Moray MP Douglas Ross has warned that some young people may miss out as home learning begins next week due to a postcode lottery on broadband connectivity.
Primary and secondary schools will shift to online classes from Monday, as mainland Scotland remains in level four restrictions with schools closed to all but the children of key workers and vulnerable young people. Moray Council has provided laptops and i-pads under a Scottish Government scheme, but there are concerns about connectivity in rural areas.
College and university students are also studying online – with no face-to-face teaching.
Several constituents have contacted Mr Ross since the announcement of the latest lockdown to point out that they struggle to even get the most basic broadband speed.
One college student living near Dunphail said the coverage was “atrocious” and the technical problems were hampering his ability to learn.
Scottish Conservative MP for Moray Douglas Ross said:
“People living in rural areas across Moray have long suffered from poor broadband connectivity.
“With home learning due to start from Monday, this will be a huge concern for many families.
“I have been contacted by constituents who are having difficulties keeping up with their studies in further education, as well as local businesses that are struggling to operate properly.
“I have repeatedly contacted BT, Openreach and both the UK and Scottish governments to try and improve the situation.
“The lockdown will bring all these issues into sharp focus. If young people cannot access a decent broadband connection, then they will face falling behind in their studies or missing out altogether.
“I am urging Scottish Ministers and Moray Council to do everything possible to ensure that no-one is missing out.”