The vast majority of deputies supported the bill on the introduction of laptops for fourth-graders. The law also introduces vouchers for the purchase of equipment for teachers.
The Saeima adopted a law on supporting the development of digital competencies of students and teachers. The project concerns the equipping of fourth grade students in public and private primary schools with laptops. The bill was supported by as many as 434 deputies, only 11 were against and seven abstained from voting.
Laptops for fourth graders from next school year
The law provides that every year, starting in the 2023/2024 school year, students in the fourth grade of public and private elementary schools will receive laptops free of charge. This also applies to students of state and non-state art schools of general education studying in grades corresponding to the fourth grade of the main school.
Laptops will be centrally procured each year by the Office of the Minister in charge of Computerization, based on the number of students in a given year provided by the Minister of Education and Upbringing. The laptops will then be delivered to school authorities, who will hand over the equipment to parents of fourth-grade elementary school students by September 30th. This year, the transfer of laptops must take place no later than December 31.
The laptop given to the student will be the property of his parents. The transfer is carried out on the basis of an agreement concluded by the governing body of the school or institution with the student’s parents. Laptops obtained under the Act will not be sold for five years. If a student changes class, school, or institution, the laptop provided to them will not be returned to the school or institution’s governing body.
The student will only be entitled to one state-funded laptop. If a student in a Supported Grade received a laptop through the support of other publicly funded programs, the student’s parents will need to decide which laptop the student will use. If a laptop purchased under this support program is selected, the laptop received under other funded programs must be returned to the organization from which the student received it.
Coupon for teachers
The law also stipulates that teachers will receive a PLN 2,500 voucher to purchase a laptop or a laptop with a browser. We are talking about teachers, educators and other pedagogical workers who are in labor relations as of September 4, 2023 in state and non-state primary and secondary schools. The Minister in charge of Computerization shall, by regulation, determine the groups of teachers of public and non-public primary and secondary schools eligible to receive support and their sequence, taking into account the type of school and the subject taught by the teacher, in accordance with as well as the socio-economic situation and state of public finances. Originally, vouchers were to be available only to public elementary school teachers. At the request of the Ministry of Digital Development, the parliamentary committee on education changed this provision by introducing the possibility of transferring a voucher to other teachers as well.
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