Bridging the Digital Divide: Stepney All Saints School Receives Additional Funding for Laptops

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We’re making sure every student has their own laptop, to support short-term remote learning and build up digital skills for the long term.


At our October Grants Meeting, the Portal Trust’s governors reaffirmed their commitment to education and student wellbeing at Stepney All Saints School, awarding funds to ensure each of its students will have a laptop to support their learning.

This new award builds on our work with the school during the Covid pandemic, highlighting the impact of collective efforts to bridge the digital divide. Portal Trust funding, combined with the commitment and expertise of the school community, brought about positive change in a challenging environment.

While the World grappled with the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, we took action to support students at Stepney All Saints with a grant of £165,000, which ensured that all pupils had a new laptop to carry on their learning when the school site had to close. This support addressed issues of limited access to technology: a challenge that many students faced during lockdowns and remote learning periods. The grant aimed to prevent any student from falling behind in their studies due to a lack of essential resources.

The new laptop grant is a rapid response to the recent closure of Stepney All Saints School due to the discovery of RAAC concrete. While work is underway to fully and safely reopen the school site as soon as possible, the situation has temporarily disrupted the students' ability to attend school in person every day.

The new grant of £42,000 will make sure that any student who doesn't already have a laptop from the 2021 offering will receive one now.

Research by Ofcom in 2020 showed that 21% of children from lower-income families had no access to a computer at home. This Digital Divide became an acute issue during the pandemic, but also has broader consequences for young people entering a jobs market in which IT skills are increasingly essential.

The Stepney All Saints School community looks forward to using these new laptops to empower students and enhance their educational experience. With our ongoing support, the school is better equipped than ever to navigate the challenges of the digital age while ensuring that no student is left behind.