Saturday, 25 January 2014

*Sigh* Here We Go Again…

Schools should pay for their poorest pupils to have internet access at home because they risk falling behind without it, campaigners said today.
Education charity the e-Learning Foundation urged schools to pay for pupils’ home internet connections using the pupil premium funding — government cash given to schools to boost the results of the poorest children.
The campaign, which is jointly run with education website Quib.ly, called on every school in London to find out which of their children cannot get online at home.
Right, so it's basically just rent-seeking?
Valerie Thompson, chief executive of the e-Learning Foundation, said teachers often get a surprise when they find out how many children in their class do not have the internet at home. More than 150,000 London pupils are believed to be without access. She called on teachers to use some of the pupil premium funding, around £900 per child on free school meals, to rectify the situation.
She said: “A lot of schools think they are not allowed to spend it on this. But the money has a purpose which is to
Provide you with a reason to exist?
close the attainment gap.”
Ah.
She said the money could be used in a variety of ways, from installing broadband in a child’s home to giving them a tablet with 3G that does not require wifi. She added:
“Every child deserves the same opportunity to succeed in their education. This campaign takes an important step forward to help achieve that.”
Hmm, I wonder if you've got any connections to any firms that offer netnanny type software?
Matt Tavender, acting head at Cunningham Junior School in St Albans, surveyed his pupils and found that 17 of the 239 children could not use the internet at home. He plans to use the pupil premium to provide internet access for all disadvantaged pupils in the future.
He said: “We need to make sure all children are able to improve their skills and engage in their learning fully, and make sure every child has a level and fair playing field to work from.”
Paid for by someone else, of course!
Holly Seddon, editor of Quib.ly, said: “As a mum of three, I am very passionate about giving every child the best possible skills and experiences so that they can grab every opportunity both now and in the future.
“No child should be at a disadvantage through something as fixable as access to the internet.”
Fixable, that is, with other people's money...

6 comments:

ivan said...

Interesting - just how are they going to get internet access to the places where there is no internet access at all? Or is this just for those whose parents spend their public handouts on other things?

Anyway how do they propose that it would work - indeed do the schools continue to make the monthly payments and aren't many of them more than the amount of 'free' money the schools have?

Since most libraries have internet access what is stopping the kids going there to get on line if they need to? Or is that too much for the intellectually challenged people that are proposing this?

Maybe we should just follow the money as in all such proposals.

Tatty said...

The very least they can do with the "Pupil Premium" is actually spend it on the kids they're shoving forward as supposed reason for it in the first place.

ALL pupils eligible for free school meals - therefore a cash cow under the Pupil Premium scheme - should get it.

I guarantee that not ALL of those pupils actually need it.

Might get very publicly embarrassing down the line. So it should.

Bucko The Moose said...

If I had kids I would be tempted to cancel my broadband and wait for the school to stump up.

And I wonder how many of those 150k kids live within 1000 yards of free or cheap public internet access.

Joe Public said...

C'mon Julia, isn't it discrimination to deny some kids access to porn & music-piracy, just 'cos their parent(s) is poor?

JuliaM said...

"Interesting - just how are they going to get internet access to the places where there is no internet access at all?"

I really doubt they've given it that much thought...

"Might get very publicly embarrassing down the line."

Is anyone in modern Britain embarrassed any more? By anything?

"If I had kids I would be tempted to cancel my broadband and wait for the school to stump up"

Heh!

Tatty said...

Is anyone in modern Britain embarrassed any more? By anything?

The extreme lengths that people will go to try and deflect outside observation perceived as critisism tells me yes, yes they are. So they should be.

*purses lips, folds arms* ;)