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£11m IT investment boost for Swansea’s schools

Pupils across all schools in Swansea will benefit for many years to come from a huge investment in digital technology.

It means teachers and pupils will be able to make more use of online resources and sets them up nicely as the new curriculum is rolled out in Wales.

Since the start of the pandemic Swansea Council has purchased an additional 11,265 devices including laptops, Chromebooks and iPads to add to existing equipment in schools.

All schools have also seen an upgrade in their digital infrastructure during the past 15 months to improve Wi-Fi coverage and digital storage making their IT systems quicker and more resilient and allowing teachers to make even more use of technology during lessons.

As well as spending £4m on the upgrade Swansea Council has also set aside a further £7m over the next decade so that schools do not have to fund replacement equipment or maintenance from their existing budgets.

Swansea Council’s Cabinet Member for Education Improvement, Learning and Skills, Robert Smith said the investment would help pupils across all schools develop vital skills that will be with them for the rest of their lives.

He added: “Before the coronavirus pandemic began the Welsh Government announced a £100m investment to improve the digital infrastructure of schools in Wales and in the last two years more than £4m of that has been invested in Swansea.

“This investment to improve the skills of pupils and teachers and prepare for the new curriculum took on a new significance last year with the challenges the crisis brought and the need for pupils to learn from home.

“As well as investing in thousands of new devices our IT teams have worked closely with colleagues in education and schools to upgrade infrastructure.

“This year Swansea Council has committed to investing £7m to future proof these improvements ensuring that headteachers and governing bodies do not need to worry about the cost of replacing devices or maintaining the infrastructure in the years to come.

“Digital technology is more important than ever and this huge investment ensures that pupils and staff have the right equipment available to work and learn to their full potential.”