Asda has announced that it is working with Dell Technologies to provide 7,000 laptops to schools across the UK to help children who are at risk of falling behind in their education
Some children do not have the technology to take part in online lessons during lockdown, so the supermarket has formed a partnership with Dell and is investing £2million so that every Asda store in the UK can donate at least 10 laptops to a school in need in their local community.
Each laptop comes with a tech bundle that includes a headset and a mobile internet dongle with a data allowance of 20gb from Asda’s network partner Vodafone. The dongle and data allowance has been funded by a separate £500,000 contribution from the retailer’s charity arm, The Asda Foundation. The laptops will also include a one-year warranty and technical support.
According to Ofcom, around 9% of children in the UK do not have access to a laptop, desktop or tablet at home. These children are primarily from disadvantaged backgrounds and at risk of falling further behind with their education.
Each Asda store will nominate a nearby primary or secondary school with a large proportion of families struggling to support home learning. Working closely with Dell Technologies, they expect to deliver the first shipment of laptops directly to schools next month.
Dayne Turbitt, Senior Vice President and General Manager for Dell Technologies in the UK, said: “Digital exclusion is a growing global and societal issue, which is significantly impacting the UK as a result of the most recent national lockdown. As a global technology company committed to driving human progress, we want to help support families across the UK with access to devices, connectivity and the critical tools needed to fully participate in remote learning. By working alongside Asda, we can help champion digital inclusion for young people across the country.”
During the Autumn 2020 term, the Asda Foundation awarded more than £500,000 to hundreds of schools to ensure children could get back into the classroom.
Roger Burnley, CEO and President of Asda, said: “It’s clear that digital exclusion is an issue affecting many thousands of children who attend schools in communities that we serve. These children have been disproportionately affected by the lockdown and are at risk of falling further behind their peers. We want to do all we can to help break down the digital barriers so they can continue their education remotely.”