Secondary school gives 1,200 pupils a free iPad 2 at a cost of £500,000
A secondary school is facing questions after it handed out iPad 2s to each of its 1,200 students at a cost of almost £500,000.
Honywood Community Science School in Coggeshall, Colchester in Essex is believed to be the first school to make such a significant investment in the technology - at a cost of about £400 per iPad.
However, campaigners from the TaxPayers' Alliance want to know how the school, which was granted academy status in May, funded the move.
A former headteacher of the school said the investment sends the wrong message to students.
Meanwhile, the school declined to answer questions on how it will benefit students, saying it wants to protect pupils' safety.
Headteacher Simon Mason said the investment represented 2.3 per cent of the school's budget.
He has posted iPad tutorials on website YouTube to teach students how to set up Apple accounts and download applications.
In addition he has asked parents to donate £50 towards insuring the iPads.
Emma Boon, Taxpayers' Alliance campaign director, said: 'iPads are a premium product at a premium price, there will be a huge cost of buying, repairing and replacing the devices that will inevitably be damaged or go astray.
'Buying new technology for schools has to be about educational results, not gimmicks.
Try explaining that when all the class is playing Angry Birds
Better than my sisters school I guess, who have a pot of money for special needs students from the government to help their education, and the school's spent it on other things Thankfully the parents have found out.
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