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Fighting Poverty in Schools

We often see appeals for overseas aid or funding, and requests for donations to charitable organization away from home.  But there are money issues and economic problems in every country, and if you look closely enough in every town.

Last Christmas, a shocking 120,000 children were homeless in the UK*. That’s four children in every school.  In addition, a staggering 4 million children live in persistent and severe poverty. 

For these children from deprived families or poorer neighborhoods, it can be hard to get access to basic necessities in life such as food and clothing.  Let alone digital technology, computers or iPads.

Yet according to a study dating back to 2014 named “At What Cost: Exposing the impact of poverty on school life”, families were found to be on average spending £800 each year per child on additional school costs.   This was despite the free government schooling the children were receiving. (See the full report here.)

Children were also found to be struggling with the cost of the increased requirement to use computers, with a third of children living in the poorest families saying they had fallen behind at school because their family couldn’t afford the computer or internet facilities. The effect of this on a child at an impressionable age is unimaginable, and it is no surprise that this has not only led to some of these children becoming embarrassed but also being bullied.

With tight budgets, it is impossible for every school to supply iPads or tablets free of charge to every child of school age. However, these statistics highlight the importance of ensuring an iPad or tablet usage plan in schools is both managed and rolled out effectively to get the most for all students, not just the affluent ones.

There are various ways in which schools can supply tablets or Chromebooks to students.

  • Rent or lease tablets.
  • Have a specific number of tablets assigned to different groups at different times of the day.
  • Supplement institution-owned devices with a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) scheme in schools where students are able to bring personal mobile devices to school to be used for educational purposes.

LocknCharge Charging Carts and Baskets can be used to alleviate the financial divide in schools. In instances where there aren’t enough devices to around, our Charging Carts provide mobility to easily share 20-40 devices between classrooms. This allows schools to stretch their device assets further to benefit a greater number of students.

Our Baskets offer even broader device mobility between classrooms that are not as easily accessible with a Cart–such as up a flight of stairs–and allow you to carry 5 devices per basket.

Our CarryOn Charging Station is the perfect solution if devices need to be transported from one school to another. The Station features a secure and durable storage area with a carrying handle, making it easy to store, charge and transport 5 tablet devices safely and easily.

Alternatively, there is the FUYL Tower, which is designed to individually charge, store and secure almost any mobile device – including tablets, laptops, mobile phones and more. Through a simple and easy-to-use secure digital locking system, students can charge and secure their tablets until they need to use them in class. Where the FUYL Tower becomes even more unique is in what it can do ‘behind the scenes’. IT staff have the ability to remotely access an admin portal, where they can see how many locker compartments are occupied or available in real-time. If a student forgets their PIN, the administrator can unlock compartments from a remote location. The FUYL Tower provides schools with a full audit trail and time-stamped events. Schools will know how often the FUYL Tower is used when it is used and more, which makes it ideal if using shared devices.

According to the office for National Statistics in 2017, 90% of households in Great Britain had internet access, an increase from 89% in 2016 and 57% in 2006. Hopefully, things in this regard are improving.  But in instances when tablets do still need to be shared, we have the solution to device management which will help all students make full use of their resources in class time.

For an additional story about LocknCharge products are helping combat poverty in schools, click here.

 

Research:

https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/householdcharacteristics/homeinternetandsocialmediausage/bulletins/internetaccesshouseholdsandindividuals/2017

*According to www.givingworldonline.com

 

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