More families gain tech edge at home

Nelson families have been presented with home computers to help them better connect with their schools and communities.

At a graduation ceremony 22 families were given refurbished computers after taking classes in computer studies held at Auckland Point School.

Computers in Homes, a nationwide scheme, provides low-income families with computers and an internet connection so students can continue learning while at home and their parents can be better involved with their learning.

The programme is supported by the 2020 Communications Trust who provide a recycled computer, internet access, training and technical support to families who did not have their own.

Parents of students from Auckland Point, Nelson Central, Victory and Hampden Street School attended classes at Auckland Point School and had to pay $50 to take a computer home.

Auckland Point School principal Sonya Hockley hosted the classes and the graduation when the families were presented with their own computers.

Hockley said the programme taught computer skills such as how to send emails, blog, and use programmes like Skype.

She said families were "fantastically motivated" to do the course.

Having computers at home helped them to stay connected with the school and the wider community, as well as continue learning outside school

"Our children are really digitally savvy and really expert at computers, so we are teaching them to use a variety of applications in schools like different software and hardware to use a wide range of digital learning."

She said it was important that students could continue accessing what they learnt at school when they went home and that parents could interact with their children's work.

The Computers in Homes scheme was launched in 1999 aimed at low-income communities in New Zealand. Since 2000, 5000 families have been supported nationally through the scheme.

The Nelson Mail