Aberdeen Council draws up radical plans to buy mobile phones for pupils

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A Scottish council which is currently consulting on a series of controversial school closures sparked outrage by announcing proposals to spend an estimated £860,000 to ensure every pupil has access to a smartphone in the classroom, according to the New Scotsman.

Education chiefs at Aberdeen City Council are drawing up radical plans to buy mobile phones for pupils whose parents cannot afford to purchase a device.

The aim is to allow both primary and secondary pupils to use their handsets in class, utilising new wi-fi systems which will enable schoolchildren to connect their phones to the internet for classroom research.

A mobile device management system will filter which sites pupils can use and they will not be allowed to use their handsets to make any phone calls.

The scheme will cost £30,000 to put in place at each of the council’s 12 secondary schools and £10,000 at each of the 50 Aberdeen primaries. It could be rolled out on a school-by-school basis after the summer break.

Opposition councillors, angry parents and members of the public yesterday united in condemning the proposals.

However, David Leng, the council’s head of schools, defended the scheme, saying it was time schools stopped trying to prevent pupils using their phones and instead embraced their potential as a tool for learning.

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