Scottish Borders Council Defends iPad Decision
Scottish Borders Council defends decision to hand out iPads to schoolchildren after having them called into question.
18:20 08 April 2019
Scottish Borders Council has defended its decision to handout iPads to every pupil in years P6 to S6 for school and home use after having them called into question. Opposition councillors sought clarification at March 28’s full meeting of the council and have asked for more details about the £15.7million project such as how much will it cost to provide WiFi access for all nine of the region’s high schools, keep thousands of iPads charged and train teachers how to use them in lessons.
Councillors Shona Haslam said: “Wifi is already available in all Scottish Borders Council schools.
“The survey work is being contracted via CGI, who have appointed a contractor.
“The council’s agreement with CGI is that initial wifi surveys will be completed by the end of next month.
“I must admit that I am a bit confused. The opposition and administration both held budget working groups. Both groups agreed that this is a good thing to do. It reduces the poverty gap, it improves attainment, it reduces the burden on teachers and it provides digital learning access to ensure our young people are equipped for the future.
“And yet now the opposition are attempting to grill the administration on this policy. “I had assumed that during the budget-setting process the opposition were as robust as the administration, but these questions clearly show us that they were not.
“Inspire Learning is seen as a way of enhancing the process of teaching and learning. It is not envisaged that there will be a requirement for teachers to transfer existing materials in bulk. “The iPads can be used to access existing online educational content and they can be used for sharing feedback on pupils’ work without the development of new materials.”