Blankenberge schools stick to ipad requirement for all pupils

Two secondary schools in the seaside resort of Blankenberge are sticking to their guns and insisting that all pupils are kitted out with an ipad when they go back to school in September. The school managements are staying the course despite objections from several parents.

Management of the Sint-Pieter College and the Sint-Jozef Commercial School announced last March that pupils would require the Apple tablet computer in order to follow lessons and do their home work.

A group of parents filed a complaint because the price of the measure was unclear. The Flemish Education Commission sided with the parents, but the schools are not backtracking.

School manager Nicole Vancoillie: "We considered postponing the project, but procrastination will do greater damage than good. Only ten of the 700 affected parents protested. We've been making preparations for a year now and we have also conducted a pilot project."

"We appreciate that we could face a sanction, but we want the school year to start in a serene atmosphere. We will await the outcome of our appeal. The complaints are about the preparatory work and consultation, not about the pedagogical value of the project."

No pupils will be left out. Parents who need to can call on a special fund to pay for the ipad.