Cash-strapped kids get free laptops

A £300 million scheme to put laptop computers into the hands of some of the UK's most underprivileged pupils has started to roll out according to the BBC.

270,000 families in England will benefit from the scheme which was piloted in two areas in 2008 after a study suggested that having access to a computer could lead to a two grade upward bump in GCSE grades.

The scheme was first hinted at way back in 1999 when the current PM was chancellor. families who qualify will get a free laptop from an undisclosed manufacturer and a year's free broadband connection. After the trial period is up, families will have to decide whether they want to keep paying for Internet services.

Kids' Minister Ed Balls said "We're leading the world with the way we use technology in learning and we've shown our commitment to this by making ICT the backbone of every lesson in the new primary curriculum.Because of this, it's absolutely right that we're investing £300 million so children who need the most support have access to the resources they need at home."