A supermarket giant is to provide 80 laptops to schools in Aberdeen in a bid to stop children from falling behind on lessons.
Asda has formed a partnership with technology provider Dell and is investing £2m to allow every branch in the UK to donate at least 10 laptops to a school in their local community.
Asda will donate 7,000 laptops to schools in the UK, which includes 620 in Scotland.
Each laptop comes with a tech bundle which features a headset and a mobile internet dongle with a data allowance of 20gb from Asda’s network partner, Vodafone.
The dongle and data allowance has been funded by a separate £500,000 contribution from the retailer’s charity arm, The Asda Foundation.
Laptops will also include a one-year warranty and technical support.
According to Ofcom, around 9% of children in the UK – between 1.1 million and 1.8 million – do not have access to a laptop, desktop or tablet at home.
These children are primarily from disadvantaged backgrounds and at risk of falling further behind with their education.
Roger Burnley, CEO and president of Asda, said: “It’s clear that digital exclusion is an issue affecting many thousands of children who attend schools in communities that we serve.
“These children have been disproportionately affected by the lockdown and are at risk of falling further behind their peers.
“We want to do all we can to help break down the digital barriers so they can continue their education remotely.”
Dayne Turbitt, senior vice president and general manager for Dell Technologies in the UK, said: “Digital exclusion is a growing global and societal issue, which is significantly impacting the UK as a result of the most recent national lockdown.
“As a global technology company committed to driving human progress, we want to help support families across the UK with access to devices, connectivity and the critical tools needed to fully participate in remote learning.
“By working alongside Asda, we can help champion digital inclusion for young people across the UK.”