School community rallies to support laptop appeal

More than 130 laptops are being donated to local families in need thanks to the generosity of the Tonbridge School community.

Parents, staff, former pupils and other friends of the School have responded rapidly to its laptop appeal, which is assisting those who are in ‘technology poverty’ and do not have a computer for home schooling. 

Members of the School community have been donating both new and secondhand devices, including tablets, iPads, smartphones and even sets of headphones, as well as laptops.

In addition to the equipment which is being brought in to campus, Tonbridge has also set up a special fund for donations to the cause. Pledges currently exceed £40,000, which has enabled the School to purchase laptops from a supplier. These will be delivered to local schools in the area, ready for onward distribution to families, in addition to the other laptops and related devices which have been donated directly to the Tonbridge School appeal.

James Fisher, Tonbridge’s Deputy Head Co-Currricular, is leading the School’s appeal. He said: “Many local primary and secondary schools have told us about the plight of hundreds of children who either have no device, or who have to share one with several siblings. What was a disadvantage before lockdown has become a real barrier to their education, during this lengthy period of online lessons. 

“We wanted to play our part in addressing this desperate need that many families have, and the response from across the School community has been extraordinary. We look forward to getting these laptops and tablets into the hands of local schoolchildren as soon as possible.”

More information about donating to the fund, set up and managed by the Tonbridge School Foundation, can be found via the link.

In terms of donating equipment, those who live further away from Tonbridge and its surrounding areas are encouraged to support other local initiatives along the same lines. The BBC website has a summary of schemes in other areas. 

Pictured above: The School's Juliet Burnett with just a few of the donated laptops, which will be delivered shortly to local primary and secondary school pupils.