Kit4Kids Crowdfunder campaign started to supply over 375 laptops for Cornish schools.

The Kit4Kids campaign has been started to provide Cornish schools with much-needed laptops and data dongles. 

There are currently over 1800 children in Cornwall without access to a computer or affordable data connection which can negatively impact on their education, especially during Covid lockdowns. 

The Department of Education has already provided over 500 laptops to Cornish schools this month, without these laptops some students have had to resort to using their phones to access their online lessons. 

Cornwall and Isle of Scilly Digital Skills Partnership have teamed up with Newquay based Crowdfunder, Cornwall Council and local businesses to launch the Kit4Kids campaign to help. 

The campaign aims to raise a total of £75,000 to buy laptops and data dongles for Cornish primary and secondary schools through Crowdfunder. 

This should be enough for approximately 375 devices at £200 each, the laptops would be loaned out to students in need. 

Crowdfunder has waved its usual fees and is looking for local businesses, individuals or community organisations to help raise the rest of the money with the Crowdfunder already pledging to match £4,000 in donations.  

The Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership made a starting contribution of £20,000. 

Frances Brennan, who chairs the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership Employment and Skills Board, said: “Digital inclusion is vital to give our young people the opportunities they deserve which is why we have asked our Digital Skills Partnership to lead this campaign and have pledged enough funding to buy 100 laptops. This equipment will help deal with immediate home-schooling issues and create a legacy by bridging the digital divide for hundreds of children and their families long after the pandemic is over. Now more than ever we need to support families to have full access to online learning and they shouldn’t have to choose between food, heating or educating their children.” 

Laptops are a necessity for both the child’s education so that they can complete their work and the child’s mental health so they do not feel stressed when they fall behind or feel like they are not part of the group when they do not have the same equipment as everyone else to learn. 

Alex Lingard, the headteacher at Liskeard School and Community College, said: “There are many families across Cornwall disadvantaged by not having access to IT. Lack of internet connectivity or a lack of devices, such as laptops or home PCs, can often result in children falling behind in their education. This is, even more, the case during the current lockdown where lessons are being delivered online. Providing such resources to families unable to afford their own has a significant impact on their children’s education. Not only are pupils able to access their lessons, it gives them the tools to complete and submit work, but also, crucially, allows them to interact directly with their teachers and peers.” 

The Kit4Kids campaign has a target of £75,000 which is enough to buy 375 laptops, but if the campaign goes well, the total could be increased to £200,000 which could supply 1000 devices for schools across Cornwall. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *