Thousands of families without broadband internet are to be given vouchers for six months’ free wifi access in scheme run jointly by the Department for Education and BT.
Nick Gibb, the schools standards minister, said the move was designed to ensure the education of the poorest children in England did not suffer because of coronavirus. Some 10,000 families could benefit from the vouchers, according to BT.
Tuesday’s announcement followed a report that millions of pupils have done very little schoolwork during lockdown. The UCL Institute of Education found one in five children had spent less than an hour a day on study since March.
Though many of BT’s roughly 5.4 million hotspots are in petrol stations, high street shops and banks, a spokesperson told The Independent: “The vast majority, approximately 5.1 million, are in homes and provide coverage for surrounding residential areas.”
Voucher recipients will use routers belonging to