NEARLY 1,000 laptops will handed out to young people in need to ensure they can continue their education during lockdown.

The computers along with 200 4G routers are currently in storage to be distributed to disadvantaged children.

Bolton Council has allocated 849 laptops and 100 4G routers for care leavers and children with a social workers. Town hall chiefs are also handing out 137 laptops and 90 routers for disadvantaged Year 10 pupils.

The laptops are part of a scheme funded by the Department for Education.

The scheme, which launched in April, was designed to support pupils who couldn’t attend school during the coronavirus lockdown but didn’t have a computer at home, and for digital studying during the summer.

Bolton Council’s opposition spokesperson for children’s services, Cllr Martin Donaghy, said: “I welcome this, it will be of great benefit to children who require these laptops, it will be a Godsend to them.”

Although he questioned how long it had taken to deliver the laptops, as the announcement was made in April, he added: “They will be used over the summer months, which is of huge benefit to those sitting exams next year.”

It is likely in Bolton that the council will given ownership of the laptops to schools which, when they are no longer needed by the children, will be able to be used by other youngsters.

A council report, which will be discussed next week by councillors, stated: “The primary reason for the device allocation is to enable vulnerable and disadvantaged pupils to access education remotely during the covid period, when they cannot attend school.

“The pupils using the devices need to use compatible software in line with the individual school setting.

“Any other option would delay the roll-out and children/young people would not gain the benefit of using the device at a time when they need it the most.”

The allocation for Bolton forms part of more than 10,000 laptops and devices being distributed across Greater Manchester.

Education bosses say the laptops will be crucial for upcoming GCSE students to use to study during the summer months.

In Oldham, more than 1,200 devices have been distributed to schools.

Cllr Shaid Mushtaq, cabinet member for education at Oldham, said: “This offer was originally made in April and it has taken them some time to ensure this actually reaches those most in need but we are now in a position to supply to schools to pass on to students.”