.”
Councillor Vaughan Moody, Joint Leader of the Council added, "This year has shown that technology has been the saving grace for many of us, and we recognise the importance it has played for pupils learning at home. Whilst access to online learning is essential during a lockdown or a period of self-isolation, it is also of great benefit to pupils for home learning whilst they attend school. The roll out of devices is about equity of opportunity and ensuring there are no barriers to learning for any pupils in East Dunbartonshire.”