Order laptops and get internet access for care leavers

This guidance explains which care leavers are eligible to receive laptops, and how local authorities (LAs) can place orders through the Department for Education’s Get help with technology service.

Care leavers cannot order directly.

We recommend that you get set up to order as soon as possible to make sure you receive your preferred choice of laptops.

Which care leavers are eligible for this support

DfE is providing these to support care leavers your LA is responsible for, who:

  • are aged between 16 and 25 years old
  • do not have access to a laptop or tablet from your LA, or any other source

LAs can request 4G wireless routers for eligible care leavers without fixed broadband too.

How to get laptops and internet access

1. Check your local authority’s laptop allocation

DfE has asked each LA to nominate one or more staff members to order laptops and request internet access for care leavers.

If you’ve been nominated to order, we’ll email your LA’s estimated laptop allocation to you. If you have not received this email, contact us.

Allocation estimates are based on each local authority's share of the overall care leaver population.

You can also request 4G wireless routers for these care leavers if they do not have a fixed broadband connection.

Tell us if your allocation is wrong

If your estimated allocation is wrong, contact us and let us know how many laptops you currently need for eligible care leavers. Do not include any personal data, such as their names or dates of birth.

We cannot guarantee that we’ll be able to meet all requests for more laptops. We encourage you to order your current allocation anyway so that you can begin distributing devices. We’ll contact you once we’ve reviewed your request.

2. Check what care leavers need

We recommend working with your care leavers and IT team as soon as possible to find out the following information.

Laptops

To order laptops, you need to find out which:

See step 6 to find out about safeguarding responsibilities, laptop ownership and providing IT support.

Internet access

To request internet access, you need to find out which eligible care leavers do not have fixed broadband.

You do not need to complete this step before moving on to step 3.

3. Complete and submit your contact details form

We need some information from you to set up your Get help with technology service account, even if you’ve used the service before. You’ll place your orders using this account.

If you’ve been nominated to order for your LA, you’ll receive an email with a link to an online form. You need to use that form to tell us:

  • your full name
  • your local authority's name and 3-digit code
  • the delivery address we should send your laptops to (all devices will be delivered to the same location at your local authority)
  • the person we should contact when we deliver your laptops

If you’ve been nominated to order but have not received an email with a link to the form, contact us.

Once you’ve completed and submitted your form, it will take up to 5 working days for us to set up your account. We’ll let you know as soon as you can sign in and order.

4. Order laptops and request internet access

Once you complete steps 1 to 3 and your ordering account is set up, you’ll receive an email to let you know.

You can then sign in to the Get help with technology service to order laptops. You can also request internet access for eligible care leavers.

You can order all of your allocation at once, or place multiple orders.

If you order Google Chromebooks, you'll receive an email asking if you want us to supply Chrome Education Upgrades (Chromebook licenses). Find out about your options for securing Chromebooks.

5. Receive laptops

All of your laptops will be delivered to the local authority address you provided in your contact details form.

Most deliveries will arrive within 5 working days after you place your order.

6. Laptop ownership, safeguarding and providing IT support

Your LA will own these laptops when they're delivered to you. You'll be responsible for making sure they have appropriate safety and security measures installed and maintained.

Your LA can decide whether to temporarily lend or permanently give devices to care leavers.

Find out about options for lending or giving devices to children, young people and other organisations.