COVID-19 Emergency Response
COVID-19 restrictions are requiring many thousands of students to study remotely at this time. With most of the global education and workforce population also operating remotely, this is placing unprecedented demand on laptop supply chains globally.
While students, pupils and teachers can engage with remote learning using devices including Desktop PCs, Tablets and Chromebooks for example, for those schools who have determined that laptops are required and in order to ameliorate current laptop supply situation for schools, the Department is advising schools of two mechanisms to aggregate purchase orders from schools for laptops under centralised bulk provisioning processes. The generation of a bulk order will enable prioritisation of laptops orders with manufacturers, and so expedite delivery over and above timelines that are generally available at present.
HEAnet – Single Provider Direct Drawdown Framework for the Provision of DELL Laptops for the Education Sector
One such bulk provisioning process will be facilitated by HEAnet via its direct drawdown mechanism for Dell laptops which has been established by the Office of Government Procurement (OGP). Further information concerning this mechanism can be found here HEAnet_provisioning .
Department of Education Single Provider Direct Drawdown Framework, with Datapac for the provision of HP Laptops for Schools and ETBs.
Datapac will also facilitate such a process via the Department of Education Direct Drawdown Mechanism for HP Laptops, established by the Office of Government Procurement (OGP). Further information concerning this mechanism can be found here Datapac_information.
Please note that the reaching of an aggregate bulk order volume is a prerequisite to this provisioning approach, and we would encourage schools to avail of this mechanism as soon as possible to ensure timely access to laptops. This is a unique service being offered to assist schools in addressing the challenges presented by this period of school closure owing to the Covid-19 emergency.
Schools are also advised to support the continuity of learning and encouraged to make available existing devices to students who are unable to access classes because there are no devices available. In this context schools are advised to maintain a register of devices, the students/pupils/teachers to whom each has been loaned and a log of confirmation for return of each device. As these devices are property of the school all schools should put in place an agreement of understanding for the loan of a device to a student and it will be recommended that an undertaking to return the device to the school, when remote learning is no longer required, is obtained from either from the parent/guardian or the student in the event that the student is 18 or over.
In terms of post-primary, a survey involving approximately 28% of post-primary schools, demonstrated the number of students with no access to devices and the number of devices in the system is similar but that the student’s school and the school with available devices was not necessarily the same. In an effort to support all Leaving Cert students the Department are asking that neighbouring schools work together where possible to provide for these students as soon as possible and not to wait on delivery of new devices.
Teacher Education Policy – Digital (ICT Policy Unit)