About the offer

Find out who is eligible for devices and why the DfE is providing them.

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Ordering devices for schools, colleges, academy trusts and local authorities from September 2020

In the event of a disruption to face-to-face education at schools or colleges due to coronavirus (COVID-19), DfE can provide support to help disadvantaged children and young people who are otherwise unable to access remote education.

Examples of this include disadvantaged children:

  • with no digital devices in their household
  • whose only available device is a smartphone
  • with a single device in their household that's being shared with more than one other family member

This offer applies to maintained schools, pupil referral units, academy trusts and hospital schools, as well as sixth-form colleges and further education providers who have enrolled 14 to 16-year-olds. They’ll receive an allocation of devices to be used to support disadvantaged children if they do not have access to a digital device through other means.

Devices are available for:

  • disadvantaged children in years 3 to 11 who do not have access to a device and whose face-to-face education is disrupted
  • disadvantaged children in any year group who have been advised to shield because they (or someone they live with) are clinically extremely vulnerable

Devices can be ordered for disadvantaged children in years 3 to 11 when:

  • a local health protection team has advised a group of children (such as a ‘bubble’ or year group) not to attend school
  • a primary school is only open to vulnerable children and the children of critical workers (tier 4)
  • a secondary school or college is only open to vulnerable children and the children of critical workers (tier 3 or 4)
  • a school or college is fully open, but supporting a disadvantaged child living in another area who is unable to attend due to local travel restrictions

Devices can be ordered for disadvantaged children in any year group who have been advised to shield when:

Devices cannot be ordered when:

Laptops, tablets and 4G wireless routers provided between May and July 2020

DfE has already provided laptops, tablets and 4G wireless routers to local authorities and academy trusts between May and July 2020.

These are being distributed to disadvantaged families, children and young adults who did not have access to them through another source, such as their school.

Laptops and tablets were provided for:

  • care leavers
  • children and young people aged 0 to 19, or young children’s families, with a social worker
  • disadvantaged year 10 pupils in the 2019 to 2020 academic year

4G wireless routers were provided for those who did not have internet access. They were provided for:

  • care leavers
  • secondary school pupils with a social worker
  • disadvantaged year 10 pupils in the 2019 to 2020 academic year

A care leaver is someone aged 16 to 25 who was looked after by a local authority for at least 13 weeks (at least part of which was on or after their 16th birthday), but who is no longer looked after.

These digital devices will help:

  • social workers to provide virtual safeguarding and support to the children and families they work with via video conferences, for example
  • children, young people, families and care leavers to access the online services they need to protect their wellbeing
  • families and care leavers to avoid social isolation
  • children and young people to access remote learning, including year 10 pupils in the 2019 to 2020 academic year

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Device allocations