Greene King donates laptops to children facing 'digital divide' in lockdown

Vicky Neale, headteacher County Upper School and Karrie Baugh, group service delivery IT manager Greene King

Vicky Neale, headteacher County Upper School and Karrie Baugh, group service delivery IT manager Greene King - Credit: Dave Gooderham

Schoolchildren without laptops have been offered a helping hand by pubs giant Greene King.

The Bury St Edmunds-based brewer has donated 110 laptops to schools across towns including Bury St Edmunds, Haverhill, Newmarket, Sudbury, Ipswich and Felixstowe.

It said it was keen to support its community in Suffolk and had decided to give them to the children most in need through the Unity Schools Partnership.

Greene King IT boss Karrie Baugh said schools were doing "an amazing job" with remote learning.

“Lockdown is really tough on everyone, but it’s particularly hard for those who are homeschooling without the right equipment," she said.

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"We hope this will go a little way to make it a bit easier for some of their students during lockdown.”

Vicky Neale, headteacher for County Upper School in Bury St Edmunds, said: “We are delighted to be the first of many schools within the Unity Schools Partnership to benefit from this generous donation.

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“We have many families who either require a laptop because they don’t have one in the household or because they are having to share with parents who are working from home.

"Either way, this will make a big difference to how they can access their remote education.”

Tim Coulson, chief executive of Unity Schools Partnership, said the donation would make a "massive difference" to students across its 30 schools, and offered the company its heartfelt thanks.

The company has made the donation - worth nearly £25,000 - after updating many of its devices before the onset of the Covid-crisis.

Its IT team overhauled each laptop, fitted new memory and wiped all data to meet the specification required by schools.

Earlier this month, Greene King announced plans to change pub names with racist overtones.

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