"There is a powerful link between poverty and academic performance. In 2012 only 37% of children eligible for Free School Meals got an A* to -C grade in English & Maths compared to 63% of all the other children; a 26% point gap (DfE)." Judith Burns, BBC News education reporter
"At the most basic level, lack of a home internet connection or a computer could mean that children struggle to research homework or complete coursework and are unable to access school websites which allow pupils to submit work digitally and receive feedback from teachers.”
Valerie Thompson of the E-Learning Foundation
Creating a level playing field
Starting in 2015, Mac Medicine is launching Computers for Schools. Clients can donate their old computers to Mac Medicine and in return I will securely erase all the data at no cost, ensuring your privacy is not at risk, before passing the Mac on to a local school.
Paul Beeton, Computing Leader of Learning, Primrose Hill School says :
Primrose Hill School has been helped greatly by the Computers For School scheme. We operate on limited budgets and have to prioritise carefully when deciding where to allocate technology.
Outlined below is a list of ways of how the children are benefiting from Mac Medicine’s donations so far:
Suite of Mac computers in the music room
This is being used for creative Garageband projects linked to the music and computing curriculum. We have 3 iMac computers in the suite, something that would not have been possible within the computing budget at Primrose Hill School.
Children with Special Educational Needs are benefiting from the use of a laptop which aids one-to-one learning in the classroom.
Donations to families
Primrose Hill School lies in the highest percentile of the deprivation index. With so much of the curriculum relying on technology use, and so many children having multiple siblings, Mac Medicine’s Computers for School scheme will provide invaluable donations so children can subsequent their learning at home with the use of a computer.
Parent 'Cyber Cafe'
As many parents do not have access to a computer at home, in January 2016 we hope to install a cyber cafe for parent use in the school reception area. This will be made up of donated devices from the scheme and will be made available to parents to view the school website, complete online forms such as secondary school applications or to use with their child as they drop them off in the morning or after a school club. "
Frequently asked questions…
Are you interested in any old computer?
Only Apple computers within a certain age and condition will be considered useful to a school or family. Macs from 2010 onwards are suitable for donation.
What about iPhones and iPads?
These devices are also very useful to schools and can also be traded in to put money towards computers.
When you say the data on my old Mac will be "securely erased" what does this mean?
When disposing of a computer or passing it on, it is vital that your personal data is permanently erased first. Simply erasing a drive is not enough. Mac Medicine applies a 3-Pass Erase. This is a very secure option that writes random data across the drive and meets U.S Department of Defense standards for securely erasing data.
How do you select the schools you donate computers to?
The Computers for Schools scheme marries two communities; clients of Mac Medicine and schools local to my office in London NW1. To begin with, I will only donate to one school at a time and for long enough to make a real difference. I will then move on to another local school.
How do I get my old computer to you?
Since this is a non-profit scheme, I ask that clients either drop computers to me in person or use a courier. A typical courier delivery in London will cost between £10 and £15.
Your old Mac could make a huge difference to a child in a a London school. If you would like to donate, please get in touch.