As a student, you know how expensive a quality education can be. The cost of tuition, housing, books, and devices continue to increase.
Even since I graduated college back in 2009, the cost of education can be ridiculously high leaving students without many options but taking on more debt.
If you’re a student that comes from a low income household, this article was written for you with the intent to inform you of the various programs available to help you get a free tablet and utilize it for your educational needs.
Free Tablet Programs For Low Income Students
There are a number of programs in the US where students can get free tablets for their education.
Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP)
The ACP is a federal program that provides eligible households with a discount on their monthly internet service and a one-time discount on a connected device, such as a tablet or laptop. To be eligible, households must have an income at or below 200% of the federal poverty level or participate in certain government assistance programs, such as SNAP or Medicaid.
Computer Technology Assistance Corps (CTAC)
CTAC is a non-profit organization that provides refurbished computers and tablets to low-income individuals and families. Students can apply for a free tablet through CTAC by filling out an online application and providing proof of income and residency.
Step Up For Students
Step Up For Students is a Florida-based non-profit organization that provides scholarships to students in K-12 schools. Some Step Up For Students scholars may also be eligible to receive a free tablet and internet service through the ACP.
Individual school districts and programs:
Many school districts and programs also offer free tablets to students in need. For example, some schools may offer tablets to students in low-income families or to students with disabilities. Students should contact their school or district to learn more about any available programs.
In addition to the programs listed above, there are a number of other organizations and businesses that offer free or discounted tablets to students. For example, some internet service providers, such as Comcast and Spectrum, offer free or discounted tablets to low-income families with children in school.
Applying For Free Tablets
The application process for free tablet programs varies from program to program. However, there are some general steps that are common to most applications:
Gather your documentation
Most applications will require you to provide proof of income, residency, and student status. You may also need to provide proof of participation in certain government assistance programs.
Complete the application
The application will typically ask for basic information about yourself and your household, such as your name, address, contact information, and income. You may also be asked to answer questions about your education and why you need a tablet.
Submit your application
Once you have completed your application, you will need to submit it to the program administrator. This can be done online, by mail, or in person.
Wait for a decision
Once you have submitted your application, the program administrator will review it to determine whether you are eligible for a free tablet. You will typically receive a decision within a few weeks.
If you are approved for a free tablet, you will be contacted by the program administrator to receive your device. You may need to pick up your tablet in person or have it shipped to your home.
Is the application for free tablets different for students?
Yes, can be some differences between applying for a free government tablet as a student and applying as a regular individual. While most of the income-based programs are the same, if you are applying through a non-profit or educational organization there can be some GPA-based requirements.
Students may have additional eligibility requirements, such as being enrolled in a school or having a certain GPA. Some programs may also prioritize students from low-income families or students with disabilities.
The application process for students may also be different. For example, students may need to submit a letter of recommendation from a teacher or counselor.
The type of device that students receive may also be different. For example, students may be more likely to receive a tablet that is designed for educational use.
Overall, the application process for students is generally more streamlined and focused on ensuring that students have the resources they need to succeed academically.
What kind of tablets will students receive?
The type of tablet that students can expect to receive through a free tablet program will vary depending on the program and the availability of devices. However, most students can expect to receive a tablet that is suitable for educational use.
This means that the tablet should have a large enough screen to easily view documents and websites, as well as a long battery life so that students can use it throughout the day. Usually this also comes with an Android operating system.
Some of the specific features that students may look for in a tablet include:
- A large display (at least 10 inches)
- A long battery life (at least 8 hours)
- A durable design
- A stylus or pen for taking notes and drawing
- Access to educational apps and resources
Some of the most popular tablets for students include:
- Apple iPad
- Samsung Galaxy Tab
- Microsoft Surface Go
- Lenovo Chromebook Duet
- Amazon Fire HD 10
Keep in mind, not all free tablet programs will offer the same selection of devices. You should carefully review the program information to learn about the specific devices that are available.
If you are a student and are interested in receiving a free tablet, I encourage you to research the programs that are available in your area. You can contact your school or district to learn more about any available programs, or you can search online for free tablet programs for students.
As a student, I know how expensive new devices can be. You need something to take notes, do your homework, and read your textbooks. If you’re a low income student, there are multiple options to obtaining a free tablet through various government and education programs.
I hope this guide serves as a helpful guide to furthering your education, please feel free to leave any comments with any further questions.