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Get help with technology for remote education during coronavirus (COVID-19)

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Nick Gibb, Schools Standards Minister, said:

“The Government were clear that pupils in all year groups and from all types of school should return to school full time from the beginning of the autumn term. Figures show that, as of 15 October, 99.7% of schools were open and over 7 million children and young people are back in school, representing 89% of pupils across the country. We continue to do everything in our power to ensure that every child can continue to attend school safely, because that is the best place for them to be for their education, development and wellbeing.

“Ensuring that schools can provide a high quality of remote education was and continues to be a key part of our work to support schools. Alongside the direction, the Department announced further remote education support intended to help schools and colleges in meeting the remote education expectations. The support package is available over the coming months, and parts of it are available now to support schools and colleges seeking additional support. Information can be found on the “Get help with remote education” page on the website.

“We have invested over £160 million to support remote education. As part of that, during the summer term, we delivered over 220,000 laptops and tablets for disadvantaged children who would not otherwise have access to the internet. It was one of the largest procurements of computers in the UK. On one single day, 27,000 were being delivered. We are now supplementing that support by making available 250,000 additional laptops and tablets for disadvantaged children in years 3 to 11 in the event that face-to-face schooling is disrupted this term as a result of the pandemic. By the end of this week, we will have delivered, since the beginning of term, 100,000 of those 250,000 computers to schools.”

The Department for Education is working in partnership with an industry coalition to provide technology to support remote education.

Schools and colleges will soon be able to get access to more remote education resources during the school closure period. Local authorities will also soon be able to get access to resources to support care leavers and children with social workers.

The Department for Education is working in partnership with technology suppliers such as Google and Microsoft to provide:

  • internet access and digital devices (such as laptops) for some disadvantaged secondary school pupils who do not already have them
  • internet access and digital devices for care leavers and children with social workers who do not already have them
  • support for schools to access online platforms where teachers can set and collect work from pupils
  • training on using remote education resources from the technology suppliers
  • support from other schools and colleges who are already using these resources

Schools, trusts and local authorities will be able to place online orders for devices for eligible pupils from Wednesday 22 April. Parents and pupils will not be able to order the devices themselves.

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