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Game-changing 1-2-1 education initiative unveiled with Microsoft named Principal Partner

England’s education community today gains access to what is being billed as a game-changing IT device initiative with Microsoft being confirmed as the Principal Partner.

Devices for Education which is aimed at addressing the continued challenges posed by the digital divide in England, has been created by Consenna which works with numerous global IT companies.

The Covid-19 pandemic not only highlighted the importance of technology in the delivery of teaching and learning, but its legacy will accelerate the move towards greater hybrid learning. The need for every student to have a fit-for-purpose device has never been greater and whilst moves to address this have gained significant momentum, more is still needed.

Devices for Education differs from other 1-2-1 and leasing programmes in several ways. Not only is it equitable in ensuring that every student has access to a device of the same standard, but it is entirely transparent from a cost and device life-cycle management perspective. No other programme to date has presented England’s education community with such a straight-forward approach to IT procurement.

Simon Yates, Chief Operating Officer at Consenna, comments:

“Increased attention on the vital role of technology in teaching and learning over the past year has not only shone a light on the mismatch of devices that students use and the challenges that this creates for IT leads and teachers; it has also highlighted the fact that far too many students continue to have no access to a fit for purpose device at all.

“We wanted to do something positive to make a difference and address this imbalance but knew that any workable solution not only needed to be simple, affordable and sustainable, but that it also had the backing of the IT community. To have secured Microsoft as the initiative’s Principal Partner therefore gives Devices for Education the energy and influence needed to make a real difference.”

The initiative’s mission is to help connect one million students with a fit-for-purpose device in the first 12 months, whether that’s via an outright ownership, leasing or parental contribution model.

In being named Principal Partner, Microsoft has utilised its reach and influence to secure the support of device manufacturers HP, Tactus and MS Surface, with further names expected to be confirmed in the coming months.

Chris Rothwell, Director of Education, Microsoft UK, concludes:

“The important role technology plays in education has never been more visible nor critical, than it is now.

“Devices for Education is a step change in how laptops are procured for student use to ensure standardisation across spec, security and usability and we are proud to have taken the Principal Partner role in this important initiative. Now, we need to encourage schools, parents and corporates alike to register and find out more about how they can easily and effectively make a difference to every student in England.”

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