Thousands of Milton Keynes schoolchildren are given free iPads to enhance their learning

13 local schools are in the scheme
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A multi-academy trust has provided thousands of pupils at all 13 of its schools in Milton Keynes with their own free iPads to help them engage and learn.

Inspiring Futures through Learning (IFtL) has given the devices to 4,600 children from Year 2 upwards as part of its special Futures Project.

The move is part of the trust’s commitment to investing in immersive learning technologies for children and driving equal opportunity.

Young pupils are Holmwood School in Milton Keynes enjoying their new iPadsYoung pupils are Holmwood School in Milton Keynes enjoying their new iPads
Young pupils are Holmwood School in Milton Keynes enjoying their new iPads

And the iPads will help to “enhance their engagement, skillset, and outcomes”, say trust bosses.

IFtL schools in Milton Keynes Ashbrook School, Chestnuts Primary School, Fairfields Primary School, Glebe Farm School, Heronshaw School, Holmwood School, Lavendon School, Olney Infant Academy, Olney Middle School, Rickley Park Primary School, St Mary and St Giles Church of England School, Two Mile Ash School, and Whitehouse Primary School.

The trust also has three schools in Corby.

It says providing the iPads was a “significant financial investment” but the devices are a supplement to, not a replacement for, other approaches to teaching and learning.

IFtL Digital and Accessibility lead Shaun Hughes said: “At IFtL, we have committed to a shared vision centred on children and their futures, and we owe it to the pupils we teach to educate and inspire them to make use of digital technology in the right ways.

“We want to use technology as one way of increasing equity in learning and accessibility of the curriculum. We aim to unlock opportunities for our learners to find out more about our world, learn together when geographically apart, and develop skills for a world that will continue to advance in ways not yet dreamed of in their lifetimes. We are committed to investing in immersive learning technologies for children that are accessible, strengthen engagement and learning for each child, and provide a wealth of digital skills.

“There are several reasons why we have taken this step. We know that the world we are preparing children for is changing quickly. It is more than possible that their first role in the workplace will be one which did not exist when they were born. Every job they ever have will rely on their skilful use of technology. The pace of change is unprecedented and the digital competencies that we can confer through the routine use of technology in every aspect of their learning will be important preparation for this.”

The programme has been supported by iPad introductory lessons across over 120 classes, as well as the development of video tutorials and information for families.

“The Futures project is not something we have embarked on casually. We have collaborated with several different trusts, during which we have learned from their expertise and experiences to ensure we approach this project suitably prepared for success.

"We are certain that iPads will make a marked difference to the quality and pace of learning at school, and convinced that this project will make a significant contribution to children’s education, which is otherwise impossible to replicate.”