HOMESCHOOLING: Government plans to issue Free wifi for struggling students
Children across our region who are struggling to access the internet could be able to take advantage of a temporary scheme to help them.
A government plan to assist children who do not have adequate access to broadband could see kids get free data to ensure they can continue learning.
Children across the country are now learning remotely once again after schools were shut as part of the new lockdown, England’s third since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
The new scheme is being supported by a number of the country’s largest broadband providers and will target disadvantaged children.
Many families have struggled to afford the increased costs associated with out of classroom learning, such as broadband costs and access to electronic devices.
Schemes were put in place to buy electronic devices for disadvantaged children to use when the pandemic began but the process was hit by changes to schools’ allocations and confusion over the process
In the autumn, Liverpool Council’s chief education officer warned that there was still a shortage of laptops for kids who needed them if schools were to return to remote learning.
The government scheme in place for broadband is separate to the fund to buy new devices and focuses on families who can’t afford the costs of broadband for their child’s continued education.
Who can request the extra support?
According to information on a page of the government’s website dedicated to the scheme, the request for extra can either be made by your child’s school or trust, or the local authority.
Who is eligible?
The government sets out three criteria which has to be met for schools to be eligible for support.
- your school is experiencing disruption to face-to-face education
- the disadvantaged children you’re responsible for do not have access to the internet at home
- your school has been invited to order laptops and tablets
The help is also only available on certain networks, though the government said it is hoped that more companies will join the scheme.
Currently, children need to have a smartphone or tablets that accesses broadband through Three, Smarty, Virgin Mobile, EE, Tesco Mobile and Sky Mobile.
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